tenuously connected thoughts

I'm in slow gear these days. Vacation mode. Honestly, I haven't had time to post because I've been spending every single minute either sleeping, watching movies, eating, or exercising. Which is a pretty great way to spend a couple of days.

I finally checked our academic calendar for spring: all hail the Calendar Gods who have granted me 27 more days before I have to teach again! This is perhaps the longest winter break we have ever had at my U -- it changes around year to year depending on how the moon's cycle intersects with the stock market (or some other set of equally random factors). So, I figure I can take a few days totally off right now before I start into my various plans for Accomplishing Great Things during the break.

Paranoid thoughts that ran through my mind this afternoon when the back of my neck & head started to itch while we were at the movies:
  • spiders
  • fleas, mites, or parasites
  • allergic reaction to dusty movie theater
  • allergic reaction to whoever's head was in the chair before mine
It was probably just a reaction to the dry winter air and dry heat in the theater. But there's nothing like sitting in a dark theater worrying about insects crawling on you to make you feel squirmy.

Worst of all, we were at one of the megaplexes with the supposedly super-comfy seats that are kind of like airplane seats -- padded, wide-butted, with seat arms that can be raised up out of the way if you want to snuggle with your companion. But the un-comfy aspect of these chairs was the curvature of the seat back -- just like on many airplanes, for some reason, the top of the chair curves forward -- in a gentle C curve. I suppose this is to support a slump-shouldered person of so-called average height (which in airplane terms is what, 5' 8"?). But it doesn't seem very ergonomic, even for such a tall person. Well, I'm far short of that, so that such chairs push forward on my head and neck in a really unpleasant manner. I have to fold up my coat to make a cushion to sit forward of the curve, thereby bypassing most of the slouchy comfort of a padded chair. Why can't they just have a straight seat back like a regular chair? Is it for the weighty G-forces of airplane takeoff? Surely that isn't necessary in a frickin' movie theater. I suspect the theater folks think the chairs are comfortable. Are they, for those of you of mid-range height?