school’s out forever …

… I wish.

But classes are over and I have a week of glorious freedom before the final essay drafts come in.  Yay!  I’ve actually been thinking about my *own* work.  <gasp>  Because I have plenty of it.

I’ve only ever hinted at my occupation here on the blog … because, well, it’s mostly about knitting, right?  But my work affects my knitting and my blogging (or at least the time I have to devote to both), so it doesn’t seem completely out of line to talk about what I do.  I’ve also been shy about revealing too much about myself … I didn’t want to come off all freaky-weird and overly bookish.   Remember: knitting. 

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Anyway, all this to say: I’m a graduate student in German at [ETA: an Ivy League University] and have been for four years.  That means I get paid to read books in German, write about books in English (I’m no native speaker), and teach German.  This sounds idyllic.  What they never mention in the viewbook, though, is the crippling, soul-destroying doubt and insecurity that will plague your every moment, thought, presentation, paper, etc.  Not to mention the guilt that will suck the joy out of the moments you’re not working.  At least for me.  Because I got it in my head that I wasn’t here to learn but just to *be* smart.  Very different things.  This last year (thankfully over) was an orgy of failure and rejection: no fellowships, no writing, bad exams, no idea why I was here or what I was doing or what I was interested in.  I basically stopped working, focused on teaching, and dreamed on escaping to … anywhere.  An academic mess, really. 

Things have been better lately, though.  Not that I have any answers, but I’m okay with my bad exams, my master’s degree that took 3 1/2 years to get, my slow progress towards a dissertation proposal, my incomplete coursework.  I’ve never been an academic mess before … now I’m figuring out how to stop feeling like one.  It’s no self-help journey of discovery; it’s more about doing the work I’m supposed to be doing. 

I’m moving to Germany in the summer for a year of study at a university there and even though I’m scared about a lot of things (especially losing Mr. B.), I’m super-excited about getting out of town.  [ETA: Ivy League Town] may be lots of things, but it’s never really been the place for me — academically or otherwise (friends and the wonderful Mr. B. excluded).

So here I am on campus, trying to get some stuff done.  Like reading.  See:

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  Basement cafĂ© on a beautiful day. 

But not before I took some pictures of my knitting … as I was rushing out the door.

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Lizard ridge squares 1 – 3.

I have to say, I was one the fence about square #3.  The alternating green was somehow too emphatic — it is just so very green; the ridges don’t blend like in the other squares; the colors are so starkly separated.  But it’s growing on me. 

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The purple at the top kind of saved it for me.  This is the Noro 88  I used for the Halfobi way back when; alternating ends of the ball definitely gave the square a different feeling. 

I’m certainly not suffering from anything approaching miter-madness, but the squares are awfully fun to make.  An eighth done, only 21 more to go …

I’ve also determined to keep on slogging with my sister’s Rebecca wrap sweater with eyelets.  Why it has that little appropriate-for-beginners flower on it is beyond me. 

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Nemesis.

I ordered some more ggh soft kid in purple — a year or more later and from a different store — and got the same dyelot.  So now I have enough matching purple mohair to … what?  Make lots of sticky, hairy garments?  I was thinking I might search for something appropriate in my newly-acquired Victorian Lace Today.  But first the cardigan.  It really is cute: check out Anna’s longer version.

To change subjects: Sockapalooza 4.  I’m excited and nervous … first real socks and all; first exchange, gifty thing.  I found some lovely yarn and lots of possible patterns, but it still needs some thought.

Okay.  Time for real work.      

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One thought on “school’s out forever …

  1. When you figure out how to stop feeling like academic mess, please tell me. I took some time off between my master`s degree and my postgrade studies. Big mistake. Now I have no idea what I want to do anymore. Or where. What part of Germany are you going to?
    Anyway, I hope you will have a better luck with the Rebecca Cardi this time. I saw a version in stockinette stich only on someone`s blog. That was cute too.

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