Advice to New Faculty, or, Fantasy Letters #101, #007, #99, and #0

If I had ever actually sent these I would have been a busybody. When the events took place — and it was not one, but several different occasions — I practically sat on my hands so as not to send them.


Dear Junior Faculty,

Please do not try to intercede in this matter. Your efforts are unnecessary and only make the candidate look undignified. They are also stressing hir out. Lay off, will you?


Dear Senior Faculty,

This is National Smile at the Candidate week! Ze is besieged by lower level vampires who want to feed off hir state of nerves. Normal collegial contact with people in touch with reality is needed at this time.


Dear Candidate,

You are not obliged to be hospitable and listen to advice and “support” from people who know not whereof they speak. Phrases like “I am taking care of it,” “I have advice from senior faculty on it,” and “I have already discussed it as much as I need to” are useful to have in one’s arsenal. It is sometimes useful to practice them ahead of time.


Dear Candidates Nationwide,

Every minute you spend listening to the “helpful” advice of lower level vampires is a minute you spends further depleting and not replenishing yourselves. I should know — I was Reeducated! You don’t have to do it.

Realize too that if you do not win this award, you will see the Return of the Vampires. They will want to have a drink and talk about it! They will spend great amounts of your time and energy in this manner! The answer to that is, “I am very busy now.”


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