Classy papers.

First week of classes: done!

I’m taking three classes while I’m here, a pleasantly manageable load.  To make sure that I am not too far behind when I get back, I am taking one English class that will count for my major, a Pacific lit class.  The class has been humbling.  I know next to nothing about the Pacific.  I do not recognize names, places, events, or people, and can pronounce even less.  One of the issues we have been discussing is the idea of representation, and how the Pacific people have been fighting against attributions placed on them by Westerners and Europeans.  Finding the true Pacific, even amidst battles of orthography, is one of the aims of having classes such as this.  However, I find myself caught as a Westerner.  To contextualize any of the information I am being introduced to, I am having to receive it through those same Western eyes that have supposedly disrupted the true Pacific.  Context seems to be the key here.  And that can be said of this whole trip so far.

My second class is a class entitled, “Jesus, the Gospels, and the Coming of God.”  I think it will be an interesting time, coming from an academic standpoint about matters concerning this famous first century Palestinian Jew.  The professor can talk. And talk. And talk.  However, at this point (having one lecture under my belt) I’m still at the, “Man this is great.  I wish I was more sponge-like.  I can’t write fast enough” phase.

Lastly is a class that is dedicated to the histories of different music genres.  My first assignment: “Critically compare and contrast an issue of either Rolling Stone or NME magazine from the 1970s-1980s with a contemporary issue.”  I’m pretty keen on this class.

Outside of class, I’ve been enjoying some of the most delicious sushi of my life.  There’s a place that I call the “top alley” (there’s a giant sculpture of a top. in an alley) and in the top alley is this sushi place that goes half price after 4:30.  I first noticed it because of the long line stringing out the door and spilling into the alley.  All types of people: businessmen and women in nice suits, longboarders, a homeless man, and a guy who looked strikingly like Cristiano Ronaldo.  Sights such as these I take note of. They must know something good, and I want to know exactly what it is.  Secret’s out: the sushi is delicious. And cheap.  And delicious.  I’ve eaten there four times now, and have added afternoon sushi dollars into my budget for the duration of my stay.  I can only hope that the seaweed wraps remain adhesive, the rice filling, and the fish fresh.  So yum.

On a run the other day, I bounded into an old quarry site that featured a cave.  No more than five feet high, the rocky outcrop opened up into what was clearly a cave.  I did not go in.  I do not know if it was the ominous rain clouds that loomed overhead, the remoteness of the area, or the way that the winds moved through the surrounding trees like they were passing whispered wagers as to whether or not the human would dare venture inside, I decided to forgo passing through.  I will return, however.  With a torch, just to be safe.  As Gandalf once said, “Be on your guard. There are older and fouler things than Orcs in the deep places of the world.”

On an unrelated note, feeling dancy?  Say hello to Disasteradio.  He was playing a show at a place called the San Francisco Bath House last Saturday and totally unexpected was what came next: fun, poppy, dancy tomfoolery.  I thought he was the stage crew setting up the mixing board, mini synth and laptop, but no! He was Disasteradio, and he was entertaining and contagious.  The place was almost a hipster bar, so it felt a bit like home.  The cast and crew of the iuka house would have felt right at home.  Good times!

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