Weird Me

I’m a weird person, my friends. A weird, weird person. Last year, I was criticized pretty severely by the reviewers of one of my articles for sucking something fierce at the writing of abstracts. 

“This scholar seems to labor under the erroneous belief that abstracts should consist of sentences copy-pasted from the article,” one of the reviewers pointed out.

That was exactly how I wrote my abstracts because nobody had told me that this was not a good idea. I had no choice but to agree with the reviewers and decided to learn to write abstracts.

I thought that the way to do that would be to write a couple of proposals for collections of articles on different topics. “Nobody would accept the proposals, of course,” I mused, “but at least I will get to practice.”

So I sat down and wrote these proposals. To avoid the temptation of copy-pasting, I chose collections that addressed the topics I never worked on before. This was good practice for me and everything would be peachy, save for one little detail. Both proposals were accepted. 

I mean, that’s great and I’m honored. Both collections are being edited by people who are well-known in my field and whom I always wanted to impress. The problem, however, is that I now need to do the following things before August 1:

1. Write two articles for these two completely different collections on topics I never worked with before. This means that I now need to familiarize myself with theoretical contributions to the fields of a) masculinity and b) space in literature.

2. Write a talk for my Oxford conference (that’s the third completely different topic).

3. Keep writing my book on the fourth completely different topic.

As they say, be careful of what you wish for because you might get it. I wanted an intense research year and I will have it in spades. I have had to create a very detailed plan that lists the number of words I have to produce every single day between today and August 1. This will be intense.


Yesterday, we had a meeting at the department because there have been tensions and people feel like they need to express their concerns.

“I feel like nobody listens to me and my opinions are not valued!” one colleague exclaimed.

“Yes,” another colleague agreed. “I have opinions, too, but nobody is listening!”

“Well, we are here now,” I said. “The floor is yours. Do express your opinions.”

“I have opinions,” the colleague responded passionately. “And I want to express them!”

“Yes,” another colleague said. “It’s important to express our opinions. Let’s set up a meeting where we will all express our opinions!”

“That’s a brilliant idea,” I lied. “But since we’re all here anyway, would anybody like to share there opinions?”

“Yes!” a colleague exclaimed. “It’s very important to express our opinions!”

Two hours more of this, and we could finally go home.

“This was such a useful meeting!” a colleague shared in the parking lot. “It’s great to have one’s opinions heard.”

Modern Family

Has anybody seen this horrible little sitcom titled Modern Family? Bleh, what a nasty show. I’m yet to figure out what’s supposed to be so modern about this cast of dinosaurs.

Yes, there is a gay couple, stereotyped to the extreme, but that’s it in terms of modernity. The Latin American prostitute, her sleazy Latino ex-husband who looks like a pimp, their obese child, the plastic parents of 3 who look like people who spend their lives at the surgeon’s and not at the playgrounds, the patriarchal mother whose 40-year-old daughter puts up with vicious bullying for no reason that anybody in 2015 can understand.

Sitcoms are not supposed to make sense, I know. But this one is just too out there.