...I never finished the MOOC, and mostly disappeared from the blogosphere for a month. What happened?
Life got crazy. First, I moved into a new apartment. Only half a mile away from the old one, but so much nicer. The move, though, was an ordeal. We were supposed to move at the end of June. We hired professional movers with a decent online reputation. The day of the move, though, turned out to be bizarre. It started with me witnessing one of the movers buying a twelve pack at noon, and by 2:00 pm we had fired them. Thankfully, they hadn't put anything in the truck, so they couldn't blackmail us. The final discussion included me saying to one of them: "I'm a college professor, I deal with bullshit on a regular basis, I can smell it from a mile away, and you are more full of it than any of my students. Get the hell out of here". After they were gone I proceeded to go out and get drunk like I hadn't been since grad school. Ouch. Finally, I paid my old landlord a half month rent for July and organized a move with students from my institution. I paid them a decent rate, fed them good pizza, gave them unlimited supplies of Gatorade, and the move went as smoothly as it could. And the move included scenes like one of the students, a Classics major, explaining why Thucydides is hard to read in Ancient Greek. Because I am sophisticated like that.
In the meantime, my Dean "asked" me if I was willing to teach a Beginning Spanish course online next summer. I told her that pedagogically it was a bad idea, but she insisted. Unbloggable stuff at my institution made it impossible to say no. So I started an online course about how to design and teach online courses, given by my institution to future online instructors (yes, I get paid to do it). I will refrain from giving my opinion because 90% know who I am. Let's just say that I am learning a lot by negative example.
Because of all of these, I didn't go to Argentina this summer. So my parents decided to come and visit me, and help me unpack. I love them to death, they were really generous buying stuff for us, but I am exhausted. I also learned a lesson: never go to The Container Store with your mother. My husband had to intervene so that a discussion of the merits of plastic vs. fabric (or practicality vs. aesthetic) wouldn't turn into a shouting match. My parents left yesterday, and tomorrow my mother in law is arriving. Sigh
In the meantime, I have a three prep, 4 days a week teaching schedule. I've only taught one of those courses before. I have only started to write the syllabi for the Fall in my mind. And I have decided to include contemporary chronicles (like Cristian Alarcon) in two of them. I think I have a pretty neat idea for how to articulate the courses, but I have never taught this genre before. In the meantime, I am teaching again Paz Soldan's El delirio de Turing. The first time I taught it, the Wikileaks scandal broke in the middle of the semester. Now, we have the NSA scandal. I am a lucky fellow, and will have plenty of material for discussion.
Well, I hope to write more often. I am more active on Facebook if you know who I am and want to look for me there. To be continued...