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October 2008 Archives

My amazing Com Media Teaching Assistants pose with olde Professor Dumbledore on the staircase of the Main College Building.


Comment on Halloween.

I really did paint my face blue when I read scary stories in the dormitory livingrooms. I still enjoy reading. For the Safe Halloween Party I stand on the stage of the renovated Alumnae Hall and perform for a crowd of neighborhood children. I use my big voice to drown them out. They raise the racket to drown me out. Such good fun.


Comment on Reading.

When Bianca J. ("You're a star, yes you are, yes you are . . .") spoke, forever, at Commencement, forever, she insulted the United States, was booed, and I was embarrassed. Mortified.

When Eve Ensler, author of The Vagina Monologues, spoke at Commencement, she was wonderful, thrilling and fantastic. I was proud. Thrilled. In awe.

As David Gullette teaches his Shakespeare class this semester he is doing it for the last time.

Shakespeare. The curriculum of St. John's College is based exclusively on the most important books of Western Civilization. I envy them. I have no use for technology which is not functioning as I need it, when I need it. Shakespeare is a good read.

Before Christmas was politically uncorrect (P.unC.) David Gullette read at the Simmons Christmas Concert along with deans, students and presidents. I saw him read scary stories in the dorm living rooms for halloween. I have a video of him reading A Child's Christmas in Wales. I saw him perform Samuel Beckett's play Krapp's Last Tape in a small, theatre room in Cambridge.

Did I say that David "reads"? David Gullette simply transcends the spoken word every time he performs. Skip your meetings, meals and classes, and sneak into Shakespeare.


Comment on Oct 9 Simmons Voice.

Simmons alumna Heather O'Neill, CNN documentary producer, shares a moment with her old Communications professor.


Comment on Old Friends.

When the Department of Communications launched the careers of the women who grace the Wall of Honor, Professor Alden Poole was Chair.

When then Interim President Dan Cheever first addressed the Simmons community publicly, he had a timeline of the college posted as we entered and we added personal comments with our Magic Markers. During the gathering Dan saw that I had listed my own birthday and asked what I'd like as a present. I asked him for the President's reserved parking space which he had just given up along with the idea of an Imperial Presidency. He appreciated my sense of humor. I did not receive the space.

When President Susan Scrimshaw responded to my fears that the "grassy quad" would be all concrete, she said, "My dream is of a green 'urban oasis', with trees (yes, they will grow), with a corner or two to sit and read a book or think.I dream of paths which are not straight, but which force us to break our deliberate strides.I see art, and a lot of green." Oh well, I guess we can always spray paint it.

When Gwen Ifill moderates the vice presidential debates I will be remembering. I paid good cash money to attend Simmons' First Black Alumnae Symposium, and I cut her out of the crowd and greeted her in what was seen as a mutual bear hug. She surprised me years before by recognizing me sitting at the bar of a fine hotel (I must have been there by accident) and by delighting her friends by clearly enunciating my name. And proclaiming some imaginary nonsense about the professor with the long white beard. Hugs ensued. She always mentions Professor Alden Poole. And Gwen Ifill so loves Simmons.


Comment on September 28 Simmons Voice.

It is not on page 29 of the 2008-2010 Catalog. At least I couldn't find it there when I looked. Honor Code of Responsibility. Where the heck was it?

I found it on-line. Student Handbook. You see I was wondering if students are supposed to turn in other students they see cheating? Do they still tell you that?

I had to look under "Judicial System" to find that. My gosh what a lot of her/him & she/he. What's wrong with "they" and "them"? But I digress. Did I put that question mark in the right place at that close quote?

So, see cheating? Be encouraged to urge the person to report themselves.

You see, I got this e-mail from Human Resources about "whistle blowing", a new Simmons policy on reporting financial slugmuggery. I was a bit taken aback. Of course my "morale" not to be confused with my morals, is extraordinarily high - it has to be to attain the rank and title of Cheerful Professor. But the morale of many of my colleagues is pretty dismal, considering the financial state of this institution outlined on the Voice's front page last week.

My first reaction was first (yes, I said that twice), "Is this the best way to bolster morale, Human Resources?" and then to huff and puff with all kinds of ideas to report to the secret whistle blowing website. My gosh, you know, it was millions of dollars.

I am Googeling "punctuation and quotation marks" now.

Oh, do you think I got around to making a point?


Comment on September 21 Simmons Voice.

A farewell poem

she showed me
The Cupboard
Under The Stairs
at Lee Street
the President's home
there is one
a Cupboard Under The Stairs
she showed me
we both love Harry Potter
a Lady walked among us


Comment on April 26 Simmons Voice.

Don't ever invite a Vampire into your house, you silly boy.

Thus, the fine character actor Edward Hermann, delivers these lines in the 1987 film The Lost Boys. And so begins the climactic battle between good and evil once again. You see, people should be careful about whom they invite into their homes.

You see, people should be careful what they wish for.

You see, I was invited to become part of this web logging project. Invited.



Comment on Why I Agreed 2 B Part of this Project.

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