May 22, 2007
1. on the subject of; concerning
I am a teacher and a writer or a writer and a teacher; I don’t like to create hierarchies if I can help it. I have a penchant for scarves, purses, old hats, and baubles I find at second hand stores. My favorite color is blue, but every time I slice a beet, I’m astonished. If I could will my hair to grow in that shade of fuchsia, I would.
2. used to indicate movement within a particular area
Most generally, I consider myself an essayist, but within the genre of creative nonfiction, I like to be “about” many different projects. Currently, I’m finishing a book on embodiment, gender and illness—a memoir that explores my life with Graves’ disease and how I confronted what I like to call the American Dream Body, the impossible ideal of a whole, perfectly functioning body from birth to death.
Subject-wise, I also find myself compelled by Nancy Drew with her complicated status as (another) unattainable ideal and by public anatomy, its history and illustrations. Form-wise, I continue to find myself drawn to performance, especially how it might intersect with creative nonfiction. The all-out marriage of the two is documentary theater, but I’m also interested in finding other ways to infuse cnf with performative elements.
3. used to express location in a particular place
I teach at Valparaiso University in northwest Indiana. Usually people reference our city in relation to Chicago–about an hour and fifteen minutes away on a very good traffic day. This propensity will mostly likely increase as folks from Illinois move into the area. I wonder how long it will take before we’re counted a suburb.
I live in a bungalow (love that word!) within walking/biking distance of the university. This is a very good thing. My two cats, Monkey and Sideways, abide with me. This is also a very good thing.