English professors

This site has recently surpassed the 10,000 hit mark, which can be attributed to its ability to attract the crucial “Random Person” demographic. These are people of an indeterminate age, gender and purpose who visit this site and often sign the guestbook with the most random messages humanely possible. Back in 2000, people used to sign the guestbook and simply say normal guestbook things, like “Hello Eric, I know you from school. Oh well, I don’t know what to say. Peace out.” It was a nice little guestbook system; they typed some shit, I read it, and we all went home at the end of the day and got on with our lives. Eventually, however, the guestbook turned into a strange and mysterious creature, and instead of tipping their hats to inside jokes that we shared, guestbook patrons began making up inside jokes that I didn’t really even understand. Oh, sure, I played along—I pretended to know who these people were and what they were talking about. But gradually the messages got more and more bizarre, until I began forgetting whose guestbook I was even reading. I would say, “Damn, whoever owns this guestbook must be one fucked up kid to be getting all of this nonsense. I’d hate to be this … ‘eKarjala’ guy.” Then about twenty minutes later I would realize that I was the owner of the guestbook, and I would be sent into a deadly spiral of confusion and betrayal. “National Socialism? Sunglasses at night? What the hell are these people talking about? What’s happening to me?”

These guestbook messages, however, make far more sense than the comments my English professors leave on my analytical papers. Apparently, there is a policy that all English professors must repeatedly bash their hands with a hammer before they grade students’ papers, so that all of their ensuing notes are impossible to read. Here is an actual excerpt (as best as I can decipher) from my professor’s critique of a recent analytical paper I turned in: “A ver sard papir! How9w, ib lafer some of tower oven pg. 4, where mystopl, etc. Soeal sape!” Thanks, teacher, that clears a lot up for me. I know that asking these professors to print perfectly legibly would be too much to ask, because after all I am only paying tens of thousands of dollars to put up with this bullshit, but could they at least pretend like they’re writing neatly? Or was I absent on the day the professor passed out the fucking decoder ring?

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