Greetings from C'ville

The Kundiman retreat for 2007 is in full swing and there's been lots to talk about:

1. Seventeen brilliant fellows made the trip this year. We've got a ton of new fellows who are wonderful, talented, and silly.

2. Travel on Wednesday was nightmarish. Apparently United Air's computer system crashed, causing all sorts of travel delays. Poor Patrick and Prageeta got caught in the airtravel snarl as well as a few of our fellows. They finally made their way to Virginia, but there were headaches.

3. Open circle, where all the fellows, faculty, and staff members read there work, was amazing as it always is.

4. A PhD candidate came in and gave a talk about Myung Mi Kim's work. The discussion after the presentation was quite contentious, but I do believe the conference is better for it. The fellows are a lot closer and they talked about the event. It's hard to distill the emotions into words for a blog.

5. We've dubbed Vikas, "Jump". I won't explain why so that if you run into him, you'll have to ask him about it.

6. We played a game of dictionary craps. Fuzzy dice were rolled. The numbers corresponded with pages and word entries. The words selected are as follows:

bank note, picaresque, aster, grain, honor, bear, pecking order, chignon, air bag, gravimeter, secularist, lottery, shield, loud mouthed, apricot, mawkish, cleaver, dormouse, abstruse, abscissa, oscilloscope, along shore, lock, Taegu

Now everyone has to write a poem or poems using the words. By the end of the retreat, all the words need to be used up. Soham and Rona openly challenged me to write a poem after they had successfully completed my assignment.

I'm in trouble.

7. Regie Cabico made Myung Mi Kim howl with laughter.

8. We also caught Myung Mi dumpster diving. I have an image of it on film. It's true.

9. Of course, Patrick borrowed Jump's guitar, and everyone sang sappy 80's ballads.

More later. Right now I have to write this damn poem.

Oliver de la Paz