my pal kevin announced his hilbillies of the month yesterday … and they just so happen to be the same men involved in next year’s scariest indiana congressional race!
speaking of hillbillies … the J&C editorial page is still in all-Current-Situation-all-the-time mode, which makes for interesting lazytime perusal, especially when readers from the outlying counties write in with bizarre employment referrals …
Dear Dr. Martin Jischke, president of Purdue University:
I am writing on behalf of my cousin, Jane. Cousin Jane needs a job, and from recent articles I’ve read on the Journal and Courier Opinions page, I think Jane might be an ideal candidate for a position in the Purdue humanities department.
Jane is actually not my favorite cousin. Seems like whenever there is a family crisis, one that calls for us to stand united, Jane starts ranting about family imperfections, and tries to tear us apart. But she’s one of us, so we always make sure she is safe, and free to “do her thing.” I really think, however, that Jane may fit in well with some of your other professors, so on Jane’s behalf, I submit the following.
[a two-paragraph argument about dissenting views on foreign policy and religion being ‘anti-american’ deleted]
Be advised, Dr. Jischke, that Jane has some special job requirements. These seem restrictive to me, but I’m told that they will be no barrier to her consideration for a humanities department position:
[unrealistic beliefs about professors’ work schedules and salaries deleted, along with the usual ‘academics are commie bastards at heart’ rant and some tangent about ‘manual labor’ i didn’t really get]
In conclusion, Dr. Jischke, your consideration of Jane for any openings would be appreciated. I know most good citizens of Indiana will resent having Jane on the taxpayer’s payroll, but I have a selfish reason for hoping you will find her a position. If she gets one of your jobs, we are going to schedule all family gatherings during her four-hour workday. You see, we love ol’ Jane, but we’re just really sick and tired of listening to her baloney.
[signed, some guy in delphi]
now, do you really think MC jischke would let something like this go? he took time out from the latest leg of his world tour in support of his latest release, discover purdue, to pen this rebuttal, that i’ve taken the liberty of lightly translating for the clue-impaired …
[some guy in delphi] has addressed an open letter to me concerning his cousin Jane … Since he chose to communicate through the Journal and Courier editorial page (Oct. 23), I’ll respond in kind:
[hey, you! yeah, you in the ‘i hate liberal academics’ shirt!]:
I hope you are successful in finding gainful employment for your cousin. However, Jane’s qualifications, as you describe them, indicate that her future does not lie in Purdue’s School of Liberal Arts (there is no department of humanities).
Her aversion to hard work and long hours make it quite unlikely that she would meet the minimum qualification for faculty status … [a schooling on the amount of time and work it takes to get a doctoral degree, and the difficulty in finding an academic position deleted].
As an assistant professor, she could expect to spend her first six years working toward tenured status. In addition to a full teaching load, [a laundry list of all the other ways the university would 0wn3rz jane deleted]. She may well have a contract that pays her for 10 months, but … [a nice way of saying, ‘if you think our professors are mailing in four hours a day for nine months out of the year, you’re on crack, pal!’ deleted].
If she [manages to win this game of survivor: academia], she’ll be considered for promotion and tenure. However, there’s at least a fair chance that someone else in her department will [kick 100% of her ass, academically speaking], in which case, Jane could be [set up her the bomb]. This means she will lose her job at Purdue and [be pretty much fuxored, in so many words].
I should mention that Jane also will be expected to spend some time serving on committees, which will require a cooperative spirit and a willingness to listen to other viewpoints. So her reluctance to do her share of work will not enhance her career. These committees are very focused on the work at hand, so Jane’s views on religion and foreign policy probably won’t contribute much, and her colleagues will [think she’s a freak, and act accordingly, in a manner of speaking].
Your description of your cousin does not state that she is [in other words, cold-hearted and evil], but I infer from your comments that she is not a generous and caring person [and that is not cool, dude] …
… people who don’t pull their weight at a university aren’t appreciated and don’t experience success any more than people who don’t do their share in an office or factory. On the other hand, those who love their work and commit themselves to it with enthusiasm are rewarded with deeply enjoyable lives and careers. They have the great satisfaction of helping young people fulfill their potential every day. This typifies faculty at Purdue — in the humanities and elsewhere.
Unfortunately for cousin Jane, this is something for which she has not prepared herself. She doesn’t qualify for any job at Purdue. However, the wonderful thing about education is that everyone can benefit from it. Perhaps it’s not too late for Jane.
[sincerely, MC jischke]
i laughed like a little girl when i read that article in the dead-tree edition. i may even have uttered a ‘h4w’ or two.