July 27th, 2014

Giles on a horse, need i say more? [muzakgurrl]

driving? driving! (take 9)

I was in Norwood Friday night for a belated joint birthday celebration with Elyse and her mom Janna (they live 2 towns over from my parents).

At dinner, I said to my mom, "You're not going to let me drive to Janna and Elyse's tonight, are you?"
my mom: "Are you capable of driving there?"
me: "Define 'capable'."
My mother was not inspired by this answer.
I explained that obviously I think I'm capable if I'm asking, so I didn't really know how to answer the question.
She asked about the driving I'd done and decided that no, I was not going to drive to Janna and Elyse's -- but she pointed out that my dad could take me driving the next day.

So we did. I drove around the parking lot a bunch first to acclimate to the car. I hadn't expected to need to do that, but taking my foot off the brake the car moved a lot more than I was expecting, so I wanted to get used to maneuvering it before I took it on the road. (He asked me what kind of car I'd beee driving and I had no idea. I mean, I know it's about the same size and it's also an automatic and I know how to adjust the mirrors in the car ... but I pay zero attention to car brands. My parents' car is a Toyota Corolla, but I couldn't have told you that until Saturday.)

My dad let me choose where I drove, since I know the town. I mis-estimated, however, and ended up on more trafficked streets after not too long. There wasn't a lot of traffic, though, so it wasn't very stressful. I think I still haven't done lefts onto major roads now that I think of it, but I've done rights onto them and crossed them (both of which I'd done before). I also did a rotary for the first time -- almost empty, which is good since I got all confused about how I was supposed to be signaling (where I wanted to turn off would have been a left when I entered the rotary if it wasn't the rotary, but you don't signal until you're approaching your street and at that point it's a right).

I mostly stayed in my lane -- though at least once my dad pointed out that I was drifting across the white line on the right; and the big thing was that I need to start turning sooner when I make turns ... I pull out into the street and *then* start to turn, which is inefficient bordering on dangerous. Intellectually I believe him when he tells me to start turning, but it totally *feels* like if I start turning then I'm going to hit the parked car that's on the street I'm turning right onto.

I felt less stressed driving than I usually do, and I'm not exactly sure why that was. I think partly the roads felt wider -- like it felt less claustrophobic than driving on the side streets around FCS where not only are the roads narrower but the houses are so much closer together. I think it also felt more like suburban driving than city driving -- less traffic (and thus fewer instances of concern that I was going slower than the cars behind me -- though I definitely did have some of that), not having cross streets all the time, ... NO BICYCLISTS! (though there was one who had been riding on a sidewalk and crossed in front of me and hey, there's a hedge there so cars can't see you until they're practically in the intersection so maybe you wanna be more careful bicyclist dude), fewer intersections where you have to pull up into the intersection to see everything (probably related to houses etc. being more spread out, less piling all onto each other).

I think I'm getting better at keeping an eye on my side mirror.

We drove for ~45min and my dad was silent for most of it, which was basically fine, just different from driving with FCS-Ian. In part, I think this was because my dad was basically letting me just practice driving, whereas FCS-Ian (a) has a history of all the times I've driven previously and the bad tendencies I have and the things I need to work on, and (b) therefore has some agenda for what we're practicing that day.
hard at work

How do I not have an icon that accurately expresses my nerdy excitement?

Remember when I posted about maybe going to ASA?

On the phone yesterday, Ari asked about it, and I said I wasn't feeling so sure anymore.

For reasons I won't bore you with, we ended up looking at the Call To Action conference (not going) and the AAR (Academy of Religion) Annual Meeting.

Whereas the ASA session descriptions are SO academic as to make our eyes glaze over (I learned that reading them aloud helps with my comprehension), reading the AAR program (which only has the names of the sessions/papers and the names and affiliations of the people presenting/presiding/responding/etc.) made me really excited -- lots of sessions I want to attend, lots of sessions where I am only interested in one paper so I want to email the presenter to get coffee while we're there, lots of names I recognize (authors I recognize, names I recognize from BQTF, ~friends of mine it would be lovely to see again).

I've got time before I need to decide, but I'm still holding the possibility of going to both (and also allowing for the possibility that I'll decide to go to neither -- but I feel like Being Brave is probably a better choice than taking the easy route of staying at home&work). Exciting project: figuring out a schedule of all the sessions I want to go to at each (for ASA, this will help me figure out whether it's worth going; for AAR it'll help me figure out in advance which of the many interesting sessions offered at a given time I'll pick to go to and which ones I'll just email presenters to ask to get coffee together). I am telling myself to do other things with my afternoon than this project. Sooo exciting... but I do have other things to do.