Tuesday, July 13, 2010

this is dedicated to the one i love

mannn. okay, so to distract myself from academic reading yesterday, i read the first of those young adult novels, daphne's book.

daphne's book

i tried not to read the descriptions too closely for any of the books i bought, so based on the title and cover i thought it would be a story about someone getting their diary stolen. it turns out that it's a pretty realistic portrayal of a girl being forced to work on a project (writing a children's book) with daphne, the most unpopular weirdest person in school. of course they become friends, and the main character (cannot remember her name !) has to deal with being embarrassed about daphne in front of her popular friends, and keeping daphne's big secret, which is that she lives in abject poverty with an increasingly senile grandmother. it's a huge bummer- daphne basically has to take care of her little sister and stops going to school so she won't have to leave her sister alone with her grandmother, whose senility is pretty scary and depressing. it gets to a point where they have no electricity, heat, or food in the winter and the protagonist finally has to tell her mom, which gets daphne and her sister sent to a group home, which is also described pretty accurately and therefore depressingly.

it ends with a ray of hope (second cousins of their mother taking them in in maine) but not a really happy ending, which is also the way daphne suggests the book they're writing for class ends. daphne's desperation and loneliness and distrustfulness are super realistic, as is the protagonist's (what the fuck was her name !) mixed feelings about genuinely liking daphne and wanting to be liked by the popular kids. overall it was a total bummer and i cried a little at the end !

crying baby

i've been so busy reading books from when i was a kid over again that i don't really keep up with new YA fiction- do people still write books that deal with poverty, foster care, unfit or mentally ill parents, etc.? or is it all vampires and werewolves and harry potters?

after i was done reading, i went to german class, where we learned how to ask people about their families. this will come in handy in case i'm ever in germany and am ordering food and suddenly have to know my waiter's grandparents' names, i guess. i had an opportunity to give feedback on the format of the class, and i tried to be gentle, but i think it's going too fast. he just blasts through powerpoints full of stuff and then has us look at them later, but there's a new powerpoint for every class and we have class 4 days a week. i'm doing okay- my blog essay only had one correction and everyone else's had like 10-15.

teacher's pet

my big worry is my history class. we aren't getting much personal feedback or any graded material, and the whole thing makes me feel stupid. i know i'm not stupid, and expressing this is kind of frustrating because everyone is like DON'T WORRY YOU'RE REALLY SMART #)(@)*#)(*)(# but smartness and doing well in school don't have that much to do with each other. going to school seems to be like 10% intelligence and 90% knowing how to go to school. it's frustrating because some of the reading she's giving us is like the world's most jargony jargon (one article i read yesterday was like a cartoon of a stuffy history professor?). i feel like there's so much information for me to try to read and synthesize, more than i've ever had for a class before, and i keep missing stuff. 99% of it is that it's a short summer class so we have to cram a whole semester into 6 weeks, but it's super super super stressful for me so far and i'm really worried about it.


blehhh. i have a meeting now, and then i have to try really hard to do all the work i have to do and then go home and have more excruciating classes and feel stupid and want to go to sleep forever.


  1. "smartness and doing well in school don't have that much to do with each other"

    Do you plan on taking more online classes in the future? I have to take them occasionally cause it's otherwise almost impossible to go to school and work full time, and i find them to be so so so so so much harder in terms of going to school skills than traditional classes.

  2. i like my online german class- i even think the online stuff for the history class is neat. i just think the history class was um.. too meaty? (gross) for a summer class format !

  3. I think other subjects are adaptable for summer session, but history is ALL FACTS so it's pretty impossible to shove it all in. I dropped my history class yesterday after getting 27.5/100 on my midterm :|

    But I also sympathize with the "You're smart what's going on?!" thing teachers like to do. I'm not sure what they base this on either since if they're saying something to me, I'm obviously not doing that great. Ugh college D:

  4. this is only my second week of classes, so i haven't quite had a professor say i'm smart yet, but all my friends are like DON'T WORRY ABOUT IT YOU'RE SMART YOU'LL DO FINE but... one week in, i feel like i'm drowning. ughh.