Got a No.

I received a No email and thought it was for a particular position. However, now that I have looked at it again, it seems that I received a no for the position I just phone interviewed for on Monday. So they did phone interviews and then hired someone? Seems like that must have been an inside candidate.

Usually the schools do a phone interview (14), an on-campus interview (7), and another on-campus interview (3).

But it’s closed.

Guess maybe next Monday’s phone call will also be short and sweet.

What made me figure it out? I got an email requesting a phone interview for the position I thought had hired someone.

Dang! And the interview made me want to work there, too.

Two conferences: A saga

I sent six proposals to MLA because I really wanted to get something there. I’ve been worried, though, that I would get too many yes answers. (You are allowed to present two.) So far I have gotten three no’s and haven’t heard from the other three.

Despite the fact that I was all worried about the six from MLA, I decided I would go ahead and send two out for SCMLA. (You can only present one.) I have a technical writing paper, but I am not sure it is really what they wanted. However, when I was looking at my email, it turns out I didn’t send the second one. The deadline was Friday. So, my SCMLA proposal will either sink or swim on its own.

I hope it is accepted. I hope I get two yes answers from MLA, too.

Bawl your eyeballs out: A father’s promise has the story of Robert Jr and Sr.

The letter sat on the dresser for four years.

Robert Gilbert never opened it. He only touched the envelope when he needed to dust around it. He wanted to give it back to his son unopened.

Every time his Marine son was deployed, his son would ask, “You still got my letter?”

His dad never wanted to read what was inside an envelope marked: “Dad, open this if I am wounded. Love, Robert.”

The call to open it came March 8.

A Discussion of the Political Situation

by a postliberal, Well-Meaning Opposition.

Here’s the sticking point: there seems an inability to back all the way down the road and re-look at the question Is this the right thing to do? Failing that, they are locked endlessly in the impression that ours is a moral failing, that must be addressed on moral grounds. They assume we must not like universal coverage only because it is too expensive; that we are reluctant to extend citizen’s rights to detainees only by failure of generosity and justice. They can’t think of other reasons. When we say something else they think we are just rationalizing, and are really just fearful and morally flawed.

Thus the things they say are horribly insulting and accusing. They are not generally horrible and accusing people, and are hurt when they are called on it. We must have misunderstood their intent or meaning. Longtime followers of this site know that this is where village idiots come in, and why I aspire to be one. When you are accusing others of evil motives, that is in itself reason to backtrack as far as need be to make sure you have understood.

It is fair to ask whether this unwillingness to backtrack is not a sort of intellectual sin, or a moral cowardice of its own. Often it is, and I have been strident over the years that any progressive’s refusal to consider that such a thing is even possible tells me when I am onto something. Once the door is opened to the possibility that these supposedly moral stances are suffused with more primitive tribal values, or class values, or mere fashionableness, there is going to be pain in store for any of us who walk through. But when they hear “fashionable” they think that’s not me, I’m anti-fshionable; “tribal,” they think no that’s ethnic, racial or sexual – I don’t have those prejudices. That there might be a deeper tribalism, a deeper fashionableness, does not enter their minds. They can easily reject the superficial meaning, and so are well-defended against the deeper one.

So we all pretend there is no door. I have walked through the door a few times, which is why I am postliberal. But I have little doubt there are still further doors I refuse to see as well. It’s human nature. There are always more doors, that both our faults and our virtues are influenced by factors we did not suspect.

To conclude, I give the reasons that non-liberals believe motivate them. All we neocons and neoliberals, libertarians and postliberals, think these are our real reasons. We may delude ourselves in this, and we may turn out to be nothing more than the shallow, selfish, prejudiced boors we are accused of being. But it would be wise to at least consider that we might actually believe these things.

1. These schemes seldom actually fix very much, they just make us all feel that we have done something about it.

2. Progressive plans have obvious benefits, but non-obvious consequences which are dire. The simple benefit to individuals is in the open; the complex cost to society is disguised.

3. “Cost” doesn’t mean just money. Loss of values, culture, and character are important costs.

There is much more on the website, which I will add to my daily reads. Visit Assistant Village Idiot to read the post.


I am dragging on teaching. I am overwhelmed with grading, not because I have more than usual, but because even grading for an hour seems a monumental task and I need to grade.

I don’t want to go to class, not because I don’t want to teach, but because I don’t want any more papers to grade.

I am mentally exhausted for no reason.

I guess that means I am depressed.

Sorrow, not quite despair.

The health care bill has passed.

My government now owns the auto industry, banking, and health care.

One giant step at a time into socialism.

Sorrow. Pain. Tears. Weeping.

Despair sits just outside, though. Despite the immediate tax additions, the health care aspect won’t go into effect until 2014. There is still a little time to potentially stave off the destruction of America.

But not much.

And despair crouches at the door.

Quote of the day

“We, the people are the rightful masters of both Congress and the courts, not to overthrow the Constitution, but to overthrow men who pervert the Constitution.” — Abraham Lincoln

Health Care

I am praying about health care. I am praying that today is not the day my country goes officially socialist. God, please, bless the United States.

Boys v. Girls: Different

The Common Room has a post that is exceptional:

However, the female response to stress is completely different, and prompts instead a decreased heart rate and blood flow to the brain, dizziness, nausea — all of it triggering a desire to hug and be hugged, he said.

Moving Requirements

Fix the wooden floors. $
New carpet on the stairs at least, probably upstairs entirely. $$$
Fix bathroom ceiling. $
Replace kitchen and bathroom paper. $$

Get a cover for the hot tub.
Fix the fences.
Replant the front yard. (I lost most of my pretty plants to the cold.)
Paint the media room and the hall and R’s office.

Move some bookcases and furniture into storage to make the house seem bigger.
Set up the teen room either to look like a teen room or to look like a workout room.
Move the china cabinet into the dining room.
Put a smaller table in the dining room.
Clean out my office.
Get the electricity in the teen room fixed.

Preferable, but not required:
Get the electricity for the hot tub fixed.
Paint the whole house inside.
Replace all the carpet.

That’s a lot of stuff to do. It’s especially a lot when R and I are working full-time. It might be a job for M to do, though. We could pay him for the work… But he wouldn’t want to do it and we need someone who would actually get the work done.

I might want to talk to Lou about who revamps his houses for him.

Of course, this is all assuming that my alma mater comes through with a job for me.

Job search updates

I received two calls today. One is for a phone interview. One is for a follow-up face-to-face interview. I guess I passed the phone interview.

I also found another position at the high end of my preferences and applied to that. They were supposed to start reviewing candidates today, so I am a bit behind in applying.

I didn’t hear from the alma mater yet. Because it is now spring break, I don’t expect to hear from them until at least next week.

I have now made progress on 3 of the 8 applications I put in for jobs this semester. One I don’t really want to make progress on. Those guys don’t like their work.

So, preferences:
alma mater and techwrit job about the same- different benefits, drawbacks
nearer cc– better driving time, but limited class options
farther ccs– better class options, longer drives
SLAC– I love the faculty, but when three people tell you that you don’t want the job, you probably don’t want the job.
nearest cc-the one where the faculty don’t like their students and they didn’t hire me last year

I’d say the problem is that I might hear from one before I hear from the rest, but really, if I hear from one, unless God drops a bowling ball out of the sky near my foot (I was going to say on my head, but I don’t want that!), I will assume that is the one I am supposed to take.

That means my alma mater waiting to call isn’t a positive sign, of course. I’m okay with that. We found a “dream” house there, but who wants to move? There is lots of work involved in that. Plus our salary will be cut by 2/3s.

How long will it take techwrit to get back to me? Possibly forever. I think my cover letter was good for them, but the CV doesn’t look like what they want. However, I can only do what I can do, so …

At the rate that CCF (far) is going, if they like me, I might have a final interview by the first week of April. However, I didn’t make it last time I got to that point with another college, due to age issues. So I don’t know how the Search Committee will feel about that.

Three weeks from now I might know about a full-time job next year. Or I might not. Not all schools are good about calling back and letting folks know if they are rejected.

So, what does that mean for me? It means I should get going on my writing and try to get more publications. It means I should focus on the more advanced stuff I am interested in, since I have plenty of the lower level stuff coming out in publications, etc.

I looked in my alma mater’s jobs and there is one that R could do well. The pay would probably be abysmal, but if he wanted to do it, he could.

Of course, we are talking about him staying here with M while M finishes his last official year of high school. M says there is no need for that. He can graduate this year.

If we decided to go together, we’d have to really move to get the house organized and fixed up for sale. It would be quite a stretch in terms of time. Of course, I’m not sure how we’ll do it next year either.

If we were moving, should I drop my Maymester class and work on the house? Probably.


I have an interview today with a sister college of one I teach at. The drive is long, but the potential for growth is huge.

I am looking forward to the interview and hope I do well.

Integrating Two Things

As part of a job application I have to write a philosophy statement of faith and learning.

Goofing off, I wrote this:

Education without faith is dead. For degrees will pass, classes will cease, and intellectual stimulation is not the be-all and end-all of life. Faith calls us to an eternal experience that supersedes all education, but can use our education to the benefit of others.

Does God Talk to Us?

This is particularly relevant to me.

R and I asked God for an answer as to whether we should apply for this job that is at my alma mater. I had a long conversation in my head with God in which he said no. However, in the past, long conversations with God have primarily been my own invention. That is, I get an answer and then I go on a two-way conversation that I invent myself to make sense of his response.

I am not sure I actually heard from God on the no.
R didn’t hear at all.

God knows way more than I do and I do not want to move my family halfway across the state for a situation that would be worse for them than where we are.

I do, however, want to have friends again and enjoy my teaching.

So… What does this mean for me?

It means that I still don’t know what God is saying about the application. We are moving forward with what could be a HUGE change in our family’s life… but I’m not sure we should.