Wednesday, December 11, 2002

After a day of grading papers, I want to do absolutely nothing directed or useful. Instead, I have to muck out the guest room. Mom arrives tomorrow; seven other family members and friends will roll in on Friday. I also have to make time to have my increasingly big hair made small. I can't imagine any other day or night, before Saturday, when I'll have time.

Grading is always traumatic. I don't enjoy being an authority figure. I also have a hellish reputation among my students for marking down essays and papers because of problems with spelling, grammar, and syntax (one of my students used a feedback sheet to remind me of this in three-red-pepper detail this week). The explanation that I only mark down if I can't understand the answer doesn't generally go too far.

And, one of my Arizona millipedes died this week. Millipedes don't seem to thrive under my care; I think I'm going to donate the survivors to the local nature center. The centipede, fortunately, endures; I still think it's about to molt again. I don't want to think about how big it's going to be after the next ecdysis. But I love my big bugs; my friend Nick, who works with ants, keeps needling me in a friendly way about what he perceives as my fondness for immense arthropods over small ones.

"They're Julie-rific ...."


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