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Woo, I'm excited! In a fit of initiative, I've finally created an account at Dreamwidth and I think I've configured everything to cross-post. This is the test. If you're an LJ friend of mine who's also on DW and you want me in your Circle, you can find me t/here as "sanet." I'm doing my best to add you if we're already mutual LJ friends and I know your DW username as well.

What else can I say? Yoroshiku onegai shimasu!
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Broadcasting live from the heart of Grading Country, it's The Merin Minute, reporting on any and all things me-related! Today's top stories:

Teaching: is done! Both classes wrote final exams this week. Now to deal with the heaps of frantically-scrawled booklets, containing occasional gems of insight and lots of hazardous waste material ("Fritz Lang's Waltz with Bashir." I kid you not.)

Research: is beginning! I'm presenting at the Film Studies Association of Canada conference, held during Canada's massive week-long humanities Congress in May. My paper: "Digital Dreams and the Nostalgia for Cinema in Hugo and Paprika." Looking forward to this one!
I'll also likely be lecturing this summer at Wako University (Japan), in Ueno Toshiya's seminar on A Thousand Plateaus by Deleuze and Guattari. I hope to talk about the Body without Organs and "kyara" or character bodies (possibly in early shounen-ai manga/anime, possibly Hatsune Miku.) It sounds exciting, but I'm nervous about the cost of this summer's Japan research plans, in financial and emotional terms.

Anime: Apollon SQUEEEEE! The first episode of Watanabe Shinichiro's new series Sakamichi no Apollon (Kids on the Slope) actually made me squee out loud. In retrospect, I get the feeling I'm being hooked by a formulaic narrative and typed characters: delicate classical music student Nishimi Kaoru transfers to a new school in backwater Kyushu, where impulsive, jazz-loving bad-boy Kawabuchi Sentarou takes a sudden liking to him. Kaoru is fascinated in return by Sentarou's "drumming." I see the bait there, Watanabe. But I like it, so I'll let the hook sink in and trust you to pull me somewhere good. Also, new music/jazz covers by Yoko Kanno, yay!

Personal: Feeling very "up-and-down" this month: content one day, overwhelmed by anxiety the next. Changes in schedule always upset me, even "positive" changes like the end of term. Still, I'm trying to be gentle and give myself more down-time. I'm drawing again, and writing fiction. Nothing I'd show the world, but it makes me happy.

Blog: Really thinking of switching to Dreamwidth, but see above about the anxiety-provoking effects of change. Any advice on how to switch over easily?

And that was your Merin-Minute. Tune in next time for another exciting installment!
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So busy. So, so busy! With 40 quizzes to mark, four lectures to write, a conference paper to edit, and all the regular reading, emails, meetings, and survival tasks coming up just for next week, things are frantic and I'm not even into the heavy part of the term yet. I haven't watched any of the summer anime releases, and the fall shows are already coming out. >.<

Also, I finally got my copy of Saitou Tamaki's Beautiful Fighting Girl in translation and read through the intro and first chapter with interest. Now, it sits on my couch-side Ottoman, Ayanami Rei glaring sideways off the cover at me, and I just can't find the time to get back to it. It's actually less offensive than I expected so far. But it still does that "let's mention female yaoi fans as a kind of otaku in passing and then keep talking about otaku as if they're all the same as the psychoanalytic idea of men" trick Azuma Hiroki also does. Maybe I'll bring it on the plane to Minneapolis and read it then instead of writing more lectures.

Anyways! This is just to say that things are good but busy. I like my classes, I have some excellent students who say they like my classes, and my proposal for a Japanese Film course was unanimously passed by the English and Film Dept. yesterday. (It goes on to the Curriculum Committee next.) I'm pushing myself very hard and it's cutting into my personal/fan time, but hopefully I can find a balance in the coming months.

Over and out!
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I did it! I'm all moved in to my new apartment and my new university office in Ontario. Once I get a home printer and more books to fill my office shelves, I'll have everything I need to live, write, and work effectively. Eventually, this life will become normal.

Which is to say, it's not quite normal yet. )

In short, however much things change, let's stay connected. What else do we have blog communities for, anyways?


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April 2014

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