Negotiations have taken a positive turn and I may go off strike soon. If I do I will still reserve the right not to post daily until after Labor Day, since I have ended up posting a great deal while on strike.
Today I am located at the Grand Village of the Natchez Indians because, as you know, I am Mayan. Sometimes I just have to get away from all these white people, so I am visiting my cousins. We have limited connectivity here on the mounds, but there is guest commentary from one Mr. S.
Mr. S. is grateful that I took him from the animal shelter, but frustrated that I am not learning the habits of his species as quickly as I might. I have not yet begun to hunt in his style, for instance, despite his showing me how. I should also spend more time in the garden and do more outdoor work. I should have more parties, so he could socialize more often with more people, and more children, so he could be carried around all day. Finally, he wants me to set up one of my tents on the lawn and sleep outdoors on all but the hottest and coldest nights.
Mr. S. has taken notes on some of my random thoughts. They are as follows.
Should YOU want to be a professor? All blogs discuss this question incessantly. The problem is that it is often a moot question by the time you are close to being one or are one. One’s friends rationalize it in increasingly hair splitting terms. It is alleged one can do nothing else, or that one is “so good at it” one should make just one more sacrifice to stay. It is all well and fine, so long as you do not give up certain very basic expectations, to wit:
1) Abusive work environments are not acceptable.
2) Work environments with nothing to offer in your field but teaching may be acceptable but may resemble community college or high school teaching jobs in your discipline more than they do professor jobs at the universities you went to. Be aware of this and look before you leap.
3) Work environments such as those described in (2) are expensive. You will need to travel more, buy more books, and make more photocopies. Be aware of this and plan.
Mysticisms. We have been talking for months now about possible healing devices for our various ills. Mayan, I believe in all kinds of magic. I had part of Reeducation removed by a proto-shaman and another part with acupuncture. I also beckon myself back to real life with a Marty Balin song. The idea of return is important and valid in my view, and all of the characters in my unfinished novel MADRID se mueren por volver [click on both of those links if you speak Spanish, you will die laughing].
My point, however, is that no amount of returning is enough, none will take root, unless one learns a few facts, such that it is not actually a good idea to relinquish power, and that certain behaviors really are unacceptable — and that they can be identified, and they have names. These points are fundamental and they are what Reeducation was structured to silence.