March 04, 2005

Weird noise ringing through the halls of the academy

Today in my mailbox, I found a memo from the university bookstore telling me that they want all books orders for the fall.

HAVE THESE PEOPLE LOST THEIR MINDS? Is anyone out there thinking about fall right now? Is there a faculty member in the country, the universe, or even the whole galaxy who is all caught up with grading papers, who has the whole rest of the semester planned out, and who is now leisurely planning out fall semester?

Yeah, if any of you out there in the land of blog are in that position, please do not comment. I do not want to hear from you. I would prefer to hear whining and ranting.

Swwccckkrrunvch. That is the sound you hear when fall semester zooms backwards and crashes into spring semester. Better cover your ears because it's not a pretty sound.

15 comments:

Scrivener said...

You mean you haven't mapped out each detail of your fall schedule? Sheesh, where have you been? I ordered my exam copies for the fall on the second day of the spring semester, and I pored through them a couple of weeks ago. I've just made my final selections and I've got them all stacked up right here on my desk. Now I'm just waiting for email to come from my bookstore so I can shoot them the details.

Dr. Crazy said...

You're preaching to the choir, jo(e). According to the dimwit bookstore guy here the reason that they "need" the orders so early is so that when it comes time for book buy-back they'll give the students more money if they know that the books will be used in the coming semester. So in other words, not only are faculty supposed to feel guilty for not having their courses perfectly mapped out months in advance but also they should feel guilty for ruining students' chances to make an extra 50 cents when they sell back those oh so useless books that we make them buy. The truth of it is this: in the age of computers, they don't "need" these orders more than one month before the semester begins. And I refuse to have this be one more thing that I stress out about.

jo(e) said...

Crazy: Yeah, I have no intention of meeting their deadlines. I know from my experience that I can wait until August .... and most of my students get books off the internet nowadays because it's cheaper.

Scrivener, just shut up before I slap you.

Scrivener said...

Help! Help! I'm being repressed!

jo(e) said...

Scrivener: Just trying to teach you some manners. For the good of the community!

Lucky for you that you are holding a baby in that photo or I'd be even meaner ....

Pilgrim/Heretic said...

What's even better is that despite the fact that I actually do order books when they ask me to, NOT ONCE in the three years I've been at current institution have I had a semester when they all arrived on time. NOT ONCE.

Pilgrim/Heretic said...

Scrivener's being repressed! Come see the violence inherent in the system!

anbruch said...

I make it a point to be the bookstore's worst nightmare. Inevitably I get around to ordering my textbooks about two weeks before the semester starts. The students have never complained. As P/H points out, the book is either in stock or it's not, and if it's not, it doesn't matter how soon you order it.

My only regret about ordering late is that our bookstore gives us nice little engraved glasses when you order on time. Then when you've collected eight of these glasses, they give you a nice glass decantor.

jwb

Pilgrim/Heretic said...

Wow, Jimbo! What do you have to do to get the booze to put in it?

~profgrrrrl~ said...

Yup. My book orders were due in on 3/1. And students are already emailing and asking about a syllabus. Ugh!

Ianqui said...

Don't worry--I got that email from the bookstore too and promptly deleted it. (Although now that I think about it, I'm teaching the same course as last year and don't plan on changing the book, so maybe I should go ahead....) The reading packet--now, that's a *much* bigger problem.

Bill Tozier said...

Time to consider Open Source class materials. No ordering, no fuss, no muss.

Somebody will need to write them, is all....

dr. m(mmm) aka The Notorious P.H.D. said...

First, I'm not caught up with last semester yet. Second, I never know until the last minute if I'll even be rehired, so I can't make a book order anyway (one of the very few privileges of being my department's bitch). Third, I've got the book reps banging on my office door asking me to make my orders. And I still get all the emails asking me to make book orders.

jess said...

I've got to say...I worked at my college bookstore for over four years and it really does make a difference when you get the order in. As far as students selling books back, if you don't have the order in they might get $1. If you're using it again, they might get $10. Makes them a whole lot happier. And oooh, those trust fund kids can be nasty when they don't get their money ;) But seriously. This is SO early for orders - but please give the bookstore slaves a leetle bit of respect.

comebacknikki said...

Fall semester? I'm still waiting for my fourth book to arrive in the bookstore for the *spring* semester... and spring break starts in two weeks!