Monday, August 01, 2005

Adventures in Lots of Different Things

On Thursday evening, I taught both karate classes again. Our teacher was visiting his parents in North Carolina last week, so I taught everything all week. People got inspired to spar, so we did a lot of sparring. Unfortunately, I jammed the middle finger of my right hand while sparring. This was after accidentally getting kicked in the ribs. I'd rather get kicked in the ribs. It hurts less.

I took some ibuprofen that night after I got home, but in the morning my finger was puffy and fairly painful. So I called the student health center, and they told me to come on over. It was such a beautiful day that I decided to walk. On my way over there, I saw an older woman having a personal chat with the grass of somebody's yard. I slowed down as I passed her, because I wasn't quite sure what she was doing: weeding, maybe? I was particularly confused because I thought I knew the people who lived at that house, and she wasn't one of them.

She saw me and asked me to help her get up. She had tripped on an uneven piece of the sidewalk, and fallen there. I helped her up, even though it was very painful to grip her hands in mine, and I escorted her to her home. She had a cut on her face and her glasses were all bent up. She was also very embarrassed. I tried to reassure her that even I've had my fair share of tripping accidents, and that it was nothing to be embarrassed about. She apologized for causing me to divert my route, and I told her it was no problem at all. Then I asked her if she wanted me to call 911 or anything, and she said no.

Not fifty feet from where she was lying were some men doing construction work. I wonder if they didn't see her fall, and I wonder how long she had been lying there before I got to her, or how long she would have lain there had I not been walking that way. I keep meaning to call the city and report that uneven sidewalk. She showed me where she had tripped. One slab was jutting above the next by more than an inch, I would say, and at that time of the morning, there was a shadow over the crack, which obscured it.

I continued my journey and made it to the student health center. The doctor examined it, splurged for some x-rays, and determined that it was not fractured. I had figured as much, because there is a certain type of pain associated with a broken bone, and my finger did not have that. I was more worried about whether I'd damaged the muscles or ligaments or whatever. He just told me to ice it down a couple of times a day, and not to do anything that hurt.

I got to my office and sat down, when the phone rang. It was the folks from the academic office downstairs, asking for one of my officemates. She wasn't in the office, and they said she had agreed to host a visiting student, but if I'd like to do it, I could. I had already packed a lunch (three peaches, cut into quarters, delicious!), but I was game because I didn't really want to do any work. So I trekked down to the academic office, only to meet my officemate there. It was fine, though, because by the time we made it to lunch, the party grew to six: five women hosting one male prospective graduate student. It was a lot of fun. I've always enjoyed hosting prospective students. It was kind of sad to realize that this young man is probably the last one I'll ever host. But, I'm sure I'll get a chance to host prospective job candidates wherever I end up working, and that will be fun, too.

I spent the afternoon proofreading my dissertation once more. On Thursday, I went out to lunch with my advisor's secretary, who encouraged me to just finish the stupid thing and have it ready to deposit at my leisure. So I actually finished it up on Thursday. I made it through most of the way on Friday, and am finishing up the proofreading today. Then, subject to my advisor's approval, it should be ready to deposit whenever I decide to do it.

I spent most of the weekend role playing. It's been a while since I really got into a character to this degree, but now I am addicted to playing Perfidy MacDiarmid, a young woman with itchy hands in a city sundered by civil war. I don't know if anyone still remembers their standardized test vocabulary list, but the word perfidy means "treachery." She started out being neutral to the civil war and unconcerned with others' suffering, until she had a death experience and saw what she faced in eternity for being that way. Now she cares a little more, although she's still more concerned with getting vengeance for the death of her family and acquiring lots of money. But she actually gave a hopeless paladin a pep talk and a reason to live, and saved the city from a plague of undead (to which she had been alerted by the hopeless paladin) by activating an ancient artifact.

Between role playing sessions, I baked like a maniac. I bought a bag containing 18 ripe bananas for $1.35 the other day, and decided to bake various banana loaves and the like. We have a lot of flour that needs to be used up before we leave here. We can't really transport it to our new home, so I figured out that I could bake banana bread with it, that I could then freeze and we could take along as a snack when we drive there. And we could eat some of it right now too. Also, I could continue the "Bread of the Month Club" (now renamed "Bread of the Every-So-Often Club") with my fearless younger sister.

So far I've used seven bananas. I baked a loaf of chocolate chip-banana bread and one of lemon-banana bread (two bananas each), and a dozen banana-walnut muffins from The Joy of Cooking (three bananas). Tonight I plan to swing by the store and get more paper muffin cups and bake some more muffins, because they were easy, delicious, and pre-portioned (unlike loaves).

1 comment:

Euroyankee said...

Here's a tip for some unusual, yet surprisingly yummy, banana bread from my friend Stacy. Take a normal banana bread recipe, but instead of walnuts add pistachios and along with the spices add a little cardamom.