All We Want for the Holidays
Since U of All People is as multicultural as its name suggests, this time of year we celebrate Kwanzaa, Christmas, Hanukkah, Chanukah, New Year’s, early Ramadan, something the provost calls “The Festival of Budget Overruns,” and whatever else we can squeeze into a crowded December calendar. One commonality that ties all these events together is the receiving of gifts, though the administration admits that last year’s mass-distribution of “Recession-Proof Meal Coupons” was in poor taste. On the other hand, the Winkelman football trophy left out of its display case in the Tyro Athletic Facility was not intended as a gift and should be returned immediately.
Will we ever get what we deserve? One can always hope. Hoping is one of our favorite sports here at UAP, just below synchronized complaining. As the holiday season approaches, here’s our wish list:
An executive decision-maker, the kind in the shape of a foot-high X, half-filled with a fuzzy blue fluid that dribbles into either YES or NO after you shake it up -- for the Dean of Students who can’t make up her mind when it comes to apportioning money to certain student organizations who asked her last April and have the e-mails to prove it.
A forced retirement package for French professor Myra Viveash, who’s been at UAP for over forty years and who was mistaken by a recent campus tour guide for Our Founder. Note: the package is the wish of the Modern Language department and not that of Professor Viveash, who has affixed a motto to her office door, “Après moi, le déluge.”
A new piece of chalk for the seminar room in Norton Hall.
Extra memory space, either through a RAM implant that the computer lab says is almost feasible, or just the added brainpower of an office assistant, for the secretary in the assistant assistant provost’s office who continually forgets to send out half the memos, and by the way, we still need those notes from the Furlough Committee meeting of September 4th.
A new, expanded parking lot to replace the new parking lot that was made available last Tuesday.
Some real money and benefits for the staff, instead of those stupid perks like “Discount Day at the Bookstore” and “Staff Appreciation Day” that add up to nothing.
An endowed chair for Professor Hiram Niggles in the political science department, who’s been lobbying for it since 1981, the publication date of his one book, The Politics of the Reagan Administration.
An upright, wooden chair for Adjunct Professor Ted Bupkis, so that he can take a seat alongside Instructors Cindy Cram, N. Hale, and Dorothy Huddle, in the converted janitorial closet they’ve been given to hold student conferences.
A new copying machine for the Multi-Purpose Faculty Technology Center, to replace the one that went on the fritz last March. The scribe’s kiosk set up outside the facility was funny only for the first week.
Some new lecture notes for Professor Mortimer Vellum, who’s been using the same yellowing sheaf for History 205: American History Since 1865, since 1985. And a new literature anthology for Professor Ray Iterate, who’s by now memorized all the words to Macbeth, “Ode on a Grecian Urn,” and “The Lottery.”
A replacement ping pong table in the Student Center to replace the old one, after “Mitts” McGonigle furrowed a deep groove in it with a pool stick, thinking he was knocking the cue ball and missing spectacularly.
An extra-dimensional, null-time, wormhole passageway from Aaronson Hall at the south end of campus to Zapatos Hall at the north end, so that students can get to class on time.
Two chili peppers on RateMyProfessors.com for old Professor Ben Broadbeam in the mathematics department. That should make his day, no, his year -- or the next 10 years to come, as well as showing his ex-wife that he’s still got what it takes.
A holiday bonus. Just kidding. Ho ho ho.
David Galef is happily employed as an English professor at Montclair State University, not, thankfully, at U of All People.