Friday, June 22, 2007
Tuesday, June 19, 2007
Bring me your nachos, your chips, your cups o' microwavable soup...
Such memos and committees, of course, are not found only at ye olde land-grants. Yet I have a raft of emails about parking garage cleaning schedules, street closures, power outages, and so on that I receive almost daily. We professors do not spend ALL our time breathing the rarified air of metaphysics. We do the following:
*Final open forum on vending needs is Tuesday*
The final open forum to discuss the future needs of snack vending and beverage vending on campus will be at noon Tuesday, June 19, in the second floor lobby opposite the information desk in X Center.
Comments and questions can be directed to Y.
Seriously? An open forum on future vending needs at the university? And the final one at that, meaning there have been OTHERS? I bet Y hates his/her job. I'm tempted to send my comments: Dear Y, I am glad to see that LAND GRANT is FINALLY taking action to understand the diverse vending needs at this fine institution. It is a long time coming, let me tell you, but something is better than nothing, that's what I always say.
There is something my colleagues and I have been debating for quite some time now. To wit: how would you characterize the current philosophy of the LAND GRANT vending group? I mean, there are some folks who advocate a strict traditionalist perspective: chips (nacho, potato, and maybe Cool Ranch if feeling a bit edgy), Baby Ruth, and the occasional skinny bag of peanuts. Then there are the trend-setters: Banana Twinkies, Salt 'n' Vinegar Chips, and even Cup o' Soup (SOUP in a vending machine??!!). I'm not sure there's a place for the trendinista vending crowd at this fine institution, but I'd like to hear your thoughts on the subject. Respectfully submitted, Professor Z, BA, MA, PhD
PS - Don't EVEN get me started on all those faddish beverages. I mean, berry-flavored this and electric-blue that. And water??? Who buys water when you can get it for free from a good, old-fashioned, bacteria-laden fountain?
A Tale of Two Presidential Searches
Iowa: Here is how the University of Iowa is doing its search. All four finalists' vitae are on the web, candidate forums were public, then broadcast on UI TV, and finally archived on the web (I watched the one for our provost on my laptop at home).
Which is better? I would opt for openness. The arguments trotted out for why Purdue was secret, that public knowledge of the finalists would cause some to withdraw from the search, does not seem to be the effect at Iowa, though I understand one candidate did withdraw.
I do support confidentiality of a presidential search, but ONLY up to the point of campus interviews and visits by finalists. Then what Iowa did should be the norm.
As a faculty member, I don't feel like I was part of the process, and indeed, I wasn't, but that is the point. Our BoT telegraphed that idea by deciding in private, and unless I am mistaken, the search advisory committee, on which faculty sat, did not know who would be chosen either.
I am glad that the BoT did what appears to be a fine job. We shall have to see, of course!
Surprise! A non-posting on Richard Rorty
Tuesday, June 12, 2007
"...no one owns the truth and all have a right to be understood" - Rorty and Education in Our Times
"It is hard to think of a current American philosopher who has had more effect on my thinking than Richard Rorty. His quote (from Milan Kundera) that "there exists a fascinating imaginative realm, born of the echo of God's laughter, where no one owns the truth and all have a right to be understood," stands as an ideal for all I do and strive to do."
"Obviously Kundera is talking of the novel and Rorty of social/political situations. I expropriate it for my vision of what education can, when well done, lead us toward."
Saturday, June 09, 2007
Aletha Hall's MySpace Page
RIP Kelsey Smith, said by her father to be "scrubbed with sunshine."
Wednesday, June 06, 2007
James Peterson, Bucknell Professor: Great Job
The topic was Danny Glover's relationships with Hugo Chavez and John Edwards, but Peterson's well-reasoned and dispassionate points were hard to hear over the blather and chatter of the talking heads.