Daniel Tosh, the Evil Insect Who Thinks Rape Is Funny

I support the freedom of speech and believe that the vile freakazoid Daniel Tosh has the inalienable right to tell as many rape jokes as he wants. I also believe that, for the same reason, every normal, decent person is entitled to denounce him and tell the world what a vile cockroach he is.

The story about this stinky animal proved to be a great litmus test of people’s basic normalcy. I already discovered two diseased freaks in my blogroll (one male, one female) who tried making excuses for this jerkwad’s vile actions.

If we all join forces in denouncing Daniel Tosh as the vile rape apologist that he is, we will manage to tank his sorry excuse for a career. Let’s do this, people! Let’s ridicule him and boycott his stupid shows.

P.S. One comment that is even mildly defensive of this animal will get you hurled off this blog for good like a turd of shit. I don’t need any mentally unhealthy freaks around here.

How to Prepare for a Trip: Tips From a Masochist*

1. Decide that the hotel room is going to be horrible and obsess over that for weeks. Because you are totally going to a beach resort in order to sit in a room all day long.

2. Worry yourself to the point of mental collapse with the doubts as to whether two sticks of deodorant will be enough for the entire trip. Because it makes so much sense to wear deodorant to the beach.

3. Freak out every twenty minutes about the possibility that you will forget to print out your travel documents yet abstain from printing them out. Because just printing them out already would rob you of a great opportunity to freak out constantly.

4. Read only the negative reviews of the resort. Because a positive review might actually alleviate your misery.

5. Convince yourself that being away for two weeks during the month when you are not scheduled to teach and nobody expects you on campus will ruin your academic career. Because successful academics are people who live in their offices and never have any fun.

6. Tell yourself that even though you’ve been packing for over a week, there is some hugely important object that you must have forgotten to pack and your entire vacation will be ruined as a result. Because the success of a vacation is totally dependent on a piece of clothing or a pair of shoes.

7. Decide based on no evidence whatsoever that your partner who is traveling with you doesn’t love you any longer and doesn’t really want to go. Because it makes no sense to be miserable on your own. It’s so much better to make somebody else share the misery.

8. Worry endlessly as to whether it’s better to paint your toenails one day or two days before the trip. Because this huge dilemma of incredible proportions is really worth stressing about. Especially when you are a 36-year-old university professor.

9. Decide that you cannot go to bed until you determine whether the Japanese restaurant at the resort where you are going is amazing (as some reviewers say) or horrible (as other reviewers maintain.) Because finding out for yourself when you actually get to the resort would be too easy.

After completing all of these rounds and feeling thoroughly unhappy, you are ready to set on your trip. Fortunately, the airport is a great place to torture yourself some more with worst-case scenarios.

There is never a dull moment for us, masochists.

* By masochism here I don’t mean the fun, great and healthy S&M practices. 

Who Will Have the Best Higher Ed in XXI Century?

World’s higher education is changing:

By the end of this decade, four out of every 10 of the world’s young graduates are going to come from just two countries – China and India.

The projection from the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) shows a far-reaching shift in the balance of graduate numbers, with the rising Asian economies accelerating ahead of the United States and western Europe. The forecasts for the shape of the “global talent pool” in 2020 show China as rapidly expanding its graduate numbers – set to account for 29% of the world’s graduates aged between 25 and 34.

The biggest faller is going to be the United States – down to 11% – and for the first time pushed into third place, behind India.

I don’t believe in China’s higher education. I think it’s as much of a bubble as the Soviet education was and for the same reason. The Indian education, however, is hugely promising. All of my very best students at every university where I taught were from India. I don’t want to be stereotyping but I’m yet to meet a student from India who is not bizarrely good.

I hope our country realizes how important it is to invest in our own system of higher ed in the face of such impressive competition. Unless we want to turn into an intellectually insignificant backwards place that is completely dependent on others for ideas, research and technology, we need to stop looking at our universities as places that need to be squeezed for money and profits. We need to stop adjunctifying, scrimping, and cutting down on vitally important research needs.

“Lots of Spanish Spoken”

I keep obsessively reading the reviews of the resort where I will be going the day after tomorrow (because I can’t enjoy the trip until I have tortured myself with every nightmarish scenario possible, of course.) Almost every single review mentions that people in the Dominican Republic speak Spanish and their English is far from perfect. The sense of outrage these tourists experience when they realize that not everybody in the world is an English-speaker is bizarre, to put it mildly.

Yet some universities refuse to introduce the language requirement or to raise it from one year to two. I maintain that any university that allows students to graduate without speaking a second language scams its graduates. A monolingual person with a scholarly degree is a joke.

Should Men Let Women Wear the Shoes They Like?

Even the supposedly progressive sources can’t avoid using hugely offensive language when discussing women. The “What About Teh Menz” blog started out kind of fine, but it has adopted the language of disrespect for women that makes me cringe. Here, for example, the kind of dating advice that its author dispenses to short men:

Let your girlfriend wear high heels if she wants to.

In this blogger’s confused sad excuse for a brain, adult women need their boyfriend’s permission to wear the shoes they like.

I’m sure that many of that blog’s followers are wondering why their personal lives are miserable. The answer is, of course, that as long as they see this kind of rhetoric as acceptable, their loneliness will only intensify. Nobody needs a man who thinks he will be “letting” his girlfriend do things. Even the most downtrodden, mousy females have realized by this time that they don’t need their boyfriends’ permission to dress the way they want to. There can be any number of boyfriends in a woman’s life. But none of them can matter more than her dignity.

Unfortunately, Google Reader doesn’t allow me to bump blogs off my reading list, so I’m doomed to reading the idiocies of this stupid blog in my blogroll.

Translation Riddle

OK, time for another riddle, people.

Everybody knows that machine translation systems are useless when translating fiction. However, there was one scene in the novel I’m translating that I knew would be translated perfectly by Google Reader. I tried it and it turned out I was absolutely right. The translation of the scene required almost no retouching after it came out of Google Translator.

Question: what kind of a scene was it and why did Google Translator translate it so perfectly?