Saturday, February 27, 2010

Two more "Geeking with the Wife" columns

Episode 4: Bulls and Bears

I promise that I'm working on my dissertation and various individual poems, but this is the most fun I'm having while writing in the past month. Sigh?

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Geeking with the Wife, Episode 3: Go Big or Go Home

Another Week, Another Geek(ing with the Wife)

Now with more pictures!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Chuck Norris is wrong (as usual)

I like using Chuck Norris in my Introduction to Composition classes. He has a regular op-ed column that appears at creators.com. I like using him for two reasons. One, when presented with an open field of seven or eight potential writers, students almost invariably choose Norris. Two, his tactics are fairly transparent (for analysis) and poorly-thought-out, allowing us to examine what not to do on paper #3.

The most recent issue I take is with the column my students selected today: "Is Justin Bieber in Danger?" In it, Norris half-joking says that the danger to 15-year-old Bieber is not Norris himself (Bieber Photoshopped the two of them together) but the federal government's increased spending and debt. Alert to my liberal friends - I agree with Norris that spending/debt is out of control. The trillions of the federal government owes will bite us big time, and sooner rather than later. That being said, Norris uses the silly and tired argument that the Founding Fathers disapproved of all debt. He quotes Thomas Jefferson:

who counseled to "put off buying anything until we have the money to pay for it." Jefferson also admonished, "The conclusion then, is, that neither the representatives of a nation, nor the whole nation itself assembled, can validly engage debts beyond what they may pay in their own time."

while ignoring one of John Adams's earliest assignments - to acquire debt by taking out a loan from the Netherlands. It is in the degree, not the existence, that our current government (and past governments) fail(s). I'm serious, Jefferson, the man behind the Louisiana Purchase (the original one, not the crap scandal-of-the-week one), famously spoke out of both sides of his mouth. And when it came time for action, which speaks loudest, he took on debt if he was convinced that it was for the betterment of the nation.

Again, I'm not saying Norris is wrong in that the fed is making a massive mistake. But in painting these black and white terms and attempting to rally history on his side, he just makes himself look foolish.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Spam

Hey, folks. I know some of you out there are reading, but the only comments I'm getting are spam. Are you just reading quietly? Have I become boring? I'll be getting back to more poetry-related posts soon if that helps.

[insert uncertain emoticon here]

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Real Estate

Another week, another Geeking with the Wife. This also lets the cat out of the bag: we're buying a house in Martin, TN. I've left this information of out my blog posts because I didn't want the possibility of it messing with my own job search, but Kate landed a tenure-track position at the University of Tennessee at Martin. She was actually offered three jobs, and after long discussions about what would be best for her career, what offered me an opportunity to teach as well, and what looked like a good place to start a family, we decided on Martin. In less happy news, I believe that I've gotten all the rejections I'm going to get from this go-round of job applications. We'll see how adjunct work pans out in Tennessee.