Tuesday, September 25, 2007

"If your eyebrows fall out...

...deal with it with some dignity." That was paraphrased from some conversation we had over dinner on Sunday evening. We had some friends over and Fred and I cooked. It was a good time, always is with this bunch. The conversation wound its way around to tattooed eyebrows (doesn't it always?) and how Whoopi Goldberg has no eyebrows, but no one notices.

You will now.

The dinner reminded me how great it is to have English speaking friends in Amsterdam. I'd like to have Dutch friends (I have quite a few Dutch acquaintences, or kennissen), but there's something about Americans that I love. It's the common background and the ability most Americans have to make friends quickly, an openness. There are some Dutch people that I love being around, but it's not the same because I feel like I should be speaking Dutch, and there's some basic assumptions on the way frienships are handled that are not the same here. I think I've still got a lot to learn to really fit in. And it's not just vocabulary and grammar.

Fred, of course, is the exception. I feel like we've got that secret languages couples have that transcends language, which these days has devolved to English. I'm very comfortable with Fred. He's very patient, very supportive, very loving.

Speaking of Americans, a couple of years ago, I thought of doing a montly post entitled People That Make Me Happy to be an American. Then I thought that it might be better to shorten it to People that Make Me Happy. I think the "American" part was a reaction to the many Americans who were in the news who made me want to scream, "That's not me. They don't represent me!" But in the interest of being open, I will shorten it to People Who Make Me Happy.

Garrison Keillor. I've been listening to A Prarie Home Companion for the last few weeks. (The podcast, available through iTunes.) It's always News from Lake Wobegon and it always makes me laugh. It's about ten or twelve minutes long, generally. I think he's also a Lefty, which makes me very happy. If you've never listend to him, I suggest you give him a try. In graduate school, my friend, Sean, used to go on about him and I thought it was just a bunch of hayseed humor. It's not. It's very cleverly worded, beautifully told stories. And sometimes he sings, which is so sweet. So he's number one on my list - which will be composed in no particular order.

Sunday was a really beautiful day. Somewhere between a crisp fall day and a day that wanted to be Indian Summer. I love living here. I was talking today about how much I love New York City and how great it was to live there. It's very important for me to love where I live.

Today was my first day of work since mid-July. It started at 9:00 and ended at 11:30. It went really well. I was supposed to have three different classes today, but due to vacation schedules, the other classes will be starting next week and then the following week. When the one student put me in the room and went to fetch the other student, I stood there alone in the room and said to myself, "Oh Lord, what am I doing here?" Fortunately that went away quickly and I just did the class. They were nice guys. Ready to learn. Lots of good questions. I really enjoy teaching. It's one of those things that almost doesn't seem like work to me.

Grading tests, attending teachers meetings? That's work.

And I've been knitting. Also not work.

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