I Like Big Bites & I Cannot Lie

The problem with having a small mouth is this: food always ends up all over my face and I often take a bite that’s just the slightest bit too big. As I eat, I like to wait until the end of the meal to clean up my sub-consciousness’s attempt at an edible Pollack; otherwise I’d be brushing off my face more often than putting food in it. My friends reach inner-circle status when I can trust them to check my face after such a meal without my having to ask. Not to say my mouth is so small that I haven’t been caught with my foot in it on more than one occasion, but you get the idea. Success at mealtime is solely dependent on how well I manage my petite-mouth deficiency.

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Of course, this is a Minor in Writing blog post and while I’m totally serious about the difficulties that come with a small mouth, I’m not really here to discuss my eating habits. I bite off more than I can chew in every aspect of my life. Be it overbooking my social calendar or convincing myself that I can totally handle an 18-credit semester, my plate usually seems to end up more than full enough. Yet I always somehow seem to pull off that crazy last-minute scramble and everything falls into place right at the last second. As such, I keep taking on more than I should be able to handle; I’ve managed it every time before!

I had just started scheduling my courses for next semester when I decided to take a break and clean out my email inbox. While sorting through potential internship opportunity information and cTools announcement notifications, Molly Bancroft’s reminder of the Peer Writing Consultant program application deadline caught my eye. My interest piqued, I began toying with the idea of applying. Within about twelve hours and after speaking to my MiW and ChemE advisors, I decided to go for it. The application process and program seemed manageable; I was excited to give back to the writing community and aid my peers in their development.

But now I’m feeling swamped. The left side of my brain, the exhausted little ChemE part of me, is not looking forward to pounding out an application this weekend, nor is it excited about an 8:30 a.m. class next semester. But the right side of my brain, the relentless word nerd part of me, insists that the lost sleep and extra credit hours will be worthwhile. My decision making process depends on finding a balance between my two passions: science and written word. I am only afraid of one outweighing the other. At this point, I know I would enjoy becoming a member of the Peer Writing Consultant program. The last hurdle is talking myself into the time and mental commitments against the knowledge that my plate will most probably be too full next year.

I just have to hope that everyone can excuse me next year; it looks as if, more often than not, I’ll be running around with too much food in my mouth.

5 thoughts to “I Like Big Bites & I Cannot Lie”

  1. I COMPLETELY know what you mean! I also have a hard time with time management. I find myself getting involved with all of these extracurricular activities, taking 18 credits because I can’t decide which classes to drop, and then working 3 nights a week! But for some reason, I never learn!! I think I’m scared that if I’m not swamped, I won’t know what I’ll do with my time. But maybe a well deserved break is necessary.

    As for the Peer Writing Consultant, I am currently one, and I think you should do it!! You get to make your own schedule and choose your own hours, so technically you can work as much/little as you want. It’s the perfect job because, ultimately, you’re in control of how much you work. Also, we have a really amazing group of tutors that are awesome to talk to and hang out with. It’s definitely one of the closest communities I have on campus and I feel really lucky to be part of it. So in essence, I think you should pound out that application (not to add more stress to your life). Good luck!

  2. Rachel,
    Great post on something everyone inside and outside the Minor in Writing can relate to at this great University that demands so much of us. I love your use of the petite mouth/large life plate metaphor. Definitely a great way to discuss a topic, of balance, that has been done many times before.
    Like Sara, I think you should apply. While I am not a Peer Writing Consultant myself, I work at the Academic Center for athletes where there is drop-in Sweetland Tutoring and they students who use the service, as well as other tutoring services here, definitely appreciate the help. Not only will you be able to help other students with their writing, but it also also expose you to many new voices face to face, and not just online like we’re used to with this blog.
    Good job on always have everything fall into place at the last minute. I think I can relate to this one too, although at the time it seems what apparently fell in place actually did not.
    Good luck with the application and continuing the excellent balance you’ve described!

  3. I like the anecdote you use to start off this post. It’s very relatable.

    It’s about the work-life balance which I don’t think anybody ever perfects. But it’s awesome that you’re trying to. I didn’t see the answer to this question in your post, but right now, which side of you do you think is outweighing the other: the science side or the writing side? I think it’s great that you have these two passions that can be considered opposites. There are a lot of engineers who loathe writing. It’ll separate you from other people.

    Also, I think being a Peer Writing Consultant would be a great way to develop more writing skills.

  4. Oh Rachel,

    If anyone in this class can attest to the truth behind this blog post, it’s me. I like that instead of attempting to alleviate the problem, you straight-up acknowledge that you’ll always be the person that puts too much on their plate. Although the left and right sides of your brains constantly clash, their one commonality is that you constantly need to be pushed to the limit.

    Luckily, that’s not necessarily a bad thing. There are a lot of studies that show when you have more to do, you get more accomplished. (I’m not going to hyperlink to a study because, after writing half a dozen columns, I don’t have the energy to look anything else up.) Although you’ll be more busy, it’s also more than probable that you’ll get what you need done. And knowing how busy you are, if you actually wanna do this, you’ll get it accomplished.

    And I think this is a good idea for you. Writing has always been something you’ve enjoyed personally–a hobby if you will. By taking that passion and channeling it into something tangibly productive, I think you’re gonna get more out of this passion. Maybe you’ll even get your left and ride sides the opportunity to appease each other.

    Anyways, congratulations on applying! I’m so proud of you, Rachel.

  5. Rachel,

    I loved your post. I enjoyed the metaphor you used and the transition you made from something less formal to an issue that you, and many of us, face in your every day life. I agree with you that often having MORE to do is actually helpful….I am so much more productive when I’m busy. If I have a free day or block of hours, on the other hand, I am much more likely to sit around and do random activities than I am to actually get work done. I think you’re going to be an awesome Peer Writing Consultant and I am really excited for you. It has been awesome learning about your life as a ChemE major and some of the projects you’ve taken on, as it is a field I have never been exposed to before. I’m really jealous that you have such a balance between your left and right brains and you are constantly working both! You are awesome!

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