Sunday, February 15, 2015

The Return of Real Goddamned Mail.

Collected between November 2014 and whatever today is.
  • You might be a little thin-skinned for the job.
  • I really enjoy the page some days, but when things go wrong you get so pissy and defensive. That's not going to help anyone.
  • You are like all the other mods, and I mean it as an insult.
  • I had a comment up a couple of days ago where I told Xxxxxxx he was an asshole. Now, that's allowable. That's just commentary and criticism. Anybody who's read that guy knows he's an asshole.
  • How can we convince Beaker Ben to post something every day. He's so funny.
  • Tell Beaker Ben that if he wants to post so much he could just start a livejournal page or maybe he could write it in his diary.
  • Terry, you're the best mod we've had. Keep on rocking and rolling.
  • Will Fab or Leslie K be coming back to moderate at some point? I really don't want to complain, and I mean no offense, but the whole page is just getting too boring.
  • My daughter is going to college next year, and as I've helped her do research on college life I found this website. You should be ashamed of yourselves. I cannot believe any of you have any power or position in colleges. It's despicable. I hope you are not in Colorado.
  • Why don't any of you use your real names and institutions. That would change the way you talk about the profession. I've been teaching for 10 years and absolutely nobody has heard of this blog or gives a shit about your twisted version of what real professors do.
  • I swear I'm not a complainer, but on my screen the font is too small.
  • Is there a command I can use on the blog to make the font smaller? When I pull it up each morning it's so much bigger than the other websites I read. I tried ALT+ and ALT- but that doesn't seem to do anything.
  • Here's a link to a story about what's going on at the University of Xxxxxxx. Could you write a few sentences about it and post it for me?
  • Can you give me administrator's access to the blog. I'd like to help maintain it and maybe push it so that it's a little edgier. Let me know.
  • I wrote a post several years ago about my precious snowflakes and how they drove me crazy with excuses. I can't find it now. Is there a way you can research it and find it for me. My name is Xxxxxxxx, but I used to post under Yyyyyyyy.
  • I'm convinced that some people are posting under different names. That one guy Xxxxxxx always agrees with what Zzzzzzz says, and it's incredible that you wouldn't catch it.
  • In the comments sometimes there are the same people saying the same things. I liked the page for a while, but it's all the same thing now. Maybe you could encourage other people to comment and give different perspectives.
  • The only crisis in academe is the adjunct crisis, and you so rarely let us talk about it. I'd bet things would be different if you weren't growing old in your cushy positions.
  • Why not just call the damn thing Adjunct Misery. You let outliers run the whole page with sob stories. This is not a place where any full time professor would feel welcome. I know it's mostly driven by envy, but you purport to be for all professors when you're really just sharing the disgruntled (and badly wrought) grumblings of a handful of Freeway Flyers.
  • I renew my earlier objection.
  • Read it. Hated it.
  • Too Dumb; Didn't Read.
  • Some readers of this blog have contacted Google because they believe this blog's content is objectionable. In general, Google does not review nor do we endorse the content of this or any blog. For more information about our content policies, please visit the Blogger Terms of Service.
  • An attempt to login to your account was made at 10:41:23 from 145.12.XXX.XX.XXX
  • This webpage contains content that will not be delivered using a secure HTTPS connection, which could compromise the security of the entire webpage.
  • Your Blogger user name has been temporarily locked! We detected unauthorized login attempts from other IP addresses. Please re-confirm your identity today or your account will be locked due to concerns we have for your safety and integrity. 
  • I'm a longtime professor at a Christian college in the Midwest, and I find it deplorable that any of you at Northwestern College can justify the hate-speech you traffic in on a daily basis. I wish your president knew about this page and could find out who you each are.
  • I've forgotten my password.
  • I can't remember my password.
  • Can you look up my password?
  • Is there a way I can look up the email addresses of all the contributors?
  • How do I delete a comment somebody made on my post yesterday?
  • What time do new stories appear on the page?
  • You had a title up a few days ago where College Misery was spelled Colege Misery. I hope you caught it.
  • On most websites the linked text changes colors after you click it, so you know which things you've read. Your links are all red all the time. Can you check that out?
  • You've changed the archives so now it's just a tiny box with a month at a time. That's a bit of a pain to use. Could you change it back?
  • I want to thank you for getting rid of the advertising. I always thought that was fucking ridiculous.
  • The @CollegeMisery Twitter page has not been updated in a while. Do you need someone to do that?
  • If you ever need someone to go graphic design for your page, you can contact me. There are a number of ways to proffesionalize the look of the page.
  • Why are you so in love with the hit counts? If I see another green graph pretending there are thousands of readers, I'm just going to quit reading.
  • Montana? What the fuck is your obsession with Montana?
  • I love that we're so small in Montana. When I retire I can move there and tell people I was the moderator. They'll never know. The cachet will be delicious.
  • You should post more linked articles from The XXXXXXX of XXXXXXXX XXXXXXX. They're really dealing with all of these problems in a professional way.
  • You truly cannot all be professors. Your behavior is unprofessional and actionable.
  • Last week you changed the sidebar from Weekly Hot Posts to Monthly Hot Posts and mine went from #5 to completely off the list. I know I may be overreacting, but it seems as if you did that so nobody would get to see what I wrote.
  • The comments are always more entertaining than the actual posts.
  • I have started to completely skip the comments because they're also so over the top.
  • Welcome to Match.Com. You can complete your profile now by ....
  • Welcome to GolfChannel.Com. Click here to verify your identity.
  • Hey, Terry. I wanted to run an idea by you. When I was an undergrad I had a fair amount of scrapes with the cops, misdemeanor things, hijinx. I wonder if it'd be funny to post one a week, just college goofballs getting into jams. One story I think I'd share is when the guys and I from XXX went out of town to XXXXXXX and ended up partying with these XXXs from XXXXXX. One of the girls had a dad who was a trustee. Sufficient to say, she was the only one who had a cell phone at the time and so he was the one who bailed us out. But the point would be that we were all kids back in the day and that just because we've got some black marks against us we were able to make something of ourselves, and maybe that'd be a nice message - a tonic - for the usual fare. Let me know. I think I'll write that first one up and show it to you, or maybe the one about the time that our college's mascot got drunk with us after a nationally televised game, and we ended up taking his head and standing behind a reporter right on XXXXX Street during a live telecast on the nightly news in XXXXXX. The kid got booted from the gig, and we all felt pretty badly about it. One of those guys now is a judge in XXXXX. So, you tell me, who won that night?


  1. This, clearly, is a paean, RGM.
    You just take the one code word from each complaint, and it makes sense.
    I'll start you off:

    You really like anybody funny. Start rocking, offense power blog: I command you! Administrators drove incredible perspectives.

    1. That's a good game. Hers is my next part:

      The professor I hated didn't believe your webpage has traffic.

  2. Personally, I am pleased that I could contribute in some small way to the readers' misery.

  3. I've seen thin-skinned mods. Terry does not appear to be one of them. Not to me, anyway.

    This one is for Xxxxxxxx, who used to post under Yyyyyyyy. I have had great success with this:

    Protip: if you want to research the offerings of an author with a multi-worded handle, use hyphens instead of spaces in the name, e.g.:

  4. Surely the RGM's being thin-skinned is affected, and part of the joke? I do appreciate the RGM. I always do my best to be helpful, of course.

    Also, aren't academics supposed to be capable of constructing arguments better than just calling people assholes? Not doing so may be a symptom of too much sitting in a circle, holding hands, and singing "Kumbaya." But then, since so much of being an academic is getting people to PAY ATTENTION, many academics are flattered to be told they’re being read at all.

    For the reader who wants to make the blog a little edgier, Strelnikov did offer to moderate. I think it’d be great!

    For the parent who hopes we aren't in Colorado: I'm at Fresno State, where your daughter can get a superb education in physics. No kidding!

    1. "...where your daughter can get a superb education in physics."

      Not to mention animal husbandry.

    2. Now that recruiting season is upon us, the faculty here at Fresno State are having some fun with it. As has been observed more than once, there's no such thing as baaaaaad publicity.

      Well, maybe...

  5. Ah, the roller coaster of RYS / CM. Since I first joined back in, oh, 2007?, the constant complaints!!

    My first published article here was about nothing important -- emails, students, who knows -- but I remember the RYS folks changed my gender-neutral plurals into an impersonal he. I was so incensed!! Here I am, living the good feminist life, and my words were warped to transform all women into men and look us in the eye to make sure we knew it. Fuck the impersonal he! So I complained to the Mods. And the RYS Mod promptly reverted the "he" back to grammatically incorrect "they" and added a gentle [sic] to every instance throughout the post.

    What a beautiful "Fuck. You."

    It always sticks with me -- how silly it was to get worked up about it, how ridiculous it is that I am still worked up about it, and how that one interaction must be multipled thousand fold to create the experience of the RGM on a single day. Fuck that Mod for assuming impersonal he is an okay thing in the 21st century, and fuck me for being such a goddamned bitch about it.


    1. Ha! indeed. That's pretty much the situation in a nutshell.

      Maybe I'm too thin-skinned (and/or too uncaring/unprofessional) myself, but I'm baffled (hi, Hiram!) by the people who are horrified by what they see on this page. Don't they realize that, if we didn't actually care about doing the job well, Terry would be spending 1/24th of his sabbatical doing something far more enjoyable, and Cal would get in another round of golf or two, and the rest of us would just stop thinking about work as soon as we possibly could?

      Doesn't anybody ever write to the RGM and say "where do these people teach? I want my kid to study with them!"

      A bit much too ask? Probably. But, give or take the fact that the RGM can't actually answer the question (except, perhaps, to steer the inquirer away from Montana and perhaps Maine), there are worse approaches to picking a college (e.g. paying any attention to the subliminal and not-so-subliminal messages sent by the work of the intercollegiate stock photo team and their many, many colorful folders).

    2. It also feels like parents forget that professors are humans, and tenure-track jobs are still jobs. They are going to have awful challenges, and nit-picky people, and moments that require a deep breath and a moment to decompress. We are not robots!

    3. Parents just want professors to protect and nurture their widdle children. Considering professors to be actual human beings would mean realizing that no one but the parents wants to protect and nurture their widdle children. Denial is far easier.

    4. I guess it depends how you define "protect" and "nurture." If the goal is to end up with functioning adults who can think for and take care of themselves (and possibly even others), then protection from age-inappropriate dependency and nurturing of qualities like independence and resilience in the face of (initial) failure might be included. But of course such parents tend to notice, well before college age, that their children aren't so widdle anymore, and adjust their expectations (of both no-longer-child and those charged with hir education) accordingly.

      And yes, I know I'm preaching to the choir here.

  6. When are we going to see the "proffesionalized" version of this page?

    1. This is thr professionalized version. You don't want to see the amateur version.

  7. I love Real Goddamned Mail. I have been waiting patiently for it for a month. Love you Terry!

  8. Real Goddamned Mail always reminds me of my course evaluations. I read them and laugh and laugh.

    1. Indeed. And the same questions about whether the commenters were even in the same classroom/reading the same blog (which Terry has so ably highlighted above) tend to arise. Now if administrators would only realize that you can't please all of the people all of the time.

  9. Thanks, RGM! Real Goddamned Email has always been a favorite. Particularly mice this time to read contrary views in juxtaposition.

    My youngest kid is looking at colleges. If he were to end up at any of the schools represented here, I would hope he would choose one of you as a professor, and that he always would take a stapler. Especially if he went to Fresno State.

  10. And the mice were particularly nicely juxtaposed.