Friday, March 10

MFA schools here I come

Today begins three weeks of adventure and cross-country travel. Updates for this period, unfortunately may be sparse. But know this: it's all in the name of higher education.

Tomorrow my roommate from Clemson, Evan, arrives at SFO, and I've managed to swing two days off in my upcoming work week to accomodate him. In addition to those two days, I've managed to coerce my boss's acquiescence in allowing me time to visit the three primary MFA grad schools I'm looking at.

Here's the tenative plan:

Destination #1: Boise, ID.

I'm hoping to convince Evan to go along with me for a ten-hour roadtrip here. This may involve offers of free downloaded music, promises of adventure and natural beauty, and, of course, copious amounts of drugs--kidding, mom! The reason I'm going is that Boise State has made some very accomodating offers, and I figure, what the hell, I'll give them a shot. I've never been to Idaho, but the one person I know from there (Keith Morris) is awesome, and the one person I know who lives there (Denis Johnson) is awesome, as well. Still, they're the so-called Dark Horse--a fact I made the mistake, I think, of telling the director while talking to him on the phone yesterday. Note to self: before leaving, call back and make sure the offer isn't rescinded...

Me: I'm here to check out the school.
Boise State Creative Writing Director: Are you James?
Me: Maybe.
BSCWD: You're a real asshole.
Me: Does that mean you don't want me to be your special graduate assistant anymore?

After Boise and Evan's departure, the next destination is #2: New York, New York(insert Frank Sinatra impression here) for Columbia. I don't know what to say, other than I'm hella stoked. Amped, even. The day I plan to visit the campus there is a humor seminar (hear that Trev, it seems everyone's got one of these) and one based on narrative choices (or something esoteric but useful like that) and I'm looking to sit-in on both. I'll carry a notepad (better yet a Moleskine notebook) and be sure to jot down things and underline others, but, honestly, I'm just there for The Babes. Hellllo Ivy League Lay-dees! It's too bad they're, as of this moment, not offering any money to cushion the fifty grand they estimate combined tuition and housing to be.

I musn't forget to mention who will be housing me during my NYC stay--this guy!

This is, of course, a photo of none other than Robert C. Calhoun, defender of all things John Mayer, descendent of John C. Calhoun, great Southern (Suth-urn) Senator, and a fine blogger in his right (Robb, not John).

It must mentioned that, during my brief moments of respite at homebase San Francisco, I will work four days. While at work I will try not to be rude to the person who I suspect reported me to HR for "overuse of the telephone for personal calls". Try, yes, but I've got my list of suspects.

Taddle-telling Middle-aged Middle Manager: James was using the phone for personal calls. [pounds fists on desk] Wah! Wah! Wah! [picks nose, examines it, and then consumes findings]

By this time it will be the last week of March, where it's on to my final destination #3: Houston, TX to visit my sister and her fiance, and then to borrow one of their cars to take for the next couple days. From Houston I'm going to San Marcos, TX (3-4 hours from Houston, 20 mins outside of Austin) for Texas State University. This place is highly appealing (for a multitude of reasons that none of you probably care about--I'm only being honest,) and if Columbia doesn't budge on the financial aspect, it may become the future home of this blog. Or, perhaps more accurately, the future home of this blog's author. Or, perhaps more aspirantly, the future home of an author who blogs.

Hey, we all got dreams, right?

With my MFA tour complete, I plan to take the car to swamps of Louisiana for weekend visit to friend from high school and a writer/close-friend from college. (Hi, Lindsay. Hi, Kev.)

Hopefully Kev (the writer/close-friend) and I will both be able to simultaneously celebrate our acceptance to the most awesomest graduate schools in, yes, the ultraverse. If not, we'll drink and get pissed at every one doesn't "get it".

Just like we did in Clemson.

*happy sigh*

These letters will save the world! Or at least me from entering the job market for three years!


Robb said...

It's a little known fact that John C. Calhoun was indeed a great blogger, and one of this country's first. His blog was written nightly and dispersed to its wide readership by the swift feet of Calhoun's own slaves.
Also, thanks for ruining any chance I ever had at public office up here by publishing the following sentence:
"defender of...John C. Calhoun, great Southern Senator, and...who...picks nose, examines it, and then consumes findings."

Thanks James, Boise is right. You are a real asshole.

James said...

Thanks for the John C. Calhoun behind-the-scenes scoop. Had that little-known information been available to me earlier, my second-grade report on Great South Carolinians would have been quite different.

Apologies about associating you with a post that included such activities as booger-eating and Southerners. I came up with these so that when you do run for office, you'll already have some catchy campaign strategies to toy around with.

Possible slogans for Robb C. Calhoun, Anderson County Sheriff 2010:



ROBB C. CALHOUN FOR SHERIFF called; he wants his AWESOMENESS back. JUST KIDDING! He wants to give it to YOU--in EXCHANGE for YOUR VOTE!

I know, I know--those were mind-bogglingly good. Examples of work similar to those posited above are the main reasons, I think, I got into those writing programs. Just for future reference I could be available as Senior Special Advisor to your campaign, for the right salary: a dinner a week with a famous singer/songwriter. John Mayer must be first, and Jason Mrax and Gavin Degraw must not be included.

Anonymous said...

You've got a serious d-t confusion issue, yo. To wit:

Tattletale. Catty-corner.

James said...

Seriously? Shit!

Benny said...

Catty is American for Kitty, which comes from Cater-corner.

But it's cute (cude?) with the Ds.

Why does Boise make me think of Keebler Elves?

And why is Robb's photo nearly as big as Boise? Or need I ask?

"Esoteric but useful": Never. Never ever.

Swift and Sure Regards,

Tolly Pardon xo

James said...

Benny, Boise=potatoes=potato chips=junk food=Keebler snacks=Keebler elves.

James said...

Oh, Benny, and Robb's picture is ginormous, because that's how big my love for him is. Ginormous.

And you're right about the esoteric point.

Benny said...

I am always (sometimes never) right, Jimby. I'm talented like that.



Trevor said...

A humor seminar at Columbia, you say? Just the thought of all those poor grad students and unsuspecting faculty being held hostage for days while some blowhard discusses at length his thesis topic ("Sut Lovingood and the Evolution of Ebonical Humor") makes me smile a little inside.

Because I've already had to sit through that one in class. Yeah, it's a doozy.

Benny said...

Too bad you weren't there when Natalie Portman dropped by...

Though, I've read that one was a doozy, too.

jenneral said...

Ivy League ladies? Other than Natalie Portman, you are out of luck. Almost every single girl I saw at Harvard was badly dressed and unattractive.

James said...

Badly dressed and unattractive, you say? Sounds like South Carolina.

Harry the Hire said...


that like naive backward without the eye: an inverted blind ignoramous.

It's also rhymes with heaven.

It's Welsh for John.

It's a name very close to my own. It seems to be getting slightly popular now, even with girls (Evan Rachel Wood???)


Robb said...

You don't get to stay with me if you don't update.
The people demand an update!