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The office is the clear winner

January 16, 2012

Once the dining room, now my office

 

I’m quite certain there are many blogs out there in the academic blogsophere comparing the creation of new course content to giving birth so I won’t belabor the analogy here except to say that lo many years ago before I gave birth to my only child I experienced some serious nesting issues.  Mums and dads will know what I mean–nesting is when the pregnant mum goes nutso preparing the nest for the new arrival–furniture wants moving, deep-cleaning feels necessary, each and every item has to be in just the right space for it all to work.   Well, that’s what happened to me today.
My syllabus is ready.  My BlackBoard site is in progress.  The prezi for tomorrow is prepared, along with classnotes, and handouts for the first day.  In order to get there I had stacks of books, and papers, and post-it notes strewn all over three of my four desks in the house (don’t ask) and to top it all off I’d annexed the dining room table.

I was feeling kind of guilty about that dining room annexation but the holidays are over and I’m not planning any dinner or cocktail parties in the near future.  So this morning I gave into the inevitable.  Books and papers from other office-type sites in the house were excavated and organized, and the dining room (and the dining room alone) has become Quattrocento-Central for the foreseeable future.  My texts are all at hand:  Hartt/Wilkins,  Paoletti/Radke, Berenson and Levey and Baxandall, Campbell/Cole, and Brucker.  Within reach is the Douay-Rheims version of the Bible, my two-volume “Golden Legend,” Miles Unger’s “Magnifico,”  Martines’ “The Social World of the Florentine Humanists,”  and Edgecumbe Staley’s works on the Florentine Guilds and the lives of famous Florentine women, and two dozen or so other books that form my lifelines to various topics.

Archimedes required a lever.  All I need is my books within easy reach, a good connection to the internet, Pandora’s jazz essentials, a cup of coffee and I am ready, if not to move the world, then at least to nudge it along a bit.

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