An address from the former Adjunct Professor

On the Stanford Linguistics weekly newsletter, the Sesquipedalian, this morning (timestamped 7:36 am):

Artifact of the Month: Zwicky’s Linguistics Quilt
In the spirit of reminiscence, this month we bring you former Adjunct Professor Arnold Zwicky’s linguistics-themed quilt, composed of 12 t-shirts from different linguistics events…

(The quilt, and its component parts, can be viewed in my 12/11/19 posting “The linguistics quilt”.)

My Monty-Python-dense response (which the Sesqui might or might not choose to print, but you, my readers, can see it here):

I would like to complain, and don’t tell me this is abuse. Unless you know something I don’t, Stanford hasn’t dropped me from its roster of Adjunct Faculty (though some no doubt find me an embarrassment to the department and the university and would be pleased to have me taken out with the garbage). Further, I am not an ex-parrot, either; I am not pushing up any daisies. Fragile and withering, yes, but still kicking some. As I note regularly in my blog, like Mary Queen of Scots, I am Not Dead Yet. Perhaps you have confused me with the admirable Adjunct Lauri Karttunen, who has (oh profound sadness) recently died. Please mourn for Lauri, not for me.

Arnold

8 Responses to “An address from the former Adjunct Professor”

  1. Maggie Winters Says:

    Good for you!

  2. arnold zwicky Says:

    Rumors of my death greatly exaggerated etc. etc. But, seriously, it took me nearly four decades to rise to the rank of Adjunct Professor, so I cling tenaciously to the title.

    My first father-in-law, Keene Daingerfield, who was a teller of stories in the finest Southern tradition (as well as a major figure in American thoroughbred racing), used to maintain that when he was in the Army during WWII, the highest rank he achieved was that of Acting Rodent Control Non-Com. I am pleased to entertain in his footsteps. (When I want to look all puffed up and sort-of-famous, I brag that I was elected a Fellow of the American Academy of Arts and Sciences in 1992.)

    • arnold zwicky Says:

      Well, I am a DUPE (Distinguished University Professor Emeritus) at Ohio State, but OSU totally lacks the cachet of Stanford, and nobody much cares what levels of magnificence I attained there.

  3. arnold zwicky Says:

    The entertainment just rolls on. The Sesqui staff replies:

    We sincerely apologize for this mistake, which should not have happened, and we have corrected the news listing on the web site. [AZ note: of course, there’s no way to fix a mailing]

    To which I riposte:

    Well, thank you, but I have already made great fun of you on my blog. [blog link here] You might have fixed the error — I mean, what the fuck were you thinking? — but a thousand or so of my readers have now gotten the pleasure of seeing the original, and my response to it.
    Arnold, Not Dead Yet, and Not Terminated either

  4. Robert Coren Says:

    In fairness, although the newsletter item does seem to deny your continued status as Adjunct Professor, I cannot see any implication in it that you are no longer among the living.

    • arnold zwicky Says:

      Ah, fairly commonly, former and late are confused, in both directions, so without context I often don’t know which sense was intended. So I covered both bases.

      • Robert Coren Says:

        OK. To me, “late” always implies “deceased”, whereas “former” says nothing about whether the person referred to is alive or dead.

      • arnold zwicky Says:

        To RC: yes, and your usage is the entirely standard one. It just isn’t always the usage one encounters, so (as I said), I covered both bases.

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