The Cast of Keeping Up With Appearances

Back to School!

The cast of Keeping Up with Appearances

Once upon a time, I had blog and sometimes, I would post once or twice a day. It would drive me nuts when folks would start blogs and update them twice before effectively “driving into the sunset.” Then Twitter came around and ruined me entirely for blogging. What was the point of journaling/extended posts when microblogging could do the trick on a real-time impulse?

And yet, here I am, six weeks out from my last post, guilty of not keeping up with appearances. Or rather, I’m now finding that life gets in the way of blogging in the way I did 20 years ago– especially after removing Twitter from the equation. So here’s a brief update (because I do, in fact, have at least one rather lengthy post in my draft queue).

First, the school year started and I’m teaching two in-person courses, as well as back-to-back Fall I/II online courses. Obviously, course prep/grading takes up a substantive amount of time. I’m also chairing our Assessment of Learning Committee as our business school heads into its AACSB re-accreditation year.

Second, I’ve been working on some manuscript revisions, as well as getting other manuscripts in order. I’ve got a lot to get off my plate before my sabbatical.

Third, the Jewish High Holidays just started, which is one of my main psychological markers of when the year has “begun” as well. Now it feels like things are in full swing. But it also means that the year is a-swing on the personal front with shuttling kids to different afterschool activities.

Fourth, I’ve found a place to live in Bogotá and have been trying to get medical paperwork taken care of so I can get my visa and book flights. I’ve also been getting various travel gear such as rolling duffel backpack, packing cubes, purified water bottles (especially if traveling outside the city), etc. We’ve had some informational briefings for orientation and there I definitely have anxieties swirling about what to expect once I get there and start working.

Back in 2003, I took French immersion for 3 weeks, 5 hours north of Montreal. And as January comes closer and my Duolingo streak extends to a year, I’m remembering how mentally exhausting the immersion experience was. The anticipated language barriers are contributing a bit to anxiety.

I’m also reading a lot on methods that I haven’t really done since my Ph.D. program, trying to learn more so I can write up an IRB protocol for my research (which is the point of my Fulbright/sabbatical). The research pivot is also contributing additional anxiety to the mix.

So there are definitely a lot of big feelings this semester, alongside the usual chaos of a semester. And all of that has caused me to overload out of the polished posting frequency I envision continuing. Hopefully, the further we get into the semester, the better the focus, the more natural this becomes as part of my writing flow.






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