Sunday, September 25, 2011


I spent much of my young life living by an academic calendar, much longer than people using spend that way.  Every year had the same cadence of semesters, final exams, and summers off, so for me September has always seemed like the beginning of the new year, not the end of summer.

As soon as I was actually a teacher rather than a student, I found that the year just kept on, there was no true break over summer, I was never truly done with everything.  And when I left academia, even more so, the working year just rolls from task to task to project to report to budget planning, on and on without a break.  It's unusual even for people to take long vacations, lots of two days off and leave early on Fridays and frittering away one's annual vacation in tiny bits so you never really get a sense that you're done with everything, no one can ask any more of you.

This isn't true in every field, though. When I lived in Australia, all of my favorite personalities on the radio typically took two or three months off during the summer.  There were still broadcasts to fill the airwaves all day, but they were the second string, the substitutes, the apprentices.  It wasn't until February or so (the start of autumn in that hemisphere) that you heard familiar voices and settled back into the familiar schedule.

Here in the US, radio personalities don't seem to take long vacations, but the TV schedule does.  This week has been the premiere of all the commercial networks' new fall shows, and this weekend the new seasons of all the important, award-winning cable TV series have come back on the air.

So with this blog.  My hiatus was longer than a usual one this year because in May, I changed employers and started a new job, which took quite a bit of time and mental bandwidth.  I was pursuing some other time-consuming summer hobbies through the end of August, and then September has had a few family issues that delayed my intended return.  But now, with the TV schedule, I am back from hiatus and ready to start regular posts again.  I might make this an annual tradition, summers off from blogging.  I do feel refreshed, and I've stored up some new things to talk about.  Plus, now that temperature in my northern town creeps toward freezing every night and our nights are longer than our days, staying indoors and cozying up to a warm computer seems like a much more attractive pursuit.