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Language Log

Wednesday, Sept. 06, 2006 - 6:55 p.m.

One of J's students-- an advanced student, a PhD candidate-- told him today that she was going to bail and go to law/ business school...

I find that so brave. I don't change what I'm doing until I get whacked over the head by the good sense of it...even then, good sense may bludgeon me about the head and neck for some time before I acknowledge it. And then it still takes a while to beat some sense into me.

I value sticktoitivity. We were talking about this the other day and J said he didn't think I was especially sticktoitive. Not for a grad student, anyway. Whereas I always get a little thrill of smug satisfaction when my mom tells me that I stick to things (unlike, say, another child of hers we could mention), and I have thought of myself as a determined, if sometimes disoriented, person-- but I guess it is all relative-- anyone looks tenacious compared to my brother, and after all, maybe there's a difference between determination and just being afraid to change course.

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