17 thoughts on “In This Sign I Will Conquer

  1. Pingback: In This Sign I Will Conquer | @the_arv

  2. Pingback: In This Sign I Will Conquer | Reaction Times

  3. Sad that it even needs to be said to people who call themselves adults.
    In some of my classes, I distribute pdf materials to the students, which gives them the excuse of saying that they are only accessing it on their phones (not Dungeons and Dragons, or Facebook, mind you).

    We despair of getting our students’ noses out of their phones, and yet several times now at faculty meetings, someone’s phone has gone off and its owner has exited the room! It’s getting hopeless.

    • I too send PDFs to my students but my rule is that they must print them out and consult the hard-copy in the classroom. (The university gives each student a generous printing allowance, so my modest demand is no skin off anyone’s nose.)

  4. “I was too busy texting” is nowadays in many cases the honest although non-appearing epitaph. The State of New York has been running a television spot addressed to people who step obliquely into the thoroughfare with their backs to on-coming traffic as though their cellphones, on which they are performing some obsessive and meaningless activity, generated an invisible shield of starship Enterprise-like invulnerability. Living near and teaching on a college campus, I see this every day.

    The cellphone is the external sign (this is a paradox) of total internal emptiness. It is a succubus. It is a plague.

    • The State of New York has been running a television spot addressed to people who step obliquely into the thoroughfare with their backs to on-coming traffic as though their cellphones, on which they are performing some obsessive and meaningless activity, generated an invisible shield of invulnerability.

      Ha! The State of Oklahoma ran a radio spot a couple years back admonishing the general public to keep in mind that “Emergency Rooms are for … Emer-gen-cies.”

      I thought it humorous, because dumb, at the time; I could (and can) hardly see how the spot could/can have its (apparent) desired effect. When you raise up several generations of dependents who think a minor cut or a minor cough is an “emergency,” well of course your ERs are going to be over-taxed with bullsh*t non-emergency cases.

      • Emergency-room physicians use an acronym to refer to the kind of patient about whom you write: GOMER (“Get Out of My Emergency Room”).

  5. I just used my phone to refresh me on what is a succubus which saved time over dredging out Webster’s to post this comment.

  6. For this year, I have fitted a 24 slot mail box cubby unit to the wall of my (high school) classroom and attached the largest power strip I could find. It is decorated with a picture of Narcissus gazing at an image of himself on Instagram in the screen of a large smartphone where his pool would normally be. Students will be required to deposit their phones here at the beginning of class.

    I hope this works because 34% of my Latin 1 students failed last year, and electronic onanism with phones was a major factor for them all.

  7. Easy hack for teachers: make part of classroom participation grade be about written note taking. Hard to cellphone while note taking. Only problem is that best way to administer this is to take a quick photo of students notes (with cellphone?)

    • I lecture a good deal, but unless I make explicit the “NO CELLPHONES” rule, the electronic onanism goes on.

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