Tuesday, June 1, 2010

now i don't have my ph.d.

or, reason #1,375 why grad school might not have been for me

I've blogged before - either at my old MySpace blog, or here, or both - about how there's a non-stop jukebox in my head. There's always a song playing, and it's usually triggered by something in my environment, even if I'm not conscious of it at the time. For example, as an undergraduate, one afternoon I was wondering why the Hoodoo Gurus' "Dig It Up" was in repeat mode in my head, and then I realized that earlier that day in my 200-level British and American Literature class, we'd read and discussed John Donne's "The Relic."

WHEN my grave is broke up again
Some second guest to entertain,
—For graves have learn'd that woman-head,
To be to more than one a bed—
And he that digs it, spies
A bracelet of bright hair about the bone,
Will he not let us alone,
And think that there a loving couple lies,
Who thought that this device might be some way
To make their souls at the last busy day
Meet at this grave, and make a little stay?

Hoodoo Gurus:
My girlfriend lives in the ground
My friends ask why she's not around
She won't come home
I'm so alone (you'll never know!)
You can't bury love
You've gotta dig it up

So yeah, it's a musical word association game in my head pretty much 24/7.

Anyway, in my first year of graduate school at Vanderbilt, one of the books we were assigned for a Colonial American History class was Patricia U. Bonomi's Under the Cope of Heaven: Religion, Society, and Politics in Colonial America. It was a very good book, but that's beside the point.

My point is, and I do have one, that while I am unsure how Ms. Bonomi pronounces her surname, whenever I saw or thought about her name, the only thing could possibly go through my head was:

U-bon-o-mi! U-bon-o-mi! U-bon-o-mi! U-bon-o-mi!
....Now I guess I'll have to tell 'em
That I got no cerebellum
Guess I'll get my Ph.D.
I'm a teenage U Bonomi!

This probably explains a lot about why I never finished my grad school education. Vanderbilt, so much to answer for.


Anonymous said...

Me, I never got past the word "Cope" in the title of the book...hello Julian!

Miles said...

I thought about the Cope, but the Ramones won.

jontv said...

I have the constant jukebox thing going on, too. I'm not sure it's quite so associative for me, though. That happens sometimes, I guess, but mostly it's playing whatever I've been obsessively listening to, lately, or something I'm writing myself.

I don't know if there's a connection, but it took me 12 years to finish a 2-year MA degree. Hmmm....

pplist said...

When I saw the postitle, my cerebral jukebox immediately played The Godfathers: "And I don't need no Ph.D/'Cause I'm ten times smarter than you'll ever be/'Cause I Said So."

Nice post and blog.