Thursday, September 22, 2016

Thursday morning things

* Almost wrote Wednesday. Man, this week has felt long, though.

* It's still ungodly hot here. Too hot for the first day of fall. That's SUPPOSED to change but I am not trusting weather reports right now as they have been so wrong these past 2 weeks. Supposedly it will rain Sunday and then we will be in the 70s next week. I hope so but I am not getting my hopes up.

* Random thought of the morning: "TL:DR" (where you give a short summary up front) is the opposite of clickbait. Also, what is now called "clickbait" used to sometimes be called "burying the lede." How times have changed. (We did a unit on newspaper writing in sixth grade (? I think it was) Language Arts and I remember the big thing was: put the main point up front because (a) people might not read the whole story and (b) the story might have to be cut for space)

I also have a demonstrated fondness for the concept of Teal Deer, so I would naturally feel some opposition to clickbait. (And also: clickbait is annoying to me. It's annoying in the way a "news story" online is where, when you get there, you have to watch a video that takes five minutes instead of reading the paragraph or two in a matter of seconds).

* This is an example of a clickbaity story: What Knitting is Doing to Your Health That You Probably Never Thought About.

Here's the TL;DR - it is POSSIBLY good for your mood and brain. (Possibly, because most of the "studies" cited are convenience samples, which aren't worth the paper they're printed on. Or the electrons, for electronic surveys). I guess there are a few more solidly done papers that do suggest it can relieve some of the symptoms of anxiety and the like if they are low-level.

(Hm. Maybe I self-medicate with knitting. And maybe those weeks I'm too busy to knit I'm unhappy not JUST because I'm too busy, but because I'm also not knitting?)

But anyway: one of the dumb little crusades I'm going to take on now? When ever I link a story with a clickbaity title, I am going to give the teal deer. Because I enjoy sticking a pin in the clickbait balloon and I also dislike how we've entered Peak Clickbait, to the point where local news, reporting on things that COULD be immediate safety concerns, does them clickbait style. ("You won't believe what happened on Highway X!" and it turns out there's a MASSIVE accident that's shut it down)

* I got an e-mail from the textbook publisher yesterday: one of their other editors is falling behind, could I take over some of their work? It would have meant the same kind of pay as for the previous chapters.

I thought about it because money.

And then I said "no." My grant supplies got ordered yesterday, and when they come I will have to set the project up and start monitoring it. And I admit: coming in and working the better part of a Saturday on eye-crossing editing work isn't quite my idea of fun. The money for the first whack of it was nice and will fill the hole left by being paid adjunct wages for the summer, and more money would also be nice, but I really need the time more at this point.

And also, I have to admit, having all my "free time" eaten by extra work isn't good for me. I need downtime.

So I sent them back a very polite e-mail thanking for their interest (hoping they will read between the lines and understand it to be: "please think of me in the future when you have more work") but saying that at this time I could not take it on.

I feel good about that decision.

* This weekend I am taking mostly off. I don't have anything looming; I wrote the exam for next week yesterday afternoon, I don't get another whack of grading in until Monday. One thing I'm learning is that work expands to fill the time you give it and so maybe it's a good idea to grab some relaxation time when you can.

Not sure what I will do. I DON'T think I'm going to drive to Texas; that roundabout detour got really old really fast and I also learned that the road I use as a detour is apparently Drugs Central, and while it's UNLIKELY people will be out there conducting deals early on a Saturday, still.

And also: the level of crowding in the stores last week and the level of human rudeness kind of broke me from wanting that kind of interaction for a while. There's still an *outside* chance I consider driving to Ardmore or one of the intermediate towns in my state and do some antiquing instead.

Or I just stay here - I noticed the big old office-furniture store that was closed FOR-EVER has reopened as an 'antique mart' and while my heart is still broken for downtown (after losing the quilt shop and after the paperback exchange left and that building has sat empty for nearly a year), maybe I can get my antiquing fix there.

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