I learned a thing today. There’s a Bulgarian tradition where you gather your neighbours, dig a big hole in the back yard, and then yell at the hole until you get everything out of your system. Then you fill the hole back in.
One of my colleagues is Bulgarian, and we when we’re not talking about work, we talk about other things. Sometimes racia is involved. Today, an invitation to yell at the hole in his backyard, because I am caught in the middle of a scholastic civil war.
I often run a technical programming lab. I’ll put time pressure on students, sometimes they get kind of flakey instructions, I try to give them a taste of what programming as a professional might be. It’s not always glamourous. I give myself the role of senior programmer (read: mentor) as well as boss (final arbiter).
The theory professor in this course, however, is usurping part of my job. Not intentionally, mind you. This person has decided to go off and teach whatever they wanted, with little regard for the actual curriculum. I’ve taught that specific course, I’ll teach it again. It’s not easy material, but it doesn’t warrant teaching “whatever” (that’s the technical term).
The students view me as sympathetic (and rightfully so), so they complain to me. The professor also views me as sympathetic (and generally rightfully so), so they also complain to me.
As for me, I love a good scrap. I mean, I’m not throwing fists anymore, I’ve outgrown that, but there IS a right side, and a wrong side, and I kind of want to wade in there, except it would be the height of foolishness to get involved. It is hard to keep my mouth shut. I may have once clapped my hands over my mouth to stop myself from saying something I’d later regret.
So instead, I yelled at the hole in my Bulgarian buddy’s back yard, after lubricating the pipes with very potent cherry liquor. That hole is full, I tell you what.