LBJs

*I haven't posted one of these in a while--heck, I haven't posted one of anything in a while--so if you don't already know, it stands for "Little Brown Jobs," a/k/a the small unidentifiable songbirds that are encountered on any birding outing. Here it stands for thoughts that somehow didn't lead to anything of any greater length or significance, but which somehow had to be recorded.

*I've been on a social media sabbatical. During the month of January (or at least since about the 5th) I've been refraining from hanging out on Facebook, Twitter, or any of my various other online hangouts. It's been helpful, in that I haven't been distracted from real life by any of the various Tweetstorms that inevitably arise when I'm twittering, but while it has probably helped me get ahead (or at least keep up) on things like grading and writing comments, it hasn't freed me up to get anything written, which was kind of my hope. On the plus side, I've gotten a bunch of stuff read.

*The reading has consisted of several novels, plus a quickie nonfiction book by a favorite author: Neal Stephenson's Anathem, a massive SF tome that came to me for Christmas; Ebola, an updated and expanded chunk of David Quammen's longer work Spillover focusing specifically on the disease that most recently made headlines across the USA; and The Magician's Land, the third volume in Lev Grossman's terrific Magicians trilogy. Okay, I also read the fourth collection of Brian K. Vaughan and Fiona Staples' Saga comic, and even re-read Dan Jenkins' seminal (in more ways than one) book of seventies football and porn, Semi-Tough. Let's just say that the former remains a terrific series, while the latter has a few elements that haven't held up well since Playboy published the book forty years ago.

*The month's birding has been relatively subdued. Right now I'm standing at 35 species for the year, most of them observed on my feeder or elsewhere in the yard. I did have the chance to spend an afternoon at Robertson Lake on campus, and there I found my most noteworthy birds so far this year: a pair of Bald Eagles and a trio of migrating Common Goldeneyes. The latter is a species I'd never before logged in Virginia, let alone on campus; I'd seen them only in Ohio, Utah, Maryland, and Vermont. I'm still holding out hope that the Purple Finches will return to my feeder, but I haven't seen them since early December.

*And finally, the big news: Kelly has a new job. After years of unsuccessful searching for a full-time librarian position in the vicinity of Woodberry, she finally obtained one in Chesterfield County, which is just south of Richmond--in other words, about 90 minutes away from here. We were thus faced with a choice: have her spend three hours a day in the car (not to mention putting 750 miles on the car every work week) or find someplace for her to crash during the week. We opted for the latter, so she'll be spending the first week staying at a friend's place while she tries to decide whether she'll stay or try to find a place of her own for a bit. At the end of the school year, we'll try to decide what our best option might be.

*And yes, that may include my looking for a new job.

*And by coincidence, Ian recently found a new job, so he'll be leaving his longtime position at Chili's at the end of this month.

*And of course Dixon graduates in May.

*In short, within the next six months, every member of our family may end up working in a new job. It's a time of flux in the Cashwell/Dalton household, let's just say. Maybe I should post a picture of something to take my mind off it. Hey, here's a pic of Kel and me with our former advisee, the spectacularly talented Anna Grey Hogan, following her triumphant performance as Liza That Was in the Richmond Triangle Players' production of We Three Lizas! Take a bow, Anna Grey!

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This page contains a single entry by Peter Cashwell published on January 27, 2015 7:54 PM.

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