Ok, so I can't really come up with one thing to sustain an entire blog post at the moment, so the following is a collection of highlights of break, followed by a dilemma. Because nothing invites comments like a dilemma, and a blog is lonely when it isn't commented upon.
1. MLA: I went to the Modern Language Association's annual convention, because it was in Chicago. While there, I attended numerous panels on war and violence (since my dissertation is about war and violence and the aftereffects). Sadly, not one of these panels had anything to do with literature or any kind of theory that would aid my own thinking. I also attended a panel that had papers I could have written as an undergrad (including one paper I'm pretty sure I did write as an undergrad), and one really kick-ass panel on Hawthorne, of all people. Don't get me wrong, I loves me some Nate-Dog H., but if you'd told me beforehand that the highlight of the conference for me would be a panel on Hawthorne, I'd have laughed in your face.
Oh, and apparently hotels feel no qualms about charging you $11 for a vodka tonic. I didn't realize this until after I had ordered two of them. C'est la vie.
2. New Year's: Had people over, was a fun time. Mellow. After everyone left, I opened a second champagne bottle and drank most of it myself. Because I couldn't figure out the wire thing on top of the cork, I cut it with wire cutters. I was drunk.
3. Ninja Drunk, take two: Got plastered off some Wild Turkey Barrel Proof, nearly fell over while playing pool. Don't remember the end of the night, but apparently had a drunk dial conversation in which I claimed to have paused the internet. Am researching this power for future use. May require more Wild Turkey.
4. Bar Golf: Got plastered again a week later at Bar Golf. For those unfamiliar, each bar counts as a hole. Each hole has an assigned drink, and a par. Drink one, get par. Drink two, birdie. Etc. Our course had 6 holes. I made it through four consciously, but still managed to stealth order a drink at the last bar in spite of a concentrated effort to stop me from drinking. Depending on who you ask, I shot either a -2 or a -3, or I was disqualified because I can't remember anything past the fourth hole and passed out at the last bar. But I say that last drink keeps me in the game. To wit: two rum & cokes, two Miller Lights, two martinis (Hendricks and Ketel), scotch and cigar, vodka tonic (and a chicken ceasar wrap I swear to the gods of Kobol that I didn't order). We started at 3:15, I was home by 8 or so, and at roughly 12:15 am, I regained consciousness and was back out in the street calling to find where the group had gone, only to realize everyone had gone home hours before. Went back upstairs and passed out again.
Also, Boone's (so nicknamed for his taste for the wretched drink) won with a -6. Because he is an inhuman drinking robot. Or a Cylon.
5. Poker: In Wudan tradition, we played some high stakes poker, with some nice upper shelf alcohol. I won $15, and rediscovered my love of Hendrick's gin and Bushmills 10 year. Batman won big, though a snafu with the pot kept him from claiming all his winnings. Still, won enough to put a new layer of armor on the Batmobile. Oh, and TGD got hilariously upset at my lucky streak (which was, admittedly, entirely luck and not skill).
6. Semester Kickoff Party: In which I discovered that beer does not make you as drunk as liquor. Thus, I was able to drink steadily for roughly 8 hours (8pm-4am) and still remember the entirety of the evening. I found I am pretty good at baseball (the drinking game), and that Boone's does in fact taste awful. Which is why we passed around two or three bottles of it at the end of the night and just took turns taking swigs. (I also discovered that sleeping in till 2:00 the next afternoon is a great way to avoid a hangover.)
7. The Hill: Today, on the way to campus, traffic was backed up way past my apartment. I was able to walk to campus (roughly 30 minute trek, all down one road) in a shorter time than it took the bus that was at the stop outside my apartment. I passed three other buses en route, and beat them all. Why? Because we had snow yesterday, and cars couldn't get up the hill about a mile down the road. Because, you know, in Madison, they don't know how to keep the roads clear or salted. Still. After one of the snowiest winters on record. All in all, it was a hilarious testimony to the ineptitude of both drivers and municipal officials. Though it did mean I had to walk a long time in the cold and the snow. Which kinda sucked.
That about brings us up to speed. I'm sure there are some other things I'm forgetting or neglecting. I didn't do nearly as much work as I planned. I managed to stave off guilt through alcoholism, BSG dvds, and movies (go see Cloverfield).
Oh, and the dilemma. I'm rapidly adding people to the cast of characters that comprises this blog, and I need nicknames for them. So I invite you, the readers, to submit nicknames for other people I know. Granted, this is mainly my Madison readers, but others can feel free to offer outlandish suggestions that I might randomly apply to others as suits my whim.
Finally, check this out, courtesy of Bourbon Samurai. Hilarious.