Tuesday, January 16, 2007

We ain't got none o' them tecknalogickabul advantsmints, y'all.

Okay, so Thursday the humanities department chair at the local community college called and asked me to teach a general psych course. Dumbass here agreed, having wanted to do one for some time just for the experience. Friday afternoon around 3, for the sake of convenience, I met him at my local post office to get the textbook, which is an information overload if I've ever seen one. I took a full course - sometimes two or three - over what is covered in each chapter. There is no way in hell anyone can learn all of that in one semester so we're just going to cover the high points. Sometimes too much is just too much.

During the ice storms of the last few days, I've been working feverishly trying to get everything set up because what little I was given seemed woefully inadequate. The official syllabus mainly just addresses plagiarism and the official bibliography didn't have anything on it that had been published within the last 12 years (raise your hand if you can pronounce unethical...). The class scheduling was particularly bothersome because we'll have 2 fewer class periods to address the 14 chapters of textbook material because our final is first in the lineup, and we're supposed to have a "major project" in there somewhere. Did I pay attention to any of those red flags? Hell no I didn't. I was just excited to be offered yet another distraction from that stupid dissertation thingy. I needed another one - no, really - I did. Seriously.

So I get all this crap (including making a blog for class communication since as yet I have access to NOTHING at the school aside from the textbook) done over the weekend, fully expecting the school to be techno-nerd compliant, because it's a college, right? Guess what? It isn't. There's 1 (count 'em) 1 LCD projector for the whole college - scratch that, there is another one that belongs to the nursing department, but it belongs to the nursing department. Psychology is not part of the nursing department. Great.

Shit. Can't show Power Point presentations and minimize 25 people staring at me for an hour and a half waiting for me to say something deep and philosophical that they can can hold in their hearts foreverandever with no LCD projector. Can't do halfassed fun (okay, mildly interesting) live multimedia-driven lecturish kinda stuff with no LCD projector. Luddites. Good thing I'm not in it for the money.

Needless to say, after general introductions and threats of public humiliation for getting on my nerves for tardiness, eating in class, et cetera, plus a potty/water break were over, I reaallllyy should have let them go. Did I? No. Hell no. Not right away at least. No, I stood there and stammered some dumb bullshit about Wundt and introspection and some other dead guys with bushy eyebrows and something about Freud until they started giving me that "WTF!?" look as if I'd grown a third eye. I have a teenage daughter. I am all too familiar with that look. It was at that point I mercifully let them go.

I can pick up wireless internet access from another classroom so it's not a total loss. After class and about a 45-minute wait on the department chair, I received sort of a tour and brief access to the group copy card to make copies of the syllabus, etc., I still have no official paperwork filled out or access to the online component of the textbook (dammit - that's the fun stuff, too), or anything else. So what did I do? I went straight to CompUSA in Fort Worth and bought an LCD projector. I've been considering one for a long time so now I have one. Too bad the salesman sold me the wrong part to hook my MacBook's mini DVI into the VGA cable. I'll go back tomorrow and exchange it for the right part. Oh well, it's only money and time - I pull both of those out of my ass at an alarming rate, right?


Flumadiddle said...

I'm impressed! The only thing I can pull out of my ass is useless information that gets me absolutely nowhere in life.

drsharna said...

Hey baby, it's only money. I'll make more, right? And time? NO problem since I'm not going to die until I'm 112 - from a freak bunjee-jumping accident.