Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Positive Energy Is Starting To Run Out

Update on Job Search:

Nothing yet. I'm very frustrated and anxious, but more or less holding it together.

Occasionally I get something like this:

Dear Applicant,

Thank you for your interest in our Assistant Professor of Biology position. I regret to inform you that the position has been filled. Although we received materials from more than fifty very qualified applicants, please be assured that each application was reviewed with careful consideration by the entire faculty of the Division of Natural Sciences. Best wishes for a successful job search.

Yeah. Thanks. I didn't want to work at your crappy school anyway.

No word from the place in FL yet, but it's not expected. However, I know that they know whether or not I'm hired. They're waiting for approval from the Provost. It's a slow process. If I didn't get this job I'm going to be discouraged. Just think of this as a warning for those of you who serve as my support network.

On the other hand, there are so many great jobs to apply for. Consider this one:

The Department of Biology at Indiana State University invites applications for a tenure track position focused on the conservation and biology of bats. This position is available at the Assistant or Associate Professor level. Applicants should have a Ph.D. in biology or related area, and demonstrated research expertise in bat biology and conservation. Postdoctoral experience or equivalent is desirable.

All of you bat biologists should look into that. Also, if you're qualified to teach Anatomy and Physiology, I know of approximately 7,000 jobs that you can have. See, I didn't get a PhD in anatomy (or physiology) because I thought that we had pretty much figured that stuff out.

Okay, I'm stopping this now, because it sounds more bitter than I had intended. I think the sun is shining right now (objects are casting shadows, which is unusual for a German winter) so I'm going to focus on that and write some more cover letters.

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Things I Don't Understand

One of the frustrating things about living in a country where you don't speak the language is that you have no idea what's going on much of the time.

For example, once Ko and I were standing at a traffic light when some man came and stood really close to me (and Germans stand farther apart from each other than Americans). Then he started to gently stroke the traffic light pole. He had something metal in his hand, so it made a distinct sound each time. I took a step away from him. Up and down, up and down. Eventually the light changed and he walked away.

In another case, I saw a crowd of men dressed as clowns talking to an H & M poster with a pretty woman on it. This may have been a bachelor party, but I can't be sure.

And my apartment building is always putting up signs I don't understand. I try to remember what the words are so I can look them up when I get upstairs, but that rarely happens. The other day I saw something that seemed to indicate something about filming a something, which I assumed I misunderstood, but then it turned out that the next day there was a film crew outside my building. Okay, so I didn't see any actual cameras, but I did clearly see a wardrobe trailer and a catering trailer. And many of the other trailers were labeled with a picture of a video camera. Hopefully my building will end up one TV at some point, so keep an eye out.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Because today is not a holiday in Germany

Also, I'm feeling sort of uninspired when it comes to posting. At some point I'll give you an update of my life, but in the meantime, here's something not at all surprising. You can read the article here.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Snow on my Balcony

I keep thinking I'll take pictures on my way to work, but it hasn't happened. I know people get tired of hearing this, but it's cold here. It snowed all weekend and this is how my balcony looks now:

I stuck a ruler in the middle of it - 20cm. I think we've had a bit more than that, but the balcony is slightly protected.

Okay, I'll try to keep weather related posts to a minimum. But I just wanted you to get an idea.

Wednesday, January 6, 2010


I'm at a job interview today. First - man are they exhausting. But the people have been really nice, so that's good. The worst question so far: If your life were a pie, how would you divide it between your personal life/sleep, teaching, research, and service.

There's a graph builder over at the graph jam link on the side, if anyone actually wants to make their life a pie.

Also, I should point out that the biology people thought that was a hilarious question. It was during my special meeting with the active teaching committee. I was their first interviewee.

Friday, January 1, 2010

10 minute break post

I'm rewarding myself for practicing my job talk with this short break to post update my loyal readers about my life. I have a job interview next week. I'm excited, but also nervous. Especially since I get to do a research presentation and teach a class. It's sort of tricky, since the students won't actually be there, but we'll see how it goes. Anyway, research presentation is made. Lesson plans will be prepared after they tell me what the subject is. I'm trying to be cool about it.

In other news, Sammy got a haircut. He hasn't stopped shivering since. He's curled up in my down coat on the chair beside me shivering right now. It's possibly the most pathetic thing ever.

I discovered a new TV show this morning. It's called "Dancing Your Ass Off." Have other people seen that? It's where fat people compete to loose weight through dancing. Kind of awesome. I'm a little concerned that when I move back to the U.S. I won't be able to handle the English TV, and I'll just sit in front of it all day, drooling.

I hope that people had nice New Year's Eves. Mine was lame but pleasant. Mom and I made hamburgers and guacamole and watched a 30 Rock marathon. I just wasn't excited about the possibility of going to a bar. Jeez. I'm an old lady already.