I survived my first real semester of grad school (the summer session was only about a month long) and it was really enjoyable. I’ll let you know how much I really enjoyed it once I get my grade on Thursday…just kidding. The workload was very intense—hours of reading each week, regular response papers, and a lengthy final paper/presentation. I feel like all of my hard work paid off and that I am well on my way to becoming more educated in the fields of gender studies, sexuality, race relations, etc. For my final project, I studied the television show Queer as Folk and used some queer theory from class to analyze the text. I had quite a bit of fun with my project, but watching 65+ episodes of one show in the matter of two months was a little insane. I also had the chance to socialize with some of my fellow classmates and they are all great! 

Next semester, which starts in a few weeks, I am taking Theoretical Approaches to Cultural Narratives. This semester’s version of the class is focusing on “Sequels and Series, or What Television Can Teach Us about the Novel.” It sounds like something that is right up my alley! For the final project, each student will be choosing one serial text (TV show, novels, etc.) to follow—maybe this time I can focus on a show that doesn’t have so many seasons and episodes! Maybe Flavor of Love 1 & 2? Or Dead Like Me? I thought about Buffy the Vampire Slayer, but she’s a little outdated and I think there are seven seasons to that show…yikes! 

In terms of writing, I just sent a query letter to Bitch about an article idea that occurred to me after looking at some of the new “tween” sensations—particularly a store called Libby Lu. This boutique for pre-teens has managed to creep its sparkly way into most states, including Massachusetts and Connecticut, and includes overpriced clothes, spa products and even makeovers. Yes, I said makeovers…for girls under the age of 14. At the ripe old age of 26, I have yet to feel the need for a makeover but apparently life is really tough for privileged girls growing up in suburbia. The makeovers include special packages like the Rock Star makeover (complete with a rhinestone head set) and the Pink Twinkle makeover, which includes enough pink makeup and barrettes to make Paris Hilton jealous. 

I am also in the process of completing a really short article about Second Life, a virtual reality game in which players spend money to create an alternate life of their choosing. In Second Life, players create a character and use their money to build houses, play sports, interact with other people…and apparently even to purchase the ability to rape others. For more information about this, please read here. I don’t want to say too much more because this really is going to be a short article, but after doing some research I realize there may be more that needs to be said about this game. Scary stuff I tell you. 

Finally, I want to wish all of you a Happy New Year…some astrology lady on TV said that this is the year of the Cancer, so I’m going all out! After much consideration, my resolution is listed below. I spent quite a bit of time making lists, contemplating plans of action, mapping it all out when I realized that it all boils down to one thing: To be a healthier me. This includes the usual stuff such as daily exercise, watching what I eat, remembering my vitamins every day, etc. But it goes far beyond that. I always put myself last in an effort to please so many other people. I burn myself out on tasks that I don’t even enjoy so others can benefit from my hard work. This year, I want to focus on me and if I get burnt out, I want it to be from tasks that I enjoy/love/choose—pursuing my education, writing more articles, spending time having fun with Dan and my friends. The world is in my hands and I think I’m finally ready to do something truly great with it.