monday morning monkey mind


It's not morning anymore, obviously, but Monday mornings always seem to be "monkey mind" times for me. I've gotten pretty good at turning work off on the weekends and simply relaxing. This weekend was particularly nice, because Sunday was my birthday. Gerald and the boys took me to my choice of restaurants, The Crab Pot, where you order a seafood feast and they dump the pot of crabs, shrimp, clams, mussels, potatoes, corn, and sausage out onto your table. Everyone gets a bib, a mallet, a crab-cracker, a fork, and some melted butter. Yum!

But weekends off means that when I wake up on Monday my mind starts racing, jumping around all the projects that I've got on the table, all the things I meant to do over the weekend but didn't, and all the things I've got to get done that day. I take loooong showers on Mondays, while I try to organize my thoughts.

Today I had four areas of focus--the upcoming social computing symposium and related communication, the research project I've been working on here (and hope to be blogging about this week), the Star Wars: Galaxies "community summit" event that I took Lane to on Saturday night, and whether or not to return to my position at RIT.

The first of those, as you can see by the link, now has information available online. Once I've got webcast details, I'll link them from that site.

The second is something I want to get clearer in my head before I start blogging about it, but I think that will happen this week.

The third I've just written up in some detail, but won't be posting here. Why? Well, I've been invited to be a guest author on one of my favorite blogs, TerraNova, so watch for it to be posted there in the near future. (Yes, I know, I need another blog like a hole in the head. But it's so much more fun to start new projects than to finish old ones, isn't it?)

The fourth is a sticky subject. It turns out I like MSR. A lot. It's been wonderful to be in a place that really values the kind of work that I do--without my having to constantly explain and justify it. And it's not clear yet whether that's going to be true at RIT. As my end date here grows closer, my angst over this has grown as well. On the flip side, my family and I have strong ties in Rochester, and a strong sense of connection to community. While it's been nice having a break from teaching this year, I'm starting to miss my students. We also have a house we love in a great neighborhood, at a fraction of the cost of something comparable in Seattle. Life would be easier, I said to Gerald, if only someone would invent a teleporter. If I could live in Rochester and work here at MSR, that would be pretty much perfect. But life's not perfect, and I'll have to find a compromise that my family and I can all live with. (Don't get me wrong, I'm not whining. I know how lucky I am to have such great choices. But it's a big decision with a lot of repercussions, and requires a lot of thought.)


Prof Lawley, I am a fourth year student in the IT dept here at RIT. I am glad to hear that things are going so well at MSR. I am kind of bummed I never got a chance to take one of your classes. I have really enjoyed reading your blog and getting to know you through your blog.

I can relate to having big choices ahead, granted maybe not on the same scale, but with graduation in the not to distant future there are lots of choices to be made.

Best wishes!

Liz - a question for you (& yours) to ponder: where do you want to be in 5 or 15 or 25 years? Work backwards from there to discern what needs to happen to get to those places?

I can totally relate to your dilema, I'm on the far side of it. I've been back in OH now for 5 months, after living in Maine for the better part of 5 years. I loved being in Maine, and yet the history, connections and proximity w/ family and friends won out. No right or wrong decisions, just different choices. Good luck!

blessings, Phoenix

Phoenix, that's definitely part of my thinking process. It's hard, though, to get 9 and 11 yo kids thinking five years out. :) That's half a lifetime to them.

Happy b-lated birthday! We'll have cake and pizza on thursday :)

Wait a second... you replied with that helpful university tiebreaker on your birthday? Well, happy belated birthday. Next year, I'll make sure the gifts are heading in the right direction.

(And I'll send a proper response once I've put in my SIR.)

You and my daughter share a birthday. Congratulations on making it through another year!

I'm sure there are places in your current vicinity that would be happy to have you as a teacher. And I bet MSR would be cooperative too. So there.

Meanwhile, I've been asleep at the switch. Your Social Computing Symposium sounds awesome. I'm jealous. How about a geek dinner on the side?

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This page contains a single entry by Liz Lawley published on April 17, 2006 4:10 PM.

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