Bad students have this aggravating trick where they say something like, “Professor B is failing me because I don’t understand the difference between assonance and consonance!” And it sounds like Professor B is a monster, indeed. How can you fail a student for something like this in a survey of Spanish literature course?

And it’s true, the student in question doesn’t get assonance. Problem is, it’s the least of his troubles. Aside from assonance, he failed to understand all the rest of the material covered in the course because his Spanish is extremely poor. It’s so poor that he can’t say “His name is Cervantes.” 

The worst part is that the student fully believes his own story. He is absolutely convinced that his only problem is assonance, and he’s unfairly persecuted. Any attempt to make him recognize that it’s a fact of objective reality that he made 127 language mistakes in an 8-page essay elicits nothing but a string of sullen complaints about the blasted assonance. 

It’s the complete blindness to one’s own faults that bugs me. You make 127 mistakes in 8 pages. Seeing yourself as a victim in this situation takes the kind of obviousness that scares me. 


13 thoughts on “Obliviousness”

  1. I was once unlucky enough to have recruited a PhD student like this. Every class she took, she just barely passed. And every time it was the professor’s fault — one professor did not explain things well enough, the other one asked her to do too many calculations in the exam, the third one’s homeworks were a lot of grunt work, and so on.

    I consider myself extremely fortunate that I managed to get rid of her within a year.


  2. Hackity hacktity whoops coincidence wikileaks

    France sought to keep a computer hack of frontrunner Emmanuel Macron’s campaign emails from influencing the outcome of the country’s presidential election with a warning on Saturday it could be a criminal offence to republish the data.

    Macron’s team said a “massive” hack had dumped emails, documents and campaign financing information online just before campaigning ended on Friday and France entered a quiet period which forbids politicians from commenting on the leak.

    “On the eve of the most important election for our institutions, the commission calls on everyone present on internet sites and social networks, primarily the media, but also all citizens, to show responsibility and not to pass on this content, so as not to distort the sincerity of the ballot,” the French election commission said in a statement.

    The data leak emerged as polls predicted Macron was on course for a comfortable victory over far-right leader Marine Le Pen in Sunday’s election, with the last surveys showing his lead widening to around 62 percent to 38.

    The commission, which supervises the electoral process, said after a hastily called meeting on Saturday that the data been fraudulently obtained and could be mixed with false information.

    However, its rules may be difficult to enforce in an era where people get much of their news online, information flows freely across borders and many users are anonymous.

    French media covered the hack in various ways, with left-leading Liberation giving it prominence on its website, but television news channels opting not to mention it.


  3. Have you heard about (Putin?) attacking Macron a la Hillary Clinton?

    French campaign watchdog examines election-eve Macron leak

    Emmanuel Macron, France’s leading presidential candidate, claims he was the victim of a ‘massive and coordinated’ hack; allegedly, hundreds of documents were stolen and leaked online along with false documents in order to harm the candidate.

    Slamming the hack as an effort to “seed doubt and disinformation” and destabilize the vote, Macron’s movement En Marche said it would “take all measures” to shed light on what happened. It recalled similar leaks from Hillary Clinton’s U.S. presidential campaign, which also said that authentic documents were mixed with false ones.

    Many voters, however, don’t like either Le Pen or Macron. They fear her party’s racist past, while worrying that his platform would demolish worker job protections or be too much like his mentor, the deeply unpopular outgoing President Francois Hollande.


    The last quoted paragraph also reminds me of the latest American election.

    Even if Macron wins, the leak may give even more power to Le Pen (in the opposition).

    Funny how both times – in USA and France – the more democratic candidates are hurt, isn’t it? Must be a coincidence.

    Btw, all three comments to that article mention Russians.


    1. Something must be seriously wrong with the French if they know that LePen is Putin’s whore (and they do because it’s no secret) and still support her. Do they think Putin has their interests in mind?

      Dumb fucks.


  4. Oi, have just seen Shakti has already mentioned the thing.

    I think any warnings that “it could be a criminal offence to republish the data” are counterproductive in our age. The same could be said about “television news channels opting not to mention it.” One should suppose that many (most?) voters have already heard something about the leaks and will easily find all info online.

    If I were an editor / owner of Macron-supporting newspaper or website, I would have put a front page article about the American leak, including all info about the alleged (an important word to prevent being sued) Trump’s Russian ties. And call for everybody vote for either candidate, but not because of foreign intervention.


    1. If a person is willing to vote for LePen, it’s a psychiatric condition. No appeals to people in the midst of such a deep psychotic break will work.


      1. If a person is willing to vote for LePen, it’s a psychiatric condition. No appeals to people in the midst of such a deep psychotic break will work
        How are people who voted for 45 sane?


          1. 45 Scroll all the way down of the list. I was trying to save myself keystrokes.

            I’m sure we’ll see article after article about how eminently sane and reasonable and oppressed such people are, forever.


            1. Sorry, my bad. My brain is on the fritz today.

              Hey, I followed your advice and bought a magazine titled Kitchens and Bathrooms. I’m in heaven. Thank you, it was great advice.


  5. \ Hey, I followed your advice and bought a magazine titled Kitchens and Bathrooms.

    Would you enjoy National Geographic Magazine too? That’s the one I would buy, while Kitchens would bore me to death.

    I suppose, there are History Magazines and Middle East one too. 🙂

    You talked about being interested in Africa. Wonder whether there are good magazines about the continent in America.


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