Leapdragon 2016 - Aron Hsiao Was Here

September is almost here…  §

…and when it starts, the most difficult two semesters in my life (i.e. the most difficult academic year ever) will begin. I am intimidated just thinking about it. I have never attempted anything like this before, and I don’t quite know how I will get everything done. I am about to/will be doing/will have:

– Two papers to submit for the institute
– Three full-on graduate seminars at the Ph.D. level to attend
– At least one intensive undergrad core course to teach
– One pedagogy/teaching methods seminar to attend
– One social sciences analysis job to work
– One writing/editing job to work
– One photography sideline job to try to maintain
– Am moving to a new apartment
– Am adopting a pit bull puppy
– Am working on planning a wedding in Poland
– Will be traveling across the country, virtually from coast to coast
– Will probably be traveling to Poland again
– Will be furnishing/decorating/housebuilding
– Need to study for departmental and Ph.D. comprehensive exams
– Need to maintain communcation with my friends (very important)
– Same with family (also very important)
– Same with my fiancé, in terms of “us time” (most important of all)
– Need to keep working toward submitting/attending publications/conferences
– Will be submitting a strong application for a research assistantship

These last two items may also add:

– Need to prepare presentation(s) and/or attend conference(s)
– Need to find time to help launch a department and/or do guided research

Finally, there is also:

– Need to continue with my own research (ABD by spring, exams permitting)
– Need to keep myself healthy so that I don’t collapse under all this weight

This is a lot. This is not just a lot, this is Everest. This is everything, ever all wrapped into one, with no extra time allottable or allocatable for anything. If I manage to succeed at everything during the next two semesters (i.e from now until May or so), I can do anything.


My fiancé is basically in the same boat. We will be busy as (as she says) two hells.

The scary thing is the thought that we could fail, at any of them. Looking at my list, at least, one is tempted to say that “something’s gotta give.” I hope not. Same goes for her.