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It’s nice to not have a week to catch up on.

The Silent Dinner Wednesday was great. I was running late to meet the club at the Benjamin Building, but everyone was still there, so I was fine. I rode with Irene, a very nice junior officer, Carla, and John. She always does the “deaf moment” at meetings, where she speaks about deaf culture while someone interprets. (Interpreting ASL — American Sign Language — seems really hard. Harder than a spoken language, I think, because signing takes physical action.) We went to Chevy’s, a Mexican restaurant in Greenbelt, down 193. The food was good, even though I stuck with a chicken quesadilla. It was infinitely better than the ones the dining halls make (which are greasy and a little bland, even for my taste).

We went “voice-off” as soon as we walked in the door. I was nervous, but everything worked out. I think it was a benefit night for a deaf group, so our waiter was prepared for us to not talk. He knew some signs — even some I didn’t know, like chicken. I remembered to look up “please”, “thank you”, and “where’s the bathroom”, though. (The grammar structure for ASL is different than spoken English, so it’s unusual for a grammarphile like me. “Where’s the bathroom” becomes “where” and “bathroom”. There are signs for all the articles and such, but it’s so tedious considering the naturally slow nature of signing words to make a sentence.) I had a few conversations with the people near me, assisted by paper and a pen. Everyone knows how to sign except me and one other girl. She had written “I’m the only one who doesn’t know ASL” on the pad I saw Carla using, so I gestured and mouthed (no voices, but mouthing’s fine) that I didn’t know either. She replied (signing, of course), that none of them “know” ASL, which is true, but still.

My overall impression, which I told Irene after we went “voice-on” again, was that I’ve never had so many conversations without saying anything. Several people asked about my ZTA ribbon. Earlier this month, I was walking past the Union and saw a table with a hope quilt and a bag of pink ribbons. The Zeta Tau Alpha sorority sisters were handing them out, so I accepted it, and I’ve been wearing it every day since then. The pink ribbon is for breast cancer, and since it’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month, I’m glad I walked by that day. Anyway, since it says “ZTA” and “Think Pink”, people who don’t recognize the color usually ask about it. That night, not only did I have to figure out that Riley was asking about it, but how to explain it without speaking. Bethany, who was across from me, and I talked about our classes. Julia, on my right, tried to order a dessert to go. When the waiter told her she couldn’t have the one she wanted, she asked why, and he said, “Because it has fire.” We all laughed. I had a lot of fun. It was way more quiet than any dinner I’ve ever had before, but I’d totally do it again — hopefully once I have more signing experience. The other members say the ASL classes here are really good, so I may try to fit that in sometime.

My registration for next semester is December 1, so I have to figure out what classes I want before then. Which means I also have to figure out which major to declare. I need help, so I may have to go back to my L&S adviser or to my other advisor in Education. (I’ll end up with three advisors if I do Secondary Education: one for Education, one for English or History, and Tanya for HH.) I just can’t decide. I mean, if it took me all of high school and three weeks of college to pick a college (within the university), how long is this going to take? Ugh.

Yesterday, I got my Psychology exam back. I got an 89, extra credit and a slight curve included. I’m definitely pleased with that, considering that I thought I’d do worse. She was pretty lenient with some of my short answers, though. I got out of that class early, so I had settled into my Honors seminar when my teacher showed up, with company. The woman explained that she’d used him as an example to show that “gender is more of a construct than we think”. Oh, my. My teacher has long hair, which had been straightened and pulled back on the side with a butterfly clip, along with makeup and nail polish. It was so weird, especially since I sit right across from him at the table. If I hadn’t known he was a man, and only seen pictures (which is what that other class did, it seems), I might have been fooled for a second, but the hands give him away. Man-hands are obvious, even with nail polish.

Last night, I went to watch a movie in Danielle’s room. I volunteered School of Rock, which prompted a bunch of people to claim Jack Black as the father of their babies (wishful thinking, of course). It wasn’t as much fun as watching Paycheck with a dozen people a few weeks ago, but it was still nice. Then, I left to watch ER and finish my homework. Boo. Jenny and I talked for an hour, which was great. I’m going to miss her if she does go to Australia.

I got my Geography exam back this morning. I got a 78, which is wonderful, because he gave us a 10-point curve, so I got a B! I was totally expecting, like, a C. We took another quiz today, too. Just based on all the facts that started coming to me as I worked on this one, I should totally do better than last time. Yay for reviewing over Honey Nut Cheerios. After class, I camped out in McKeldin for an hour before lunch. I got some books on writing, for personal use and for my HH keystone project. (For the program, we have to do a project related to the arts and humanities. I am writing short stories. We’ll see how that idea flies when Tanya advises me in a few weeks.) I also read some writing magazines — yay for free magazines, even if you do have to stay in that room to use them.

Friday Five: When you were a child…

1. what did you want to be when you grew up and why? In preschool, I wanted to be a nurse. By first grade, I wanted to be a writer, and I still do. Now, I’m working on being a teacher. I plan to write until I die, though.
2. who was your favorite person to do things with (excluding your parents)? My neighborhood friends. I remember an Ashley. I think her sister was named Nicole. And Precious and Ivory, also sisters. And there was a boy who lived in our building-thing, an adopted Filipino boy, I think.
3. did you love school or did you hate it? Why? Did that change as you got older? I loved kindergarten. I never loved it as much after that, and if it didn’t take so much work I would still like it. I do like learning, though, and mingling with all the people. Some of my school experiences have made it worthwhile.
4. was your family close? What were your favorite family traditions? Sort of. I have pretty big families on both sides, full of ambiguous relatives. We get together to be loud at Thanksgiving and Christmas, and the occasional family reunion (though I haven’t been to one of those since we left for Japan).
5. did you think that being an adult would be cool? Yes. I knew I’d someday have to deal with real word, work, and paying bills, but I wanted so much to be older. Even a few years was better than where I was. Now, I don’t crave being older as much as I used to.

Greg called a few minutes ago. I’m going to Arundel Mills. Tonight should be interesting.



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