Ancrene Wiseass

A would-be medievalist holds forth on academia, teaching, gender politics, blogging, pop culture, critters, and whatever else comes her way.

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Yes, this really is yet another blog by a disillusioned grad student. I sympathize, but that's just the way it has to be. For hints as to what my bizarre alias means, click here and here and, if needed, here and here. To get a sense of what I'm up to, feel free to check out the sections called "Toward a Wiseass Creed" and "Showings: Some Introductory Wiseassery" in my main blog's left-hand sidebar. Please be aware that spamming, harassing, or otherwise obnoxious comments will be deleted and traced.

Tuesday, September 06, 2005

Fear of a Blog Planet, Part 2

I (and also you, dear reader, if you are so inclined) have Quod She to thank for snapping me out of my continuous posts about the Murder of New Orleans. I may write one more mega-post that's simmering in the back of my mind, but it's not ready just yet, and I need to let it be for a couple of days, at least.

So what has the inimitable QS said that got my attention?

Well, it seems that our favorite anti-blogger has returned to the pages of the Chronicle. That's right: "Ivan Tribble" is back for more. As QS herself said, "he didn’t get enough abusin’ by the blogosphere the first time around?"

You can read "Fear of a Blog Planet, Part 2" here if you're in the mood.

What really gets my goat about this installation is the closer, which reads:

"As my original column made clear (and many amid the outcry reiterated) when it comes to blogging, I just don't 'get it.' That's right, I don't. Many in the tenured generation don't, and they'll be sitting on hiring committees for years to come.

If that's bad news, I'm sorry. But would it really be better if no one bothered to mention it? Shooting the messenger may make some feel better, but heeding the warning might help them get jobs. "

Two things strike me about this:

1) The absolutely mind-boggling sense of self-justifying entitlement. "Yeah, that's right. I'm an Old Fart who doesn't understand what You Crazy Kids are up to. I recognize that what you're doing may have some positive applications, but I'm too scared and/or lazy to figure out how to separate the blog wheat from the blog chaff. And hell, I don't have to! 'Cause I'm tenured and I'm on the hiring committee, and you're not. So nah nah nah nah boo boo."

2) He's reneging on his earlier empty rhetoric about how people should "be themselves" during job interviews if they want to find a truly agreeable work situation. Why do I say that? Well, because he's telling his readers that they shouldn't run the risk of exposing professors of the Saurian persuasion (who supposedly have a lock on hiring committees) to New Ideas or New Media, which might frighten them.

And, may I just ask: What the hell kind of attitude is this in somebody who's supposed to be a lover of ideas? ("Ewww. That's a new idea. Not only that, but it hasn't been vetted by a committee of Tenured People. I don't like that sort of idea. It might be . . . contagious or accessible or even something I didn't think of. Make it go away!")

Yeah, Dr. Tribble, you don't "get it." But you don't "get it" about a whole hell of a lot more than just weblogs.