IMR: 1999: March: 18 — Thursday, 10:01 a.m.
Watanabe Hall, University of Hawai`i–Manoa, Hawai`i

Bwy's class again. So far he's said "shit" nineteen times, and we're only halfway through class. As usual, he's dancing about, getting worked up about something. Sounds like one of his colleagues, and whether he — as a male professor — can be a feminist.

And I quote: "I know Kathy Ferguson, and you, sir, are no Kathy Ferguson."

This might be a stats class, but you learn a fair amount about campus politics. Today, for example, he's already given Fred VonAppen and Kenneth Mortimer quite a treatment.

Another quote, Bwy on the internet: "All my colleagues are all saying hypertext is the next big thing, that it's going to change the fucking world. 'You see? It's blue, and you click it, and you go somewhere else!' To hell with hypertext. It's just a footnote. A fancy fucking footnote."

God, I can't keep up with this guy. His mind runs at a million miles a minute and he takes off on so many tangents of tangents of tangents, it's impossible at times to identify what the original thought was. But I think I'm learning. Really. It's hard not to pick up on correlations and scales and reversals when he captivates your attention so.

Especially compared to my other class. You know, the one in my major?

See, Oshiro is a decent instructor, especially given her status as a practitioner (rather than an 'educator'). And her personal interest in the internet and Computer-Assisted Reporting seems to be rubbing off on even the most technophobic of my classmates. But she's also been rather ill, and has missed more than a few classes this semester.

So Kato has been filling in. Kato is probably one of the most knowledgable people in the state when it comes to the finer points of the local media, but his teaching style is rather dry. And while extensive lectures have a place in the journalism sequence (Kato's regular course is required of all majors, after all), it's difficult to take at 7:30 in the morning... especially when a net-connected computer is sitting in front of you the whole time.

Not surprisingly, students sneak onto the net, keystroke by keystroke, when Kato's not looking. This morning I spotted folks checking hotel rates in Vegas and chatting on IRC. And this when Kato wasn't lecturing at all — he had a guest speaker this morning, who eventually led us through an in-class writing assignment.

Actually, it was fun. And I think I like the occasional "write a story before the end of class" assignments the best. (It sure beats Oshiro's other course requirement: a fully-developed story a week with essentially no guidance.) Honestly, if you're in an upper-division journalism class and can't write four paragraphs in fifteen minutes, you best reconsider your major. This stuff is a cakewalk compared to a real newsroom.

Oop. Stats class is over. Final "shit" count, excluding utterances while I was concentrating on typing, is 36.

© Ryan Kawailani Ozawa · E-Mail: · Created: 18 March 1999 · Last Modified: 19 March 1999