Amongst the numerous attributes possessed by many fellow academics which displease me (a shocking lack of social skills, for example), I think what frustrates me the most is just how stupid most of you are, outside your narrow discipline. The unwashed masses, well, what can be done about them? They’re supposed to be vile. Yet, after spending over twenty years acquiring an education, many academics are downright selfish, inconsiderate, and careless. How can you be this stupid after all those years of supposedly spending time expanding your mental powers?

For example, I live in between the two campuses of Duke University, the “Harvard of the South.” I’m surrounded by faculty members and graduate students from the university. One of them lives directly across the street from me. I have never, ever seen him leave his house or exit his automobile without his phone pressed to his ear. This distraction causes him to miss the little things – he checks to make sure his car is locked numerous times because he isn’t paying attention to what he’s doing when he just, seconds ago, locked his door. He also misses the big things. Despite an email to the neighborhood listserve, notes left on his automobile, and pounding on his front door, he managed to be completely unaware that an enormous, hundred-year-old tree in our front yard was due to be removed. His car just sat their, forcing the treemen to waste time navigating their tools and machinery around his go-kart of a car.

Aside from taking an inordinate amount of time to exit his car, since beyond the locking conundrum he only has one hand with which to lead his life, what truly pisses me off is that he ignores all the safety issues involved in distracted driving. He’s been in school for twenty years and he thinks it’s acceptable to drive around at all times with the use of a single hand? If this educated person is such a self-centered, worthless fucking jerk, what hope is there for someone who maybe hasn’t seen the countless public safety messages regarding driving and cellular phone usage?

Dear Academics: Don’t let the obsession with your one, likely esoteric topic, obscure you from using your brain on a regular basis! Take your brain outside your office! Take it outside your research laboratory! Use it at more than academic conferences. Feel free to show off just how powerful your brain is to commoners, to neighbors, fuck, even show it to my dog!

As an objective human being, it is very, very difficult to not feel cynical about the world these days. Corporations are people. Global warming is a hoax. Shipping oil from Alaska to Mexico by pipeline is a wonderful idea.

Please, to all your academics who cruise through life beyond your narrow discipline acting like total fucking selfish assholes, don’t add to the problems of the world. Use that powerful brain you’ve spent most of your life developing.

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