Just took the CS33 midterm1. I don’t know how I did. Either all right or all wrong, but it was nice to look at a CS33 exam and not be baffled by half of it.

Oh Christ, I’m so happy I dropped that class. I guess you never know how happy (or unhappy) you’re going to feel about something until you do it and stand on the other side of it.

I decided to drop that Italian class. I had been thinking about dropping it for a while and this morning I decided that the whole expereince in this class was really distracting me from other classes that I like and into which I need/want to put more time. I have midterms in two of my other classes very soon and studying for those is the only thing I should be thinking about right now. 
I’ve never dropped a class before. True, I didn’t like my score on the quiz we just took, but I’ve stayed in classes before after recieving far worse scores. 
The real issue was the teacher. She’s a TA, getting her masters. This is her first year teaching. I don’t believe she’s ever been even a TA before, but this is perhaps an Italian Dept policy to have people with fresh BAs teaching the lower-level classes. I don’t know.
I don’t know much about what’s going on in her life right now, but what was impressed upon us in the class was that she really didn’t want to be there. She was late so many times that she stopped apologizing about it, she rarely ever returned e-mails, she seemed disappointed to answer your questions half the time, and the homework assignments were sporadic and were often assigned at about 11 or 12 midnight for the following morning’s class. She generally set an odd tone in the class that infected the entire group. But, the TA is just one reason I dropped the class.
The other reason I dropped the class is because I’d like to learn more Italian someday and I didn’t want this TA to ruin the whole language for me.
I’ll see what I want to do in the fall about a foreign language. I may just pick up French again and just get as fluent as possible.

I decided to drop that Italian class. I had been thinking about dropping it for a while and this morning I decided that the whole expereince in this class was really distracting me from other classes that I like and into which I need/want to put more time. I have midterms in two of my other classes very soon and studying for those is the only thing I should be thinking about right now. 

I’ve never dropped a class before. True, I didn’t like my score on the quiz we just took, but I’ve stayed in classes before after recieving far worse scores. 

The real issue was the teacher. She’s a TA, getting her masters. This is her first year teaching. I don’t believe she’s ever been even a TA before, but this is perhaps an Italian Dept policy to have people with fresh BAs teaching the lower-level classes. I don’t know.

I don’t know much about what’s going on in her life right now, but what was impressed upon us in the class was that she really didn’t want to be there. She was late so many times that she stopped apologizing about it, she rarely ever returned e-mails, she seemed disappointed to answer your questions half the time, and the homework assignments were sporadic and were often assigned at about 11 or 12 midnight for the following morning’s class. She generally set an odd tone in the class that infected the entire group. But, the TA is just one reason I dropped the class.

The other reason I dropped the class is because I’d like to learn more Italian someday and I didn’t want this TA to ruin the whole language for me.

I’ll see what I want to do in the fall about a foreign language. I may just pick up French again and just get as fluent as possible.

I don’t know what’s with me this quarter. I feel overwhelmed. I made all kinds of mistakes on my Italian quiz. I don’t think I can get an A in that class now. Thinking of taking a pass/no pass in that class so it doesn’t mess with my GPA.
My Business Law class: there’s so much fucking information. I don’t know how I’m going to mange getting it all down for the midterm next week. My CS project score is up and it’s good… but almost the entire class has an even better score. That midterm is the day after tomorrow and I’m not sure how prepared I am for that.
Fuck. I don’t know what my problem is. I’ve had quarters before where I’m taking this many classes with this much information.
I don’t know what my problem is right now.
I wish I could take a week or two off to get straight on it all.

Just did so badly on my Italian quiz.
Shit.

Meet Thomas Thompson, our most recent SPM.
I’m 50 and in my third term at Portland State. Actually, doing the local cc in a transfer program but am inspired by you to go directly to them for admission. I will continue at my local cc while going through the admissions process.I am a programmer who has limited credentials. I attended a programming school after a four year stint in the army. I had success in the IT world, going as far as becoming an IT director for a theater chain called Harkins Theatres. Their entire IT operation was designed and programmed by me. After that, I was haunted by my past service and my life took a downturn, I became an addict and lost everything. I became homeless, lost my BMW, girlfriend, credit, health, and finally all this culminated with a felony for distribution. This causes me much issue when looking for a job in IT. I get plenty of interviews but no offers. I can write code with the best of them and do a lot of my own art. Love web design and programming.Anyway, on my way back now. I always wished I had gone to college so that is what I am doing now. I have gotten my health back. I am a young-looking 50. After this semester I will have 29 credits. Also I am maintaining a 3.50 GPA. I am leaning towards genetics or astro science in someway but I am also an undergrad in Psychology, as Psychology is the one career that my addiction and past could actually prove to be an asset.I was happy to come across your tumblr after running into an old Family Ties episode on the tube. I wanted to see what the cast was up to. It is nice to know that I am not alone in college at my age. I associate with all your posts. I will be going through it all at the same time as you, so it is nice to not be alone.
Thank you for the inspiration.

Meet Thomas Thompson, our most recent SPM.

I’m 50 and in my third term at Portland State. Actually, doing the local cc in a transfer program but am inspired by you to go directly to them for admission. I will continue at my local cc while going through the admissions process.

I am a programmer who has limited credentials. I attended a programming school after a four year stint in the army. I had success in the IT world, going as far as becoming an IT director for a theater chain called Harkins Theatres. Their entire IT operation was designed and programmed by me. After that, I was haunted by my past service and my life took a downturn, I became an addict and lost everything. I became homeless, lost my BMW, girlfriend, credit, health, and finally all this culminated with a felony for distribution. This causes me much issue when looking for a job in IT. I get plenty of interviews but no offers. I can write code with the best of them and do a lot of my own art. Love web design and programming.

Anyway, on my way back now. I always wished I had gone to college so that is what I am doing now. I have gotten my health back. I am a young-looking 50. After this semester I will have 29 credits. Also I am maintaining a 3.50 GPA. I am leaning towards genetics or astro science in someway but I am also an undergrad in Psychology, as Psychology is the one career that my addiction and past could actually prove to be an asset.

I was happy to come across your tumblr after running into an old Family Ties episode on the tube. I wanted to see what the cast was up to. It is nice to know that I am not alone in college at my age. I associate with all your posts. I will be going through it all at the same time as you, so it is nice to not be alone.

Thank you for the inspiration.

Io ho quarantotto anni

So, in Italian class we learned how to ask someone’s age and then tell them our age. Now, this is a class where I get called on only about half the time my hand is up, so when I was the first person of whom she asked this, I was thrown.

She says my name, “Justine?”

I’m thinking, “Really? Are you really about to ask my age for the entire class?” 

"Quanti anni hai tu?" 

I fumbled through the answer, “Io ho quarantotto anni.”

Then, for the benefit, I suppose, of those in the class who don’t know what 48 sounds like in Italian, she confirms in English, “48? You’re 48?”

This is like some cliché out a movie, right?

I have never been concerned with age. Half the time I can’t even remember how old I am and have to look at which Superbowl just happened to remember the number. The issue at school, though, is that I’m loathe to bring up things about my life that makes me separate from my classmates. I don’t want to have an experience at UCLA that is separate and apart from everyone else. I just don’t see the point of that. So I don’t mention my husband, my kids, my career, etc. I talk about what’s in front of us: projects, papers, exams, etc. I have some close friends at school with whom I mention the other parts of my life, but this is after we’ve established some great relationships.

So there I am in a class that is already thick with “separateness” amongst the students, a class being run by a TA who seems frustrated to be there, and I’m called out. I’ve though about dropping this class many times for various reasons, but dammit, I want to learn Italian.

So, “separateness”, watch it grow. I just have to not give a shit if it does.

I’m having the strangest time in one of my classes. The teacher seems new and the students are mental. It’s a participation-heavy class, but, strangely, the competition seems really high in there. One misstep causes the entire class to bark the correct answer at you, while wearing slightly disgusted looks on their faces. I’ve never had a class experience like this before. I’m trying to ignore the other students, but it’s tricky when we have to pair up for exercises. They also have no sense of humor.
Weirdos.

I find it disappointing when I take a class where I don’t connect much with the teacher. In two of my classes this quarter I can already feel their annoyance with my questions in class. It makes me want to dislike the subjects a little, but fuck it—I like these subjects. I can’t let these teachers’ attitudes screw with that for me. I’ll just have to be willing to be disconnected from the teachers. Fine.

I find it disappointing when I take a class where I don’t connect much with the teacher. In two of my classes this quarter I can already feel their annoyance with my questions in class. It makes me want to dislike the subjects a little, but fuck it—I like these subjects. I can’t let these teachers’ attitudes screw with that for me. I’ll just have to be willing to be disconnected from the teachers. Fine.

A brief check-in on my classes.
ITALIAN1: It’s frustrating not to just launch into French in this class and I’m convinced a quarter of the class already knows Italian, but I’m just being petulantly competitive, I know.
CS33: Great to be in this class and understand what the professor is saying. When I audited it a year or so ago, I came out of 75% of the lectures not having understood most of what was said.
ENGL CMP3: This was that “Writing 1” class out of which I had tried to petition. The teacher’s pretty nice and very enthusiastic, so it might not be such a drag after all. At least there are no midterms or final.
MGMT108: Business Law. The class was packed and I was 12 on the waiting list. Got in anyway. Yeay. I really like reading about cases. I suppose it’s like the thrill some people get from reading celebrity gossip.

photo via

A brief check-in on my classes.

ITALIAN1: It’s frustrating not to just launch into French in this class and I’m convinced a quarter of the class already knows Italian, but I’m just being petulantly competitive, I know.

CS33: Great to be in this class and understand what the professor is saying. When I audited it a year or so ago, I came out of 75% of the lectures not having understood most of what was said.

ENGL CMP3: This was that “Writing 1” class out of which I had tried to petition. The teacher’s pretty nice and very enthusiastic, so it might not be such a drag after all. At least there are no midterms or final.

MGMT108: Business Law. The class was packed and I was 12 on the waiting list. Got in anyway. Yeay. I really like reading about cases. I suppose it’s like the thrill some people get from reading celebrity gossip.

photo via