Wednesday, July 11, 2007

Le Show and EMU + other news (plus a photo)

This is the flower of a Century Plant, a kind of agave. I took this photo outside of Silver City, NM, where I am now. The flower grows from the plant (and the leaves are about 7 feet tall), and then the plant dies after the flower comes up. We saw a whole hillside of these plants as we were driving toward the Gila Cliff Dwellings. Super fabulous and cool.

It's good that I can enjoy moments like these in my life, because there are many other moments right now that are not quite so fabulous. Not bad, but ... mmmm... shall we say, lively. I've not written on this blog about EMU's recent forays with the Education Department (I've been thinking about them in other contexts, as the tens of readers know), but the administration has also had many interactions with them over the Cleary Amendment, which requires universities to notify faculty, staff, students, etc. when something occurs that poses a clear danger to the campus - say, a murder. I have made every effort to essentially take the moral high ground here, continue to do an excellent job, try to pretend it will be resolved (which I guess it will be), etc.

But then, this. Every week, I listen to Le Show, one of the many things that helps me keep my sanity given my proclivity toward, shall we say, long term depressing (in terms of policy) thinking. I especially enjoy segments like "Dick Cheney: Confidential." I heartily recommend this program to all of the tens of readers. Another of the regular segments of Le Show is The Apologies of the Week. Last week, Scott (the spousal unit, for the tens who don't know) and I were listening to Le Show on the way to pick up the young thing at camp. "Apologies" came on ... and one was from John Fallon, EMU's president, re: the current campus situation.
Sigh. I can run, but I clearly (or, should I say, Cleary, ha ha) can't hide.

But enough about that. We'll get through this. One of my friends/colleagues from EMU saw another colleague from EMU at the gym; this second colleague told the first that she's come up with a new slogan for EMU faculty: "We Didn't F*** Up." And it's true. EMU's faculty remains first rate, which is why it's ultimately still a good place to be, despite the current crapola. So there it is.

Meanwhile, for those of you keeping score re: the OMB, I got smart comments from reviewers. Goal is to have revisions done by the time I start teaching on August 20. I should start a countdown clock to that ... but won't.

And now, I'm off - with my mom, for today - to the WPA annual conference in Phoenix. Today's high, 111. It's a dry heat, though. It will be great to see friends and colleagues.