Sunday, September 16, 2007

The holding pattern breaker

09 Jun 2007

So, I've almost finished writing submissions for this semester. I've written 4 x 4000 word essays in 4 weeks. That sounds like a Dr Seuss book.....

I've written 4 essays, says the chick in the chair.
I've written 4 essays of 4000 words, says the chick in the chair
I've written 4 essays of 4000 words in 4 weeks, says the chick in the chair
I've written 4 essays of 4000 words in 4 weeks, now vodka me, demands the chick in the chair!!

Yep, I'm sure I read that as a child.

Now that my essays are written, I only have 130 undergrad clinical psychiatry exams to mark. Simple......get that vodka ready. Actually, I shouldn't be that harsh. Last year, some of the answers gave me giggles. For example, when asked to define schizophrenia, one student wrote, "it's when a person is really sneaky".
But, by far my favourite two answers were in a question asking the students what they would ask somebody whom they suspected may be suicidal and they needed to assess risk. My favourite answers were:
1. How come you can't cope with life when everybody else is doing fine?
2. Have you thought about what your life would be like if you were dead?

The weekly lecture is at 8am, so I only get half the student group. Let's hope all of the above were in the other half, cos I'm pretty sure I'm not teaching them that!! Just in case, I rewrote the exam for this year.

Now that the semester is effectively over, the holding pattern that is my life is more flexible, and I felt like making a few changes around the place. I threw out the rotting vegetables in my fridge, I cleaned the plughole in the shower (well, I asked my cleaner to do that), and I thought I'd find a new myspace layout. Just as well my brother's an optometrist cos I think I've burnt my retinas out looking at all those sparkly layouts.

So, I apologise that my new layout may create some corneal scar tissue, but it was the best of a bad lot. I wanted a simple layout that reflected me in some way. My choices were:

- any variety and combination of fairies, hearts, teddy bears and sparkles. What the!!!! Who likes that shit? Oops. I just finished watching Dr Phil, and he said that women were supposed to have inner elegance so....Who fancies that shit, ma'am?

- Something that requires me to be a "gangsta pimpin bitch". I'm not sure if I qualify for that. Can someone please send me the job description.

- many, many, many layouts featuring cannabis. Now, that may sound like a good idea now, but if I'm ever in any sort of trouble, you just know that "a current affair" are going to show that on telly as proof of my evil ways. Just in case, I said no, and went back to look at the gansta pimpin bitch page.

- pretty little kittens and puppies, with quotes about friendship ("friends are like flowers. Beautiful flowers. Friends are like flowers in the garden of life")...These were cute, but I was concerned some of you may lose your job when you vomit on your work computer. So, thinking of you, I declined. (confession: the above quote was not from a layout, but a hymn I learnt in grade 1...indelibly inserted in my brain)

- penguins. Now I was leaning towards these, cos I believe the penguin should be the patron saint of the paralympics. Let's face it. They can't fly so they have impaired mobility compared to most other birds, and they appear to have some form of gait abnormality. I might be wrong here, but I don't reckon a penguin could negotiate a flight of stairs. And, have you seen their upper limbs. They'll need a helper to carry the groceries. So, this was my page of choice, but alas, they sucked.

So, you get what you're given.

Speaking of the paralympics, my old team, The Gliders (Australian women's wheelchair basketball team), have just got a myspace page. You'll find them in my top friends, so add them! Add them now!!! Add them now, says the chick in the chair!

And, speaking of sport, now that I've retired, I've found a new hobby.....heckling. Seriously, it's fun. On a Tuesday, I go to my friends' netball with a travel mug of hot chocolate (I accidentally spike it with cointreau), and yell out random stuff whilst doing the official score sheet. God knows what the actual score is at the end of the game...cos I sure as hell don't.

Having spent 15 years of my life in sporting venues, I thought I'd heard all the good sporting advice...until last Tuesday at nettie. It was after the game (and after the mug of hotty chotty with coinnny tronny) so my memory is a little sketchy. But, I think it went like this:
Tash: "we're playing tomorrow night at an outdoor court"
Nat: "well I better remember to wear pants then"

Mmmm.....yes. I'll leave you with that.


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