Well, I had a great weekend in Tucson, visiting the sociology department at the University of Arizona. The desert, contrary to my expectations, was absolutley beautiful! I had imagined a desolate area with little vegetation, but the greenery was stunning. The Saguaro cacti existing alongside evergreens and palm trees was exciting. As I was flying in, I got a good look at the mountains, which were wonderful. Over the course of the weekend, several grad students mentioned the usefulness of the mountains for orienting onesself, and given my lack of directional skills, this can only be a plus. The department itself seemed wonderful. The students and faculty were friendly and many seem to be doing lots of exciting work.
So, I think, essentially, the decision is down to Arizona or UC-Santa Barbara. At UofA, I will end up focusing more on religion, and at UCSB, more on gender. The stipend+area seems more liveable in Arizona than in Santa Barbara. That must be a factor, too. I thought this decision would be easy, and I'm definitley leaning somewhere right now, but the more I think about it, the less certain it is.
Enough of the hand-wringing and indecisiveness, though.
As to the computer situation: Neville, who is missing a power supply, is currently unavailable, so I have a different computer, who doesn't have an assigned name/gender yet. I'm working on that. S/He works just fine for now, though. I do, however, wish that I had access to all of my files, even though most of the relevant ones (drafts, recent papers) can be found in gmail. It's also kind of annoying not to have any of my music on here and to have to reinstall basic things such as a google toolbar. Alas.