Tuesday, August 09, 2011

I think that I have solved the various technical issues in Samsonville. The first, extending the range of my wireless router, took buying this new adapter. There are still only two bars, but that is enough to make a satisfactory experience and eliminate the cable lightening rod. This wonderful N router helped, but that adapter may have worked even with my old G router.

The second, getting home phone connect to find a signal inside the house so I don't have to emulate Green Acres* and have it cradled in a tree with a long cord to a phone on the deck (thereby creating a new lightening attractor) took a visit to the store, and a bunch of aggravating telephone calls to tech support. But the result is that on Thursday FedX will be bringing me a wireless extender to plug into my router (it will make a mini cell phone tower in my house) and a new blackberry bold telephone. The phone isn't much different than the curve I already have, but it is over two years newer so naturally it's more modern. I re-upped my cell contract at the same time, and so they were willing to give me the range extender for free. My, and other people's regular cell phones should work there now too, but we'll see. I'll be hooking it all up on Saturday.

This all makes it sound so easy! The first, getting the Internet wireless signal extended took years. Really. I worked on it so many times, installing everything, and then after all the equipment got fried by lightening. Hours on the phone, lots of money in replacement equipment, endless brainstorming, and more than hours working on the machines.

The second didn't take quite as much time but it did take some tinkering, as well as numerous phone calls to tech support, which eventually devolved into me threatening and becoming, as I say, "borderline nutjob." Why should it have to come to that? But the problem is resolved so now we're back to a lovefest. Or will be, after Saturday when I set it up and it works like a charm!

The only apprehension (and I guess I've made peace with it given that I am actively seeking to be surrounded at all times) is that who knows what all these wireless signals are doing to us. The mountains tried to block us...but we will have them at our peril.


A completely different subject: the clock is ticking, as the semester approaches. If I had a break of a week or even a couple days during the semester, it seems long and is welcome. But during the summer, being away from campus for nearly 4 months...when there are three weeks left it is almost enough to generate a panic attack! I get into major procrastination mode, and the preparation for the semester seems almost insurmountable.

Then, I devolve into owl, which is my natural tendency. How will I ever get up and be ready to go in the morning? What will I wear? I have to get dressed up? Dressed up is used in a relative way here, probably should just be "dressed." I have to wear respectable long pants that are not full of wrinkles and a decent shirt that is age appropriate, fits, isn't (too) weird, and is free of stains. I haven't really "dressed up" for work since 1998 (except for a short-lived spell in 2001). Bob teases me, says "Oh no! You'll have to wear clothes" when the semester is approaching, as he pantomimes getting dressed and the horror of it. I've worn nothing but shorts and comfy tee shirts since May. A while ago I linked this funny video. My litany of woe here should be added since it is equally pathetic! Even worse, I only have to go to campus two days per week. The rest of the time I can loll around in my winter attire - sweat pants and comfy tee shirts.

Of course, there is that bittersweet emotion, the end of the growing season approaching, the long winter looming. I like the four seasons, love Fall, don't mind winter or adore the heat as much as most people. But still I feel a little blue over the march of time, the end of the garden, the closing of the pool. And, there is always that unpleasant, gnawing sensation that not enough was accomplished, that things on the wish list are left undone.

Finally, I have a touch of (self-diagnosed) agoraphobia, and while the long, quiet, idyllic, peaceful summer may be good for self-reflection, it really whips my anxieties into overdrive. That first day back on campus is hectic even within my nearly student-free isolated enclave on the third floor; the campus center "mall area" is like an out-of-body experience. And of course all those faces get younger and younger every year :-). Say what? It's me? No way! How dare you?


We've been watching a lot of DVDs. The latest was Country Strong. Not a bad movie at all, interesting with good acting and pleasant music, but very, very sad. Don't watch it if you are not up to a downer!


*One of those cultural references that can never be made to students.

Added: saving this link about the Grades 3-8 NYSED assessments for use in my class and research.

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