Archive | PhD Chronicles RSS feed for this section

Oh, Hello There! I’m Back.

8 Aug

I’m back, ladies and gents. After many months of silence, I’m back.

Return of the…. Beez?

I am currently living in the amazing city of Omaha, Nebraska where I’ll be finishing my IO Psychology PhD journey. Here, I’ll be working on amazing psych projects with creativity and robots. That’s right – mother effin’ robots.

Close enough.

I already have too many things to talk about for one post: my adventure in a multi-ton death trap, driving 18 hours from Buffalo to my new home in Omaha, couch surfing for over a month, making new, interesting, and wholesome friends, teaching a class all by my big-girl self, meeting a really great gentleman on the Internet (I know, I know – gimme a break). The best part is that I don’t remember the last time that I was this genuinely happy. Just beaming and radiating positivity about my future. I cannot explain in words how empowered I feel by all of the opportunities that I have here. Even better, I actually feel like writing again. I can say, without a shadow of a doubt, that I would not wish my life any other way. Well, a bushel of $100 bills would be nice.

I was born in the wrong state. I love Nebraska. It’s my new home.

More like, “The GREAT Life”

Monday Music Moment – I Miss Philly Edition: “Heart It Races” by Dr. Dog

25 Mar

 

The past few days have suuuucked regarding the amount of work I have to get done. However, I shouldn’t be surprised: I’m a first-year PhD student. It’s not supposed to be fun. However, I only have to go through 1 “first year”. I have to keep reminding myself that….

Anyway, I’ve been missing Philly ever since I came back from my impromptu trip a couple weeks ago. Dr. Dog is a Philly-native band and this particular song just gets me in the mood for Spring – even though that groundhog is a dirty liar. I am no longer taking meteorological advice from a rodent. Look out, Punxsutawney Phil. You might not have a job for much longer.

 

Have a kick-@$$ Monday, everyone!

 

Stuck in an Internet K-Hole

18 Mar
Screen shot 2013-03-18 at 9.32.07 PM

Thanks, urbandictionary.com

When I work on a paper / presentation / thoroughly detailed outline of the next 5 years of my life, I go to my favorite coffee shop. There’s something about that atmosphere that just makes me feel productive. I see all of the other diligent, hipster-y looking individuals tip-tap-typing away on their MacBooks, looking to make a huge impact on their field. Or maybe just scrape by to finish the class they hate. Unclear.

I buy a jade tea: 1. because it’s delicious when you add just the right amount of honey. 2. because if I drink anymore coffee, my heart might burst within my chest cavity. I wish I was being hyperbolic. I think half of all the cups of coffee I’ve imbibed in my lifetime have been in the city of Buffalo – and I’ve only lived here for 7 months.

The only problem with this tea is that when they hand it to me in the artfully crafted ceramic mug, it is roughly the temperature of the sun, so I can’t drink it right away. Of course, I don’t have to start working right away, because I want to wait for my tea to cool down. I can’t embark upon this academic adventure if my tea isn’t ready to go. I can’t leave it behind, so I start on Facebook. After perusing the pictures, jokes, videos, and general quirky Internet presence of my friends, I find a link to an online article, and I remember that my Google Reader is full. I should go empty it. Even if I don’t read through every article in there, I love the feeling of a clean inbox. One of the articles reminds me that I haven’t checked Reddit yet today. Haha, Grumpy Cat memes. Memes, memes, and more memes.Wait, we just had a major holiday, so there are bound to be millions of photos uploaded to Instagram. Each one telling a story of how drunk someone was, how delicious their food was, how adorable their pet is, and how much they love selecting filters (ProTip: everyone looks great in Earlybird). How many likes did my photo get? Did anyone comment on my photo? Who is this person? Ohmyblog their nail art is amazing! I totally have gold glitter nail polish. Maybe I should go home and paint my nails like that. I’m not home? Oh, I’m at the coffee shop.

Hold on – what time is it?

Dammit! I just spent 3 hours browsing the Internet. That’s 3 hours that I’m going to have to stay up later to write this dumb paper.

Ugh! Every time, Internet. You get me every time.

And now, my tea is cold.

It’s About Survival / Dating Dislike

6 Dec

As of 9:30pm EST this very evening, I will have completed all of my classes of my first semester as a PhD student! My last final is the 17th, so I’m not counting my chickens before they hatch. Also, I don’t own chickens.

The past few weeks have been hell for a few reasons.
1. I miss the sh*t out of my sister. She gives the best advice and it’s sad to not be able to hug her after she’s done dealing a hefty dose of a reality check.
2. The other person in my cohort is thinking of quitting.
3. There’s only enough time to get it done – not to make it perfect. As a raging perfectionist, I’m getting a really valuable life lesson to calm my sh*t down. It’s not about achievement – it’s about survival.

I’ll be honest – I thought about quitting this past week. I thought about going to cosmetology school instead. You see, one of my stress relief tactics is shopping at Sephora – not the healthiest for my wallet, but my skin looks great and I’m kick-ass at liquid eyeliner now. But then I thought about the office job I would get instead – because that’s what I’m most qualified for at this point – and immediately went back to my research. I cannot work in an office. Even though it’s super stressful, this is really the environment where I belong. I’m gonna stick it out for the long haul. I like Buffalo, my new friends are awesome, and I like who I’ve become. I like everything here.

Well, there is *one* thing I dislike – people who say they had a nice time on your date and then never talk to you again.

Really? Caution: it’s about to get straight-up cranky in here.

I’m a person who is very quick to appreciate others and I’m optimistic about my future. I’m honest about how I feel and very empathetic. I tell people how I feel about them. My guard is usually down. When you tell me that you enjoyed spending time with me, I believe you and I get my hopes up. 2012 has *not* been my year for relationships. Luckily, 2013 is right around the corner. I know the right guy who will love all of me is out there somewhere – it’s just going to take me a little bit longer to find him. Or have him find me 🙂
I’m not looking for pity, but rather to educate. If you don’t want to date someone anymore, tell them. Believe me, they’ll appreciate it more if you buck-up and just say what’s on your mind. Oh my blog – I sound like my mother.

I think I’ll just marry myself – I know we’ll be really happy together. Also, I’m registered at Target, Crate & Barrel, and – of course – Sephora. 😛

Sunday Study Session Song – “Kites” by Geographer

2 Dec

Oh, you know me – just procrastinating and avoiding this research that I’m supposed to be doing.

I had an interesting weekend and I made a new friend. Well, we were friends before, but we actually spent a lot of time together this weekend. I know Amy through my PhD friends, but now I can actually say I’m friends with her: I joined her book club, went to karaoke with her, went bowling, went to brunch – it was pretty kick-ass. My PhD friends are in Vegas this weekend and with my high need for affiliation, I was craving some human contact. It was really nice to hang out with someone who isn’t in my program – well, besides the fantastic date I went on last weekend. More on that in another post. 🙂

Happy Sunday, everyone!

Mid-Week Music Moment: “Hang With Me” by Robyn / Quick Life Update

19 Nov

It’s Thanksgiving this week! I’m so excited to be seeing my family. I don’t remember the last time I saw my sister – she lives in Rhode Island now and doesn’t get to travel to this side of the Northeast ever. I’ve been so swamped with work this week so far. I’m actually supposed to be writing a stupid paper as I write this, but blogging seemed like a better way to take a break.

So besides getting to see my family, I’m also excited for this weekend. I’m going on a date. Yes – a real life “post-college where you meet other people who didn’t go to the same school as you and therefore are super interesting” date.  He’s in the circle of friends that I’ve been spending most of my free time (hah! what free time?!). He originally asked me out to dinner, but he changed his mind and is now planning a surprise date. I love surprises, but when you tell me that you’re surprising me, I get super anxious and curious. I hope it has something to do with a fire-breathing dragon, but since they do not exist in real life, I’m keeping my other ideas down to earth.

Have a splendid Turkey Day everyone! Gobble gobble!!

Election Day Should Be A National Holiday So I Don’t Have To Go To School

6 Nov

Happy Election Day everyone! I hope you’ve all exercised your right to vote and then mentioned it on Facebook 🙂

Seriously though, I can’t wait for this to be all over! If I see one more campaign ad, I’m going to poke someone in the eyeball. When I lived in Ohio this summer, I saw more campaign ads than I think I’ve seen in my entire young life. I have a very strong opinion for one candidate, but I’m not trying to shove it down my friends throats. For my Facebook friends that are trying to sway my vote via Facebook status updates, I have *seriously* considered defriending them. It’s just become too much. I checked out a few weeks ago because I already sent in my absentee ballot. It was really gratifying knowing that my opinion is going to be counted and I hope everyone who votes today feels that it was worthwhile.

So, ranting aside, I just got back from Florida on Saturday – what a nice break from the Northeast! It was sunny and beautiful – just what I needed to help push me through the last few weeks of my first semester in a PhD program (and boy, do I have a crapton of stuff to do). I had a great time and even learned a thing or two that will help me with some future research. I’ll have more updates when I can take another breather, but for now, that’s all she wrote.

Happy Tuesday, peeps!

Mid-Week Music Moment: “Parentheses” by The Blow

17 Oct

“Even diligent day takes relief every day from its work making light from the night.

And when you’re holding me, we make a pair of parentheses.”

 

Thanks to the majesty of Pandora and my suh-weet music collection acting as the soundtrack to my “SuperStudyFest 2012”, I successfully passed my first PhD-level seminar exam. It was one essay prompt and I had to defend my answer using as many references to articles as I could remember. Yes, I had to memorize the information for all of the articles I’ve read so far this semester – all 52 of them. And you know what? I did. I memorized all 52 of them and can recall them. I was able to accurately cite 23 articles on my exam – those are all of the ones that were relevant to the topic. When I got out of the exam, I felt like my brain had been processed in a blender right in front of me.

I came across this little gem of a song when I was a freshman in college and thought, “I love punctuation!” I remember my sassy gay friend, who lived one floor below me, would come up and we would listen to this song while I did Physics homework and he busted out some Intro to Engineering Analysis stuff. Sometimes reminiscing can be sorrowful – longing for a time where, due to hindsight, everything was *so* much easier. However, memories of rockin’ out to music are happy memories and give me the spark to dance around in my room or office. When my office-mates aren’t here, that is.

Oh, who am I kidding? I dance in my office at any chance I get. 🙂

 

My Current Study Jam: “Little Secrets” by Passion Pit

15 Oct

 

For more Passion Pit goodness, they were on SNL this past weekend. I still have to watch it, so I can’t comment on whether or not it was fantastic. My guess is that it absolutely was.

Words of the Week – “Never let the body tell the mind what to do”

1 Oct

Another long week ahead of me, but I think I’m starting to figure out how to push myself harder than I ever have before. I’m discovering which environments enhance my productivity and which energy beverages work best for helping me power through. I was up until 4:30 this morning and woke up at 7:00 and I got everything done that was due today!  At this point, I’m well-caffeinated and fairly coherent. I have a workshop on how to use a network analysis tool, a seminar on diversity, and my first stats quiz this week (It’s an open-notes, open-book quiz. Not too stressed about it :)). I just booked a flight to go to Florida for the first time ever! I’ll be going to the Southern Management Association conference in Ft. Lauderdale. I’m not presenting – the other students I hang out with are. They invited me to come along and I was interested in some of the topics, so I’ll be on my way at the end of this month!

 

I think it’s going to be a challenging, but great week.

 

Happy October, friends!