Crossing Campus in Late March

Minnesotans wait a long time for Spring.  Winter marks its territory in November and stays with us until mid-April.  The month of March is the most difficult to get through–most of the snow is gone, the ground is starting to soften, but most of the world is still a frozen wasteland.

But then there’s that day when you catch it: the slight scent of spring.  I don’t even know how to describe it, really.  It’s just a subtle freshness in the air.  It’s slight, but it seeps down into your soul, giving you fresh energy to make it through a few more weeks of winter.  The thing is, though, if you don’t pay attention, you miss it.

A few years ago, during a particularly long, miserable winter, I was in a poetry class.  I don’t do much creative writing these days, but I’ve resurrected something I wrote on the subject of the first scent of spring.  I re-edited it just now to make it decent enough to post. In light of a Blogging 101 assignment (which I discuss below), I’ve decided to share it with you all.  My theme wasn’t cooperating and formatting some of the words the way I wanted, so I made an image version.

———————————————— CrossingCampus Poem Text ————————————————

This post was created for a Blogging 101 assignment that had to do with writing based on a prompt.  I wrote from the following, found on The Daily Post:

From the yeasty warmth of freshly baked bread to the clean, summery haze of lavender flowers, we all have favorite smells we find particularly comforting. What’s yours?

I’ve always enjoyed prompt-based writing, but I haven’t done any in a long time.  I really enjoyed crafting this post, revisiting old writing, and sharing with you all.  This stretched me in a way I’m not used to, and it feels good to push myself.

You now know about one of my favorite smells.  So now I have to ask: What’s yours?

Visual Journalism angst

My Visual Journalism class is going to be the death of me.

The class is project based.  The professor barely lectures.  We are given a large assignment, then spend the rest of the week’s class time working on it.  Usually this involves organizing and conducting interviews, shooting video footage, and spending copious amounts of time in the lab editing.  After hours and hours of work, we turn in our news stories.

I’m an extremely organized person when it comes to large assignments.  I get my ducks in a row right away–I reserve my camera equipment before any of my classmates, I plan interviews, I have a mental vision that, if things go according to plan, will pan out beautifully.

The problem is that things NEVER go according to plan.

With the first video-based project, we couldn’t do our interviews until just before the assignment was due, leaving me to spend 9 hours in the lab in two days.

With the second project, I had three interviews lined up one afternoon.  The first went well, but there was a technical error and I had no sound.  The second interviewee never showed up.  The third actually went well.  But my overall assignment failed to capture two sides of an issue, something I know I’ll be docked points for.

Now I’m on my final project for the class.  I got all my ducks in a row.  I scheduled an interview, reserved the equipment, and had a day by day schedule of how I’d get the work done.  But then, the day of the interview, my subject called in sick.  We rescheduled for the next day.  She cancelled again last-minute, ’cause she lost her voice.  By this point, my equipment was due back at the media office, but I begged my way into keeping it for the weekend.  I then attempted another interview, but once again, my subject did not respond to texts in time, I missed my opportunity on the day she was free, and she is now unavailable the rest of the weekend.  I have to bring the equipment back in early tomorrow and am unable to check it out again.  Which means I have no video footage for my final project.  Which means I am absolutely screwed.

This class makes me so frustrated because I have absolutely no control over the circumstances.  It’s not anyone’s fault my interviewee got sick, and there’s nothing to be done about it.  But I hate being organized, doing what I need to do, and then things not falling together.  It is incredibly stressful.

What am I going to do now?

I’m going to talk to my professor tomorrow, explain the situation, and hope that she’s feeling merciful.

This is becoming so much more stressful than it needs to be.  Can the semester please be over now?

Riding the stress wave of midterms

Midterms are quickly approaching.  And I find myself riding the wave of tension and stress that always rolls around this time of year.

Here’s what I’ve got standing between me and Fall Break (which is next Friday):

  • 3 page literary criticism response paper for Victorian Lit
  • Photo essay project for Visual Journalism
  • My final speech for Public Speaking, in which I will tirade about how awful Twilight is
  • Midterm for Visual Journalism
  • Midterm for Grammar and Language
  • 6-8 page paper for Victorian Literature
  • 15 minute presentation on some British marriage laws for Victorian Lit

Already this week I’ve written most of the response, begun searching articles for the presentation, and took a quiz for G&L (not mentioned on the list ’cause it’s already been taken).

Excuse me while I spend my night de-stressing over the most recent episode of Downton Abbey.  ‘Cause I’m going to be hitting the books hard this weekend and need to relax somehow!

Do you have anything stressing you out, readers?  What is your favorite way of relaxing?  Answer in comments!