a big beautiful mess

My To Do List

1) For class tomorrow, Elena and I are showing a video of Steve Jobs’ 2005 commencement speech at Stanford. I need to watch it again, list active vocabulary and idioms, and then somehow get it onto a DVD that’s playable on Russian region 5 DVD players.

2) On Wednesday, I’m meeting with the same group of students in a translation class, so I need to translate the article they’ve been working on from Russian into English. I want to make a list of vocabulary and expressions that I don’t understand, and one that I think the students might have trouble with. And hopefully meet with Elena to go over it before stepping in front of the students.

3) The department is working on putting the finishing touches on a collection of articles written for the American Shelves project, which is a program run through the U.S. Embassy, where they give resources and money and support to Russian institutions to publish works in English. The collection was written last year and is set to be published at the university in mid-November, and Elena’s asked me to edit the student-written articles for language. So, I need to finish that. And write a short intro for the collection.

4) On Thursday, I’m team teaching a class session on “Effective Negotiation,” in which we’re supposed to have the students put into practice what they learned in lecture on Monday. I don’t know anything about business English or business negotiations, so I’ve got homework to do!

5) On Friday, I’ll be with Elena again, doing a class in which they’re reading short stories by Muriel Spark, so I need to read that and again think about active vocabulary and idioms.

6) If I get a chance, I want to skim the textbook unit I’m supposed to help teach on Wednesday.

7) There are a million other things I need to take care of or figure out, including

  • Find out where the Fonateka is, a sort of library of electronic equipment like DVD players and projectors and speakers. I know it exists, but have yet to find it.
  • Find the city library, which contains the American Corner!
  • I was told that there is already an American Club at the university, in the history department. I want to find them and collaborate/invite them to my Halloween party in one week.
  • Talk to the International Office about how to get my new, long-term, multi-entry visa.
  • Seek out a Russian tutor. I’ve been given a dozen different stories about whether there are Russian classes for foreigners, who’s allowed to take them, and whether there are students in the Russian teaching department willing to practice teaching Russian for money.
  • Possibly buy a USB port Internet antenna, because the university wifi is somewhat unreliable and often doesn’t let me watch YouTube videos.
  • My new roommate, Ɓukasz, tells me that there is a British man living in this building. I need to get over the fact that I don’t, in fact, have a sixth sense for native English speakers and go seek him out!
Oh, and I’m meeting with Elena in 3 hours. BLARGH.

1 Comment

  1. Jefe B Jefe B
    24 October 2011    

    Don’t forget to breathe.

    At least you won’t be bored and spend hours wondering what you’re doing there, since you are busy doing.

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