Friday, February 15, 2013
No, You Cannot Add My Class.
Dear Stupid Entitled Snowflake:
When you wrote an email to me on the last day of add/drop, asking to add my course because the hybrid section you're in isn't working out for you, I was in the ER being diagnosed with a 6.5mm kidney stone--after being up all night vomiting and feeling like Gd had personally decided to kill me--so I didn't get back to you. They gave me Percocet for the pain, and I kind of phased out once I got home.
When you wrote again on Sunday to repeat your (misspelled) request, I was fairly lucid, and I replied that it was too late to add my class because there is no way to get you caught up, since I had to have surgery (this past Tuesday) to remove the stone, and would be out of school this entire week. A week during which my classes were doing their work online. I was nice about it. I suggested that if you were really struggling with the hybrid format, you should drop the course and take it face-to-face in the fall, and I wished you good luck.
So why the fuck did I get an email from my friend the associate dean on Thursday asking if I could add your sorry ass to my course? I am looped to the gills on Percocet, but it strikes me as dumber than shit to try to go over my head to get what you want, and risk having to deal with me, pissed off and entirely unable to help you "get caught up on stuff" because I have been out of class myself for almost two weeks and have a ton of my own work to "get caught up on." Seriously. Who the fuck do you think you are?
Thankfully, the associate dean really is my friend, and it really is to my discretion whether to add or not add you to my roster, which is already over the CCCC recommended cap of 20 for a composition course (just like my other 2 sections!). Plus I have tenure. So bite my shiny, burnt metal ass, Snowflake. And you better hope that if you sign up for one of my fall sections that I'll have forgotten your little attempt at an end-run around my entirely reasonable refusal to accommodate you.
Professor Burnt Chrome
PS. At least you did not email me on the day of my surgery (as two of my very special flakes did) to ask me to “go over” your paper. So there is that.
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To be fair to the little shits, they didn't remember anything about your kidney stone. Probably because they weren't listening to you in the first place. You could have told them that you were going to fuck George Clooney and then set him on fire and they wouldn't have remembered. It does not occur to them that you have an actual existence apart from "the professor who should always be available to meet my needs".ReplyDelete
Next time, you need to piss blood right in front of them. That might get their attention.
No, the flakes who emailed me both said "Hope your surgery goes well" before asking me to give them feedback "when you're feeling better." Luckily I had turned on my out-of-office auto-reply, which tersely indicated that I'd be out all week due to illness and that I'd respond to emails upon my return. Too bad the assignment is due on Sunday night in the LMS.Delete
Nah, they'd hear the George Clooney part.Delete
I hope you're feeling better! Those are spectacularly painful. I had one once and that was more than enough.ReplyDelete
I emailed the last person who tried this after the end of the add/drop period to tell them the class was full. A little white lie since the class did have one spot.ReplyDelete
That. Was. Amazing. Get well soon!ReplyDelete
Ouch! I hope you're doing better.ReplyDelete
I suppose it's a good thing that students are beginning to realize that not everybody is cut out to take a course wholly or partly online, but they don't yet seem to have realized that if they pick the wrong format and take too long to realize it, the solution is the same as if they enrolled for an overly-challenging class and didn't realize it before the end of add/drop: take the class next semester (or this summer). I'm especially fond of the students who tell me that they just *have* to take my class (which they were supposed to take at the end of sophomore/beginning of junior year) this semester "because I'm graduating in May." They tend to be a bit nonplussed when I point out that summer term is an option, and will only delay their graduation by a few months (but. . .but. . .but. ..they're graduating; they *told* everybody so).
OWWW! A 6.5-mm kidneystone! I hope you get well soon. I just had a similar twit with an ambiguous relation with the truth pull similar crap. Although it's in my syllabus that I don't give make-up exams, this creep was so unpleasant to so many people, I decided to cave and let him have it. Just to make sure everything was fair, I just gave him a copy of the one the other students took.ReplyDelete
I am still chortling, since he got an F. I know that Schadenfreude isn't nice, but when it's so well deserved, it's hard not to enjoy it.
It simply does not occur to them that it's a good idea to be polite to someone who can help you, and that it's a bad idea to be rude to someone who can harm you. But then, they seem to have no idea of what "polite" or "rude" are. I'm reminded of what a judge said when dealing with a crack addict: "I'm nostalgic for the good old days of heroin, when people at least didn't forget to be human."Delete
I hope you feel better!ReplyDelete
Thanks everyone. I am feeling human again, and have been cleared to return to campus on Monday. I hope to never be bedridden like that ever again. The silver lining is that it happened now, rather than next month when I am going away for Spring Break with my family to a state whose healthcare is notoriously poor. Even my surgeon went, "Ooh, yeah, you do *not* want to be hospitalized there."ReplyDelete
I'm glad you are feeling better.ReplyDelete
Glad you're recovering, BC (and glad it didn't happen over Spring Break, and not only because the health care in the state you're visiting is poor). Take it as easy as you can during your first week back, huh? Sadly, as I'm sure you're well aware, "please go over my paper" usually means "please point out each thing I need to change to get an A now, so you have no excuse for giving me any lower grade." You have tenure, right? And you're in a state where the elected officials have been trying to increase your workload (and destroy unions) while decreasing your compensation? This sounds like a good semester to choose, for your own sanity and longterm health, to "work to rule" -- exactly as many assignments and drafts, and exactly as much feedback, as you're required to give, and not a bit more. Offer the class group feedback in class. The ones who are willing/able to benefit will apply it to their own work (with perhaps an occasional intelligent, targeted question to you); the ones who want you to do it for them (and/or to spend more time justifying any grade lower than an A than you would doing it for them) -- well, they weren't going to learn much that way anyway, were they?ReplyDelete
P.S. I'm sure you know all of the above, but sometimes it doesn't hurt to be reminded, especially when we're feeling apologetic, for some unfathomable reason, for being human, and therefore subject to illness and other human frailties. As far as I'm concerned, one reason for those CCCC and ADE guidelines that nearly every comp program violates is to allow time for teachers to recover from just this kind of emergency (or even for colleagues to step in in a longer-lasting emergency without imperiling their own classes). Every semester has a few bumps, small or large, and building in a bit of leeway makes it possible to recover from them. Just because we *can* teach ridiculous loads by neglecting our families, health, etc. doesn't mean we should. The consequences to the semester when we have a larger emergency need to be, at the very least, shared.Delete