Thursday, May 20, 2010

kung fu grippe - My “old butcher” Arthur McA. Miller, Ph.D. ...

Merlin Mann remembers a favorite professor:

Handful of random Mac moments:
  1. Told me a paragraph in a paper on Kurt Vonnegut was “curiously like whipping a dead mule with misplaced rhetoric”
  2. Remarked to our terrified, slack-jawed poetry workshop that he thought one of the week’s less successful drafts didn’t actualy need an ending—”Because it might as well just keep going on forever!” This was not intended as a compliment.
  3. Occasionally telegraphed his relative stress by lighting a new cigarette before the previous one was half-done. One day, in “Longpoems,” a third cigarette was lit. I feel confident no one in attendance ever forgot that day.
  4. Once singled out one of my particularly shitty poems as one of the most peculiarly gruesome instances of “the pathetic fallacy” he’d ever encountered. “Would you mind demonstrating how you can tell when a goddamned rose thorn is ‘angry?’” I could not.