Only a month of summer left now. Things have changed quite a bit over the past two months, I realize looking at my last daylog. But ... things always change.

First, a bit of soap opera that you would probably do best to skip. Near the end of May -- after constant-on for two and a half years -- my girlfriend and I decided to spend the summer apart, to get a better grip on ourselves and the relationship. Actually, this was more-or-less entirely my decision, made rather than simply breaking up, which was (seemed to be?) my other option at the time. This arrangement was satisfactory to her for about two weeks, after which she justifiably started getting angrier and angrier as the days passed. By roughly a week ago this had built up to a fever pitch, and she called to break up with me.

Funny thing is, I had been planning to do the same thing for some time delta before then, but hadn't had a chance to draw up the list of reasons for discussion. Oh yes, there would need to be reasons, and oh yes, I could never trust myself to come up with them in real time. The main reason I gave on the phone when we were fighting that night was a matter of world view: the more time we spent together, the more I realized that she felt better when in established comfort zones, and I felt better when forcing myself past from those zones. There should be a more concise way to put this, but there isn't. Contentment vs. Curiosity? Indulgence vs. Masochism? I don't fucking know. Besides that, she had always been clear that a relationship based on the fear of loneliness rather than mutual feeling was not acceptable, and this was heading that way fast.

It was over, that's the point. We arrived at that after thirty minutes of conversation. Not really conversation. More like cutting each other up. And then that was over too. "We still care about each other," we said, and "lets go get coffee some time," and some other things before we hung up. We've both seen other people during summer.

I am so confused. Still. It's not my right, because our problems were almost always my fault. But I still am. Fucking sue me.

Just as an aside, I've realized what I mistrust about capital-R Relationships. It's that only in this mode of interpersonal communication that one party or the other, or most likely both, are guaranteed to feel terrible at the end. That is, among friends, business partners, casual sex partners, or other (lower-case-r) relationships, the two people can often walk away without either of them feeling burned, if the situation demands. Only in romantic relationships are you promised pain.

Don't worry, I will outgrow this viewpoint. I have lots of time yet.

With that out of the way, academic matters are preceding roughly, but preceding none the less. I passed my statistics class by a much lower margin than I expected, or would've preferred. Something to do with getting two hours of sleep before the final, due to the above conversation with my ex-girlfriend, but I digress. That class puts me within twelve hours of my BS in Computer Science, which I should have no trouble covering in the two semesters I have left. All of my prerequisites are out of the way too now.

My totals so far are: CS and general studies, 123 hours; Mathematics, 15 hours; Psychology, 18 hours. Besides the degree already mentioned, there will be three hours of Mathematics added, which translates to a minor in that field. The psych department does not give minors to engineering students, but if they did the 18 hours (15 in upper-level courses) would be just right. Dunno how to list a pseudo-minor on, say, a job application, but having the knowledge is what counts.

Research over the summer has been disappointing. Instead of working with the professor at all, she asked me to work with another undergrad, on his damned honors thesis. This is frustrating, but hopefully I am at least making friends in the department and proving that I'm willing to deal with shitwork. Still, I really need to work with the professor, so she will have good anecdotes for my graduate school letters of recommendation, etc.

At work I've been learning perl, which I have come to consider a brilliantly conceived, intuitive language. Larry Wall and I need to have drinks some time, for sure. Also, I am now on the university's ACM team; it's a world-wide Computer Science problem solving competition run by the Association for Computing Machinery and sponsored by IBM. For being as disenchanted with CS as I am, this is still pretty fun -- I have rather missed structured problem solving since I left high school. Plus, since a professor is working as the coach, there is every chance that this may net an eventual letter of recommendation, which I couldn't be happier about.

Some of my friends just got back in Lawrence after a year spent in Texas. I guess that invalidates what I wrote about them in Leaving town forever, but I'll leave that writeup alone anyway. They're renting a house with some other friends up here, and it is pretty big and nice. The basement is dedicated to being an electronic music studio, with turntables, a couple samplers, a big analog modeling keyboard, and more. This means I'd have somewhere perfect to jam with my drum machine and records, if I had any, um, talent.

What else? Going back to school on August 22. Kinda bogus, but I'm looking forward to Cognitive Neuroscience and the Digital Image Processing class. Also looking forward to not having to wake up some mornings for either class or work.

psydereal and I are going to drink rum and tour the roofs of campus tonight. She knows how to get on to the student union, and I have roof access to a couple of buildings on the West side of campus. With any luck we can figure out how to get on a few in between as well; I have high hopes for the administration building, personally. Also, a venture down into the steam tunnels might also be warranted, we'll just have to see.