Friday, May 06, 2005

screaming into a pillow

I got an emailed response from a professor yesterday that has me so mad I’m ready to flake on the final exam. This professor is notorious for an unfortunate combination of ambiguous instructions and few office hours. His class has no text, only class notes, so if you don’t understand something, you have no recourse but to ask him. Especially since he makes you sign an I-didn’t-get-help-from-anyone-else-in-the-class agreement for each assignment.

Below is the email I’m too chicken to send. Maybe I will after graduation, but where’s the fun in sending an angry email if you aren’t angry anymore?

Professor,

To correct your metaphor, since "adulthood" doesn't happen immediately following birth, a mother will care for a child even after the umbilical cord has been cut. I would not have asked these questions if I didn't have good reason, and I certainly would not have bothered you with them had I not already read and re-read all of the course material/instructions. All I ask is that you give me the benefit of the doubt - I wasn't asking for a handout, simply clarification.

As you state, this work is indeed for me to complete, but when you say that this is not your exam, I disagree. Even you have to admit that your grading methods are exact, demanding not only that our data results match your own, but also our style, our aesthetics, even down to the choice of font size. This is most certainly your exam, and therefore it is your task as our guide and self-appointed “mother” to answer any reasonable question, no matter how asinine.

I'm sorry I am not bringing these points up in person, but I needed some time for my anger to subside and you are not on campus today. Please realize your last email was not only offensive and uncalled for, but the fact that you forwarded it to the entire class was exponentially more insulting, and certainly not in keeping with the respect I had for you up until yesterday.

I look forward to your response,
-Michael Garvey

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

how bad was the question you asked him??

Garvey said...

They were pretty benign questions, but relevant. And since he's a stickler for details, I didn't think it was audacious to ask him to elucidate. It's not like I asked "what's the answer to number 14?"

What burns my biscuits is that he just assumed I hadn't tried to find the answer myself, and then decided he'd use me to set an example for other students impertinent enough to question his directions.

Anonymous said...

Garvey I warned you about the 'forward to everyone in the class' policy!! Oh man, being Team 'O' really isn't helping anymore is it? I would love that email to be sent - terrible idea, but it would be great if we really could just write what we thought without much censorship, sometimes people need to hear it.

Garvey said...

Honestly, I'm not sure he'd even read it. I bet Frasier (the director of the mba program) would like to hear about it though.

Then again, one more week and I never have to think about that class/professor again.

alfiero poet said...

dr. jain
he's worse than rain
but you don't get wet
only pain

dr. jain
puts students to shame
pages of comments
only you're to blame

dr. jain
he drives you crazy
makes you drink
until things are hazy

dr. jain
what a big mess
all the students hate him
for causing distress

but in a few more days
you won't have to think
about how this shit stinks
although you can't stand
his boring lectures
snide comments
evil e-mails
POOR ATTITUDE
PENCIL DESTROYING FEEDBACK ALL OVER EVERY ONE OF YOUR ASSIGNMENTS NO MATTER HOW HARD YOU TRY TO FOLLOW HIS MINUTE FORMAL RULES DOWN TO WHAT TIME YOU SHOULD PICK UP YOUR DAMN PRINTER PAPER UP FROM FUCKING WALMART.

the end.