Life in Omaha (in Scottsdale)

daily existence away from chicago

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Friday, April 29, 2005

My version

Perhaps more information should be dealt out regarding the move to Arizona.

When January freezes the rolling hills of Omaha, Judy starts underlining the job notices in the back pages of the Journal of the American Veterinary Association. This year, after seeing the roof in danger of leaking once again (after 72 hours of repairing the ceiling, painting the bedroom, and rolling out new insulation), she pointed out the multiple opportunities in Phoenix. They all promised high salaries, quality of life working conditions, and exceptional benefits. In some cases, signing bonuses were offered.

Having been the poor slave who performed all the labor in the above mentioned 72 hours, I told her to go ahead and inquire about the jobs, just to see what they really meant. More information is always better.

The I travelled to
  • Cincinnati
  • and remembered what it was like to really push myself intellectually, something I wasn't doing at Dana. Or, at least not the way I wanted to push myself. All my energies were diverted into teaching. I struggled to find any time to write scholarly work.

    As Judy and I talked, we realized that Dana wasn't going to be the last stop for my career, but it was making the next stop nearly unreachable. We thought it would be worth the risk to quit Omaha, head west for the money, and open up some time for me to write.

    We are gambling, but we didn't feel like we risked a lot. More money makes the prospect of not teaching acceptable if not any less worrisome.

    Who Writes: At the Desk

    Going around the room: at the desk
    from the Valve

    It’s been a little while, but I still feel we’re not best friends yet, so if you could just answer the following questions:

    1. Do you compose on the computer? Why or why not?
    Oh definitely the computer. When the magic gets hot, its like the thoughts just appear on the screen. The hands, the keyboard--not even there.

    2. Does carbon paper make you nostalgic?
    nope, just itchy.

    3. Do you have a stationery and/or a pen fetish?
    I have 8 glass quills that I still think I will write with. And sometimes I do write letters on high quality paper, pen dipped in an inkwell.

    4. Do you remember the first “grown-up” book that you ever read?
    nope. Does the Hobbit count?

    5. What embarrassing book from the distant past brings back a flood of recognition?
    The absolute devotion I had after reading either Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead or Allan Bloom's The Closing of the American Mind

    6. Are you a scholar, or a critic? Or neither?
    Can I be both--I do criticism for newspapers, scholarly work for...well, apparently not for much reason at all.

    7. When did you decide to become a scholar/critic/neither? Did you decide?
    1993, when Judy was going to graduate and I had to figure out what I was going to do with life.

    8. Has blog writing affected the way you write in other venues? The way you read?
    No, not at all.

    9. Do you still read blogs or other webpages even if the design/print is unappealing or difficult to read?
    Yes, but not as often.

    10. Have you ever bought a book because of the cover/design? Which book(s)?
    Nope, I don't think so. But I was strongly influenced to by Bad Subjects when I saw the book itself.

    11. Do you think these questions are irrelevant?'
    8-10, yes.

    Wednesday, April 27, 2005

    Life in Phoenix?

    The rumors are true. Ciela is going to become an Arizona baby. I finally get to move south to the desert heat. I have accepted a position at a small animal clinic in Scottsdale and we have our house on the market. We have been swamped with preparations for the move, our jobs in Omaha, and corralling a baby on the move. We still don’t have a place to live in Phoenix or a moving date, but we will keep y’all informed. Hopefully the warm sun, mountains to hike in, and Cubs spring training will make this all worthwhile. -Jude

    Monday, April 25, 2005

    Dana: the hub of the film criticism universe

    My colleague John Lyden makes the cover story of USA Today. Dana, still the center of it - 'Star Wars' universe revolves around Vader

    Monday, April 18, 2005

    Spell with flickr

    Spell with flickr

    A Man without a Home

    Your Linguistic Profile:

    50% General American English

    25% Dixie

    20% Yankee

    5% Upper Midwestern

    0% Midwestern

    Funny that I am from the Midwest, have lived my whole life in what most people would call the Midwest and yet I rank nothing in the Midwest category. Louisville still must be the South, at least linguistically, but I'm sure people in Tupelo would consider Louisville in the Midwest. Then again, we were on the wrong side of the Ohio during the War of Northern Aggression.

    Friday, April 15, 2005

    Babes on the Beach

    Babes on the Beach

    A life of ease

    A life of ease

    Ciela in FL

    Ciela in FL

    Pilgrim/Heretic: Nebraska day

    So I'm bouncing around blogs instead of putting together a grammar test and I come across this bashing/celebration of Nebraska. Those of you who remember jo(e) from the post-election fireworks will see her comments on the state of Nebraska are surprisingly provincial from somebody who likes nature so much. (ah, who am I kidding--I'm leaving the state myself. Not exactly a vote of confidence).

    What is weirdly coincidental is finding out that Pilgrim/Heretic is related to Mick's, my favorite bar in Omaha. The boundaries of unreality are so permeable. One never knows when one will be dropped into a fiction.

    Friday, April 08, 2005



    Thursday, April 07, 2005


    Phoenix as a city seems the embodiment of a society that has forgone the luxury of reflection. It acts. It acts immediately. And it acts without proper concern for long term consequences. It piles up more and more and more. And it subsequently has greater and greater wealth. But its spent on the most meretricious environment I've seen outside of Vegas.

    And yet, I may move there. Funny that.

    Wednesday, April 06, 2005

    Book Meme

    from Psycho Kitty via profgrrl

    If you had to pick five fictional literary characters who would best embody you (in some aspect, either now or in the past), who would you choose?

    Jan O'Deigh, The Gold Bug Variations, Rick Powers
    title character from Straight Man, Richard Russo
    Codi, Animal Dreams, Barbara Kingsolver
    J. Alfred Prufrock, T.S. Eliot
    Hazel Motes, Wise Blood, Flannery O'Connor
    (these were difficult and probably none to reliable)

    Which five books (any genre) have had the greatest influence on you?

    The Gold Bug Variations, Rick Powers
    Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov
    The History of Sexuality, Vol 1. Michel Foucault
    Getting What You Came For, Robert Peters
    The Geography of Nowhere, James Howard Kunstler

    What is your favorite commonly censored book?
    Lolita, Vladimir Nabokov

    If you would ever burn a book (God forbid), which book would it be? Why?
    The Bible except for Leviticus. You gotta love Leviticus.

    Are you a monogamous reader, or do you like to read around?
    Monogamous by nature, but my job forces me into reading multiple novels at once. On the personal front, always one novel at a time. Still getting through Cloud Atlas each evening.

    Last one, and be honest: Do you skip ahead to the ending?
    No. As if the ending is important. I prefer to be lost in the funhouse.

    Friday, April 01, 2005

    George W. Bush or Chimpanzee?

    This has no redeeming value, but I laughed out loud a few times in my office.
    George W. Bush or Chimpanzee?

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