Ancrene Wiseass

A would-be medievalist holds forth on academia, teaching, gender politics, blogging, pop culture, critters, and whatever else comes her way.

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Yes, this really is yet another blog by a disillusioned grad student. I sympathize, but that's just the way it has to be. For hints as to what my bizarre alias means, click here and here and, if needed, here and here. To get a sense of what I'm up to, feel free to check out the sections called "Toward a Wiseass Creed" and "Showings: Some Introductory Wiseassery" in my main blog's left-hand sidebar. Please be aware that spamming, harassing, or otherwise obnoxious comments will be deleted and traced.

Monday, August 14, 2006

Where Bad Times = Belly Laughs

So, here I am, freezing my ass off in some extremely exuberant air conditioning, sitting in the dark because the energy-saving motion-detector lights have decided I no longer exist, with every muscle in my body aching in a way which encourages me to maintain a posture I'd hoped to avoid having when I was well past 90.

Of course, I am evading work, and where else to turn but the Interweb? There, however, I am confronted by the mournful knowledge that New Kid has taken an indefinite hiatus, Prof. Bastard's blog has disappeared and been replaced by spamtasmicness, and we've heard neither hide nor hair of Dr. V. for some time. I know that many other marvelous people are still out here posting marvelous things, and I revel in their marvelousness, but I get a little uneasy when members of my blogging community go poof. Makes me feel as though it's all a little, oh, I dunno . . . virtual.

And then, Wendy McClure appears, cape flying in the wind, to explain to us what's going on when we walk into that one Target which always feels dingy and soulless and never quite manages to have ANYTHING we went in there looking for. And yet, every time we go, we feel compelled to spend a ridiculous amount of time searching for something we need so we can justify the trip, especially because we already feel guilty for shopping in a place that allows its employees to pass moral judgment on women with birth-control prescriptions. And somehow, it is always just about to close when we get there, so we feel compelled to rush around the store while trying to find that imaginary thing we need. And the cashiers will not look us in the eye, though they sometimes seem to steal a furtive glance at our exposed jugulars. And we have the feeling that the management may be working with pirated, mimeographed copies of The Official Om Shin Rikyo Playbook, because there's a menacing and pervasive atmosphere of Toxic about the place, mingled with an unnerving sense of You Just Want to Lie Down and Sleep Now.

Those places? We are not imagining it. They are Bad Times retailers.

And Wendy McClure is brilliant.