Crazy Two Weeks!

Race to the Pub and Conference on College Composition and Communication

It’s been a crazy couple weeks. I finished the Race to the Pub on Saturday, the 14th of March in a respectable time of 2 hours 32 minutes. It’s not a record-breaker, but I was in considerable pain for the entire race, so in that way, I consider it a respectable time. I’m not sure what is the origin of the pain, maybe arthritis, maybe a bone spur, maybe muscle damage, maybe all the above, but I will need to get it taken care of before I’ll be able to attempt another 1/2 marathon.

Despite the physical pain, the race was a riot of fun and music and entertainment. The costumes people wore–in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day–were diverse and amusing, but one guy really stood out. He wore a backpack and a green Speedo, and that was it. My sister, in an effort to inconspicuously take a photo of him, asked me to pose for a photo in front of him, but unknown to me, he must have figured it out and photo-bombed me. See photo above. My good friend from high school, Kerri Brown, joined my sisters and me for the afternoon and again for dinner, and then the evening found my sisters and me out sharing a drink with my nephew and his friends. Crazy–but fun–times!

Just a couple days after the race, I was off to Tampa, Florida, for 4Cs. It’s a huge, very exciting conference usually attracting about 4,000 English and communication college teachers. I met lots of new friends and even had a mini-reunion with other MSU English people, and I attended a variety of workshops and sessions intended to help me improve as an instructor. I came away with several new ideas of things I want to try.

In the meantime, however, it feels like I have not seen my students for weeks, and I can sense that a few have disengaged. This concerns me because Spring Break is just a week away, and that tends to be a dangerous time in the semester. It sometimes seems like Spring Break reminds students what life is like without trying to “do” college while also working jobs and caring for families. We usually lose a few who don’t come back. Spring is typically a weaker semester than fall, and it looks like this one will follow the pattern.

I’m ready to go back tomorrow and get back in the swing of things. I will miss the incredible sunny, warm weather of Tampa, but as always, it feels good to be home.

Karen post-race