April 9, 2019

Somethings can happen
Somethings can happen, but shouldn’t
Somethings don’t happen
Somethings don’t happen, but should
Somethings don’t happen, and shouldn’t

8.00 am: A communion. 8.30 am: To School, under such a dispiriting grey pall as one ought always to resist. Beating the heart into a song. Moving with determination. Reconciling myself to the problems that would present themselves today. 9.00 am: Aptly, my iMac screensaver dictionary had frozen on:

9.30 am: An absentee. 10.00 am: An MA fine art tutorial with one of Dr Forster’s tutees, with Dr Forster. A three-way conversation has a very different dynamic. Although at times it can feel a little like a police interrogation in the absence of a solicitor:

The student had on their studio wall a photograph that puzzled and unnerved me throughout the tutorial. It suggested some kind of portal – that wasn’t entirely in the realms of three-dimensional space – floating in the midst of a forest:

10.30 am: I made my way – heavenward – up Penglais Hill to the main campus, where I’d conduct my workshop on ‘Preparing a Conference Paper’. There were eighteen participants – many from Business Studies (about which I know snuff):

11.30 am: I was in manic-mode. This often happens when my reserves of energy have almost all dried up. The bucket was cast to the bottom of the well. No inhibitions. It was all performance. But it got me, and the students, through the hour. (‘My mind is going … I can feel it’.)

1.20 pm: An appreciation of an act of generosity. One of our former MA students always presents a Cadbury’s Cream Egg to all the staff at Easter. It’s one of the highlights of the School calendar. ‘Many thanks!’:

2.00 pm: A FaceTime tutorial with one of my PhD fine art tutees. Each student presents a different set of challenges and operations. I’d have it no other way. 2.45 pm: I took my customary track to the Old College to acquit my pre-vacation responsibilities towards my MA Tutees. I’d arrived at the Promenade early, walked by the seashore, and honoured a memory through image, sound, and text. Some ideas persist throughout our lives. They’re unshakable and unbreakable: resilient even in the face of facts to the contrary.

4.30 pm: I gathered my thoughts at a local watering hole and posted emails to the tardy and confused, before heading homeward.

7.30 pm: An evening and night for completing pretty much everything that was left to do (and some other things which could left undone) before I took my holidays: final exhibition catalogue statements, dissertation examinations, and postgraduate admissions.

There’ll be a diary sabbatical until April 24, 2019.

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April 8, 2019
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