Another not entirely satisfying day of spring break, in large part because I must have slept weirdly last night and woke up with a horrible knot or pull or something in my left shoulder. So I twice during the day went back to bed with a heating pad, hoping to loosen up the shoulder. Kind of painful and annoying, but I am remembering that my body always falls apart a bit when I get a break and get to relax; I'd hoped that the sinusitis would count for this season's falling apart, but apparently not.
Anyway, while lying in bed on the heating pad and sleeping on and off, I was also reading Kay Redfield Jamison's An Unquiet Mind: A Memoir of Moods and Madness. This is partly for work, because I'm advising a senior project for a student who will be stepping up the hotline volunteer work she's been doing for a couple of years now, and this book is the one she's reading for her project. But it's also interesting in its own right, especially because I've known so many people in academia with bipolar disorder -- it's interesting to see the disorder from the inside.
Reading this book -- not the book itself, but the reading of it -- has also highlighted for me how I tend to read these days: drifting in and out of a whole stack of books but not necessarily making much progress in any of them. Jamison's book is an ebook that I checked out through the public library, which I love being able to do, ... but for some reason ebooks aren't renewable! So one has three week to read the book, and that's it, unless one then wants to wait and check the book out again (which one can't do right away; I haven't figured out how long the wait period is between check-outs). So last night I didn't start the Charles Todd mystery after all, because I suddenly realized that my ebook expires on Sunday. I was also struck by the fact that, when you start a book on Kindle, it tells you approximately how long it takes most people to read. In this case, 3.5 hours. And I thought, when was the last time I read a book straight through like that, other than a fluffy escapist book? I've always been someone who has a stack of books on her nightstand, but I think I'd like to limit how many of them I'm "reading" at any given moment so that I can move through books with more dispatch and as more of a unified whole, rather than a chapter here and a chapter there.
I also graded four Merchant of Venice essays; one was good and the other three were disappointing. As I said to D this evening, I think I need to accept the fact that seniors probably don't do their best work in the last term of high school. Senioritis is actually the reason that I put off teaching seniors for as long as I did. This group is AP students, so they're doing better than non-AP classes, but I'm still beginning to see some serious sliding, such as the two students who didn't even turn in their essays! I emailed them both and haven't gotten replies. Are they actually willing to get zeros? I guess we'll find out. In the meantime, that means two fewer essays to grade, so only nine left. I'm impressed with myself that I'm not leaving the grading until the last minute, as I usually do during breaks.
And finally, D. went with me to shabbat service, which was lovely, and then we had ourselves a nice dinner date afterward. And now I'm ready to go to bed at 9:30! I think I'll try to finish Jamison's memoir tonight before turning out the light.