Friday, May 03, 2013

A Reward for Myself

It snowed here yesterday. In May. For the first time since 1907 or something.

And this afternoon, I submitted my doctoral work for consideration.

It's not over: I still need to make alterations by the score, I'm sure. But the heavy lifting is largely finished. Even if I have to create new sections or fire up a dozen extra examples, the large portion of the work is completed.

It's late, as per usual.

You can count it as being two days late, since in my last email to the professor, I thought I'd be able to submit it by mid-week. You can count it as being a semester late, considering I really should have had this finished before now if I wanted everything to be ready to complete the degree in this semester that ends in less than two weeks.

You can even count it as being five years late, if you consider how quickly I should have finished had I been of a more productive mind. Like the other people I started with, all those years ago, who have long since gone on to other things.

And I'm sure I'll have another retrospective post when I am actually all done, with the title and everything.

But this time, I did two things to celebrate. The first one was that I allowed myself to open the shipment box that has been sitting in the front vestibule for two weeks. It contained something I ordered from an independent bookseller from Amazon... so I probably should have opened it sooner to make sure that it didn't contain rocks.

What it did contain was the first comic book I can remember buying with my own money. I was never a big comic book fan, but there were some around the house when growing up. Scary stories, WWII soldier comics, and even some Transformers ones, if I remember.

But I haven't looked at any of those in 25 years. This comic is one I bought for myself.

It's not really a comic book in the way I think of them.  It's not flimsy paper and about 30 pages long. It's an anthology of 12 comics, bound into a single hardcover book. And the story is "All-Star Superman".

It's a self-contained Superman story that exists outside of the man continuity of comics. It doesn't require any further outlay of money to see what happens next. It is simple a very attractive comic book, with one of the most highly-regarded stories.

I bought it some weeks ago and didn't particularly plan on it being a "reward". But I grabbed the box off the shelf as it was being delivered. I was on the verge of being late to something -- a rehearsal or a concert -- and placed it just inside my front door.

And there it sat, where I saw it every day, walking to my car. A couple of times I thought, "Gee, I should open that."

And then I knuckled down and got really busy. Late nights. Early mornings. Lots of typing and clicking.

And when I finished today, I had lunch and thought, I should get out that book.

So I did, and I read it straight through this afternoon. It was everything I hoped it would be. And it now has a place on my shelf for the next time.

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