Now, I'm a Hamster Fur Weaver and he's an Underwater Basket Weaver, or at least that was what the search committee was looking for. I've spent a lot of time developing a course for our weavers that drills the basics into their skulls while making them team players, happy campers, non-dropouts, and encourages women to stick with the course to the upper levels.
After I went through my spiel showing him my syllabus, offering him the labs and the slides and the crib sheets I make for myself for each lecture, he pauses for a moment. And asks if it would be all right if he taught the course "kinda different."
A four-alarm fire bell goes off in my head as I raise an eyebrow.
You see, as an Underwater Basketweaver he is convinced he knows all about all kinds of weaving. And teaching is a snap. You just throw them in the water and they'll learn real quick how to weave.
Um, us Hamster Furriers don't do underwater. And we have modern methods that don't involve a drop of water at all. There's actually a whole research field on how to teach introductory weaving courses. But no, Mr. New doesn't hold any truck with this. He learned how to weave the hard way, and this will be good for the students, too.
I explained the arcane financing system that rewards us if we retain students and get them to graduate. He waved me away, he doesn't want to listen to administrative garbage. Hmm. Well, I'm getting old. Is it worth it to fight him? We are his third university in five years, I suppose he'll be up and out of here in a few years, anyway. But it is sad. If we had set up the search committee to look for another Hamster Fur weaver, we might have found someone with a fundamental understanding of both the specialization and the field of teaching.
Do I need to start a retirement countdown calendar?