Octopus' Garden

Monday, January 16, 2006


Background Information:

Name: Artichoke Heart

Department: Department of Perpetual Wistfulness Interspersed with Intermittent Bouts of Chagrin

Date: January 16, 2006

Rank: Associate Professor of Perpetual Wistfulness

Degrees in Reverse Chronological Order:

M.F.A. in Muse Chasing (a.k.a. Learning to Become Whimsy and Caprice’s Bitch)
M.M. in Misanthropic Tendencies Coupled with Social Maladroitness
B.M. in Filial Disappointment

Expectations, consistent with institutional policies and subject to the concurrence of the dean and vice president, for faculty unit member performance with respect to teaching and academic advising, research, scholarship and creative activity, and service during the evaluation period as per comment of department head pursuant to Section ____.

To try and not be an asshole, to play nice with colleagues (even ones that bite), to give Students of Perpetual Wistfulness whatever they need, to successfully keep Onerous Avalanches of Administrivia at bay, to chase the muse to hell and back and somehow make sure not to come back empty-handed.

Describe your major assigned responsibilities during the evaluation period:

(a) Assist Students of Perpetual Wistfulness in any way possible;

(b) Demonstrable Muse Chasing;

(c) Serve in excruciatingly important administrative capacity as Departmental Mermaid (even though no one really ever knows whether or not to take the Departmental Mermaid seriously, and even though I had initially hoped for something much more unassuming -- not as unassuming, say, as Departmental Albatross, of course -- but perhaps something more along the lines of Departmental Crouton, or whatnot); and

(d) Chair subcommittee in charge of drafting gob-smackingly significant assessment document on The State of the Artichoke Heart.

Proposed major performance objectives for the next evaluation period:

(a) Acquiesce to the fact that I must once again learn to dance the Tarantella;

(b) Learn to become more forthcoming about when something makes me want to bioluminesce (or else maybe just shut up about it and keep it to my own damn self, for fuck’s sake . . . I go back and forth on this . . . opinions/suggestions welcome);

(c) Write a short story in the shape of a Russian nesting doll;

(d) Work on a novel;

(e) Play hooky on the first windy day in spring and spend all afternoon flying my heretofore unlaunched but most exceedingly marvelous Jellyfish Kite;

(f) Remember to just be;

(g) [ t h i s s p a c e l e f t i n t e n t i o n a l l y b l a n k ]; and

(h) Develop a super power, preferably something along the lines of Mothra’s antennae?

Assessments and recommendations re: faculty member’s performance to be completed by Immediate Administrative Supervisors in Comments Box below:
posted by Artichoke Heart at 1:50 PM


Pass Go. Collect $200. Stay amazing.
Blogger Lee Herrick, at 6:34 PM  

1) Use the following words/phrases in one sentence: bioluminesce, heretofore, Departmental Albatross, and Onerous Avalanches of Administrivia.
2) Integrate large scale Octopus Kite into evaluative form: http://waddell.ci.manchester.ct.us/2-octopus-page/pages/octopus-kite-peter-lynn.htm


1) Read Lee, and give me half.
Blogger David, at 8:58 PM  
This post RULES. You're my favorite writer in the WHOLE entire WORLD.

Love, T.
Blogger Turquoise, at 10:26 PM  
Just for the record, the Immediate Administrative Supervisor would prefer not to provide either assessments or recommendations, but has been completely overwhelmed by Administrivia and is therefore (heretofore?) no longer responsible for her actions, even though she continues to be responsible for all manner of other things.
Anonymous Anonymous, at 11:24 PM  
Dear IAS:

I'm so sorry that you're overwhelmed by Administrivia to the point of meltdown. Do I need to send in an extraction crew to rescue you? Perhaps a bulldozer? Hired guns?

Blogger Artichoke Heart, at 3:57 PM  
And thank you, T!!!
Blogger Artichoke Heart, at 3:58 PM  
haha this is too funny. ps. i LOVE that jellyfish kite.
Blogger cornshake, at 9:53 PM  
Oh, I think you missed: "(d.2) Start writing memoir...."
Blogger Tom, at 12:19 AM  
I'm with A.N. on the jellyfish kite.

Enjoyed this.

Found your blog via corn shake by the way.

Blogger Kells, at 11:47 AM  
I note that everyone has a super power, though they are often somewhat more modest than super-vision or Mothra's attennae. My own super power, for instance, is getting vague feelings about the likely outcome of some proposed action. So imagine us sitting around chatting with the other X-Men in the X-Men headquarters.

Blasting Ray Guy: Let's go attack the Bad Guy's citadel!

Me: Umm, well, uh, I don't think so.

Thunderstorm Woman: Or we could raid his mountain hideout!

Me: Uhhhhh ... yeah. Yeah, that's probably OK.

My other super power is causing people to fall asleep. Again, it's not as impressive as invulnerability, say, or x-ray vision, but we all have to make do with the gifts that we are given.

Sometimes it goes off accidentally during meetings, and we're, like, Oh, sorry, you know, like Superman when his x-ray vision goes off inadvertently in a crowd and he's, like, Oh, gosh, ma'am, I'm so sorry.
Anonymous Plurp, at 12:42 PM  
Yay! I heart Mothra.
Blogger Sfrajett, at 3:22 AM  
Someone needs to hip the Webster’s people to “administrivia” right away. But there’s no real need, is there? Perhaps there’s some way for a language ecologist to track the progress of this attractive mutation into our lexicon? Quick – where are those tranquilizer darts? We need to get a radio-tracking collar onto this one!
Anonymous John, at 1:50 AM  

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