Monday, September 12, 2016

Today's Student. From Hazel in Hamburgertown.

It rains where I live and teach. It's not a big surprise from April to October. Clouds form in the sky, where many people who aren't looking at their phones can often see them. They get dark. Water falls down.

Adults and other humans know of umbrellas. You see them. I've seen them. I've seen some students carry them because there's always a decent chance it will rain.

I can see one end of my campus from the other end, well, if I'm on the second floor of a building. It's 3500 students. We have residence halls located NEARLY in the middle of campus.

Today it started raining around 8 am, which is a little early.

At my 10 am class I had 12 of 30 students arrive, all perplexed, dripping, stunned, really. Their looks of incredulity were precious and a little funny. They shook themselves like dogs and complained about the nuisance.

The other 18 students? Well, 4 came in late and 4 came in REALLY late.

The other 10? They stayed home. They stayed in their dorms.

One wrote to me, "It doesn't like like its every gonna stop raining."

Others wrote, too, but with fewer errors, but the message was clear. It's raining. There's no way to get to class.

No flooding. It was showers. No puddling. There are concreted paths from every building to every other building. There are overhangs over all the buildings. You could, without an umbrella, scamper up one side or the other of campus under building overhangs about 50% of the time.

Spankings. This is all I'm thinking about. I don't believe any of these children got enough spankings.

- Hazel


  1. The entries from Alice and Hazel were written by the same writer, clearly a Midwestern male over 30. Evidence is overwhelming. Fake articles designed to propagate a view of academe at odds with reality. Disgraceful how you are being lied to.

    1. I write all of them and am from Minnesota originally. And I invented Blogger to fuck up colleges. I am the one who designed the flaps on passenger jets and I ana male though Strelnikov once told me I had feminine energy. Confession over. Relieved. I have jeans older than 30.


    2. "articles"????? Someone has undergrad-level problems with genre (despite being an expert at discerning gender via writing samples).

      - anon y mouse

    3. I'd be a bit careful about listening to the Strelly voice, Fab. Most of them (us?) are pretty harmless, when all is said and done, but Strelnikov can get a bit scary at times.

      I'd also suggest tuning out a few other voices, of course, for other reasons, but I suspect you've already come to that conclusion yourself.

  2. First of all to Hazel: Yes. A spanking or two. I'm old, as I've probably mentioned, and I have had trouble adjusting to the modern student, especially the last 10 years or so. The rain story is a perfect exemplar of so many things that I see. On the plus side, when a student actually perseveres as Hazel's best did today, that really charges me up. Small class is a GOOD class. And I teach the shit out of them that day with no compunction about who's missing.

    But, another thing I wanted to mention, something I was going to write about in its own "article" one day, was what just happened above with the so-well-hidden Cunning_Lad and Fab. I was telling a friend about this blog the other day. Really sort of laying out the whole weird journey from 2006 to present.

    It was so weird because it all makes sense to me, and all the subplots and characters are just a part of my regular "community," but my pal was mystified. He kept asking, "Why do these others argue with you?" "And how do you KNOW these people?"

    It was frustrating and funny because we are so chock-full of inside jokes. I got a little better understanding of the problems "some" new members have. We really are deep into this journey, all of us who have been around since the RYS goon old days, and it does take a real investment of time (and thousands of posts) to get the full picture.

    It is the richest community I'm a part of it. And the weirdest.


    (Look how similar my name is to Fab. Three letters. A in the middle. I am over 30, uh WELL over. I'm not from the Midwest, but Fab's from Minnesota - which I don't think I knew - and I was proudly born in WINNIPEG, which is, like, NEAR Minnesota, really near. I've BEEN to Minnesota. Just saying. I wrote this by the way. And the others. All of them. Fab's not real. Nobody is like Fab. And BEN. Three letters. Vowel in the middle. FUCKING spooky!!!

    1. My name Terry P. is just like Leslie K. And LOOK, I capitalize words for emphasis, mostly because I'm too lazy to put in the [b] bold letter code [/b].

    2. I know people at CM better than I know colleagues down the hall from me. As far as I can tell, I'm better off for it.

  3. We had a tremendous set of storms in the spring, torrential rain and high winds. On the Monday the school stayed open and attendance was awful. The school closed on Tuesday, even though the conditions were about the same. On the Wednesday the storms returned in earnest. 10% of my classes showed up.

    But, that night, at the height of a hail storm, my family and I were seated in a local pizza joint near a table of 15 students, about 5 of them mine. We were ten miles from campus. They could make it HERE okay.

    Welcome Hazel, or whichever one of Ben or Fab wrote it.

  4. What about making them cookies, instead of the spankings? Would that turn things around?

  5. I'm not much of a believer in spankings, but I would be tempted to buy a box of cheap but large trash bags, and issue one to each student. Besides removing the excuse, I suspect it would reveal that the students are, in fact, aware of other, more comfortable and convenient, forms of weather protection.

    Or one could say "aww; come on; you won't melt!," but (a) they might not get the reference and (b) depending on institution, this might be seen as a disrespectful way to address students (I don't think it would be a problem at mine, but I don't really have a lot of students with this little gumption).

  6. If I am in the classroom, which I Goddamn will be, it counts as an absence and you'll be tested on what I teach.

    I guess you could say when it rains it pours.

  7. Is that Conan in the picture?

  8. The first rain of the semester that was me arriving in the damp shirt. Fortunately I had an hour or two before the first lecture to dry off. The students all looked dry in class; this state must breed 'em all practical.

    (So is there a valid way to change handles here? I picked "OtherwiseOccupied" when I was, in fact, in an occupation other than academics. But this fall, woohoo, I'm back babies!)