TITLE: Coming Up For Air
AUTHOR: Eugene Wallingford
DATE: March 06, 2009 8:01 PM
I have spent nearly every working minute this
week sitting in front of this laptop, preparing
a bunch of documents for an "academic program
assessment" that is being done campus-wide at
my university. Unfortunately, that makes this
week Strike Two.
This week: no
The next pitch arrives at the plate in about
a month... Will there be no
That would be an inglorious Strike Three indeed.
It would break my equivalent of
I have never missed a ChiliPLoP. But budget
rescissions, out-of-state travel restrictions,
and work, work, work are conspiring against
me. I intend to make my best effort.
Say a little prayer.
I hope that you can survive my missing SIGCSE,
as it will mean no
reports from the front.
Of course, you will notice two missing links on
my 2008 report, so I do have some material in
Missing SIGCSE was tougher than usual, because
this year I was to have been part of the
New Teaching Faculty Roundtable
on the day before the conference opened. I
was looking forward to sharing what little
wisdom I have gained in all my years teaching
-- and to stealing as many good ideas as I could
from the other panelists. Seeing all of the
firepower on the roster of mentors, I have no
doubts that the roundtable was a great success
for the attendees. I hope SIGCSE offers the
roundtable again next year.
Part of my working day today was spent in Cedar
Rapids, an hour south of here. Some of you may
recall that Cedar Rapids was devastated by
flooding last summer, when much of the eastern
part of the state was under 500-year flood
waters. I surprised and saddened to see that
so much of the downtown area still suffers the
ill effects of the water. The public library
is still closed while undergoing repair. But
I was heartened to see a vibrant city rebuilding
itself. A branch library has been opened at a
mall on the edge of town, and it was buzzing
You know, having a library in the mall can be
a good thing. It is perhaps more a part of
some people's lives than a dedicated building
in the city, and it serves as a nice counterpoint
to the consumption and noise outside the door.
Besides, I had easy access to excellent wireless
service out in mall area even before the library
opened, and easy access to all the food I might
want whenever I needed to take a break. Alas,
I really did spend nearly every working minute
this week sitting in front of this laptop, so
I worked my way right up to dinner time and
a welcome drive home.