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Monday, 18 December 2006


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A White Bear

Seriously, Scott, just LAST NIGHT I was out with Unfogged people talking about how one of my friends knew this guy in college who is now this super-famous guy who calls himself "Girl Talk" and his work raises all these really interesting radical questions about the limitations of IP lawsuits. Last. Night.

Mike S

Don't sweat it, Scott. You've had it rougher than most.

By way of comparison, I likely won't the hit the market until Barack's second term.

N. Pepperell

Hey... Sorry this has gotten to you... :( There's a scattershot dimension to reading on the web - people can miss things, particularly given how rarely you have commented on these issues. If it helps, these sorts of emails at least do reflect that you have managed to write through all of this with a wit and style that have kept people from suspecting that anything might be keeping you from working in top form...

Adam Roberts

"... I'd been taught to keep my pain to myself and not make excuses, I kept it to myself, didn't make excuses and continued to teach ... a Jew with a Puritanical work ethic..."

You are certainly one of the most English American Jews I've ever known. Bravo. If you could just come clean about your liking for (a) tea and (b) cricket, then, man, you could simply move to a small village in Hertfordshire and call yourself Nigel.

Rich Puchalsky

This is truly the most horrible time of the year, isn't it? All those people bothering you about whether you're on track for where they think you're supposed to be for next year -- the chance to look back on how much you've done this year, as compared to some ideal -- the holiday "arrangements". Anything that you have to arrange is not a holiday.

I think that someone should theorize exactly why the MLA chose to set its yearly conference at this time. Sure, ostensibly it's supposed to be because everyone is free (consider the implications of that word) between Christmas and New Year's, I'd guess. But in a more Foucouldian sense (not that I'd know what that is) I suspect that it's a disciplinary move, a panopticon plopped down among the festivities to say that your colleagues know where you are, and that you'd better be working on your presentation / job interview prep / networking outfit.

Wait a minute -- am I supposed to be cheering you up or something?


Scott, all 3 of those things are guaranteed to bring me back for more. I doubt it's ever come up, but my undergrad honors thesis had a whole lot to do with Bakhtin. And I just heard Girl Talk for the first time recently, and I've always said there ought to be more inappropriate explosions in the academic blogosphere. Awesome.

Nigel Kaufman

I realize now the faux-exasperation sounds a little, well, exasperated. All the emails I've received concerning my job status have been overwhelmingly positive—some of them outright encouraging—but the need to tell and re-tell my sad tale weighed on my close-vested soul. This way, I only had to do it once.

AWB: There must be something in the air. Before I left for Houston, Joe">">Joe Kugelmass and I discussed Girl Talk in much the same way. Of course, neither of are within three degrees of separation from him, but still, it really is amazing—if frequently unsettling—to hear seventeen songs smashed into a single, looping beat: Pixies, Grandmaster Flash, Neil Diamond and is that Paula Abdul?

Unsettling, I say.

Mike, Adam, N.P., thank you for the kind words. Rich? Grrr... (kidding, kidding)

Uncomplicatedly: Explosions? Oh, you ain't seen nothing yet.

The Constructivist

Try show trials and cage matches, too!

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