September 19th, 2002

Fishy Circumstances

Mere anarchy is loosed upon the department

My advisor idly wonders if anyone will ever graduate from my department again. Today was our administrative assistant's last day of work before he goes off to a new job in London (UK). We still have our invaluable Finance Officer, but they do very very different jobs. At least I'll still get paid, even if there may be no more degrees...

The way the union works means that Zag was unable to train his replacement. He gave far more than the required amount of notice, but it was still not enough to find his replacement in time. The union requires that there be a week wherein anybody in the relevant union who doesn't currently have a job be given first option to apply for it. Then there must be a week of general and widespread advertising. And only then can they interview the applicants from that general advertising round. Without an administrative assistant, well, many many many things will not be happening. And all this about a month before we host SHOT (the Society for the History of Technology conference).

More craziness is likely to descend upon the department in the form of a baby boom. We haven't had any departmental babies in about 3 years and it looks like the next half year or so may bring 3 infants into the department. In all cases, the fathers are the ones who are the students.
Fishy Circumstances

Good Things

I didn't finish all my Latin in time for class, but, having gotten sidetracked by gerundives, we never made it to the end of the passage anyways, somewhat to my relief. I feel so uncomfortable about the prospect of being called on for partially prepared material. I don't have the excuse of sight-reading, nor the confidence of having finished preparing. Knowing the vocabulary is rarely sufficient.

My orientation to ITER was today. I learned yesterday that ITER can not only be the name of the Medieval and Renaissance bibliography database I'm actually working for, but also it's the name of a fusion reaction project due to be built in Japan, Canada, or Europe. A professor and I had sixty seconds of crossed wires yesterday, culminating in him asking whether my fellowship was federally funded, or perhaps from the U.S.? If I was being funded by the fusion reactor project, I'd probably be getting a great deal more money out of the arrangement than I am. Please note I am not complaining about my funding here. I'm just saying there's more money in fusion reactors, generally speaking, than in bibliographic databases. At least to begin with, and possibly all year, I'll be working on cataloging Journal title histories and numbering deviants: here's an example of the sort of thing which comes out of this work.

I came home early (after saying goodbye to Zag) to watch the Slayers TRY dvds I rented yesterday. Just doing my UTARPA homework.

Tonight C. and I have having dinner at Cat's. Very kind of her to invite us.
Fishy Circumstances


I highly recommend pork chops cooked with marmalade and ginger. Dinner at Cat's was very good. We also had cooked tomatoes picked fresh from their garden's abundance, both cherry and yellow. Plus garlicky noodles and brownie pie for dessert. It's so nice to be treated to dinnner now and again. Good company - just a lovely evening really.