Wednesday, January 23, 2008

First Day is Over

Well, all the fun of a very uneventful break is finally over. The new semester started today and I taught my first class. Jesus Christ, the temperatures here are freezing! I thought my face was going to fall off while I was just walking to the bus stop. When I got home this afternoon, I had to check to make sure that my important bits were still intact, lol.

You just gotta love the first day of class. It doesn't matter that I've taught this class several times, I still get the jitters on the first day. I was so absent-minded today. I forgot my class roster, and I took the wrong textbook with me to class. Fortunately, I didn't need the textbook. Of course, the laptop LCD projector gave me fits, but that's typical. I'm a medievalist, we're not supposed to be gifted with technology.

Ugh, my poor reef tank looks like ass. All this time, money, and effort put into this tank, and I'm not liking what I'm seeing. The fishies are very happy and doing great, but my corals are not doing so well. I had a huge hair algae outbreak this fall that completely covered everything. I gave away a lot of my SPS corals because they weren't looking so great, but then I ended up still losing the ones that were looking great. But, the hair algae has finally subsided, and I just ordered new lightbulbs. Damn, replacing three 400 watt metal halide bulbs isn't cheap! Ouch, that hurt. I'm hoping that the new bulbs will make a difference. I'm also getting the wireless wave controller for my Vortechs, so that'll be a fun toy to play with.

On a related note, I ended up getting two pairs of glasses at the optometrist. They were just running a sale that was too good to refuse. Well, actually, I just got one pair of regular eyeglasses with all the bells and whistles (special thin material, special coatings, etc), then I got a second pair made into prescription sunglasses. Someone stole my last pair of sunglasses because they saw the Armani case. Bastards, I hope they couldn't see straight and walked out into some traffic. I'll keep a closer eye on this pair.

Friday, January 18, 2008

Fun is Over!

Well, my winter break officially ended today. I had my course meeting and I have a lot of prep work to do now before I start teaching on Tuesday. I've taught this second semester beginning French course several times (this is #7), but the format has changed a little. I'm very relieved because I was originally placed in a classroom that had no multimedia or laptop projectors, and since this course is built around using all sorts of media, it was going to be a huge PITA to drag all the equipment in every day. Fortunately, my room assignment was changed.

I'm off for an eye appointment here in a little bit. It's time I get some new glasses. I don't think my eyes have worsened any, but it's been a few years since my last exam. Also, I really want/need some new glasses. Hopefully I won't come home with anything too dorky.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Whew...the Holidays are Over!

Well, the Holidays certainly went by quickly this year. I can't really complain since I wasn't in the mood to celebrate them much this year. I guess I had the single man's Grinch attitude this year.

I didn't do much for Christmas this year. I went home to my parents' home in Indiana and stayed there through the New Year. I wanted to come home before New Year's, but I ended up catching a nasty flu, so I stayed a little longer than I had intended. My brother, sister-in-law, and their two kids came home as well, so it was mayhem for a few days. Oh well, the craziness it a part of what makes the Holidays fun. I was also able to hang out with my two best friends from high school and their two kids.

Since returning to Madison, I've done nothing much except work on my thesis (pouring through research). I've also been playing with my Christmas gift to myself: A Canon Rebel XTi digital SLR camera. I got some nice lenses, including a macro lens to get some close up shots. I've never used a SLR camera before, so everything is new to me. Here are a couple of good shots I came up with.

Singe, the psycho kitty looking all cute and demure:

And here's a macro shot of the water outlet siphon on my squamosa clam:

I still got a lot of improvement to make, but it's a start.