Tomorrow is another day

Sigh. This has been a discouraging day. One of those days where it’s not that it’s so horrible but just that lots of little things went wrong. My new computer is here, and it is nice and fast, but setup has not been as easy as I’d hoped. The system doesn’t have Microsoft Office on it, so there’s no Word or Excel, both of which I use regularly. Also, the display seems to be a tiny bit fuzzy, and I can’t figure out why.

I went out to Westwood today (where UCLA is) and looked for housing. I am feeling better about driving, and luckily I didn’t have to true parallel park, so that part wasn’t so bad. But I walked around and sweated and hurt my feet just to find out that I probably won’t find anything in my price range that close to campus. Boo hiss. I guess I knew that, but it’s still a downer to actually go there and put in the effort and not come up with anything. I did get checked out a lot while I was wandering around though. For heaven’s sake people, this is LA, haven’t you ever seen a girl before?

Then I got home and found out I didn’t get a readership/research assistantship I’d been hoping to get. I suppose I shouldn’t have expected that I’d get the first one I applied to, but this one sounded interesting and I thought it’d be a good opportunity. The course was on the American West and there was a simultaneous research position at a local museum.

Some good things that have come of my pooey day:
I’ve lost my hesitation in calling people to ask about vacancies. I don’t like talking to people on the phone–my comfort level varies considerably depending on how much calling I’ve done recently–so I’d been reluctant to make phone calls, but now I am not at all bothered.

Also, in my tiredness and frustration, I’ve done something that’s pretty brave for me. I’ve emailed the American West professor back to ask why I didn’t get the position. Possibly it’s just because someone else got there first, but if it’s because profs hesitate to take first years, or because something about my email sounded wrong, I want to know this. Hopefully he will reply and I will be enlightened.

I tell myself there will always be days like this and if I keep that in mind I will deal with them better. I think it’s true. This summer has been largely about pushing myself to do things I don’t want to do or am scared to do: go to work every day (it’s not just the fact of working 8-5, but I won’t get into it here), learn to drive, go to NYC by myself. I know for sure I am a lot better about conquering fear and laziness than I was before graduation.

I am strong. Yes. Rar. I won’t let a bad day get me down.

It has, however, ruined my appetite. My linguine sits mostly untouched. Sigh.

The professor emailed me back, and his response is fair and makes sense.

I struggled with how to make a decision, since I received about a dozen requests. I thought it fairest to choose students who either had some experience working in a museum (or in public history background) and/or whose field of study was western American history (and who had indicated that they wanted to take History 153 as a graduate course (as a 596).

So I feel better.

[This post was imported on 4/10/14 from my old blog at]