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  • a happy, ordinary, middle-aged, suburban woman who paints odd pictures, gardens in a straw hat, lives with the love of her life, is owned by one cat and the ghosts of several others, and walks a little funny 'cause she has a fake leg. She started this website because there's more to life than what we lose, and we need to let each other know what's possible, even if it's only a happy, ordinary life.

November 2011

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    sara at saraarts dot com

    Make sure the subject line of your correspondence is clear and specific. I do not open e-mails from strangers unless I can tell in advance that I want to read them.

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Good reads, grownups only

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Ian Lamont

Both of you should be proud! It's an accomplishment to get in the program, and to maintain a high enough GPA to get on the Dean's List.

Good luck at the Extension School ... there are a lot of great programs there, and opportunities for students who are willing to put in the necessary time and effort to follow through to the end.


Thank you, Ian! My true love is thrilled (and relieved), and I assure you the only person who will be more proud than I am will be his mama.

Seriously, there are a lot of great programs there and terrific opportunities even for students who just want to attend a class or two, à la carte as it were. The great thing about the Extension School is that these opportunities really are for everyone, not just the privileged. I've known lots of people in the last twelve years who've enrolled in some of these programs, some who came from as far away as Brazil, China, and Eastern Europe to study things as diverse as business management, environmental management, and teaching English as a second language, just at the Extension School, and not very many of them had anything but glowing things to say.

I'm just really happy that the school recognizes the potential in my true love, too. He's no slouch. :)

The Goldfish

This is excellent news! Hooray for your true love! Returning to education after a long break takes a lot of courage and determination, as well as the capacity to readjust the gears in your head (when you go to college straight from school, all that essay-writing and critical analysis is second nature, later on it takes some intellectual acrobats to start thinking like that again).

Very well done to him! :-)


Thank you, Goldfish! I heartily concur.


Congrats to your true love on having the courage and commitment to follow his dreams - and for getting on the deans list. Adult learners are typically higher motivated and see direct application right away (at least where we worked with them in the UK), but it still takes a great effort and commitment to fit that all that study into an already packed adult life.

On a side note, we used to drive Americans insane overseas, I remember this one super pretentious 19-20 year old who said she was in Cambridge when I asked where she went to Uni. I had the look of suitably impressed and asked which of the colleges she was at. She then looked confused and said she lived in CAMBRIDGE, MASS. I sort of patted her on the shoulder and told her not to feel too bad about not getting into Cambridge and asked if she had found a uni in Mass to go to. She got really huffy and said she went to (dramatic pause) Harvard.

I gave her a baffled look which indicated I had never heard of it. "Oh, that's nice, it is any good?"

She stomped away.

It is just that here (UK) a "new" college which can't be rated with the 126 "traditional" universities are those who have only been open 150 years. So there is a perverse pleasure taken in playing the aloof Brit doing a head patting on those "revolutionaries" and thier "new schools" (I know Harvard is 350 years old - But it is still fun to play).


ha ha ha

Yeah, when I attended the Sorbonne for summer school one year, it did not escape my notice that the classroom I was sitting in was probably older than my country.

My lack of impressed-ness with the Harvard brand specifically and private colleges generally is that one of the schools I dropped out of was UCLA, where it is my belief you can get every bit as good or even great an education (at 1/2 the cost) but it is very much more difficult to do so. I was such a hot item academically back then (even though I only had a B+ average; it was my test scores) that I was accepted early by the school in 1981, but then when I got there had to compete with 30,000 other undergraduate students for things like dorms, classes, and parking. Now the University of California system is so very overcrowded that I don't think I could even get admitted, all other things being equal. I not only had unimpressive grades in high school, but no extra-curricular activities because when I was not in class, I was almost always working at one of five or six part-time jobs, several of which I held concurrently, because nobody was going to pay my college tuition, oh and meanwhile my father was having a mid-life crisis so I had to kick in for some of the house payments on the triple-mortgaged suburban family home every once in awhile, too.

A large proportion of the students I encountered at UCLA had equal or more challenging circumstances to overcome, and most of them didn't drop out like I did because though many of them had to work full-time while attending classes full-time, too, most of them didn't get perspective-altering closed head injuries in the middle of the first year. Nowadays, I hear a prospective UC student might have all that, a drunken mother, and also have to have a 5.0 GPA (which wasn't even possible in my day) achieved through substantial extracurricular work just to get on the waiting list. Harvard and other private American college students seem frankly coddled by comparison. Still, it's a very good school, and I'm really impressed by my true love.


Very impressive indeed. That's his picture up there in the corner, right? With the NaBloPoMo tatt on his back?

I only dropped out of my undergraduate program once, but I just recently dropped out of my fourth (fifth, if you count the one I was accepted into but never started) graduate program. Oh, and high school; I dropped out of that too.


Oh yeah, that's him, Alphabitch; excellent guess.

(Actually, unlike nameless tat boy, my true love has long, thick, gorgeous, curly dark brown hair with silver streaks in it. Every woman we know personally covets his hair for herself.)

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