Monday, August 24, 2015

Night Before 1st Day of School. Can't Sleep.

As the title might suggest, I can't sleep. I've been in bed staring at the ceiling, then the wall, then the fan, then the ceiling, then the lamp. then the empty bag of pumpkin seeds next to my lamp for the past 45 minutes and still nothing. Well not exactly nothing. See, the problem isn't that I'm not tired, it's that I can't sleep. It's not stress or nervousness or, well, allow me to explain.

The problem started last night when I fell asleep in my chair. What chair, you ask? Well, this chair:

Yes I just got out of bed to take this picture
Now usually when I fall asleep in this chair (which is often) it's not a big deal. I sleep. I wake up. No big deal. So I don't exactly know what happened last night, except that when I woke up after a couple hours asleep and ambled into my bedroom to sleep the rest of the night on my bed (yes on. not in) I could tell my neck and shoulder kinda hurt a little. I was too tired to really think much about it, so I fell asleep immediately, and that was that. But then when I woke up this morning I was in searing pain from my right shoulder and the right side of my neck. (In case you were wondering, yes I just had to do the whole look at your hands trick to remember right from left.) Any time I made any movement whatsoever the pain stabbed afresh. Well, I surmised that I'd gotten a crick in my neck from sleeping in the chair, which while it rarely happens, does so on occasion. I figured a quick soak in a nice warm tub before church would relax it right up and I could go about my business without any worries. So I ran a bath, and soaked for a few while reading C.S. Lewis' The Weight of Glory. (Great book. Well, so far at least.) But even after soaking there for a good half hour, it was still aching something fierce. Granted, it was now aching, having moved passed its stabbiness, but a near constant dull ache isn't much of an improvement. Now normally I'd give it another couple hours to soak (no, I'm not kidding), but I had places to be. So I got out of the tub, put on a shirt and tie, and figured I'd just make the best of it.

Driving turned out to be a challenge. It turns out that any time you want to turn, it's a good idea to check cross traffic. Checking cross traffic requires you to turn your head. Turning your head requires you to have a functional neck. I had no such thing. I could turn my head to the left just fine, but right? Well. No. So looking to the right required me to turn my whole body. (It's a good thing I do a lot of car dancing because I'm pretty sure it has made my hips and my whole core nice and limber which in turn made it that much easier to adjust to this new way of driving.) 

So this was how went about my day. Moving about as little as possible as I sat in on a lesson with the sister missionaries, attended the dedication of the Indianapolis Temple, fixed dinner, and generally went about my normal Sabbath Day activities. But all throughout the day the aching in my shoulder and neck never really went away. I'd massage it as best I could, knead it against the door frame, and do anything I could think to help the muscles relax, but nothing worked. It just kept hurting. 

After dealing with it all day, I decided that my best bet would be to just go to bed and let my body work itself out in my sleep. So here I am. In bed. The only problem is I can't sleep. I'll just start slipping off to sleep when I flinch or make a slight movement of some sort, and that searing pain will shoot through my arm and shoulder and neck and I'll wake right up. 

And here I was hoping to get up early and get a good fresh start on the semester. Robert Burns would probably have something to say about my situation. You know, something about mice and about men and laying plans that gang aft agley

Oh well. Maybe I'll try taking another bath.

Monday, August 3, 2015

Concerning Some of My Intellectual Heroes and Their Attendant Mustaches

Tomorrow I start prelims. I'm nervous. But excited. I think I'm ready? But can one ever really be ready? I dunno. But tomorrow I find out.

Anyway, when I started preparing for prelims a while back I knew that I was going to need a little extra help. So I decided to invoke the aid of three mustachioed intellectual heroes of mine. Hoping against hope that at least some of their genius came from their facial hairs, I decided grew out my mustache yet again. You know as a sort of appeal to their wisdom. So here 'tis:

Any perfectly objective analysis of this mustache couldn't help but recognize that this mustache is glorious and beautiful, easily outstripping any mustaches I've grown in the past. My only hope is that it will be enough to channel the brilliance of these three outstanding gentlemen:

Kenneth Burke:

John Dewey:

Vernon Dunn:

So here's hoping (and praying) that I do my mustachioed brethren (and father) justice over the next week or so.