10.13.2011

A quick post from on the road

I'm writing from a hotel room in Mankato, MN.  I'm here for the Feminisms and Rhetorics conference, where I was invited to give last night's keynote address (which I ended up calling "Feminism and Zines:  An Origin Story (and why these stories matter)").  It was great fun, with a lot of interesting conversation with the participants both during my talk and in the Q&A after.

Special shout-outs to:
  • Amy Mecklenburg-Faenger for being an outstanding scholar who helped me accidentally discover some of the historical feminist predecessors to zines.
  • Heather Trahan for having a great post-lecture conversation with me in line at the noodle shop, and in our walk back to the hotel.
  • Nina Krasnoff and Cate McCann for letting me show off their fabulous informal publications to a crowd of very receptive scholars.
  • Cate Bush for taking a totally last-minute picture of the publication she and I produced as girls, The North Dixien, so that I could include it in my powerpoint (damn, were we adorable).
  • Kirsti Cole for putting on a great conference, inviting me to speak, and then having some of the exact same questions/frustrations with social change that I'm having right now.  So we're going to keep talking.
And here's one final thought I want to share (Biffle, don't read this):  travel is incredibly luxurious.  It takes a long time to get from Charleston to Minnesota--I was in travel mode yesterday from 6 am until 2 pm.  What that meant is that I was sitting in airports and on airplanes for hours and hours.  And here's what I discovered:  nobody was calling me.  I wasn't checking emails.  No one was asking questions--I had no scheduled appointments to keep track of, no rescheduling to do because of unexpected emergencies or the needs of important people.  There were screaming children near me, but I didn't have one bit of responsibility for them--they could scream, shriek, run around, whatever.  Not my job.  All I had to do was what I was told:  line up for zone 3, go from gate B8 to gate B13.  Just being in travel mode felt like--feels like--an amazing vacation.

10 comments:

Aaron said...

zone 3, huh. Did you give all the Zone 1 people the stink eye as the hurried on the plane?... I wish I would get zone 1 sometime...:(

Elizabeth said...

Yes. You know you truly need vacation when the actual travel part is luxurious.

allisondcarr said...

Wow, you're at a conference with loads of my people, Heather Trahan among them! Small world...

Crittle said...

Please tell me there are LHotP shout-outs in Mankato! There have to be, right?

Alison said...

I was actually zone 5 at one point! Really low on the totem pole.

I'm amazed that I met one of your real-life friends in real-life, allisondcarr, considering that you and I have never met in real life. Interesting.

LHoTP=Little House on the Prairie? I could definitely see the prairie!

Finally, yes, Elizabeth, your point really resonates with me. That's giving me something to think about.

Heather Trahan said...

Thanks for the shout-out, Alison! :) :) Talking to you was one of the highlights of this conference:)

krlr said...

I have this running fantasy about being a SAHM... but then I get to work where I talk in complete sentences, wear clean clothes, and can sit undisturbed in front of a computer (usually working... occasionally blog hoping). I totally get it.

Anonymous said...

I like to think of those moments not as luxury so much but as zen moments, when I can be outside of my usual routine, completely unreachable and aware of being completely alone, completely independent, and just being.

I love traveling to conferences, too, for that reason.

-Deandra

claire said...

We are zone 1 -- all you have to do is miss your flight by 10 minutes and then sit around the airport for 6 hours. Then on your next flight they will give you zone 1. It had better be worth it.

claire said...

an update -- everyone is zone 1 in washington when you have to take a bus to the plane -- my moment of lording it over everyone else totally stomped. But we did get the first row.