Oh, and I did some hard time in Distance Learning Purgatory, in a program that we have to all pretend has been a riotous success because it was our president’s idea, but so far has reminded me of nothing so much as the British in the Siege of Khartoum, only with plagiarism. Ooodles and oodles of plagiarism. It’s awesome, truly.
On the positive side, distance learning and MOOCs promise far easier ways for students to not do shit while pretending they have accomplished shit, while we, the faculty, aren’t in any way responsible for making them do shit. Just record my lecture and rake in the Benjamins. Sounds Pareto to me, except for the part where I am fired and replaced by Max Headroom or Dolly Parton.
Other updates in no particular order:
- Cancer knocked down my father for the last time year. You would be surprised how sad it is when you find you have nobody to shoot Pepsi cans off a fence with.
- I wrote a book and got fatter, neither of which seemed possible, but were, and yes, they probably were related if you don’t count the other 40-odd of years of my life in which I also got fatter but did not produce a book. My chirpy public healthy colleagues told me about a walking-treadmill desk or a standing desk, but I avoided those in favor of method I innovated called refusing-to-leave-my-bed-watching-many-hours-of-Columbo-reruns-on-Netflix desk. I mixed that up with completely horizontal Plants v. Zombies marathons, where my cornpaults devastated the traffic cone zombies. Invigorating, that.
- I have taken up golf, mostly as a means to piss off other golfers, and to be able to say to my cardiologist that I exercise while not really actually exercising, unless you count wandering around looking for my ball as exercise, which I do.
- Been reading a lot, some good stuff—Rita Dove’s Thomas and Buelah, Plato’s Symposium, Neal Stephenson’s Snow Crash. And Sarah Palin’s new book on Christmas. Talk about messed up. I went and ate prime rib and opened presents on Christmas and didn’t even know there was a war on. Oh that lame stream media and the mind control it fosters.
Stay strong, friends. Summer is only many, many months away. I wish you well.