Saturday, September 1, 2007

RBoLDW: Random Bullet Points of Labor Day Weekend

  • The tenure file is done and turned in! Woo-hoo!
  • To celebrate, Bullock and I did our first shopping trip to Costco last night and got some yummy wild salmon which Bullock grilled. We picked up a number of other things, but we're being pretty judicious about what we'll actually consume before it goes bad, and what we have space to store. There are only two of us, after all. But I quickly realized that if all we ever buy at Costco are Clif Bars and giant bottles of generic loratadine (the drug in Claritin), we'll save a decent amount of money over the course of a year and more than make up for the $50 membership fee.
  • Because this Costco is the only one in Rust Belt, and therefore also the only one in this part of the state (because Rust Belt is the only city), the large crowd there produced a pretty good cross-section of the region. However, according to our local newspaper, some of the higher end shoppers of the area, the ones living in close proximity to this Costco (the reason why it chose that location) have not yet realized that Costco carries goods they'd be interested in. (Apparently they don't read all the stories in national newspapers about the Costco yuppie phenomenon.) Some of them are even vowing to boycott it because it's not high end enough for its location. Oh good god. It makes me want to hit them over the head with a lovely bottle of 2004 Turnbull Cabernet Sauvignon (about $2 cheaper at Costco than on Wine.com)!
  • OK, enough about Costco. Btw, Turnbull Cabs are to die for. Not cheap -- usually about $45, depending on the vintage -- but wonderful if you like big, rich red wines. And they're good wines for collecting and aging.
  • Tonight Victoria, her sister, our friend who needs a pseudonym still, and I are having a girls' night out. We're going to see Becoming Jane. I'm really excited, but not nearly as excited as the two mothers of young children in the group, who are really, REALLY excited.
  • I'm managing to keep up in spinning class now and do all the standing exercises! Yay! Now I need to work on form so I'm not putting my weight on my wrists and arms, but holding myself up with my legs and core.
  • Speaking of core work, Victoria has also convinced me to do PiYo -- an upbeat version of Pilates with some yoga -- on Fridays, so now we have Spinning MW at noon and PiYo on Friday at noon, plus I'll still be doing a long run on Saturdays and an easy one on Sundays. I'm going to be SO fit this semester. Here's hoping I can keep up with it all.
  • Bullock and I are talking about having Thanksgiving here this year. His mom and sister are coming, which also means his sister's kids, two dogs, and, possibly, a hedgehog will be here. Virgo Sis said she may be able to make it, too. Word is Fast Fizzy and the Fizzy family are staying put this year (Fizzy, tell me if that's not true!) since they traveled last year, and my dad doesn't travel on Thanksgiving (or much at all these days), and though I'll invite Eldest Niece and Nephew, they probably can't afford it, so it won't be the *whole* family. Still, even with just the members slated to come, that means we'll be making dinner for two vegans and a celiac! It's going to be a complicated meal. Any suggestions for vegan or gluten-free (or both) recipes are welcome! (I'm looking at you, Pastry Pirate!)
  • Speaking of grown-ups and families, about 2/3s of the new graduate students are roughly about my age, give or take a couple of years, and a number of them have kids, some of whom are in college already. One of the students, who is only 41, is a grandmother already. Some of the younger ones have children, as well, with or without spouses. It's a demographically interesting group. I find this all very fascinating, and dealing with grown-ups is such a pleasure, but I also worry for them, since they're entering a profession that still assumes everyone is young and single and child-free, or, if married, a man with a stay-at-home wife. These students can't simply pack up and move for a Ph.D. program or a job, or if they do, it will be that much more difficult for them. Any advice for assisting them -- resources to point them to, for example -- would be greatly appreciated.

8 comments:

meg said...

I'm not Pastry Pirate, but my usual vegan Thanksgiving presentation dish is the butternut squash gratin out of *The Greens* cookbook. It's tiresome and complex (thank heavens Deborah Madison moved away from that in *Veg Cooking for Everyone*), but it's high impact.

Dr. Virago said...

Thanks, Meg!

Sisyphus said...

Congratulations on turning in the big heavy binder! Whoo-hoo!

And I second any advice and survival tips --- it ain't easy being a grad student and going on the market even if you _Are_ a young singleton!

Horace said...

Good work on that binder, and thanks for the continuing update on that anxiety provoking process. Sounds like a good bottle of Cab, some retail therapy, and a guilty-pleasure movie are all in order!

As for vegan gluten-free Thanksgiving recipes, unless you like beets and brussels sprouts together, I've got very little to offer!

Dr. Virago said...

Horace, I *love* beets and brussels sprouts -- together or apart!

highlyeccentric said...

I'm managing to keep up in spinning class now and do all the standing exercises! Yay! Now I need to work on form so I'm not putting my weight on my wrists and arms, but holding myself up with my legs and core.

wait, are we talking about "spin class" as in cycling nowhere in a gym?
here was me thinking you were discovering the fitness benefits of spinning wool...

Horace said...

Well, then, I'll see if I can find that recipe and email it to you...

In the meantime, I need your expertise over at my place...please???

The Pastry Pirate said...

oops... sorry, just saw this. darth chocolate has been keeping me busy. email me what you want (breads, cakes, main dishes, starters) and i shall deliver. the recipe, not the dish, tho i'd send it if i could. and lucky you, i will have just finished our "alternate baking" class where vegan and gluten-free are two of the main topics.