Log in

No account? Create an account
There's More Than One Side To Every Sadness - De File
Does Collecting Make You Feel Dirty?
There's More Than One Side To Every Sadness
As my cryptic post of a handwritten quiz on UC Berkeley stationery yesterday and my post of an even more cryptic poem a few minutes ago suggest, I'm in mourning. My hero, role model, and friend Julian Boyd passed away yesterday. He was an idiosyncratic man and an even more idiosyncratic teacher, but the hundreds of people he touched -- and that's a highly conservative estimate -- would surely testify, along with me, that his idiosyncrasy contained unusually high percentages of both love and genius.

I learned how to teach from Julian. More importantly, I learned what I want to do with the time I spend as a teacher outside of the classroom. His generosity was enormous. And I had the privilege of experiencing a lot more of it than most of the people he knew. I'm going to try to write an essay about what I learned from watching Julian. For now, though, the poem will have to speak in its stead.

One of the great things about having longtime friends I stay in touch with through this blog is that we can share things that would be hard to express over the phone or in person. It meant a lot to me today when Batdina and Steven posted their entries about Julian. I rarely cry, but they got me tearing up. Then, when I read Kim's entry, I cried the way I did when I was three. No doubt my mid-life crisis is contributing to my sudden thrall to extremes of emotion. Today, though, the outpouring felt completely justified. I wish I could keep crying.

Mode: achy
Muse: In The Aeroplane Over The Sea - Neutral Milk Hotel - In The Aeroplane Over The Sea

9 comments or Leave a comment
nos4a2no9 From: nos4a2no9 Date: April 7th, 2005 08:49 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
My sympathies, for what they're worth. I hope you can find a way to work past all the pain and grief and truly honour your mentor.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: April 7th, 2005 10:41 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thanks for the kind words. It's helping me to write about it and read what others have written.
From: songsiheard Date: April 8th, 2005 09:56 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thoughts sent your way. I spent the week loaning my assistant services to a professor whose grandmother died, and I realized that though you think you can "understand" what someone's going through you just CAN'T. Doesn't Ludwig W. say that? But you can tell stories and trade stories, and that always helps me, and I'm glad it's helping you.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: April 9th, 2005 12:35 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Yes! just keeping the communication going does so much. I just got off the phone with Julian's wife Melanie. I can't imagine what she's going through, but I'm pretty sure that we both felt better at the end of the conversation.

In other news, I also benefit from reading what you're up to. Things are so bleak here right now in terms of making-a-meaningful-connection. Eric and I spend a lot of time talking to each other. That's great, but we'd both prefer a wider circle of investment.
elizabeg From: elizabeg Date: April 10th, 2005 01:49 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I'm sending thoughts as well. Days and days behind in my LJ reading. Illness and whatnot. Am writing you a lengthy email that feels at once horribly wrong for the moment and so very not that that I just might send it anyway. More soon, Charlie--
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: April 10th, 2005 02:41 am (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I hope you're finally feeling better. Sounds like your end of quarter was like my beginning of semester.
elizabeg From: elizabeg Date: April 10th, 2005 04:45 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
Thanks, Charlie. Slowly but surely improving. The appetite's still in a bit of a funk (no taste for anything--the horror!) but I'm getting back to myself. Off to the coffee house to attempt that thing called working. Oh so very behind and it's only week one. Sigh.

Most of last quarter's stress has sorted itself out, at least the profession-related stress. Not that there isn't plenty of new stress but whatever. This is living, right? Right.

I'm thinking of you.
cbertsch From: cbertsch Date: April 10th, 2005 06:36 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
I'm always thinking of you, but especially in this week of loss that reminds me of what I have gained and stil risk losing.
elizabeg From: elizabeg Date: April 10th, 2005 10:17 pm (UTC) (LINK TO SPECIFIC ENTRY)
As further rumination demands another venue, for here and now I'll just say: Likewise.
9 comments or Leave a comment