administration: it turns out I can do it, and it has its satisfactions for sure.  It’s not unlike teaching in that you have certain big ideas and opportunities you want everyone to experience, but you recognize that everyone’s individual experience is just that, individual, and some people are going to take a lot more of your time and attention than others.  Oh, and you don’t get to read–or at least not the things you really want to read.  I read the memos that issue from mysterious apertures in the university (hm! I didn’t know we had a vice president for community relations), and policy manuals and instructions for procedures (dealing with cheating, getting a student access to emergency funds, filling out the form that gets submitted with receipts).  I also read the books of our distinguished visitors, especially if I have to/get to go to dinner with them.  At dinner, of course, we rarely talk about their books, but about other people’s books, and airports, and gossip.

Administration is mostly an NLNRU topic.  I actually just searched for it on the blog and couldn’t find it, either as a tag or as a mention in a post.  Really?  Not in three years and 500 posts?  Let’s try “administrative.”  Oh yes, there we go: 31 instances.  Mostly attached to a vague word, as in “administrative work” or “administrative stuff.”  That makes sense, because administration, in my world, is like oxygen.  It’s everywhere, it makes everything function, but you don’t see it and you don’t think about it so much.  But you have to keep breathing.


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