Archive for August 22nd, 2019

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August 22, 2019

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Begin again

August 22, 2019

Emerson wasn’t talking about summer’s end and the new school year’s beginning, was he, when he said power ceases in repose and resides in transition? Coulda been.

Yesterday was another college move-in day, schlepping stuff up three flights in oppressive heat, this time off-campus but much closer to home as Younger Daughter transfers to my school this year. The annual anticipation of a clean slate, a fresh start, and a roster of unblemished courses never gets old. The promise of a new year is almost intoxicating, no less so for being vicarious. I have my own new year coming too, of course, as a professor. But the student’s-eye-view is more expectantly thrilling, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to experience it again at immediate second-hand. (But do you really need such a big mirror, TV, etc.?)

It’s kinda all down-hill from here, though a bit less steeply than usual. Tomorrow morning is the annual Fall Faculty meeting, when my colleagues and I are enjoined to pack Tucker Auditorium – the space normally reserved for dramatic entertainments of a higher order – and receive our university president’s benediction for the new academic season. He’ll crow about our inclusion in this year’s Princeton Review. “One student says, ‘You can literally major in fermentation and learn about the process of brewing beer.'” Literally. “Overall, students agree: ‘This school is amazing, and it is such a hidden gem.’” Well alright us! 


Free lunch in the Student Union after the president dismisses us is always a good thing. Then a department staff meeting, which is apparently a necessary thing. Then, the new stadium beer garden will be inaugurated with a reception for faculty and staff. That’s an event with potential.

Friday, a bit more schlepping is scheduled. Saturday is convocation, which I’m excited about this year because the speaker will be Educated author Tara Westover. Her story, from Idaho to Cambridge, is astonishing. It should inspire our students. It inspires me.

Monday is Opening Day. Hope springs eternal. Transition is power.

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