So I read today that mathematicians, physicists and poets all peak creatively, on average, before age 30, with poets specifically peaking at or around 21 (again, on average). Now, I knew that my mathematical skills (17?) and physics skills (18?) peaked before that, but this is the first time I've had to face the thought that perhaps I'm past my peak in something I actually care about. And of course, it simply confirms that I'm what you'd expect: getting older. Perhaps I will be unusual, however, since I feel like I'm only really now getting to what I think can be done with meter poetry in the modern world. On the plus side, literary critics are supposed to peak in their forties, so I got some time left there.
Oedipus Rex is going well; I should be off-book I think next week (although the private, ambitious goal is tomorrow...so maybe I should get on that?). The beard is a go for that production, so at the least I will be keeping it until March. I am indecisive after that period, however. I go back and forth about it, which is perhaps the definition of being indecisive.
Classes are odd. I feel like the class on Shakespeare is being taught at or below the level of the Shakespearean Playwriting I got from Greenblatt freshman year, which is alarming. Strier is a very thorough, very honest, very clear guy - but that only confirms to me, as he thoroughly, honestly, and clearly sets out his ideas, how much I think he's got it wrong. Which seems to be a general impression in the program - but he takes disagreement well, if you're willing to be as thorough, honest, and clear, so that much is good. 18th-century commercial affect is...well, it's actually really good, although I still don't know what Affect is. I like the professor, and the class dynamic, and I feel like I have things to say and like I'm capable of doing good work on our source texts. Now, if only it was in my field...
Social life in Chicago is good. Made friends with a smallish group of seniors at Chicago, all in the theater here, and they seem to have accepted me remarkably quickly. Of course, they're all frighteningly smart, so that might help. There aren't too many social circles where I'm among the least socially-awkward either...but it's a good group, and I just wish they weren't, ya know, all graduating this year. Getting to know them has also meant that I'm swing-dancing more, since they all go to a weekly dance night which happens to be on one of my non-rehearsal nights (since I rehearse 5 of 7 nights a week, that's not unimportant). Not getting any better, but at least I don't have a heart attack when I think about asking someone to dance anymore. Or not all the time, anyway. Although I still get more pleasure out of talking to someone while dancing than out of just dancing. But that's OK. They also play boardgames, although party games rather than my own niche of strategy games. Nothing to complain about, though. It's like methadone for a heroin addict - at least I don't have the shakes anymore.
It's remarkable how much more I'm doing this quarter, and I still feel like I have time on my hands. Like being able to catch entirely up on the marvelous Doctor Who (new series) and now starting on Chuck (which I always liked, but sans TV have fallen three years behind on). Or reading for pleasure again. Baking more. Even trying to write more poetry, and hoping to eventually get a third draft of my epic poem. Or even a first reader of it.