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Beagle147 (profile) wrote,
on 1-23-2006 at 12:31am
Current mood: calm
Music: "Gravedigger" -Dave Matthews
Subject: Writing & Love Paper
First day of classes and I got an assignment for a 6,000 word paper. We had to write any 6,000 words, they didn't even have to be in English, and he's not collecting it. About half of it ended up being a huge journal entry, so I figured I might as well post it in the journal. So here's the first 3,500 words, written last night and today.

In my infinite ability to procrastinate, I have left this 6,000 word assignment go until less than 48 hours before it is due. Frankly, Iím surprised Iím starting it this early. To be fair, I am writing while watching Cruel Intentions. Who names a kid Sebastian anyway?

Classes have started, and they seem to be going well enough. Writing and Love, well, weíve only had one class, yet I have more homework for that class than any of the others put together. Itís not the kind of homework that I mind though. I kind of enjoy an excuse to write every day, even if itís about matters as trivial as I know this paper is going to include. Iím really not much of a writer at all, but maybe I will be at the end of the semester. Even as I write that sentence I doubt it. I think my mind is more geared towards science and math than towards more creative things like writing, art, etc. I have just kind of been using writing as a means by which to vent frustrations and organize thoughts. The more I write in my journal (my ďnonlineĒ journal, which isnít published for most of my friends to see), the more depressed and angry I think it is. I donít consider myself a very angry person at all, but I keep bitching about stuff in my journal. I think these past two weeks have just included more small frustrations than usual. I havenít been writing about crises like last year, rather more minor conflicts that arenít important enough to bring to the personís/peopleís attention(s). As far as other classes go, Social Problems is exceedingly boring. The teacher is very young and has a thick accent; he spends most of his time reading verbatim from his notes, which I assume come straight from the book. I assume because I havenít cracked open the book yet. Actually, I havenít cracked open any books yet. I think that may catch up to me in the form of a chem quiz Tuesday and a bio test February 3rd. However, Rohald, the Social Problems professor, has admitted that chapter one is boring, and he has promised that the class gets much more interesting after most of the definitions are out of the way. I havenít decided yet if I believe him or not. Bonus points for the class because Joakim Noah is in it. Though I try to avoid it, I too fall victim to the celebrity syndrome. I donít know that his presence will make me go to the class though. It seems pretty easy, and it is at 8:30 in the morning, three times a week. Thatís probably just not worth going to. I think itís going to turn out a lot like wildlife issues last semester, which turned out to be one of the best classes Iíve taken, if only because I ended up with a 102% without showing up. Hopefully Social Problems goes the same way.

Chem is pretty much what I expected. My professor is like a cartoon character. He sounds a lot like Wallace Shawn (the voice of Rex from Toy Story), and he constantly makes over-the-top bad jokes. For example, when we were learning about ICE tables, he said, ďThis subjectís cool, man. ÖGet it, cool?Ē Crickets. A cartoon character is the only way that I can think to describe him. Heís just so exaggerated and over the top with everything he does. As far as Bio goes, I wish my bio teacher were as entertaining as my chem teacher. He gives us all the notes in advance, so as to lower motivation to go to class, not to mention actually listening as he drones on. In addition, he uses PowerPoint, so he keeps the lights down. Itís one of the hardest classes to stay awake in. There are little to no consequences for not paying attention, and my lack of motivation is really coming through. Thatís bad, though, because I need good grades in sciences. This is the first professor that Iíve had that is remotely like the professors I had envisioned before taking any college courses. He seems moderately uninterested in actually teaching, I think he just took the job for the research opportunities. He was going on the other day about this theory he and his wife have about mutations in mitochondria causing aging. I donít know, I wasnít really listening. Bio lab doesnít start until next week, so I havenít gotten a taste of that yet, but I got a full dose of chem lab. The actual lab was alright, it wasnít too bad. The bad part came in the fact that I had to work with Navela. I donít really mind her all that much, but we werenít exactly friends in high school, and we havenít spoken since May, so it was a little awkward. To make it worse, she didnít bring her lab manual, because she didnít read the syllabus, so she spent the entire time just copying out of mine. I donít usually mind all that much when people copy my stuff, or at least thatís what I tell other people, I guess, because this certainly rubbed me the wrong way. I think it was just the fact that she did it constantly for three straight hours.

Well, Iíve just written almost a thousand words, and have yet to say anything interesting.

I havenít felt very interesting lately, just kind of there. I havenít been doing much but going to classes and reading. I canít get my nose out of those damn Harry Potter books, so I spent about three hours today writing a fan fiction. I donít even write fan fiction. But I guess I have now, as itís currently about 4,000 words. But it should help me with this assignment, as I plan on tacking on the end of 2,000 words of rambling. I wish I could write more creative stuff. I enjoy fiction writing; I just get frustrated at the fact that I have so much trouble coming up with interesting stories. I have no problem writing things that I think are masterpieces, until I have trouble staying awake to reread them. Tonight Liz was very interested in my fanfic, but I think maybe that gives me false hope. Itís not even like I want to become a published author or anything, I just want to come up with a story that I really enjoy writing. Not a fanfic, something that I have come up with. Maybe if I think about it more actively, now that I know itís something I want to do, something that I enjoy doing. The problem that I keep running into though is that I just suck at creative writing. Iím decent at writing essays, but anything thatís not guided to some extent just becomes incredibly dull and boring. Then I wonder if itís a self-fulfilling prophecy. I think if I can just come up with one character and his/her situation, Iíll be able to go from there.

My biggest stressor the past few weeks has been my lack of roommate for the fall. I had a great plan, until Kim got rejected from UF. Itís getting very difficult to find someone that I want to live with, who wants to live with me, and likes large, hyper dogs. Iíve gotten plenty of offers to live with people, but all of them on campus. Hopefully Iíll be able to put an ad up on the prevet club web page or something. Otherwise Iím not really sure where to go from here. I definitely do not want to live on campus again, because I need to bring Sasha with me. Every time I go to the prevet club meetings, I am a little jealous of the people who bring their dogs with them. I want to bring Sasha with me. I love going places with her, and she loves getting out. If I can find a roommate for next year I know Iíll have so much fun with her in Gainesville. Sometimes I think of how I lived for 14 years before I got a dog, since Iím having such difficulty doing it now. Then I remember the countless conversations I had with my parents over those years. I donít know that you could call them conversations, actually. I was desperate. I just have to have a dog. Thatís it. Fish are nice, but GusGus doesnít hold a candle to Sasha, obviously. Iíve thought about getting something with fur, but Hilary is allergic to pretty much everything, and most furry things that I could keep in the dorm are nocturnal. It wouldnít be fair.

Iím quickly running out of things to write about. I am just that boring.

In March I am hopefully traveling to Michigan State to go to the prevet symposium. It sounds really amazing. Itís pretty much a convention of about 600 prevet students from around the country. ďAttendees will experience dynamic laboratories and lectures, interactions with other pre-vet students, and a chance to further their understanding of the role of veterinarians across the globe.Ē Saturday is filled with two labs and four lectures, and Iíve looked through the programs and chosen some Iíd like to check out. Hereís the short list:
Dealing with Parvovirus in Dogs - Overview of the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of parvovirus.
Intestinal Foreign Bodies in Cats and Dogs - Intestinal obstruction due to the ingestion of various objects can cause life-threatening issues in dogs and cats. The diagnosis, and surgical cure will be presented.
Zoo and Wildlife Medicine and Management - The veterinarian's role in zoo and wildlife related careers, with focus on required training, responsibilities, and job opportunities.
Ethics and Veterinary Medicine - Ethical issues you will face as a student, a practicing clinician, and a member of an important public profession. Issues range from docking tails to cloning racehorses.
Animal Welfare Assessment - Discussion of different animal welfare indicators, and the impact to animals.
The Business of Being a Veterinarian - Exploration of what you need to know about business to be successful in a veterinary practice.
Out of those lectures Iíd have to choose four, assuming that it will line up right in the schedule. Iíll have to check on that. The labs I have figured out, and I hope that I can do both of them.
Zoo Tour and Darting - A tour of a local zoo and the opportunity to practice darting.
Basics of Suture Tying - Come learn the basic suture patterns and act like a doctor.
Iím really excited about these programs, so Iím really hoping I can go. I brought it up to the parents this weekend, and they seem to be in favor of my attendance. The problem is going to be in the fact that it costs about $450 to go because of the plane fare. I think I can cover most of it with my earnings from winter break substituting, and maybe the rest can come from my National Merit stipend. Hopefully my parents will pay for at least some, but I canít realistically expect them to do that. Iím just glad that I worked a bit during winter break, rather than sitting at home doing nothing.

During my phone conversation yesterday, my mom also mentioned that Gayle contacted her about my plans for the summer; ďrecruitingĒ I believe were her words. I had to tell her to let them know Iím not really sure about the summer. I feel like I should, but, I mean, honestly, itís January. Itís not even the end of January, itís the middle of January. I still havenít made a decision about taking Organic Chemistry over the summer. I know itís probably in my best interest to take it then, but I frankly just donít want to stay in Gainesville all summer. The grass is always greener, I suppose. For some reason, there are more stresses living alone that replace the stress of parents. Plus, a lot of my friends will be home this summer, and I didnít get to spend a lot of time with them over winter break. I really would like to work camp again this summer, not to mention the fact that Iíd be making $2/hour more than I did last summer. I do, however, need to get a job with a vet, preferably Boca Greens. Iím going to go over spring break and see if theyíll hire me for May. I was thinking perhaps I can work part time at camp, and then can fill in the time with Boca Greens. It will all depend on what theyíre willing to hire me for. I donít necessarily like the idea of working two jobs over the summer, but Iíd enjoy both jobs, and I wouldnít complain about having the extra cash, especially since itís not cheap to get an apartment. The rent shouldnít be too bad, but Iíd also have to furnish it, and take care of Sasha.

I was thinking yesterday about when I was substituting during winter break, and the kids seemed to be so confused as to whether I was a kid or an adult. They must have asked me twenty times if I was married or if I had children. I think in kid-world there are kids and there are parents. I was their teacher, so I couldnít be a kid, but I had told them I wasnít a parent. It took me a while to understand why they had such a hard time grasping the fact that I was 19, it was as if they had never heard of college. Now that I realize where they were coming from, though, it makes me see more clearly the position that weíre all in. Itís kind of this transition state, sometimes I feel in limbo. Iíve spent my whole life preparing for something, but I feel like Iíve never actually gotten anywhere. You spend the years before school preparing for life, you spend elementary school preparing for middle school, middle school preparing for high school, high school preparing for college, now Iím preparing for vet school. In eight months Iíll be twenty. I never thought Iíd be twenty. Even though that feels really old to me, I still have another seven years of preparation ahead of me. Schooling, I should say. Seven years ago, I was in sixth grade. And after Iím finished with school, Iím still not sure Iíll be done preparing. Will I always be preparing for my next patient? For a better job? For my own practice? Is the point of life to constantly prepare for whatever is just out of your reach? Even if you do reach the place youíre shooting for, thatís usually about the time you start a family. Then you spend all your time preparing your children for the life you just had. On the other hand, maybe itís not preparation; maybe itís just constantly bettering yourself and trying to reach that next level, never growing complacent. I keep thinking of the Dave Matthews song, ďGravedigger.Ē I think the online journal community has conditioned me to think of songs for all of my moods and thoughts, not that this is necessarily a bad thing. ďSirus Jones, 1810 to 1913, made his great grandchildren believe you could live to a hundred and three. A hundred and three is forever when youíre just a little kid, so Sirus Jones lived forever.Ē I think this line goes back to the little kid aspect I mentioned before. I mean, obviously Sirus Jones didnít live forever, because he died in 1913. His great grandchildren know he didnít live forever, because they were there when he died in 1913. Still, Sirus Jones lived forever.

This is an excerpt from one of my favorite stories ever. I guess itís fan fiction in a way, based loosely off of The Phantom of the Opera.
ďBut Angel,Ē she said, ďhow can there be beauty in something so horrible?Ē
ďWas it the horror that created the music?Ē
ďThe swans were in pain. They were dying. And so they sang.Ē
ďEverything you say is true, and yet youíve missed the point,Ē he said. ďThe good, as they die sometimes catch a glimpse of the paradise to come. The swans who are mute all their lives, find their voice only at that final moment, for the greater glory of God.Ē
That passage really speaks to me, I love it. The fact that something can make a noise so beautiful as it literally faces its peril is a very powerful image. I really want to get my hands on The Phantom of the Opera novel. Itís not like itís difficult to find, I just havenít bought it. Sometimes I put off reading new things, and I have recently discovered (yesterday) that I just donít want to finish them. For example, I have this new book called Marley & Me that just looks outstanding. It was an impulse buy at Barnes and Noble. I havenít even picked it up yet though; Iíve been rereading Harry Potter books. I think the fact that Iíve already finished all those books is why Iíve been gravitating towards them. Iím not afraid of being disappointed with the book, I just donít want to be finished with it. Rereading something is just not the same. I have glorified the novels to the point that I donít want to even start them, they will be over in a single afternoon. This totally defeats the purpose though, because I end up not reading. I have to just find more books when Iím done. When I bought Marley & Me, I realized that I could not even remember the last time I had found something in a bookstore and bought it when it was not the exact item I had gone in to purchase. Iíve stopped buying books on impulse. I think this lost a lot of the fun of reading for me. Part of the enjoyment that comes from reading is the discovery of a really good book. That has been lost for some time now. I need to make sure that I remember it. I often blame IB for having crushed my love of reading, but I think Iím slowly regaining it. Call me a nerd, but I enjoy spending an entire afternoon reading in bed. I put as my away message the other day ďNever underestimate the power of a cup of hot chocolate and a good book.Ē That was a great day too. I just read forever, until I fell asleep. Sometimes I find that I am happier with less social situations. It makes me think that maybe I should give up the search for a roommate and live alone with Sasha and Kitty. It would be more expensive, but I think I might like that idea. Maybe Iíll run it past the parents and see what they think. Iím just a very independent person; I like my space. Also, that would ease a bit of stress about me worrying whether my roommate was annoyed with Sasha, and would just leave me in complete control of where I lived. The more I think about it, the more I like the idea. I remain undecided, however; I will see how my options play out.

So, in a crazy twist of events, I started reading Marley & Me while I was cooking dinner. It is amazing, and Iím only 20 pages in. I donít think itís a book that I can read over and over again, but Iíll enjoy it while Iím reading it. Reading the preface, I came as close as Iíve ever come to crying in a book. Seriously, dogs are a soft spot. It just reminded me so much of Sasha since Iíve had her since I was 14. Hopefully I can get 14 years with Sasha like Grogan got 14 years with his Shaun. Hereís the part Iím referring to though, purely for posterity:
The love affair lasted fourteen years, and by the time he died I was no longer the little boy who had brought him home on that summer day. I was a man, out of college and working across the state in my first real job. Saint Shaun had stayed behind when I moved on. It was where he belonged. My parents, by then retired, called to break the news to me. My mother would later tell me, ďIn fifty years of marriage, Iíve only seen your father cry twice. The first time was when we lost Mary AnnĒ Ė my sister, who was stillborn. ďThe second time was the day Shaun died.Ē
That part really made me miss Sasha, and with Trixie and Hershey both having their health problems, I really get concerned for her. I was so relieved and excited when the vet went on and on about what great shape she is in. I take such pride in the condition and health of my dog, itís like sheís my child. Whenever anyone pays her a compliment, itís like Iíve received three.

Alright, well, I seem to have reached the word count minus the fanfic, so Iíll stop for now, and will maybe write more later. Weíll see how it goes. So, without further ado, I present my meager attempt at fanfic writing.

Um, yeah, I'm not going to post the fanfic here. *hides*
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