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Archive for March 2009

Rolling, with teeth

with 3 comments

It is March first and spring is supposed to be around the corner, but the temperatures are still in the teens. I hate the NPR show Prairie Home Companion (maybe too many family vacations listening to Garrison Kiellor), but I was driving home from home teaching last Sunday and it was on the radio and it was very funny. For those of you who live in places where it still gets into the single digits at night (tonight’s low is 9 degrees), it’s very relevant. Listen here. Click on Segment 1 in the left column and at the beginning, starting at about 2:15 listen to his soliloquy about spring, which is very clever, and then from about 24:30 when they start talking about the National Weather Service, where they chant and pray to the gods of snow and ice.

Here is something nice that the weather did on our front porch:

We have been keeping Felix warm in the cold with a new hat, made out of pants:

He likes playing with his toys on the floor. Logan gave him a toy that sings songs in English and Spanish when you push buttons. When you turn it on, it says “First Words Radio” in a really enthusiastic voice, but it actually sounds like it’s saying “earthworms radio.” Here he is, doing with it what any sensible person would do with a plastic radio (eat it):

And finally, a few more pictures. First, a couple of Felix waking up from his nap:

And one of him doing one of his favorite things, rolling on the bed:

He has sharp, jagged teeth now (two on top, two on bottom) and is still growing very tall. He went in for his 9-month checkup and has moved up from the 90th percentile for height to the 95th percentile. And yes, he’s still very trim, though he moved up a few percentile points in weight too. If he keeps going like this, he’ll have a great running, cycling, or swimming body, or maybe even volleyball (watch out Logan).

Also, as a reminder, there are more pictures of Felix on our Flickr page.

As most of the people who will read this know, I’m in the middle of a job search. My position (a visiting professorship) was approved to turn into a tenure-track position. That’s great because it means that I can be in a permanent position sooner, but it means that the department is required to do a national search to fill the position, so I’m competing for it with a bunch of other people. I’ve been applying to a bunch of jobs because it would be unwise to just expect to get the tenure-track job here. Well, this week I was informed that the department chair has called off the search. Those of you in academia know how unusual it is for a department to have a position approved by the university and then just call it off. A blog isn’t the right place to go into the reasons, but it has to do with political things in the department unrelated to me (it’s about the position itself, rather than any particular person who might occupy it). They want me to stay in the visiting position. In a way it’s nice, because it’s something dependable and stable for next year in this unstable economic environment, but of course it would be nicer to be in a tenure-track position. In my search, I’ve had a few interviews for tenure-track positions at other schools (and cut my hair short for them), and am quite interested in two of them (SUNY Fredonia (near Buffalo) and the University of New Mexico). I’ve only had a phone interview with UNM (generally, schools do phone interviews with 10 or so candidates, and then bring three finalists to campus for 1- or 2- day interviews, with a bunch of presentations and meetings), but there is some really great stuff going on there in my field and it would be very nice to be in a tenure-track job at a big research school, where my teaching load would be lighter and my own work would be better supported. But we really like Grand Rapids a lot and it would be very hard to leave. We don’t have any decisions to make right now, since nobody else has offered a job.

We like that the days are getting longer and hope the temperatures rise accordingly. Felix is just getting over his first sickness and this week is Spring Break for us, so it will be fun to spend more time together. I’m hoping to get my website up and I’ll post a link to it when I get it up.


Written by rapidgrowth

1 March, 2009 at 6:15 pm

Posted in Uncategorized