Thursday, January 27, 2011

Spring Semester Ramblings

This January I started my fourth semester of Mandarin Chinese. It's absolutely mind-blowing to think that I'm still here and still getting A's in this class. The longer I continue, the more apparent the "holes" in my language study are. Because I finished an entire year of Chinese in 10 weeks a lot of information was only sticky-noted into my brain ... in place just long enough to get a decent grade on the test. All of that is definitely catching up to me now. I'm doing my best to go back, review characters, re-memorize grammar concepts, and catch up on some listening practice. I am horrible at listening and understanding -- which is so embarrassing! My test scores are great but my conversational skills are debilitating. (Not to mention a "performance anxiety" I suffer from.) This is the sort of thing that only gets better with practice -- just like public speaking. Time to dig down deep, find my brass ovaries, and stop being a noob.

I miss British Romanticism so very much. I'm taking a Whitman class now because it was the only literature class that fulfilled the requirement this semester. I'm pretty sure that Whitman is more in love with himself than any man, woman, or child could ever be. (I would say that he screams his own name during sex, but I'm trying to keep it clean here, folks.) Maybe Whitman will grow on me, but now I'm seriously regretting an entire semester dedicated solely to Whitman. Guh. Why couldn't they have an entire semester dedicated to Byron, William Wordsworth, or Coleridge??

I have to take a 100 level PE class in order to graduate and since I have horrible arches and am afraid of drowning that leaves only one option for me: Indoor Cycling. I have to be able to bike 10 miles in 20 minutes by the end of the semester or else I am doomed. Also, I need to be able to do 60 super-crazy-uber-particular sit-ups in 2min and 60 super-crazy-uber-particular squats in 2min. SO. That means this semester if I don't work my ever-lovin' tail off I will fail this class and have to take it again. Also, if I don't get skinny from taking this class (and all of the outside of class training I have to do) I will sue my body for criminal neglect.

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