Sex Ed in Higher Ed

College instructor teaching human sexuality rants about the dumbing down of America, the lost art of manners, grammar and (the perfect combination of both) the thank you note. Also includes random rants about life, pet peeves, and sometimes raves about favorite things.

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

Until June

The semester is over and I will not have tales of angst and stupidity to share with you until I start teaching summer session in June.

To tide you over until then:

In addition to getting blown off by Inappropriate Sister on Friday, I was also blown off by the author of the two worst sentences ever written. She wanted to meet with me at 9:00 a.m. on Friday to discuss her papers. Unlike Inappropriate Sister, she at least called me at 9:30 a.m. to tell me she had a scheduling conflict.

Why do students do this!? At least once a semester I have a student blow me off who also calls me (at least half an hour after they were supposed to show up) to tell me, "I'm going to be late," or "I can't make it after all." Do they think I'm incapable of telling time? Or do they think that college instructors sit around next to our fireplaces, smoking our pipes, wearing our tweedy jackets with elbow patches, passing the time discussing Proust and therefore have no concept of time at all? If you're half an hour late and you're calling me to tell me you're late, I think it's safe to say I'm already in the know.

So worst author ever says, "I guess I'll have to stop by later this afternoon." Well, I have more than one or two jobs. Right now I have four. I told her it would not be possible for me to meet with her that afternoon. She was irritated. "Well, I need to meet with you today, because I'm graduating tomorrow (boy, and I thought I had a problem with procrastination!) and my family is coming in from Texas and I need to resolve this today." The rest of the conversation went like this:

Me: Is it something we could discuss now, over the phone?
WAE: Well, it's about my papers.
Me: Yes, I noticed you didn't take the opportunity to rewrite those two papers.
WAE: Well, I decided to write five reactionary reviews instead of four.
Me: Okay. Why would you do this?
WAE: I thought that instead of rewriting that one, I would write five and you could grade five and then just give me the four best grades.
Me: Hmm. Interesting. And no.
WAE: But why? They're already written.
Me: Well, since it's the last day of the semester, I don't really think it's fair. After all, I didn't offer the rest of the class the opportunity to write five papers instead of four.
WAE: (Clearly mad at ME! At ME!!!!) Sighs exasperatedly. I'm not asking for the points for all five papers (I can tell she'd love to add "duh!" to the end of this sentence.) All I'm saying is that I wrote five and you get to choose the best four. (What a treat for me! How can I be such an ungrateful bitch?!)
Me: Well, I do appreciate a sense of enterprise, but the answer is still no. Also, I have 50 finals to grade and about 25 reaction papers since your fellow students like to wait until the very last minute, so why don't you tell me which of the five you'd like me to grade.
WAE: (Heavy sigh). I guess the one about the rape counselor.
Me: Excellent! Well, congratulations to you and good luck!
WAE: Yeah. Click. (Hangs up!)

Oh, how I wish I could be a fly on the wall when this student gets her first "real job." Can you imagine the conversations with her future employers!?

  • I thought you could pay me $50,000 a year for doing nothing for around 25 hours a week; or,
  • I know everybody else comes in around 8:00 or 8:30, but I thought I'd come in at ten, noon or 1:00 p.m. - You get to choose which one, though, so you're still the boss! or,
  • When should I take my vacation, do you think? All of June, all of July, all of August or all three? Also, I'm open to taking off November-January. Your choice.
  • I decided to pay local, state or federal taxes. Just let me know which of those works best for you, okay? I'm a real team player that way.


Remember the Groundhog's Day of papers? The SAME student turned in the SAME paper for a THIRD time with the SAME mistakes!!! The pile of blood, the "knelling" and the "wearingly" were still there! And I know (now that I have my trusty blog) that I addressed these mistakes at least once (probably twice.) What does "rewrite and resubmit" mean to you? Apparently to my students, it means print out a new cover page with the word "rewrite" typed on it and you're set. Boy, these kids think I'm just dumber than a box of rocks. Maybe it is time to return to my brunette roots (pun intended).

And finally, the semester wouldn't be complete without quotes from some papers. These aren't hilarious misspellings - these are just basically poorly constructed sentences that make no sense. The final three sentences are (of course), courtesy of Inappropriate Sister. Enjoy!

The Bible’s writings on relationships would be a very influential piece of reading as well as becoming a confident person.

One of the women Claire asked was an Avon Lady named Louise; she said that the only place she was familiar with women going to was a yellow house a few blocks away supposedly performed abortions.

The movie seemed to touch on another side of discrimination by hinting towards women’s contributions in the workplace often being overlooked because, (like in Anchor Man) the real news in found and reported by men, and women should report on the puppy fashion show at the mall.

But Kiki’s response was telling, because she is part of the symptoms of this societies ills towards our minority population, (that has made the U.S. a lucrative nation with 200 years of free labor), yet still receives the worst stigmas, and institutional racism that goes unnoticed because Affirmative Action and Welfare and one black Victoria Secret model has tricked us.

It is proven that people are more fulfilled when they are laying down their life to help then when they are self-obsessed; kind of like the Patch Adams theory.

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Blogger ColoradoCastaway said...

I can certainly understand being tricked by the nasty gov't bureaucracies of Affirmative Action and Welfare but to be tricked by a Black Victoria's secret model is just uncalled for!! And while we are on the subject. A rewrite is what I wish I could do with most of my comments after I have posted them and see all my typos. I have no intention of laying down my life until I'm fulfilled that's for damn sure!!!

May 17, 2006 5:21 PM  
Blogger Mrs. T said...

OMG- I.S.'s quotes get on every nerve in my body. How in the world did you stand her for an entire semester???
I love that you stood your ground with WAE- but next time you should just tell her sure, you'll take those papers- and then just grade the top one. (top of the pile) They think they're so clever- we need to beat them at their own game.
I hope this doesn't mean you won't be posting until June!

May 17, 2006 6:52 PM  
Blogger zygote daddy said...

It really is amazing how stupid they think we are, isn't it? I mean, it takes some serious fuckin' balls to tell an instructor (i.e. The Keeper of Grades and Future Prospects), "No, I think we'll do it this way because it works better for me."

And it happens EVERY SEMESTER. Why the fuck do they think they can have whatever they want whenever they want it, and oh by the way could you bend over for me while you're at it? I mean, seriously.

And sorry for the nonsensical run-on sentence. Just felt appropriate.

May 17, 2006 7:20 PM  
Blogger Antique Mommy said...

Damn! I hate it when I get tricked by that one black Victoria's secret model.

May 17, 2006 9:18 PM  
Blogger Jess Riley said...

Oh, Inappropriate funny yet so scary.

But as always, thanks for sharing. I needed the laugh. At least I think it was a laugh.

May 17, 2006 10:25 PM  
Blogger liberalbanana said...

Every time those students talk about the "house that performs abortions," the only thing I can ever picture is a woman throwing herself down the stairs while punching herself in the stomach. Awful thought, no? Well it's not my fault - that evil abortion-performing house did it!

You should really get sassy to these "world-revolves-around-me" students. I don't know how you can have so much self-control that you don't snap while you're talking to them!

May 18, 2006 8:31 AM  
Blogger Sue said...

I do believe I'm hearing I.S.'s words in Charlie Brown Teacher fashion. Wah, wha, mwah, mwah, mwah?

This morning our summer hire was given a bucket of drywall spackle, paint, a brush and a putty knife and told to fill in the small holes in the wall of one apartment and then paint the spots. The maintenance guy who gave him these instructions later checked up on him. Summer hire complained that it wasn't working very well and so maintenance guy watched him. Summer hire was applying the spackle with the paint brush. *sigh* It's going to be a LONG summer.

May 18, 2006 12:12 PM  
Blogger Art Nerd Lauren said...

Damn you, Affirmative Action, Welfare and TYRA MOST OF ALL!!!

Anyway, the Patch Adams theory? Does she have a citation for that? I especially HEART that she wrote about Anchorman in a scholarly writing. LOVE!

What the hell are they thinking? I've actually written on exams, "Please write out all words. This isn't AIM" The future of America, ladies and gentlemen! l8tr

May 19, 2006 9:24 AM  
Blogger Teacher lady said...

I am so passive-aggressive and evil. I wrote next to her "Patch Adams" line, "I am not familiar with this theory. Was Patch Adams a sex researcher? A psychologist? A sociologist or anthropologist? I'm sorry but I am not familiar with all social scientists. Please cite his most recent published work." I'm going to hell. But she already knows this.

May 19, 2006 12:12 PM  
Blogger Sara said...

Oh, reading those sentences makes my head spin. Ouch!!!

Kudos to you for not letting Worst Author Ever talk you into grading all her papers. I can't believe she would actually expect you to do that!!

It takes some huge balls to request such things from your college professor - and apparently they've grown so big and gotten so abundant that they're giving them to the females, too. Wow.

You're going to have to start including another section in your sex ed class!

May 19, 2006 4:04 PM  

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