Sunday, July 31, 2005

Days 12-13: Weekend, weekend! Wherefore art thou, weekend?

I've always liked those t-shirts that say "Unions: the folks who brought you the weekend." But, hey! wait a minute, I'm in a Union and I'm not sure I'm getting a weekend, now that I think about it...

Anyway, what really IS the meaning of a weekend when I'm supposed to be writing a dissertation? I don't mean to turn this into another whine/rant about finding a good balance between work and not-work, but sheesh, I think the biggest single emotion produced while one is ABD must be guilt. Sure -- fear, stress, boredom, anxiety, pride... all those emotions surface from time to time, but guilt is pretty much a constant companion. Again, this is not to say that I don't take plenty of breaks and regularly blow off my dissertation, but I just feel guilty about it while I'm doing it.

So, as you might have already guessed, this weekend's ratio has included much more non-dissertation-stuff than dissertation-stuff. Perhaps weekends are the time just to get one's life together. The highlights: Friday night dinner was fantastic. Check out the recipe for corn (on Epicurious.) I always used to consult "the Bible" (Bittman) for matters such as "how do you cook corn-on-the-cob?" and was assured that corn-on-the-cob was "done" as soon as it was heated... no matter how you did it, just get it hot. So we used to put the husked ears right on the grill until they got hot. Good enough. But this time I followed the recipe for grilling the soaked ears in their husks and it was truly fantastic -- the corn developed a really complex roasted flavor. And to make it more decadent, we added sour cream, queso fresco, and ancho chili powder. Yum.

Feeling the effects of staying up way past my bedtime meant that Saturday was destined to be unproductive. Plus having my husband home meant that my usual computer routine was a bit disrupted. So I compensated by taking care of much-needed organizational tasks, napped, went to the gym, and then after dinner we joined our neighbors across the alley who were having a block party, complete with a fire and s'mores. No, it's not quite cool enough here to merit a fire, but it sure helped with the mosquitoes, and the marshmallow-melting.

Sunday. Ditto. Read the NYT, took care of some more papers off my desk, ran a few errands, napped, exercised, and now I'm sitting down to do a bit of work in the spirit of momentum and keeping ideas fresh in my mind. We're going to a friends' house for dinner, so I should probably do a little something to earn the break, the mojito, the dinner, and our dessert of homemade ice cream and carmelized grilled bananas.

Well, since we'll be out of town next weekend for an Official Break for visiting and relaxing, I plan to have a complete draft of the intro. before we leave on Thursday night. Weekends notwithstanding, it is time to get some work done!