Monday, January 27, 2003

Finished Kansas Women last night! I'm still fighting the sore throat and it's driving me nuts - I have too much to do. But I will try to balance the next few days so that I can actually get well. I meet my teaching class for the first time this afternoon. I won't be talking very much or my throat won't be able to take it. But I am anxious to meet the group - 5 is a nice size. The last two semesters it's been 14 and then 2 - too much of the two ends of the spread.

From Critical Mass today:

George Will's Diversity Quotient

George Will argues that by its own logic, the University of Michigan should be giving conservative applicants preferential treatment. Noting that conservatives are grossly underpresented at UM, Will suggests that admissions officers should work to correct the lack of intellectual diversity on campus by subjecting applicants to a handy political litmus test:

The university should ask all applicants the following 15 questions, awarding each applicant 10 points for each diversity-enhancing answer (150 points being a perfect Diversity Quotient):

The Supreme Court's principal function is (a) to wield the Constitution as a living document to right all wrongs (b) to protect the Second Amendment.

Do you wish to enroll in UM's ROTC program?

U.S. policy toward Iraq should be: (a) give peace a chance (b) pave it.

The UM Wolverines athletic budget ($54 million) (a) is too small (b) should be contributed to Greenpeace.

True or False: Ohio State is part of the axis of evil.

Were you home-schooled?

Do you watch Fox News Channel?

America's coolest anchorman is (a) Tom Brokaw (b) Dan Rather (c) Peter Jennings (d) Brit Hume.

Do you read National Review while listening to Rush Limbaugh?

Can you tell the difference between The New York Times front page and its editorial page?

The most socially beneficial development in America in the past three decades was (a) Roe v. Wade (b) the University of Michigan speech code (c) ESPN.

The nation's worst failing is (a) racism (b) sexism (c) inequality (d) imperialism (e) respect for the United Nations.

Given a choice, would you own (a) an environmentally friendly hybrid car? (b) a Ford F-150 pickup truck?

Who is the more plausible president: (a) Martin Sheen of "The West Wing"? (b) John Edwards of North Carolina? (c) Any of the Dixie Chicks?

The Miller Lite ad in which the "tastes great" woman and the "less filling" woman duke it out in a bodice-ripping cat fight is (a) fascistic phallocentrism (b) a hoot.

Dear applicant, if your answers optimize your Diversity Quotient (b, yes, b, a, true, yes, yes, who are those first three guys?, yes, you're kidding -- right?, c, e, b, c, b), well, then: Welcome to Ann Arbor, you wonderful addition to Wolverine diversity.

Had a great email exchange with Karen McComas: Blog Squatter yesterday. She has lots of great ideas on how to make blogs work in class.

I think now we will have enough cold weather that winter will seem to have existed. Now I will probably be ready for spring sooner than it arrives! :}

Am anxious to get back to other projects. My bouts with these infections the last two months have really screwed up what I hoped to have ready to go at the beginning of the semester. But I can get back to several things and start getting ahead - as long as I remember not to work so much that I don't get well and/or get sick again.

For most of my time at PSU, my Mondays have been my most hectic days. I decide to take a different tack this semester and wait to go in for class on Monday afternoon - I usually have class MWF mornings but don't this semester - and come back Tuesday morning for office hours. I hope that will help establish my more balanced mode. I remember one of my toughest profs in graduate school that I thought was a workaholic telling me that if you looked under workholic in the dictionary, you'd find my picture. I keep trying to remind myself that my work will be better if I'm not doing it all the time. Got to get back to quilting before the winter is over.

Dad is bringing the straw over to the farm tomorrow. I'm really glad. I was afraid I'd lose all my landscaping if I didn't get it over here before the winter was out and it's not something I can do myself because I need too much of it. What a guy!

Here's the expert on the history of southeast Kansas.

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