I wasn’t going to be department Chair. I used to say in a very loud and decisive way (like I say everything), “I’m NEVER going to be Chair. NEVVAH!”

When people started asking me to run, I was incensed. How could they? Haven’t I said a million times that I NEVVAH?

So I called my sister and ranted for 15 minutes about the evil people who were trying to convince me to do something I absolutely, totally, 100% was NEVVAH going to do.

“Stop being an idiot and run for Chair already,” she said.

My sister is a professional job recruiter with 15 years of experience. She has a talent for pairing people with jobs they never expected to do, and she never misses. She really understands people and how to get them into jobs they’ll love. I don’t but I do know to trust an expert when she feels like giving advice.

So I became Chair.

I had enormous misgivings but after doing it for 1,5 months, I’m in love with this job. I’ve never been this energized or felt so alive at work. And it’s not that I was unhappy before. I love academia and always enjoyed being a professor. But the experience I’m having now is on a completely different level.

Who knows, maybe I’ll have a burnout or get bored with it soon. But the I’ve had such great 1,5 months that it’s all worth it just to experience something this intense.

You Can’t Make This Up

For the people we hire, we fill out a diversity form that explains how hiring this person helps fulfill our university’s goal.

One administrator reasonably asked what the goal is. More women? More African Americans? More Hispanics?

“I have absolutely no idea. We never figured that out,” was the cheerful reply.

Reeducation Camps for White Men

Here are some fascinating documents on reeducation camps for white men conducted by the US government.

In a subsequent session, the white males must publicly recite a series of “white privilege statements” and “male privilege statements.” They must accept their complicity in the white male system and their role in creating oppressions.

Finally, as the reeducation camp concludes, the white males must write letters “directed to white women, people of color, and other groups regarding the meaning of this Caucus experience.” They apologize for their “privilege” and pledge to become “better [allies].”

This is not pathetic at all. Nope, not in the least.

Joyful Chair

It’s actually great being Chair because now I have the power to start pressuring the Dean’s office to stop abusing our office personnel. They are forcing these poor (literally), underpaid people to do the work of two for the same low salary of one. I’ve been trying to do something about it for years but to no avail. But now I’ve pulled resources with another irate Chair and we created a strategy to defeat the Dean’s office.

Making workers’ lives better fills me with a great sense of joy. Our office manager cries every day because her situation is so hopeless. And I’m glad I met another Chair who is equally disgusted by the situation.


I was talking to a friend about books and suggested an author I thought she might enjoy.

“What does he look like?” the friend asked. I immediately knew she was asking about his race.

Before you judge my friend, you need to know that she’s an immigrant from a very poor country. As immigrants, we have to learn about a country where we come from people who live here. It takes a long time of living here, a lot of cultural competence, and a sense of intellectual authority to question what everybody around you is saying, what’s on the TV and in the press. If you hear constantly that this is a terribly racist place, why wouldn’t you believe it? And once you believe it, you’ll see proof everywhere.

I’m afraid my friend is getting radicalized and will soon tell me that we can’t be friends anymore because of how I look. This is a recent thing with her but it’s getting stronger at a very rapid pace.

Whose Language?

Forget ideology for a second. What does this even mean?

Joe Biden made the pick that maximized his chances of continuing to make the race a straight referendum on Trump while also selecting someone whose resume suggests being ready to step in, if and when Biden decides to step aside. | Analysis by @CillizzaCNN

Maximized his chances of continuing to make… while also selecting someone… whose something suggests being…

What language is this?