This afternoon I tried to take a little nap during my boy’s “quiet time.” Quiet Time is sort of a Rovian term for the two-hour period of the day during which I constantly yell at him to go back to his room. Today I heard him go into the bathroom at some point. Somewhere in my dream state I realized he had spent a long time in there and thus this might be the kind of bathroom visit where a newly-four-year-old boy needs some clean-up help, but I was also really enjoying my nap. So it shouldn’t have been too much of a surprise to wake up to find the bathroom smeared with fecal matter. At some point he also dumped out buckets of toys, and while we were having a friendly discussion about whether or not he was going to be picking these up, he launched himself face first off the couch into the edge of the coffee table, smacking his mouth into the corner. After a time, I was able to stop the nosebleed.

It was then that I reflected how much I am looking forward to residency starting this week. Hamline’s program is low residency, meaning most of it is done through correspondence, but twice a year we meet on campus for ten days of workshops, lectures, readings, and discussions. It’s epic, exhilarating, exhausting–and sort of like childbirth in that you forget the parts where the anesthesia doesn’t work and the faculty lounge runs out of wine so eventually you’re all excited to do it again.

The faculty reports on Thursday and we get to meet the new class, and everyone arrives on Friday. I’m kicking things off then with a lecture on The Hero’s Journey, though it’s been difficult to think too critically about mythical structure when I’m cleaning up blood, fecal matter, and stray Matchbox cars. I’m sure there’s some hilarious monomyth joke to be made here, and I’ll get back to you on that as soon as my assistant finishes his research.

We’ll be blogging from the residency, and while the posts may not be informative, it should at least be entertaining to watch us grow more incoherent as the time wears on. But right now I need to read workshop pieces, work on my lecture, think about packing, and email Claire Rudolf Murphy to ask about the coffee situation in the hotel that we’ll be billeted in. See you soon, friends.