In John Williams’s novel Stoner, the main character spends years teaching primitive beginner courses that a hostile Chair assigns to him until he finally invents the method I came up with in my first semester of teaching.
I knew I was overqualified for the boring Intro courses. So I simply taught them as whatever research topic interested me at the time. Yes, the students were a little confused at first but they got over it.
Want to know what kind of crap I got assigned? Introduction to Learning Spanish. IN ENGLISH. For people in Engineering and Nursing. Not a word of Spanish was supposed to be used in that course. I have no idea what we were supposed to be doing. Chatting in English about how to learn Spanish?
Obviously, I wasn’t going to do that. The first semester, I taught it as “Spain: The History of Ideas.” Then I’d change it up because it bores me to do the same thing. Last Fall I taught it as “Democracy in Central America.” It still has the official title of “Intro to Learning Spanish” but not for long. As Chair I finally can put in the paperwork to change it.
I could have spent years here on the blog wailing about how I get assigned boring courses and how I’m a victim. Instead, I went and did what I needed to enjoy my teaching. And there’s a million things like that. That first semester, the department gave me a syllabus for the Beginner Spanish, said I had to follow it. I binned it immediately, didn’t even read it. Still have no idea what’s in it.
It’s funny to see this method described in a novel published a long time ago. I was so certain it was my know-how.
When Cuomo was murdering elderly people by the thousand and concealing the deaths to be able to continuing doing it, nobody batted an eyelash.
But now that he’s sinned against the puritanical mortality, he’s going to be persecuted.
Of course, it’s still a win for the good to remove this homicidal maniac from power but having to read about how adult women were “groomed” with some utterly inane comments is aggravating.
A new joke from Russia:
The descendants of Pushkin’s slaves are suing the BLM.
For those who don’t know, Pushkin, Russia’s greatest poet and the founder of the Russian literature was black. At least, according to the US standards that are based on the “drops of blood” theory. He was also a slave-owner known for sexual abuse of the women he owned.
It’s stupid to explain jokes, I know. But it’s a really good one. Russians and Ukrainians find the BLM hilarious because slavery existed there until 1861.
I love this piece by David Hockney:
It captures perfectly how I feel inside.
Just 15 years ago, the story about Big Pharma pushing a largely untested, completely new technology onto the entire population turning them into lifelong patients under manufactured pretenses and a left-wing journalist getting censored and prevented from sharing her report about this by companies that bankrolled the current presidency would raise every leftist hackle in existence.
But today the only person who will report it is Tucker Carlson.
I’m not the one who changed.
I started keeping a list of every book I read when I was 19. And I still keep it. I put down the author, the title, the date read, my personal rating, and a brief description. I read so much that I often need to consult the list to see if I already read something by this author. Especially since I have a horrid memory for names and titles.
At the end of each year, I reread my list of books for that year and remember how I read them and what was happening in my life then. Recently, I reread my list for 2009, the year I started working at my current school and got married. The list brought everything back so vividly! It’s like having a diary of your intellectual and emotional life.
Strangely, even though I never remember the plots or the characters of the book I read, I have a prodigious memory for stuff I read for work. Earlier this week I needed a critical source that I used for my Master’s dissertation in 2003. I immediately remembered what it said, how I quoted it, and where it was in my files.
Do you keep a record of what you read?
JJ and his sister were murdered by their mother. It’s a horrid tragedy. And how disgusting is it to use the story of this poor murdered child to spread some lie about trans people being killed en masse for being trans?
Using a child’s death to advance some inane agenda, what can be lower?
Naomi Wolf (a very well-known journalist) tried to publish an investigative report on the m-RNA “vaccines.” The report was immediately removed by censors from every platform. Her FB page was cancelled with no explanation. She was removed from YouTube and Vimeo. It was a well-coordinated simultaneous attack.
But I’m sure this “vaccine” is a completely harmless, benign technology. We are being protected from knowing how it works for our own good.
Wow, I discovered a leftist QAnon group. They think that the shape of the stage at CPAC is sending out secret neo-Nazi signs.
Come to think of it, the entire left is a QAnon-type group.
Once you move to the other side, it gets very lonely and scary. Eventually, you find new friends and make new connections. But the first months are very sad because you now lead a double life. You have to fake and pretend to be who you no longer are. And as much as you want to preserve the relationships you had before the change, they crack and break under the pressure of unfairness and resentment. If one person in a relationship can express her opinions freely and the other one can’t without putting her career at risk, the result is a dishonest, tortured quasi-friendship that will eventually fizzle out.
And yes, these were not true friends, blah blah. The true friends are all reading this blog and know everything, so of course I don’t mean true friends. The true friends are by now completely resigned to my very protean nature. The poor long-suffering true friends.
But there are also the people I see every day. It’s not easy to feel constantly like an impostor, a person with a huge, dark, scary secret. Every conversation these days starts and ends with COVID. It just does. And if you aren’t crazy enthusiastic about masks and vaccines, everybody knows how you vote. My strategy is to pretend I need to visit the bathroom whenever a dangerous subject crops up. It got so, a colleague offered the number of her gastroenterologist.
I remember being terrified that other kids would find out I have a Jewish father. This feels similar.