Friday, October 8, 2010

train of thoughts

The Laurel Train Station, which makes Laurel seem more quaint than it really is.
P.S. Laurel is where I live.

I’m sitting on the Marc train as I write this (but not when I post it, since the Marc train doesn’t have wireless, which is just as well). The Marc (I think it’s supposed to be MARC but I feel it’s impolite to scream at my readers) is my favorite part of the commute. Sometimes I listen to This American Life and stare out the window, but mostly I just read. Today I’m writing a blog post.

Today was a mixed day, although I’m not sure how much to tell you about it… I would love to restrict my readership, like some of my fellow bloggers have done, but I’m not quite sure who reads this blog and I don’t want to accidentally shut anyone out. Instead I’ll just try to be tactful, which isn’t nearly as much fun.

Break for announcement: The conductor just got on the loudspeaker to say that if Alaina Efstein is on the train she should come speak to him. But get this: the same announcement was made this morning. Alaina Efstein, where are you? Announcement concluded.

The morning started well: I got a job! I already have a job, actually… I’m doing some exceptionally boring (not tactless, just true) freelance writing for Bull Run Media, a company that produces a series of industry magazines. Once a week or so I’ll receive an email containing a digital file of an interview (nope—I don’t do the interviews. I just write the story. Living the dream) from which I construct a 500-800 word article profiling the company featured. My first assignment came this week. It was awesome. The gentleman in question (whose company really does need to remain nameless) was an extremely taciturn, one-word answer kind of guy. The most animated he got in the whole article was when he was describing how “Obamacare” is going to ruin small and medium businesses. Not quite the angle we’re going for. I’m told that most interviews are much easier. Let’s hope.

Anyway, that’s not the point. Today I got another job, with a non-profit called Kid Power DC. I am thrilled. I’m going to be working with underserved middle school kids in the DC area, and it sounds really open-ended. I’ll help tutor, but I also get to supervise and plan events. I’m thinking we stage The Tempest. Kidding… kind of. Kid Power also has this fabulous program set up called “Veggie Time,” where the kids work in community gardens and sell their produce at local farmer’s markets. Um, where do I sign up?

So that was a pretty good part of the day. But every story must have a villain, and this one appears in the guise of the Graduate Fellowship Office, which is trying to rescind my Federal Work Study award. Fetchers. Apparently, I’ve had the award too long without using it, so they’ve given it to someone more deserving. Trouble is, I didn’t really find this out until I’d accepted the interview. So I explained everything to everybody and I might get a new award. Fingers crossed on that, okay? Because I really, really want this job. And by the way? I could not be more pissed about the whole situation, but I have to be nice, because I need these people to fight for me. Bummer.

Time Lapse

Anyway, that's as far as I got before we got to Laurel. The rest of the day (after the Graduate Fellowship Office, before the train) was okay... I had lunch with a new friend, and went to my really awful Literary Theory class (awful because of the structure, not because of theory itself). Then I came home and Ross and I went shopping for our camping trip tomorrow, which I'm really looking forward to. The end!


  1. Two jobs? How do you have time for everything? The Kid Power program sounds really interesting and fun.

  2. I totally read "underserved middle schoolers" as "UNDESERVED middle schoolers." If you'll notice, that's exactly one letter different, but the meanings....oh, man. I howled when I noticed my mistake. After all that stuff about being tactful in your post, I was shocked to see you unleash such thinly veiled vitriol towards students you haven't even met...and then I put my glasses on and read it again and figured my bad self out. Sweet girl, I miss you. That is all.

  3. perhaps you could do a poll to see who wants to keep reading, and make your blog password protected? i know a few people who have done that!
    - mel

  4. I support blog lock down. People who want to keep reading will become a fan. I'm a fan. I'm IN! :)