Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Day One.

I love my biology teacher. The class is called Biology of AIDS, so it dips into many areas: molecular and cell biology, genetics, immunology, epidemiology. Today she gave a very condensed history of the early years of the epidemic, talking about the Reagan 80s like someone who remembers what it was really like. I was the only person in the room besides the professor who was alive in 1981.

My Spanish teacher is a small, shy young Asian woman who speaks halting English. I'm sure she speaks Spanish beautifully. (But she did a very weird thing this morning. I'm still trying to figure it out. She was sitting at a desk in the front row as the students came in and took seats, so she looked like just another student. At 10 o'clock, she turned around and said loudly enough for everyone nearby to hear, "Is this Spanish 506? Did you know the instructor for this class has been changed? Who is this Sheena Lee? Oh! I'm her! Ha ha ha!" and she got up and started the class. It was a bit surreal.)

My only other class today was the discussion section for my American Lit. class. Here at U.T., the big lecture classes are broken into small groups that meet once a week to discuss the material with a graduate student. The instructor didn't show, I guess because, since we haven't had a lecture yet, there's nothing to discuss. Still, it would have been nice if someone had let us know. We all just sat there for 10 minutes and then one by one got up and left.

I spent $350 on books today. That's just for two classes. My Spanish book cost over $200. I have one more textbook to buy, for my government class. The books for my other classes are regular trade paperbacks which I hope I'll be able to get cheap used or maybe even check out at the public library. There are about 10 books on the list for my lit. class and just as many for my history class.

On another note, my jaw hurts. I have TMJ. Usually it doesn't bother me much, but last week I strained my left jaw muscle while I was chewing. I could barely eat for two days. Now it's just a dull ache. When I told J that I had strained my jaw, he said, "That's not very good for dating, is it?" And when I told Z, he said, "How'd you do that?" and he smirked. One bad thing (or good, depending on your sense of humor, I guess) about being a gay man is that there are times when your life feels like one long blowjob joke.


chubby hubby said...

i remember when carter was president and i was living in provincetown, had people i know just suddenly die from a cold. it started before reagan and your teacher lied if she told you that as a fact. :-)

Steven said...

There are a few theories regarding the genesis of HIV. Most scientists believe it crossed into the human population decades before the 80s. My reference to the Reagan years was meant to evoke that period of time when we were all suddenly aware of a contagious disease killing everyone around us while the federal government reacted with indifference.

m00nchild said...

I'm 37. I was in a doctor's office in 1981/2 when I came across an article about GRID -- what AIDS was known before the HIV virus was discovered. I was only 11, but I remember sitting there thinking this was important and that there would be consequences.

I realize now that the virus population infecting people at that time has replicated trillions of times and and that in 2004 I, too, inherited the epidemic. Through my virus I'm intrinsically connected to so many people.

It makes me cry.