Thursday, January 26, 2006

Time passed and present

Yesterday was my parents 39th wedding anniversary. It's easy to remember which anniversary it is because my sister turns 39 at the beginning of August. Normally I would rant all over the place about anniversaries, women who done me wrong, and how even if I met and married the right woman tomorrow that with my current life-expectancy I'll never make it to my 39th anniversary. But you'll get no such rant from me.

School started back up last week, as I'm sure you're all eager to know. My final two classes and I can officially be called a Master of something. At age 8 "I were a Master Baiter" (there's a button in a box somewhere with that slogan, hence the quotations) in the Roy's Pier Catfish Rodeo with a 3rd place finish. As I fondly recall that simpler time it occurs to me that there were only two contestants, but having received a trophy I couldn't have been bothered to care. Whoa, that was such a wicked digression I actually fell out of my chair.

My sixth and final semester is Options and Financial Statement Analysis. Options won't be a problem, since I already have a firm grasp on that subject and I've had the professor before. FSA is an unknown quantity though. It's technically an accounting class and accounting is the one subject that has given me the most trouble so far. Additionally, I've heard nothing but bad things about this professor, but I figured I would just buckle down and apply myself. It's only two classes/two nights per week and I've got nothing else in my life to do but study. Looking back at what I've done so far, I am a bit proud of my decision to go back to school. I'm a little surprised that I didn't bail out after one semester and that after 2 1/2 years I still have the money to pay my bills. Although I think I've learned a lot, I see a lot of my fellow students avoiding learning anything at all. Ok, maybe "a lot" isn't fair, but a noticeable number of students are looking for the quick & easy credits here and there. The Study Abroad trips are the worst in my opinion (especially since I'd rather study a broad) - Spend 10 days in a foreign country, take 3-4 tours while there, write a 10-page paper and you get a quick 6 credit hours (out of 48 total). Got a favorite professor who'll let you "create" an independent study course? 3 more credit hours. There are plenty of other shortcuts too. Don't get me started on the "nobody makes worse than a B" grading system.

I contemplated a number of "the moral of the story" endings here - 'Don't judge/laud someone by his accomplishments' or 'wait 30 minutes after eating before going swimming' - but I'm actually kind of hung up on that third place thing.


At 2:00 PM, Blogger Gary said...

I agree with you about the ribbons. I won a some for sports when I was 13 and they gave me a pretty big kick.

At 2:03 PM, Blogger Sass said...

And we wonder why Americans are getting fatter and dumber by the day.

Where did I put my fried twinkie?

At 9:07 PM, Blogger lucidkim said...

master baiter - :) :) :) :)

congrats to your parents! that's great!

nice to see the light at the end of the tunnel with your master's degree - i kept thinking i would bail on mine and each time i'd think "well, i'll take one more class" and a little over 2 years later i was done. time passes either way, might as well have something to show for it. :)


At 11:38 AM, Blogger Brighton said...

Happy 39th to your parents!
Is it a coincidence that my password to post this is "airpalm"??

At 5:23 PM, Blogger Badaunt said...

You've almost finished the masters? I remember that bit - it was almost (but not quite) worth going through the whole thing again just for that feeling of DEAR GOD IT'S ALMOST OVER I REALLY MADE IT THIS FAR. For the last bit sheer momentum keeps you going, and knowing that you're near the end. It is SUCH a good feeling, after so long.

Do you have to write a dissertation? And when you finish, what's next?

At 12:27 AM, Blogger tinyhands said...

Gary: Of course I admit to being distracted by the shiny things.

Sass: Hard to imagine, with my physique, but I've never had a fried twinkie.

Kim: I think your last sentence is right on the money. It has been a bit of a "what the hell" experience and I've enjoyed most of it.

Bright-one: For a second there I thought you said "hairypalm" which might have come from my other blog. But it didn't, so *whew*

Theic: No dissertation, that's usually reserved for PhD programs at American Universities. The next step is finding my dream job, and it might as well be abroad since there doesn't seem to be anything for me here.

At 2:17 AM, Blogger Badaunt said...

No dissertation? You lucky bastard.

I could have chosen the no dissertation option, but that would have closed off the chance of doing a PhD later. I have absolutely no intention of doing a PhD and can't imagine it, but ... well, you never know. I don't like closing off options.

The dissertation was pure hell. That was where I ran into the PC thing and discovered that if I wanted to write about my students not being motivated and not knowing how to learn I was not allowed to say that this is a systematic problem in Japanese universities. Oh, no, that would be racist. They would not believe me anyway. It had to be my teaching that was at fault, because my advisors had taught Japanese students and they were FINE.

Well OF COURSE THEY BLOODY WERE. They went to Australia to study because they were motivated and couldn't learn anything in Japanese universities.

Gawd. I guess this still rankles. After months of fighting this whole thing my dissertation ended up so watered down I hope nobody ever reads it. It is untruthful rubbish, but by then all I wanted was to finish and get the M.A.


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