I just finalized my travel plans for the holidays. I am really hoping that the replacement hard drive for my laptop arrives before I go. In the year since I bought it I've already taken four or five trips where it was nonfunctional and only one trip where it was marginally-functional. It's been a very frustrating owner experience. The last time I called customer service I was treated much better than any of my previous calls... for example, they acknowledged that there was obviously a hardware problem and said they would try replacing the hard disk instead of asking me to do all sorts of meaningless other stuff. I don't know if it was because I started off the call by explaining how irritated I was, or if it was because I was connected to an American call center this time instead of somebody from south Asia. At the very least, it was refreshing to be able to communicate so easily. Still, I received a set of recovery CDs two weeks ago but the hard drive was apparently back ordered and there's still no notification about it shipping.
Even though I'm not teaching at OSU this year, I went to the end-of-fall pizza party for the FEH program that I normally teach in. It's a nice chance to see a bunch of former students again. That was nearly two weeks ago now... jeez. Time flies. Anyway, it was super fun. I'm so glad I went over to campus for it. Even before the party started I was passing through the atrium and spotted Beth with the setup crew. She came running over to give me a hug. If you haven't recently had somebody come running to give you a hug, I recommend it. It's pretty nice. I hadn't seen her or Jean since we went for ice cream at the end of school way back in June. At the party itself, I was almost overwhelmed by how many of my students from last year were serving as undergrad TAs now. Seemed like there were about a dozen of them there. It is so gratifying to see old students doing great things. By the end of the night I'd gotten five hugs from lovely young women and I took home two whole leftover pizzas. I ate pizza every day for a week! (Okay, one of those days was out at Cici's, and another day I just had one little piece for the sake of eating pizza every day for a week, but it still counts.)
(Hey, Beth or Jean -- invite me into that Facebook group for the red polos?)
I put away a bunch of comic books today. I've now run out of space in the part of my closet dedicated to comic book boxes. I'm going to have to rearrange in some manner but I don't know what the right solution will be.
For the second haircut in a row -- at two different barber shops -- my hair was cut shorter than I really wanted it. The last few times I've asked for it to be a half inch on top and a quarter inch elsewhere, but twice in a row now I ended up getting a quarter inch everywhere. I don't mind all that much... it doesn't look bad or anything, it's just kind of annoying that it isn't what I asked for. Maybe next time I will say "half inch on top, and shorter on the sides" without giving a second suggested length.
Anyway, I also decided to try growing a beard. Whenever I get lazy about shaving for a week people ask me if I'm growing a beard, if I've ever tried, why I don't, etc.. Looking at my super short hair I figured I would get my whiskers to match and see how I like it. It's been almost a week now and I've only shaved my neck and done a little other detail work on the edges. I probably won't like the full beard, but I'll see, then shave it down to a Van Dyck and then a goatee to try them all out.
In college I knew a guy whose whiskers grew even faster than mine do who used to have completely different facial hair every few weeks. I realized there's no reason I can't do the same sort of thing if I feel like it... Or maybe I'll just go back to being (mostly) shaven all the time. I dunno. It's still a new thing for me to put much thought into how I look.