Friday, March 7, 2014

This is how we communicate on Friday

This has been a particularly bothersome week in my department due to some unpleasant but necessary personal interactions among faculty.  Things would have been worse had we all been sober.  Much worse.

Thanks, alcohol!

Relax, everybody.  Get drunk.


  1. Soon. Alas I still have another hour (technically) and then the abysmal drive home. But there glorious alcohol awaits!

    I feel a round of drunken essay grading coming.

    1. I found the best state to be in when grading was to be half-drunk. I was still sober enough to know what I was doing but sufficiently numb that I didn't care.

  2. Yes!
    Poll. Best boxed wine? I think the Bota merlot; the Black Box ones are also good but more expensive. Bota is supposed to be putting out a pinot noir soon-- curious.
    SPRING BREAK WOOT, time to write that article!

    1. One of my favorite and relatively cheap wines in a box, well technically a tetra pack but it was more than a bottle, was Thirsty Lizard. It was good for cooking and drinking. Sadly, I can't get it here anymore (stupid government run liquor stores). I always joked that all I needed was a bendy straw.

  3. I'm too drunk to get the stupid number-capcha thing right.

  4. The box of wine bit reminded me of a poster I saw floating around the internet about what your wine choice says about you. This is what it has listed under the box of wine: "You say you drink so infrequently you don't want the wine to spoil but really you drink so frequently you need wine on tap."

    It's definitely been a week that required alcohol for me. God, I why am I working as a research coordinator for medical doctors? I think I would rather be teaching undergrads again, even if the pay is less.

    List of my current complaints:
    1) How am I supposed to update the references when all you write is "cite"? Cite what!?! And why you can't figure out how to use a reference manager, or at least keep track of your references, is beyond me.
    2) How does it save anyone time for me to read the articles and tell you what they say so you can develop your research idea? Do you want me to write it for you too? Shit, you do.
    3) I have to combine two different versions of a draft from two difference writers, neither of which used track changes. God forbid I miss an "important" change that one of them wanted.
    4) Why the *&^% are "we making" (i.e. you're making me do) massive revisions the day before the grant is due. The internal reviewer said it is was fine, just turn it in already!!!
    And finally,
    5) Apparently page limits/word limits/simple instructions on what to include (and not include) for a grant mean nothing. At this point, I don't care if their application doesn't follow the instructions (my name's not on it), I'm tried of getting yelled at for making revisions to ensure that it does.

    1. Re #3, I've used Word's "compare documents" function to good effect. It at least showed me where the other writers had revised their drafts, so I could fold the changes in to my draft.

    2. I usually try to do that but one person has a bad habit of using whatever version they find not matter how old and changing the file name to random things so I can't even go by that to figure out which is newer. I'm not always around when changes are made so it's a complete guessing game for me. The problem I had was figuring out what changes were actually being kept and what was already cut from the newest draft. They got mad at me because I didn't include changes to something that had already been cut from the grant due to space.

    3. And much facepalmery ensues. I feel your pain.

    4. Facepalmery is minor. The other research support staff and myself are almost ready to strike (or quit). At the risk of outing myself, the people I work for are neurotic and need to see someone in their own department. But honestly, if they can't work in the academic world without dealing criticism (and understanding that it's not all bad), they need to go find something else to do. I understand doctor fees are quite lucrative.

      I'm almost tempted to go back to seasonal work.

  5. The first semester TT teaching hire/head of satellite campus chem just told me he would help me write my final if I want his suggestions. I suggest when you have 1 semester experience teaching 1 lecture section of 1 course, you don't offer to help the disgruntled adjunct who's been doing it for a decade and keeps getting passed up by spunky little darlings with PhDs and say stuff like "Sorry I didn't get to meet you yet. I've been so busy because there's so much more grading. It's harder than lecture."


    I've written more finals than he's taken. Froderick, if you have any colleagues working on time travel, please have them go back to when I decided to quit with a master's degree and have them shoot me in the face.

  6. N.B. to all my students. If you have a choice of which questions to answer on the midterm, do not choose the question which depends on having done ONE of the following things:
    - attended TWO lectures (not just one!) OR
    - skipped one or both lectures but did the extra reading (helpful direct link to the JSTOR article supplied online!) OR
    - got the notes for the missing lecture from a classmate (helpful note-sharing wiki also available online!) OR
    - just looked casually at the fracking powerpoint slides for the lecture(s) you missed (also helpfully available online!) -

    If you have not done ANY ONE of these things, DO NOT CHOOSE THAT QUESTION. Choose some other question. Trust me.

    That is all.