Saturday, November 15, 2014

Huzzah for Archie!

With the exception of collaborating on, not just one, but two amazing songs with him, I only know Archie through his appearances on Rate Your Students and College Misery.

He's one of those people you wish you had as a real world colleague. Glad to hear he'll be around again!


PS: Here's my favorite Archie post from the goon old days.


Thursday, December 25, 2008

Angry Archie from Allentown Dusts Off the Wiki Generation.
Yes, I made this
horrible image.

Raise your hand if you know about the Job Wiki. If you don’t, check it out: it is an unguided tour through the rocky shoals of upper-division snowflakiness. I discovered the thing because some of my grad-flakes mentioned it to me. Big mistake that was. Don't they know never to let their flake-flag fly in public?

Anyway, I’m on a search committee this year, so I went to see what the world of wiki-flakes was saying about our search. Afterwards I felt dirty and soiled, kind of like when you slow down to rubberneck at the scene of an accident and what you see is an 86 Camaro that rear-ended an 86 Mazda pickup, and two dudes with mulletts who just escaped from the trailer park and clearly have no insurance are duking it out because they both wanted to play real-life Grand Turismo 5 on the freeway at rush hour. So to spare you the pain, or perhaps to get you to go rubber-neck too, I am offering the following guide to the job wiki. Caveat Emptor: I looked at the wiki in my discipline, but it looks like there is one for every discipline. So just choose your particular poison and enjoy snowflakery at its finest.



  1. Classic! Maybe a bit hard on the wiki and the creators and users thereof (it does have its uses), but also a useful warning against the myriad possible misuses of the thing.

    And this, of course, is truer than ever:

    Hey man, the job market sucks. I tell every under-flake who comes into my office wanting to become a grad-flake that they are in for seven or eight years of poverty and humiliation in grad school, plus another two or three post-doc years of job searching before they will be able to dream of a regular paycheck that might cover their expenses; that they will likely fail at some stage; and that their grad school won't give crap, because by grading papers and running sections/labs they will have fulfilled their function as the academic equivalents of the Guatemalan dishwasher over at Wendy's.

    The question of the next decade or two for higher ed is going to be how to keep the whole enterprise going if there's no real reason for college grads to enter grad school in anything like the numbers they have been (let alone the larger numbers all the R2s wanting to become R1s, including my employer, are hoping for). The only people whining louder than the un/underemployed Ph.D.s who should, indeed, have known better are the tenured faculty who really, really want to keep teaching grad students rather than the undergrads their grad students are teaching. I'm sympathetic to them, too, to some extent (hey, I'd like to teach a grad class at least occasionally, to, and I'd certainly like research to be an official part of my job), but we do seem to be undergoing a major reorganization, and, for all the talk of disruption, thinking outside boxes, etc., etc., etc., both faculty and administrators seem remarkably eager to stick to the traditional models of grad training (probably because it does, in fact, continue to work quite well for the university, at least as long as Ph.D. candidates continue to sign up for the journey. As with adjuncts, change will probably only come if and when the supply dries up.)