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April 22, 2009 - 3:24pm
OK, so it's Earth Day, and Greenback had some events, and the community of Backboro is having some events, and tonight we can all go to sleep feeling like we've accomplished something. But have we?
April 22, 2009 - 6:31am
 
April 21, 2009 - 9:19pm
(After the last few days, it's nice to focus on something else again.) I just finished another go-round of policy sleuthing. It usually works like this: A: So it's settled. We'll implement policy x this Fall. Good job, everyone! B: Wait a minute. Isn't there rule y that forbids implementing something like policy x unless it's a leap year? A: Really? C: Yeah, I remember that. Did that pass the Senate? B: I think so. Remember that huge fight? D: I still have nightmares about it. A: (sigh) So can we get a copy of rule y?
April 21, 2009 - 6:29am
  Thank you to all the supportive readers who left comments or sent emails after yesterday's post.I'm surprised to discover how much they've meant to me.
April 20, 2009 - 9:00pm
Lately I find myself wearing several hats. I’m chairing a committee to look into our first-year curriculum, for example, at the same time as I’m advising my daughter on her plans for her first year in college. The disjunction is stunning.
April 20, 2009 - 5:15pm
Last week, the EPA finally came to the scientifically obvious conclusion that greenhouse gases are pollutants worthy of regulation.
April 20, 2009 - 9:29am
A Letter from Key West To My Friend David, In Memory of his Sister, Eve Sedgwick   The southernmost sky is strange at ten at night,Still mildly blue with midday clouds and a calmWind that lifts the clouds to show a star dead white,Dead white and barely there above a palm's black head. The three macaws who shriek behind the palms have gone to bed And all the traffic in the tropics pauses for the moon. Your sister, you said last week, will be dead soon. II
April 19, 2009 - 9:14pm
This semester, my institution has been moving toward developing a family leave policy for faculty and staff. I'll start by being frank about the current situation: it is not a policy. It's a patchwork system, almost impossible to piece together and relying almost entirely on state and federal policies, with a single area of exception that only applies to faculty.
Dad
April 19, 2009 - 8:38pm
My Dad died Friday. He was 69. He was at home. He had battled ALS – Lou Gehrig's disease – for the last several years, and had been in hospice for several months. The last time I saw him was a few months ago. I had brought a camera with me, but when I saw him, realized that using it would be wrong. He deserved better than to be remembered that way. He knew it was coming. At the last visit, he made a point of showing me a pile of old family photos, and inviting me to take the ones I wanted. I took several from back when he and Mom were still married.
April 16, 2009 - 9:59pm
A savvy correspondent writes: I'm writing because my large urban public university recently hired a high-profile person who, in a previous job, lost an equally high-profile civil lawsuit against him for sexual harassment, and I wanted to ask for your views on what kind of faculty response to what some of us consider a troubling hire would be most likely to get administrators' attention. There is some thought of writing a kind of protest letter and making protesting noises to the press -- indeed, some have already been approached by the media for comment.

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