South Park Self

and the next day and the next

Good lord, I am overcome with nostalgia. The student who just wandered into my office for a change of curriculum signature was in full-on Goth performance dress: dead white face, black hair, black lipstick, heavy eye-liner, docs, tights, the whole nine yards, circa approximately mid-80s. I haven't seen that in years. Judging by the name, voice register and painful politeness, somewhere under all that was a rather sweet and well-brung-up Indian lad. For all its self-conscious angst and gloom, Goth as a counter-culture is so inward-turned as to be basically harmless. Rather endearingly so. I am now all flashing back to my own undergrad Goth days and pining for Egyptian eye make-up and the Sisters of Mercy. If stv ever makes good on his threat regarding a non-cheesy 80s dance party, I will have to acquire some eye-liner and roll back the "DECADES WITHOUT MAKE-UP" sign to 0.

'Tis graduation, and the Avenue has blossomed with kids in gowns and proud parents, all more or less dressed to the nines. I have to avoid it: it makes me cry, mostly because sublimated maternal wossnames, and also investment: I see so many of these kids in distress in my office, it's warmly poignant to see them finally pull it together. Today they are proudly graduating in the pouring rain, because Cape Town and winter. I am enjoying this, too. Likewise the way that the angst and imperative of the semester has choked off suddenly, and I'm sitting in my office twiddling my thumbs with not much to do. I am very tired, see semester, angst and imperative of, above. I am also on leave from Friday next week, for almost two weeks. I am going to enjoy this very much indeed. If you're in Cape Town, let's do coffee. General exhaustion levels have meant that I haven't seen anyone much for ages, and this shall not stand.
Arrgh, I am unlikely to be in Cape Town soon. it's Too Expensive to get there. I may get to bits of Europe and or US with J later this year though.
Mad Globe-Trotting Existence R U, apparently! It will be sad not to see you in CT for Christmas as usual, but yes, cost is becoming ridiculous. I hope the Europe/UK jaunts are fun.
Purely out of interest - why graduate now? I mean, I know the Northern Hemisphere graduates around now, but the Southern?

Or is it a choice between the winter rains and the summer baking heat? BTW - 'tis raining here today (UK, South coast.)
We run two grad ceremonies over the year; December, the main one, where most students graduate, and a sort of mop-up June ceremony that's mostly filled with postgrad students who handed in dissertations in February, or undergrads who had supplementary exams (written in January) or needed a summer term course over the December holiday to finish. This year June was much larger because so many students deferred exams to January because of the protests.

My Cherished Institution is a bit insane with grad ceremonies, it's really tricky to run a December grad when exams only finish late November - marks processing in time is a bitch. Also, we are a Very Large University and it's logistically challenging to graduate everyone at all, let alone in a hurry.

Extemporanea, answering random questions at unnecessary length since 2005!