my shelf tippeth over

photoForget what Stevie Smith said in that poem.  I am waving AND drowning.  In a steady wave of essays.  It’s just that season, and while at times I feel I’ve barely crested one wave before another crashes on my head, I remember what a good swimmer I am and just float through the rough patches, on my back, looking up into the sky.  There’s always an end to it.  The hardest part is not the grading.  It’s this bad book buying habit.  All of these books, and so little time.  About half way through Flamethrowers and still interested, but . . . will it pick up the pace once she gets to Italy?  Where will I make room for this book review I promised to do for that marketing rep at Little Brown?  And from there, what to read next?

 

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who said anything about cake?

Let them have As.

marie

 

UPDATE:  It really has come to this–English teachers, admit it!  And then read “The End of the Essay” by Rebecca Schuman via slate.com.

Some choice cuts:

Students of the world: You think it wastes 45 minutes of your sexting time to pluck out three quotes from The Sun Also Rises, summarize the same four plot points 50 times until you hit Page 5, and then crap out a two-sentence conclusion? It wastes 15 hours of my time to mark up my students’ flaccid theses and non sequitur textual “evidence,” not to mention abuse of the comma that should be punishable by some sort of law—all so that you can take a cursory glance at the grade and then chuck the paper forever.

What’s more, if your average college-goer does manage to read through her professor’s comments, she will likely view them as a grievous insult to her entire person, abject proof of how this cruel, unfeeling instructor hates her. That sliver of the student population that actually reads comments and wants to discuss them? They’re kids whose papers are good to begin with, and often obsessed with their GPAs. I guarantee you that every professor you know has given an A to a B paper just to keep a grade-grubber off her junk. (Not talking to you, current students! You’re all magnificent, and going to be president someday. Please do not email me.)

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