Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Random and misc. thoughts

Thank God I'm almost finished with re-training. Only another few months--and finals. Although finals come first, and sooner or later I have to turn in my "I'm almost done" request. And after doing that prologue post yesterday, I realized it needs to be...uhm, maybe not a series, but at least a trilogy. There's still so much to explore.

On the plus side, being a student got me a student ID and I'll finally be able to get a subscription to Poetics Today. As scholarly journals go, it's pretty obscure, but I've always wanted to read it. Or at least download some of the back issues.

Small groups has been interesting....

It might not be the most comfortable class to be in, but it's a lot of information I never thought about. We did an egg drop the other night. You know, the one where you throw an egg over the side of a tall building?

There are four groups in class. Mine (it's called team black after the marker we ended up with) Team Blue, the one with the laid off Boeing engineer, random young women, headed by the fanatical twenty year old do-gooder who wants to help the disadvantaged (as long as they live in his affluent community and own expensive mountain bikes), Team Red, the one with the four ex-military and two older women (who are probably younger than me. In this class age seems to be an attitude, not how many years you've lived). Although to be fair, it seems like the smartest military guy is in charge. To be "not fair", I don't like the way they side-lined the women, and I don't respect the women for allowing it to happen. And the group over in the corner with the kid who looks like a healthier version of my youngest son. They say they're not doing well, but in my opinion--they're the second most democratic group.

Knowing we're a class on groups, we all cooperated during our last project (thirty pounds on a bridge made out of soda straws. It didn't work, btw), and it was...I dunno, all right, but mostly confused. Fast forward five weeks, and team black gets our work done, knocks out cooperative tests and always has snacks--with paper plates, forks and napkins--to munch on. We're pretty cohesive, and when the egg comes along, we take our 12 in square of cardboard, tape dispenser and index card and start creating long curls of crumpled paper and cardboard while the rest of the class is staring at their joint material pool.

Ten minutes later, we have this thing that looks like a big ball of lint held together by tape and the other group is building a parachute with a rocket-like tube and flanges. Twenty minutes later, they're still working on it and we're eating crudites.

So we all troop out to this bridge, in the rain, one building over, and send our people upstairs. The other group is all excited. They just "know" their fancy parachute is going to work, and of course--more than a few of them have given our lint ball the "look", like we're stupid or something. But they have to drop it three times, because it won't carry a three egg payload.

The first time they drop it, the parachute fails and the egg cracks. The second time, it drifts on the wind and the egg is okay--the third time, it cracks again. And...we drop our egg.

It falls like a rock, goes SPLAT! and the other team laughs. I pick it up, but nothing oozes out. The cardboard shell (surrounding the little paper twists) did what it was supposed to do.

Which was cool and a great way to end the night. We're going to see a movie for our symposium (the other teams picked bridges, art glass and body paint), which should be fun. Next week we're thinking chips and dip.


Hailey Edwards said...

lol Sounds like you're having a little fun. If not fun, then at least you're being entertained.

I never did the egg off a rooftop in school. I thought Twinkies were involved in that somehow? Or is that wishful thinking?

Knowing me, I would have said forgetaboutit, eaten the Twinkies and watched the egg splatter.

jodi said...

You know, I'll bet if we had twinkies, they would have made a great air cushion. I would have had to get Tony to stop eating them and let me squish them up.

I think...I'm enjoying the class a lot more than I thought I would. It also made me wonder if I picked the wrong field. Doing the team thing is better the second time around.

Eva Gale said...

You crack me up. I would love to be with you in those classes.

jodi said...

Eva--I'm getting ready to go whole hog on this class and bring in a full fledged dinner, bucket of KFC and all. :) Five hours (the class is "five" hours) is a long time to be staring at other people at dinner time.

deanna said...

Hey, good for you on the student discounted Poetics Today. You'll have to post what you think of it when you get it. And yay for unbroken eggs and being that much closer to finishing...must feel somewhat good. Though I'd get hungry in the five-hour class, too.

jodi said...

Deanna, I've seen so many excerpts from Poetics Today, I'm dying to get my hands on it. Lots of random and forward thinking stuff I simply can't access. Trust me, I'll be talking about it until I'm blue in the face. :)