Ten months ago, I bought myself a brown corduroy blazer. With elbow patches. As it settled around my shoulders, I felt a surge of confidence fill me—a knowledge that, while I may look like an utter dweeb, I was doing exactly what I wanted to do with my life. I took a picture wearing it—a professorial selfie—and shared it with my friends.
Who does that?
It would be so much easier to say goodbye to teaching if I were a jaded curmudgeon, full of bitterness and spite that had curdled my soul into a spiritual Limburger cheese. I could flip the double deuce at the conniving university bureaucrats who had a hand in my exit as I rode off into the sunset. I could cackle at my former coworkers’ misfortune at being stuck in the quagmire of academia, telling myself I’m so much better off now. After two years of throwing myself at over a hundred academic positions and getting the door slammed in my face each time, it would be easier if I hated the university, the students, the professors; the committee-sitting, researching, grading, and especially the weary grind of teaching.
It would be easier if I could blame someone, anyone else for why I’m leaving....Read More