Ending A Chapter and Starting a New One . . .

So a week ago, I was unceremoniously terminated at my “temporary position” as a Visiting Professor (where my soon-to-be-ex boss refers to me as an Instructor). Interesting.

So I took the rest of the week off.  (That way I could cry in the privacy of my bedroom and not over my desk like I was doing.) I took a “staycation” at a nice hotel to give myself a break. A “staycation”, if you don’t know, is the recession-friendly vacation at a local hotel to give the illusion that you are away without really being away.

My “away” included a manicure and pedicure appointment, a Swedish massage appointment, lots of libations in the room, and meals at the hotel’s restaurant every night.  Luxurious and relaxing, yes. Epiphany-causing, not so much.

I was hoping to gain some perspective or direction  that would lead me to my new chapter but I was sadly disappointed.  Now I am just more calm in my indecision which makes it at worst.

So I attend my classes this week and administer Final Exams.  The presentations the students have are interesting and eye-opening for me to watch.  As an educator, you cover the goals that you feel is important and paramount to college essay-writing and American Literature.  But then to see some of those same goals reflected back to you in student presentations explaining what they learned this semester is affirming.  At least I taught them something.

Stay tuned for more posts.

“Seeking Happily Ever After”: Are We Settling for an Ideal or Redefining a Fairy Tale?

As children, we all have been read the magical and imaginative fairy tales of Hans Christian Anderson and have memorized the romantic plot of every heart-warming Disney cartoon movie from Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, Sleeping Beauty, Beauty and the Beast, and FINALLY (for the people of color) The Princess and the Frog.

 The soft part of our childhood remains us how we all want to that “Happily Ever After.”  But what does that really look like?  Riding off into the sunset with Prince Charming or the Princess in a golden carriage?  Getting married? Finding “The One”? Where? How?

Check out a trailer for a new documentary addressing this same issue.  It is called “Seeking Happily Ever After.”  Let me know what you think!


All Songs from RENT Musical


1) “Seasons of Love” – Cast

2) “Rent” – Cast

3) “You’ll See” – Adam Pascal (Roger), Anthony Rapp (Mark) & Taye Diggs (Benny) 

4) “One Song Glory” – Adam Pascal (Roger)

5) “Light My Candle” – Adam Pascal (Roger) & Rosario Dawson (Mimi)

6) “Today 4 U” – Jesse L Martin (Collins), Wilson Jermaine Heredia (Angel) & Anthony Rapp (Mark)

7) “Tango: Maureen” – Tracie Thoms (Joanne) & Anthony Rapp (Mark) 

8) “Life Support” – Cast

9) “Out Tonight” – Rosario Dawson (Mimi)

10) “Another Day” – Rosario Dawson (Mimi), Adam Pascal (Roger), Wilson Jermaine Heredia (Angel), Jesse L Martin (Collins) & Anthony Rapp (Mark) 

11) “Will I?” – Cast

12) “Santa Fe” – Adam Pascal (Roger), Anthony Rapp (Mark), Wilson Jermaine Heredia (Angel) & Jesse L Martin (Collins) 

13) “I’ll Cover You” – Wilson Jermaine Heredia (Angel) & Jesse L Martin (Collins) 

14) “Over the Moon” – Idina Menzel (Maureen)
15) “La Vie Boheme” – Cast 


1) “I Should Tell You” – Adam Pascal (Roger) & Rosario Dawson (Mimi) 

2) “La Vie Boheme B” – Cast

3) “Seasons of Love B” – Cast

4) “Take Me or Leave Me” – Idina Menzel (Maureen) & Tracie Thoms (Joanne) 

5) “Without You” – Rosario Dawson (Mimi) & Adam Pascal (Roger) 

6)  “I’ll Cover You (Reprise)” – Jesse L Martin (Collins) & Tracie Thoms (Joanne)

7) “Halloween” – Anthony Rapp (Mark)

8) “Goodbye Love” – Cast

9) “What You Own” – Adam Pascal (Roger) & Anthony Rapp (Mark)

10) “Finale A” – Rosario Dawson (Mimi) & Adam Pascal (Roger)

12) Your Eyes – Adam Pascal (Roger)

13) “Finale B” – Cast

14) “Love Heals” – Cast

Professional Excellence or Personal Stability? Do You Have to Choose?

“Two things happened to Sandra Bullock this month. First, she won an Academy Award for best actress. Then came the news reports claiming that her husband is an adulterous jerk. So the philosophic question of the day is: Would you take that as a deal? Would you exchange a tremendous professional triumph for a severe personal blow?”

Thus begins a very fascinating argument that we all have to deal with on a regular basis (whether we recognize it or not) – do you have to sacrifice personal stability for professional excellence (either in school or work)?

Please read the following article and let me know what you think.


Unpaid Internships for College Students Are Unlawful? But How Do I Get Work Experience?

I read the following article a couple of days ago and I found it to be very interesting considering how much I emphasize the importance of internships to students to insure employment after graduation. Please read the article and let me know what you think. Are unpaid internships a contemporary version of slave labor? How will college students get work experience on their resumes without them?










Science and Reading Literature? How Can They Be Related?

So last week, I read this article about how literary scholars are researching how the brain reacts to certain kinds of literature so that these professors can find the best material to introduce students to in their Literature courses.  Read the following article and let me know what you think.  Is it true that we as humans can only follow 1-2 plot shifts in one novel or literary work?  Are these professors oversimplifying the problem?  Do students just have to ADAPT to the lofty and classic literature they are assigned to read and write papers on?

Bad Monday

So I have been going back and forth on whether I would write today given my current condition. I know my small audience read my every word and I want each word to mean something important, prefably positive and optimistic. Sadly, today hasn’t really given me a lot of positive and optimistic material. It’s not a good day for me. But after rereading my “About” page, I realized that in order to grow as a writer, I have to be open, good, bad, or indifferent. That means writing when I am sad and I don’t want to write. So here we go . . .
Now I know after a long weekend, students tend to be a little out of sorts on Monday. They don’t remember anything from last week and their reaction time for answering my questions is much, much slower. And that was TOO true today. It took all of my energy and emotional fortitude to lecture for a solid 35-40 minutes! I don’t know if any of you have ever stood up in front of a class and translated the full plot of Bizet’s opera “Carmen” and the film “Carmen Jones” from 1954. In short, it was mentally taxing and zapped all of my energy for the day, my day that starts at 7:45AM! And just when I thought my day was over, I faced another setback-my office door was locked and somehow the department did not have keys for Both locks on the door. So I had no office to hold office hours. Luckily, one of my really compassionate colleagues lend me his office when he had to leave early. That just goes to show you that angels exist, you just need to pay attention. I was SO grateful!