Sunday, August 29, 2010


The first week of classes is over, and I survived despite the following:

  • Between 25-50% more students showing up to each class than were enrolled in the hopes of getting in. I'm allowing people in my classes up to the fire code limit on the capacity of each classroom.
  • A construction accident knocked out the air conditioning to the entire campus during San Diego's warmest week of the year so far. Combine that with the overflowing classrooms and it was quite uncomfortable. Many thanks to the students, who all remained in good humor.
  • A minor lab disaster in which the internet capability (or lack thereof) of the available laptops made me send the students away to complete the lab on their own. Sigh.
  • The State Legislature has yet to pass a budget. Look at these statewide numbers: The 58 day delay in the California budget has resulted in a blockage of all state payments to the community colleges including $116 million that was due in July and $277 million due in August. Deep budget cuts and more than $1 billion in funding deferrals have left the colleges vulnerable. The state’s September payment, scheduled to go out on September 28, is one of the largest payments of the year at nearly $450 million. If this payment is missed, it will bring the cumulative funding delay to $840 million, or roughly 15 percent of districts’ total annual funding. And yet the State keeps taking taxes out of my paycheck. At least I'm still getting a paycheck.
  • Spent the week hobbling around on a bum left foot, due to a mole removal that I had done two weeks ago. Pathology came back okay (remember to get your moles checked, people!). Greg drove me to and from school, to get me as close to my office as possible. He was really the key to my survival last week.

I did manage to stick to my goal of taking Saturdays off, except for answering student emails. I really can't handle working seven days per week any more. The new crop of students seems like a good one so far. One week down.... sixteen to go!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

End of Summer

Tomorrow is the first day of the fall semester. I'm materially, but not emotionally, prepared. Summer is never long enough. Where did the time go?

  • Did enough classroom prep that this past week hasn't been too bad.
  • Went through the first half of a general chemistry text, to brush up.
  • Visited a few museums in Balboa Park.
  • Finally visited Julian and Oceanside.
  • Performed the July planetarium shows at the RH Fleet center in Balboa Park.
  • Quick trip to see the family in Sacramento.
  • Visits from Paolo, Carl, Bob and Laura and kidlings, and Kirsten and Aaron.
  • Saw four (FOUR!) movies - Rush: Beyond the Lighted Stage (awesome), Inception (solid), Predators (silly entertainment), and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (enjoyable, sorry it isn't more successful).
  • Glorious, glorious Comic-Con
  • Concerts - Rush and w00tstock.
  • Great staycation, with pics below.

Took the train to Carlsbad.

From Staycation August 2010

Visited the USS Midway with its spectacular view:

From Staycation August 2010

Took the ferry to have lunch on Coronado:

From Staycation August 2010

Got in some quality beach time:

From Staycation August 2010

Looks like the time mostly went to having fun! Hope y'all had a good summer, too!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010