Anna May she works the night shift
She is playing solitaire
Nodding off into her coffee
Wishing she was anywhere but there

Jonathan eats TV dinners
Wishing he was with his wife
But she is gone to work the night shift
Leaving him to wallow in his life

And everybody's burning with their possibilities


Wednesday March 14. 2001


I am officially a metals/ceramics major at Tyler School of Art.

Today was advising day at school, the usual crush of people staring at the walls, trying to make heads or tails of the numbers and requirements and the constant worry of Will I Be Able To Graduate On Time (answer: usually no). I got my grade report (called the DARS), and tried to understand all the archaic symbols telling me what I needed to take. I needed to take a writing intensive class, I needed two math class, I needed a lab science, I need another sophomore elective studio. I need a reality check.

It really is crazy. Because Temple is such a massive university, you have to register for your classes either by phone or online, a process that often feels like a rat race, getting up at 5 am to try dialing up the registration hotline or repeatedly hitting "refresh" on their webpage.

My first meeting was with one of the ceramic professors. He ended up being no help at all. When I said "I'm planning on double majoring in metals and ceramics." His eyebrows went up and he said incredulously, "Do you know how much work that's going to be? You know you're not going to get out of here in four years, right?"

I left the meeting confused, and went to lay on the dusty chartreuse couch in the back of the ceramics studio, intermittently talking to those that passed by and trying to glean some advice. Finally, Shannon sat down, and while devouring a couple burgers from Wendy's, said this: "You know, you're only going to have this opportunity once in a lifetime, having a dual degree in two things so completely different. Why would you pass this up just because it's going to be really hard?"

She's right. Why would I?

I went up to the Metals studio next. As I was waiting in line to be advised, Daniella asked me what my plans were. I told her I was double majoring, and she looked at me and said, "You're doing the right thing."

And I felt like I was.

Much angst and waffling went into the above decision. Was I making the right decision, will I be able to make a living, will I be able to survive the next two years mentally intact. And I came to a couple conclusions:

1. I take myself way too seriously.

2. I need to chill the fuck out.

Dad came down today to drop off Bessie and pick up the minivan (aka Ma Tilda). After I finished my advising meetings, I came home to find him washing my dishes. How humiliating. The kitchen was the one room I hadn't been able to get to. It's the one room I rarely get to. Not having a dishwasher really sucks. I usually end up with dishes caked with food sitting in the sink submerged in cold, rancid water. My meals still mostly consist of the Lean Cuisine-type variety or small frozen meals my mother has prepared for me. I have the best intentions of being a good cook, it just never turns out that way.

After that whole deal, my Dad and I went out to eat. We actually went to Target first to kill a little time before the restaurant opened. The volume and variety of things they have boggles my mind. We wandered from end to end, looking at the housewares to the men's wear to the electronics. It's a lot more fun than you might think. My Dad bought a dustbuster. As I wandered through the aisles, I once again slipped into the "what if I had a million dollars" mindset, mentally picking out all the furnishings and gadgets and other crap that I would get.

What would I do if I had a million dollars? Give a lot of it to my parents for them to do all the home improvement things they've always wanted to do. Send my Mom to Italy for a month. Buy my sister a new car so she'll stop biching about the 1990 Camry she's driving. Pay off the rest of school. Buy a big warehouse in Long Island City, and renovate it into an apartment/studio. Go to school for the rest of my life, get multiple doctorates in religion or women's studies or art history. Travel.

My Dad and I had sushi for dinner, which was just beyond orgasmically wonderful.

Oh, and if I had a million dollars, I would eat sushi every day.

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One Year Ago:
"Alas, there is no pop culture importance assigned to Philadelphia subways. No one sings about the Market East train station. No, we're known for the Liberty Bell, Independence Hall and Ben Franklin. Blech."