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  #17701  
Old 02-21-2018, 10:16 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

But (it is a truth universally acknowledged) blind people are hypersenstive to sound and touch, so he was fully aware of your nod from the slight rustle of your collar and faint movement of the air.
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  #17702  
Old 02-22-2018, 02:40 PM
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Default Re: Miscellany

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  #17703  
Old 02-23-2018, 01:57 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

There are languages that have much worse (or let's say more complicated) counting systems. French is harmless.


12 Mind Blowing Number Systems From Other Languages | Mental Floss
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  #17704  
Old 02-23-2018, 03:00 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

In Switzerland they have octante and nonante instead of quatre-vingt and quatre-vingt dix btw.
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  #17705  
Old 02-23-2018, 09:09 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Hold my beer.

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  #17706  
Old 02-23-2018, 09:45 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Juoksentelisinkohan...
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  #17707  
Old 02-23-2018, 09:50 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

YOU ARE!
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  #17708  
Old 02-23-2018, 10:30 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Se on hauskaa koska se on pieni.
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  #17709  
Old 02-23-2018, 11:26 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

:tinyburn:
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  #17710  
Old 02-23-2018, 11:38 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Myrskyvalo ajattelee puhumme hänestä!
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  #17711  
Old 02-23-2018, 03:48 PM
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:glare:
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  #17712  
Old Yesterday, 08:35 PM
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  #17713  
Old Yesterday, 09:07 PM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Subtext is an anagram for buttsex.
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  #17714  
Old Today, 12:14 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

We have a student who is a ... bit worrying. Indeed, I refer to him (not so) jokingly as my "Problem Child" when discussing him with other faculty members. He took my Introductory Biology class last semester and is taking Zoology with me this semester. He's also taking Botany with a different instructor. As you might imagine, a lot of the students taking Zoology are also taking Botany.



This kid is ... different. He's quite bright, in the sense that he's good at memorizing stuff, but not so good at understanding, if you catch my drift. He has zero "people skills." For example, he once told a girl in the Intro Bio class that he thought she was stupid -- and was then genuinely puzzled as to why she was offended. On another occasion, he asked a student if she was pregnant -- when she said that she most-definitely was not pregnant, his response was: "How do you know?". On another occasion, he demanded to know if another student was an "illegal immigrant," based upon his belief that she didn't look like someone who would have been born in the U.S. Again, he was genuinely confused when she took offense at his question and comment.


As it stands, about half the students who are familiar with him just flat-out hate his guts, while the rest seem to have decided that he's autistic and so pity him -- but nonetheless try to avoid him. Such is what they tell me, anyway.


Interestingly, he seems to have latched onto me. During labs, he'll literally stand inches away from me (he seems to have no sense of personal space), and he'll follow me about like a shadow. As it happens, he has class that meets in the same room that I teach Intro Bio and that meets right after the Intro Bio class. Often, he'll arrive 10 or so minutes before I've finished with my class, and instead of going off to do something for awhile, he'll often just stand there in the doorway and stare. It's downright creepy. On one such occasion, I actually interrupted the class to tell him that his class wouldn't begin for another 20 minutes, so he shouldn't be standing in the doorway like that. So, he stepped away and -- I assumed -- went to do something else for awhile. Later, I found out from another instructor who happened to pass by, and from some of the students, that he'd simply stepped back out of my line of vision and continued to stand there, staring into the classroom.


This kid is very much a loner. He doesn't associate with anyone else and has flat-out said that he doesn't want to associate with anyone else. He has a superior attitude and makes it quite clear that he looks down upon his fellow students as his intellectual inferiors who are not really worthy of his time. Once, he was looking a bit ill, and I asked him if he was okay; he replied that he was feeling ill and I offered my sincere sympathy. His reply was, "I really don't want empathy."


Several other students have told me that they knew him from high school, and that it had been discovered during a random locker search that he kept a "hit list" of people who had earned his ire for one reason or another.


Interestingly, he's squeamish and germaphobic. He refuses to take part in the dissections during the Zoology labs, and won't go near anything he thinks might conceivably be either "infectious" or "gross." (Did I mention that he claims he wants to be a surgeon?)

A couple of weeks ago, as I was getting over a nasty respiratory infection, my fellow instructor happened to ask how I was as we were changing classes (this is the one in which my Problem Child is in the class immediately following mine). My response was to pull a roll of cough drops from my shirt pocket and tell her that I'd be fine, so long as I didn't run out of cough drops. Our Problem Child, upon witnessing this, immediately got up and went to the very back of the room -- presumably because he feared I might be infectious.



Anyway, my Zoology lab is taught in the same lab where we teach both Botany and Anatomy & Physiology. So, we keep items like dissection probes, scalpels -- and a couple of large butcher knives -- in some of the drawers. Naturally, students are not allowed to access the lab outside of normal classroom times.

On Thursday, at the beginning of the Zoology lab, I gave the students a quiz on the previous week's material, as is standard practice. As I was taking up the papers, I noticed that for one of the questions, my Problem Child had answered, "It doesn't matter, we're all doomed." Just a bit ... odd, that.


He didn't take part in the dissections, of course, but stood off by himself. At one point, another student asked if there were any extra probes, since his dissection kit was missing a probe. Without really thinking, I suppose, I told him to check a particular drawer. He quickly found a probe, but in opening the drawer, exposed the two large butcher knives that were inside.

Out of the corner of my eye, I saw my Problem Child immediately head to the drawer and pull out one of the butcher knives. He began to flourish it with an expression on his face that I could only describe as sheer delight. As I described it to a colleague later, he looked like someone had just given him the best Christmas present that he could possibly imagine.

Another student was standing just a couple of feet away from him, and she quickly backed away with a very disturbed look on her face. I can hardly blame her. Perhaps I should have said "Put the knife away," but I feared that might make the situation even more tense. So instead, I dropped what I was doing and began to advance on him (I was behind him at the time, not in his line of sight).


I honestly thought I was going to have to physically subdue him and take the knife from him by force. Fortunately, though, he put the knife away after playing with it for a few seconds.

Now, to be absolutely clear, he never threatened anyone. In fact, I'd bet good money that he was so wrapped up in his own private fantasy -- whatever that might have been -- that he was completely unaware that anyone else was nearby. I'm certain he was completely unaware that he'd just made quite a few people very uncomfortable.


So, I discussed the incident later with the Department Chair and with the Botany/A&P instructor. We removed all potentially dangerous objects from the lab as a precaution. I also plan to discuss the incident with the Dean of Students. (He wasn't in on Friday, so I'll discuss it with him on Monday. Incidentally, this will be the second time I've gone to him with concerns about this particular student.)


On Friday, the Botany instructor noted that our Problem Child sat in his normal place in the classroom -- and nobody sat anywhere near him. Pretty-much everyone else sat near the emergency exit door. (She took a few of them aside after class to tell them that I'd informed her of the incident and that we'd removed all potentially dangerous objects from the lab.)



Now, to be scrupulously fair, this kid is probably perfectly harmless. But jeez! I hate that I have to find myself seriously thinking about what I might have to do should he show up to class one day with a knife or worse, a gun. My Department Chair tells me that they've dismissed students before whom they thought were mentally unstable. This kid may just be a candidate for dismissal on those grounds; he has never threatened anyone though, so I'm not sure there's anything that anyone can or even should do. I'm seeing the Dean of Students again, though, Monday a.m.
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  #17715  
Old Today, 01:03 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

Made me think of the main character in Chasing Shadows.
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  #17716  
Old Today, 02:13 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

I wonder if the only big different between him and the couple autistic people I know, who you just described, is they learned the importance of friends. Having people that help them navigate the world of people and to straight out tell them, "That was rude" or "No, don't do that" but also not harbor any bad feelings after. At some point they learned things were manageable vs avoiding them.
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  #17717  
Old Today, 11:46 AM
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Default Re: Miscellany

The only thing that can stop a Problem Child with a Gun is a Good Teacher with a Gun Katana.
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