Friday, February 22, 2008
  what a shite day
first, i stayed up til uhhhh... 2:30 working on a paper for my shakespeare class. well, 1:45, but then i had to print it out, take a shower, etc. i HATE being up past 2, because that means i'll get less than 5 hours of sleep, and that is just not acceptable.

but at least i got to class on time, and turned that blasted paper in.

then i had a "midterm conference" with my advanced exposition professor.

this class has been KICKING MY ASS. so much work, and he doesn't give any of it back. we've done i can't tell you how many assignments, and i only have grades for three. my last graded assignment was turned in on 1/30, if that tells you anything.

i'm usually pretty good at writing stuff. it takes me a long time, i think, but that's because i've not mastered any pre-writing organization strategies. but it works the way i do it; i spend a lot of time thinking about my words, get them down, and the end result is always good. at least in the past, i've always earned As on everything. had my stuff read aloud in class, had comments written like, "best paper i've received in years!" and that sort. of course, this was at BCC, but still. some of the professors there were really good, so it's not like i just discount their opinions.

now this class... is so complicated. we get complicated reading #1, and write a paper based on that. then we get complicated reading #2, write a paper on that. then our assignment #3 is to show what the author of reading #2 would think of reading #1. complicated stuff.

so far, i have maybe not been giving it the time it has deserved... and my grades have reflected that. of the three grades we have received, i got an A (on a small assignment) and 2 Bs (on the big assignments).

this LAST assignment we did, however, i really took it seriously. it was about analyzing images, so it was up my alley, to some degree... i worked hard on it, and was satisfied with the finished product. much more satisfied than i was with my previous papers.

so i go to this conference today and the teacher tells me i'm capable of getting a B in the class, "maybe higher," but at this point i'm probably getting a C. (i can't help but wonder... how do 2 Bs and an A average out to a C?) he said he's happy with my participation in class, so it's not that. i have good things to say, insightful, etc. but to get a higher grade, i need to put more time in, do more revisions, etc.

then he tells me he hasn't graded that images paper. i am one of only three people whose papers he has yet to grade, so, "let me print it out and take a look." he started telling me where i could improve upon it as he started to read. they were good points; everyone has room to improve in their papers. he was pressed for time, as he started his appointment with me late, so he basically said, "this is probably a C paper..." as he was ushering me out. he was asking me what i wanted to earn in the class, so after he told me this paper was a C, i said then i didn't know. i thought it was good, so if what i think is good is actually C work, then i have no idea what i'm capable of.

now, we reviewed one of these papers in class the other day... it was anonymous, but i know who did the paper. and she did an awful job. we were supposed to analyze the images from a compositional viewpoint, say what the photographer was trying to say by taking the image from the vantage point he did, etc. and the second part of the assignment was to say why the images we chose from this batch of 400 contributed to the "myth of human unity." she didn't do that at all. on top of that, she had errors all over the place... sentence errors, the wrong "it's", and other stuff like that. it was bad. i saw his comments, and he gave HER a C.

so when he told me MINE was a C, i'm like... "but that other paper didn't even meet the requirements, even sort of, and it was sloppy to boot... and THAT got a C." mine has no errors that way.. maybe sentence-level concerns.. maybe i'm not a brilliant theorist... but i at least DEFINITELY did a better job than i did on my first two papers, on which i got Bs. yet this paper got a WORSE grade?

i was so upset when i left there. SO UPSET. i kept my shit together long enough to get out of his office and that was about it.

i mean, i'm retarded at math... that whole part of my brain appears to have been lobotomized... and my sense of direction can't help me find my way out of a paper bag... but at least i've always fallen back on, "well, that's not where my strengths are. my strengths are on the other side of the brain." and now this dude is telling me that i'm getting a C. a C!!!

so on one hand, i'm thinking this is really unfair... if that other girl can turn in sloppy work and get a C, then why bother trying hard? which i did do for this last assignment.
also, how the HELL do 2 Bs and an A get you a C in a class? did he not review my grades before i met with him, and he's operating on his assumptions? if so, why are his expectations so low?

on the other hand, i'm upset because.. jesus, i thought i did a decent job on that thing... a C? granted, he only read the first page, and he did so quickly. he said he would grade it this afternoon, which he didn't do, so i don't even know if that was the final verdict or not.

but this whole class is just killing my confidence. i've got one section of my brain that i am confident performs well, and he's telling me it isn't. i mean, he wasn't telling me i can't spell or anything, but... i just don't get it. the stuff he told me i needed to do BETTER, i did do SOME of. the other girl did NONE of that and still got a C. so what's with the shit grade for me? is a C just the pity grade, the you-turned-it-in grade? why can't i do better then???

the whole time i was writing my shakespeare paper, i was wondering if it would be given back to me for a rewrite. that's not something i ever would've worried about before.

all this on 4.5 hours of sleep.

at least i worked out anyhow; for that i am proud. back in the day, i would've used 4.5 hours of sleep as an excuse to take a nap in the truck instead.
and i got a nap when i got home.
and now feel sick off of mexican food and mexican booze.

this blog is good for venting, even if no one reads it. :)
i read it.

and you can definitely write.

and sometimes you just get someone reading/grading your papers who doesn't "get it" or otherwise just doesn't mesh with your writing style or way of thinking or whatever. if it's just this *one* professor against *several* who've said your stuff was like the best ever (which I believe), I think the *several* outweighs the one. :)
Ike beat me to it. He pretty said what I was going to say.

You can definitely write. Value the opinion of a few over the one.
thanks guys.
i know i can write decent.. get thoughts out... it's just... write an assignment? as assigned. i dunno. half of me thinks this professor has his head up his ass and the other half is worried i'm really writing C work. :(
blech, school!
for all the crappy [high school] student work i've read and all the reading i do now as an editor, i feel safe in saying that you are not, as a rule, writing C work.

it's entirely likely that the professor has his head up his ass... though, that would require some years of yoga or something.

and as much as i hate being a student, i'm continually impressed by how you keep at the school thing. :)
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I'm Stacey. I'm a 31(!)-year-old Wisconsin girl living in sunny South Florida. The highlights in my life are my lovely boyfriend, my aloof cats, my adorable/adoring stepdogs, my two lumbering tortoises, select family members, being outside, being underwater, taking pictures, yadda yadda. Stay tuned for lots of babbling!

Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida, United States


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Making a difference

A small boy lived by the ocean. He loved the creatures of the sea, especially the starfish, and he spent much of his time exploring the seashore.

One day the boy learned there would be a minus tide that would leave the starfish stranded on the sand.

When the tide went out, he went down to the beach, began picking up the stranded starfish, and tossing them back into the ocean.

An elderly man who lived next door came down to the beach to see what the boy was doing. Seeing the man's quizzical expression, the boy paused as he approached. "I'm saving the starfish!" the boy proudly declared.

When the neighbor saw all of the stranded starfish he shook his head and said: "I'm sorry to disappoint you, young man, but if you look down the beach, there are stranded starfish as far as the eye can see. And if you look up the beach the other way, it's the same. One little boy like you isn't going to make much of a difference."

The boy thought about this for a moment. Then he reached his small hand down to the sand, picked up another starfish, tossed it out into the ocean, and said: "Well, I sure made a difference for that one!"

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