Tuesday, January 15, 2008

my school is effed up, part 688383995062

because i'm doing full time work and full time school, i decided that one of my courses should be a distance course. i signed up for one called "community informatics". i have no idea what it's about, but it was offered by distance, which was the primary stipulation. classes started last week, and i ramped up my school email usage to daily checks to make sure that i wasn't missing the introductory email, getting to know you, syllabus delivery, assignment and grading expectations spiel that usually heralds the beginning of a new course. i was greeted with a resounding silence.

since my life is currently being lived in carefully calibrated and fixed slots of time which are as interrelated and co-dependent as the global stock exchange, or subway traffic in tokyo, any one thing that veers ever-so-slightly off course can mess up my schedule and royally f**k me. THAT WILL NOT BE ALLOWED. when friday rolled around last week, i bit the bullet and contacted my registrar, asking what the deal was, as i hadn't heard a peep from either my faculty OR the professor for the course. the response? "__ has emailed the prof and when she hears from him she'll get back to you" doesn't anyone else think it's ludicrous that the onus is on ME to get the ball rolling?

fine, i can kind of deal with that. even if it does show a startling and appalling lack of organization. on monday (yesterday) i receive an email from the prof that says that the class is now being offered in 2 consecutive weekends of face to face sessions. friday, 1-5pm, saturday and sunday 9-6pm. at this point, having all the ammunition i needed, i unleashed a torrent of outraged, indignant, strident emails that were nonetheless coated in an excruciatingly saccharine, facetious verbosity (my specialty). i emailed the dean! the vice-dean! the registrar! the vice-dean in charge of student affairs! the professor!

it's patently ridiculous though. how could you CHANGE THE COURSE times after the first week of class had already started? the reason people take distance courses tends to be because they don't want/have time for face to face interaction. how could they NOT inform the students until one of the students decided to take matters into their own hands and initiate some kind of dialogue? anyway, i made them switch me into another distance class that was full and had closed enrollment. there was no way i was taking no for an answer, though!

the end result is now i'm taking a class on "advocacy" which means i have to sit around work and skip another class, so that i can be available for a teleconference session. wack!

in other news, i submitted injury reports for my two players online to the committee that hosts our dodgeball league. i received an email from one of the administrators along the lines of this: "hi karl. thanks for submitting the injury report. it seems like you reported a broken arm twice with two different names. can you let me know WHICH player broke their arm for my records? thanks" whereupon i had to sheepishly email back that i had in fact gotten it right and two of my players had broken their arms and that no, i wasn't beating them with heavy metal rope chains and that there were witnesses to attest that i never touched them. i feel the stink of culpability staining my every communication with the league, like how parents must feel when they bring their kid into emergency with some stitches and have to face the accusatory hawk-eyed glares from the broody nursing staff. yikes.

i packed leftover veggie lasagne for dinner, but the moussaka and the giant white chocolate macadamia nut cookie i bought from the cafe in the basement (i've had a weakness lately for white chocolate macadamia nut cookies) has made me quite full. i'll save it for night class tomorrow.

fin.

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