Wednesday, December 03, 2003

Bastards! Things readers should know about me -- I am not a Manchester United fan. I'm especially not fond of their manager, who seems to have blinders on when it comes to his own players' misconduct.

Also, I thank any appropriate deities that my Tuesday class is over. There were some truly cool students, but as a whole, they introduced me to a not-entirely-new concept -- the unwillingness of students to prepare for a class, even when a huge percentage of their grades depend on active participation. Faugh!

Yes, I am ranting. And still not ready to discuss the job market -- instead, I'm avoiding the subject by working on my part of our program assessment (something that elicits interest only in accreditation years) and a proposal to set some sort of guidelines so that students and faculty using Blackboard understand the ramifications of a partially online course. Which us luck -- if you have any ideas on setting student expectations, please share!

Meanwhile, check out the great entries on the changing face of academe via the Invisible Adjunct and some great stuff on the baby gap there and at Crooked Timber. I am simply amazed by these people -- they are productive scholars who blog under their own names ... oh well, maybe after I'm less contingent.

Monday, December 01, 2003

Well -- it's amazing how time flies when all your preps are new! End of quarter resolution -- I will blog more. Reality -- I work for the state, so can only legally blog from home. Blogging -- what one does to avoid the steaming pile of grading that needs doing. Rambling -- what I am doing now.

But seriously, there are some great blogs out there. Current faves are Invisible Adjunct and The Cranky Professor. There's a great conversation on the baby gap at the former, and the latter is a friend. I'm also becoming very fond of this wonderful academic Buffy site because I discovered the wonders of the Buffyverse last summer and am still catching up. The scholarship part makes me feel less guilty, as does the fact that I can talk about Buffy with colleagues who don't think I'm barking!

Next up -- life on the job market -- scary as hell!

Wednesday, September 17, 2003

Ok, Cranky Professor ... I'm blogging. Well, since last I blogged, I typically missed the deadline to try to write for the
Chronicle of Higher Education"first person" series for money. But that's because I was getting a Full-time Faculty Position!! Woohoo! But seriously folks ... it's a one year visiting position. Maybe two. No more than that, because then I get dangerously close to mandatory tenure-track. So what have I been doing? New faculty stuff.

Gotta say, this may be the best thing to happen -- I get to do all the new faculty stuff, but in a weird, still not really faculty kind of way. So I went to a New Faculty workshop, where we listened to a bunch of really awful people who talked in Edu-jargon (ugh!) and one guy tried to convince us that good teachers and good researchers were in some way mutually exclusive -- and that we Community College professors were in some what morally superior ... The breakaway sessions were pretty good, though, once we got past talk about assessment and outcomes. The crap we don't learn about in grad school ...

CHeck back later for the motivational speaker who drove many of us to question our self-worth and sent us into a lithium-needing downward spiral!

Wednesday, July 09, 2003

Woohooo -- finding the cool sites this week! First, an online journal that hits close to home. Then (thanks to one of my employers, I can read the Chronicle of Higher Education online, to see what interesting things the government has planned. New attacks on us liberal college intellectuals, apparently. That's kind of funny, seeing as how most of my fully-employed grad school friends (like this guy and this guy) are all pretty conservative. But hey -- what can we expect from a man who acts as though a "C" average means that his education was worth anything?

Still, all these exciting happenings in the hell of adjunct world are nothing compared to THE BEST of all -- the hell of Bad Baby Names!! What are these people thinking???

Tuesday, July 08, 2003

SquawkBox again not working ... ok -- it is now -- please someone else leave a comment, so I can test ...

Monday, July 07, 2003

Ok -- thought it was working correctly. We'll see. Happy to say that the ever-awful Tim Eyman got no ballot initiatives in this year. So you know, Tim Eyman is to me the antithesis of everything the founding fathers wanted. His entire raison d'etre seems to be to do end-runs around the people elescted by a majority and get taxes abolished. Good for him -- he's already had to fess up to the public about embezzling from his first non-profit -- and now he's soliciting donations for his legal defense fund. What a jerk. This is where one wishes instant karma were part of the Gospels. Don't know what Jesus would drive, but Tim Eyman drives a big-ass SUV. He even convinced the taxpayers of Washington State to repeal most of the tag fees on car registrations -- flat rate now, folks. Apparently, Mr. Eyman and his ilk have somehow convinced folks that graduated taxes hurt the little guy. Just one word here -- "Bastards."

Wednesday, July 02, 2003

Oh Joy -- my comments are now working. Firmly resolve to blog more -- especially as I am now discovering more to blog about.
Ok -- Squawkbox doesn't work. Still working on it. Also using a crap book for a Summer World History course. Guess which one!

Tuesday, June 10, 2003

Well, I'm not sure about the "powered by squawk box tv" thing -- it doesn't seem to be working. Oh well -- blogging more later, I suppose. Oh -- and memo to all -- the WIkipedia is no longer one of my recommended sites. It's a great concept -- an open content encyclopedia. However, there is a great tendency for people with expertise in a subject to be "shouted down" by people who know "the Truth". More importantly, there are articles on the site that might be age-inappropriate for kids -- or that one might feel uncomfortable if one's parents were to stumble across. A debate is currently raging over whether to put a neutral advisory on the site's main page, and the "all information is equal and advisories are a form of censorship" brigade looks to be winning. Mrs. Thatcher once said there was no such thing as society. The Wikipedia seems bound and determined to prove her right and 4500 years of human history wrong. Bastards.

Wednesday, June 04, 2003

I have blogged since last week -- really! Something went very wrong, though on my post on the new weird Matrix Reloaded links to Michael Baigent's Holy Blood, Holy Grail by way of a character called The Merovingian. I have to say, this is too odd -- except, of course that it's almost commonplace these days. After all, you can find out about this particular esoteric conspiracy theory (Merovingians, Jesus, and the Templars) via Sierra's Gabriel Knight 3:Blood of the Sacred, Blood of the Damned. Or, you can read Katherine Kurtz's fantasy novels about modern Templars, or her "how the Templars and the Loch Ness Monster put the Bruce on the Scottish throne" books. Great fun, but then, I don't believe in any conspiracy theories except the one where historians are kept from teaching History because a Vast Government Conspiracy wants to keep the same old folks in power by convincing the public that History isn't important. Give me a full-time (or even tenure-track) job, and maybe I'll stop believing this!

Oh -- I'm trying a New comment thingie. 'Scuse, please, if it takes a bit to work out the bugs!

Saturday, May 31, 2003

I have clearly not been in blogging mode lately. Perhaps I should leave this on in the background? Since last I blogged, many things have happened -- or at least, I've become aware of them. The most interesting to me is still the Traditional Catholic Church that Mel Gibson is building. Call me crazy, but if you want to be a traditional Catholic, shouldn't you be going back to, Constantinople? Or maybe Nicaea? I may be crap at being a Papist, but Trent seems an interesting choice. Correct me if I'm wrong, but didn't Trent strengthen the idea of obedience to the Pope? But, as you can see, it's not really about the important things like doctrine -- at least to some folks. It's about appearances. I'm with the
the Cranky Professor on Denny's architecture and penitential guitar mass, but isn't there something fundamentally post-Vatican II about a bunch of lay people deciding that they know better? Is this what people mean by "How Ironic"?

Saturday, March 01, 2003

Well, I have to say, my mind has been changed. At the University where I sometimes teach there is a modern chapel dedicated to St. Ignatius, that I thought was awful. My colleagues have changed my mind. We went in the other night after a very nice lecture on the Pilgrimage to Compostela, and the chapel was lovely. A wonderful, serene, space, lit from all sorts of interesting angles, some of the lights colored. A person could happily go to mass there.

Wednesday, February 12, 2003

FINALLY back to blogging, I hope! The Cranky Professor has been blogging, even though in Rome, and I feel the need to catch up. I'm happy to announce to all of you non-Washingtonians that the (in my own opinion, to which I am entitled) Spawn of Satan known as Tim Eyman has lost at least the first major round in his campaign to undermine the ideals of representative democracy. Meanwhile, it's not just the schools in Germany that are having trouble. (Dinner calls -- to be continued ... )