Sunday, November 30, 2014

Thanksgiving weekend

The view from my workspace

So Thanksgiving came and went, and in a few hours I'll be back in Berkeley bracing myself for the last week of classes. Getting Thursday and Friday and the weekend off really did wonders for my sleep debt - I got about ten hours of sleep each night I was at home - but I hardly got anything done. It seems that my professors all took Thanksgiving break as an opportunity to give heavier assignments, which sort of makes me sour.

I guess I took Thanksgiving differently this year than I did in previous years. For the first time, Thanksgiving break came in the wake of a few very important, very pervasive social issues that mean a great deal to me. The Ferguson saga continues with the non-indictment of Darren Wilson, the UC Regents recently approved a $3000 increase in tuition, 43 students remain missing in Mexico, and, on a personal level, the return to the Peninsula for break.

My family recently moved south along the Peninsula, and now I am a good half-hour away from my hometown. Now, even returned home, I am removed from my old friends and old haunts, from the boutiquey, bougie downtown of my teen years - so, I guess, peace and quiet. I did a lot of relaxing at home with my sister and parents and cat, a lot of dodging of homework and projects and obligations, and some meager attempts at writing.

For quite some time now, Black Friday was a social event for me and my friends. It wasn't so much about actually buying massive amounts of stuff, since I don’t really enjoy shopping with other people, but every year in college, I find that I do some of my only clothes shopping over Thanksgiving break. I didn't go shopping with them this year - late night/early morning is not for me - but I did manage to spend a lot of money on Saturday.

So, with all of the recent public/personal criticism of the consumption circus that is Black Friday, why was it that I willingly participated? I commend the protestors and the die-ins and the calls to action, but I did just what they were trying to advocate against.

Short answer - I've had specific items that I wanted to acquire, and prices are low this weekend. I also seldom have the time to dedicate to truly fastidious shopping for myself during the school year.

Long answer - ...not really sure.

I listened to this album over and over this break. It's rare that I show my sister music that she actually ends up tolerating.