Not Worth It

People who have newly (and oldly) received passwords! Please don’t narc on me to the authorities. I’ll be fine but you’ll carry it on your conscience forever. Your eternal soul (or mental health, if you prefer) doesn’t deserve to suffer on my account. I’m not worth it.

Enough with the Talks

I’m speaking at a conference at 7 am tomorrow, and I didn’t even remember the topic of the talk (or whether it’s on Spain or Central America) until two minutes ago.

I don’t write “conference talks” and I don’t recommend people do it at all, especially if they don’t have a million publications. Write articles, submit them for publication, and then you’ll be able to cull any number of talks out of texts that will be already written and a lot less tentative and confusing than whatever you write purposefully as “a conference talk.”

The genre of “conference talk” in the Humanities should die a painful death as soon as possible. We end up with crowds of people who have dozens of these “talks” that never turned into actual research.


I spent 10 minutes talking to a colleague from Spain today, and now people at the Mexican restaurant think I’m from Spain. I unwittingly imitate the accent of whomever I spoke to in the morning. It gets really weird when I get together with a guy from Kentucky before work. And even weirder when I speak to my husband before leaving for work. Then I spend the whole day with a heavy Russian accent in all of my languages and the Kentuckian friend is powerless to change it.

Sick Bunnies

There are rumors of merging departments at my university as an austerity measure. I said, merge me with anybody except for the sociology and history folks if you want to avoid bloodshed on campus. Those are sick neoliberal bunnies, and they’ll either murder me in an attack of wokeness or commit an en masse harakiri because we just can’t coexist.

When Do You Notice Change?

The government is forcing a completely new and untested medical technology into the bodies of children as young as 5 to benefit a rapacious pharma company known for unethical medical practices.

Do you still think that “single-payer healthcare” is a good idea? In neoliberalism, the role of the government is to facilitate the transfer of capital to the tiny transnational global elite while destroying welfare protections. What makes you think a reason won’t be manufactured to deny you healthcare for refusing to be a guinea pig for yet another experimental medication?

I understand (if not support) being for nationalized medicine 30 years ago. But things have changed. There is no longer anything that can be meaningfully called “a nation.” The government as a concept has mutated into something completely different from what it was last century. When is a good time to adjust your thinking in a changing situation? When is it time to notice that things are changing?

Collective Wavelength

Around here people decorated really late for Halloween this year. But they started decorating very early for Christmas. Many already have their Christmas lights on, and I’ve seen some Christmas trees through the windows. Usually, everybody decorates for Christmas after Thanksgiving.

What I wonder is how everybody knows what the trend will be this year? How did everybody get the collective message to delay Halloween decorations but go very early on the Christmas ones? How do I get to join this collective wavelength?