Listening, bowling, writing and designing

I’m starting to conquer the Advanced Writing listening assignment I dreaded so much. I found a group of moms who sit on the bleachers at the Mizzou Rec Pool while their kids are at swim practice. The kids practice six days a week for at least 2 hours a day. Most parents drop off and pick up, but some of the moms stay the whole time to relax and chat. They use it as a break from the craziness of life. This is ideal because I know exactly where they’ll be and when, and now they know who I am. I just sat myself right down and introduced myself and told them what I wanted to do. They thought it was a little strange at first so I just chatted with them for a while til they got to like me. Now that they’re used to me I can go back and hopefully capture some good dialogue.

Lori talked to me the most, but Lisa dominated the conversation between the two of them. They talked about pretty typical woman stuff, but it was still interesting. A second Lisa came on the scene halfway through and started a husband-bashing session. Lori turned to me and said, “It’s group therapy.” Lisa’s husband had freaked on out her for not having dinner ready after the last swim meet. He was home from a long day at work and hungry. She wanted to know if he had all his fingers and toes intact and why he wasn’t capable of finding his own food. I haven’t gotten their last names and phone numbers yet. I’ll try that tonight now that they’re used to me. Hopefully they won’t mind.

Two hours a day six days a week is a lot of practice for 10- to 12-year-old kids. I wonder if the kids like competitive swimming, or if it’s one of those things their parents push them into. They were talking about Michael Phelps coming to the Missouri Grand Prix swim meet this weekend. I wonder if they are trying to make their kids famous. That might be an interesting story, but it’s not my assignment. I asked the ladies some questions to get them comfortable and get some background information. But now I’m just supposed to listen and see what comes out. Should be interesting.

I’m heading back to the bowling alley where I used to work tonight. Another girl in my Advanced Writing class is doing the listening assignment at the bowling alley and she’s having trouble. They won’t let her come in during league and nothing much happens the rest of the time. I’m going to try to sweet talk the managers into letting her hang out with the league players. I’m sure there are some of them who wouldn’t mind and she’ll get some really colorful dialogue. Those guys are crazy. I’m a little nervous. Hopefully they still like me up at the bowling alley. At the end of last year, they begged me to come back after Colorado. I told them I would so they’d hold my spot, but I changed my mind. People come and go pretty regularly at jobs like that, so hopefully they won’t hold it against me. I had issues with the way the manager messed up my schedule all the time and I got tired of being constantly hit on by the league guys. I hope I can get the girl in.

I’m so tired, but I still have a lot to do tonight. Hopefully I can help her out and then leave and go sit with my swim moms for a while, then work on my creative nonfiction essay that’s due Thursday and look at my mag design project for Monday. Somewhere in there I might eat dinner. All I want to do is sleep. That’s the prize I’m working toward.

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About Nicole

Daughter of God, wife, mother, volunteer youth leader, substitute teacher, aspiring writer, rabbit owner, nature lover. These are some of my titles.
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4 Responses to Listening, bowling, writing and designing

  1. Anonymous says:

    Is Aimee your T.A.? If so you should go to her as much as possible. She really helped me. In fact, I’m sure she won’t ever forget me because I was constantly nagging her for help.

    Also, you should ask Berkley about Gay Talese.

    P.S. Is your last semester freak out finally over?

  2. Nicole says:

    My TA for Design? No, it’s Kyle. She’s very helpful, too. I always try to go to her open lab, but it’s in the evening at the same time as all this other stuff I’m trying to get done.

    Berkley intimidates me a little bit. Kind of like John Fennell who I had for Intermediate Writing and who probably got me to do my best college writing to date. I think a little intimidation is good for me. It makes me bring my A game.

    My last semester freak out will probably never be entirely over. It comes and goes in waves. I get emotional and psyche myself out. But I’ll be fine. I just have to remember not to worry about the future because things never go the way we plan anyway. I’m telling myself I like surprises.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I’m amazed you find Berkley intimidating. In my mind he’s the antithesis of intimidating. He’s an easily approachable sensitive gentile southerner. Anyways no matter what you should check out Gay Talese.

    Also, you should start talking to Phou Sengsavanh about getting your resume together. She’ll help you join the Mizzou mafia and she’ll tell you where to find job listings. I know it’s all overwhelming, but the sooner you realize what’s going on the better you will be.

  4. Nicole says:

    Ok, maybe intimidating is a strong word. But to me, anyone who is very talented and wants to see my work is intimidating. I can tell he’s a great man. I never believe I’m good enough and I don’t want to disappoint him. I feel like he wants us each to be something great and I don’t know if I have any greatness in me.

    I met with Phou last semester about my resume. I fixed it up so I could apply for an editorial internship at Missouri Life magazine. I felt like I had a good shot at that, but I didn’t get it and it was a big blow to my little ego. I always read Phou’s emails that she sends out, but I don’t usually find what I’m looking for. I’m being too picky and too shy. Anything I find that I like, I worry I’m not good enough. What I really need to work on is getting my clips in a good format to send to people. I don’t really know how to do that.

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