Up Front by Emma Hart

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Up Front: The Up Front Guide to Parenting

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  • Megan Wegan,

    Without anyone looking over their shoulders, they spent at least a year falling down, throwing up, and smashing letterboxes. Any course-work handed in would be done in a blaze of panic; a couple of hastily-typed pages thrown together and sprinted across campus to be flung in a submissions box seconds before the deadline.

    I can attest to the truth of this statement, and you are right, my parents should have kept me home. If they had done that, instead of sending me to boarding school and university, perhaps I would have amounted to something by now.

    Anyone know a good lawyer? Surely I can make them pay for their mistake?

    Welly • Since Jul 2008 • 1273 posts Report Reply

  • andin,

    Masters in Unemployability.

    Oh I wish...

    raglan • Since Mar 2007 • 1220 posts Report Reply

  • Public Servant on a tea-break.,

    If only you had been my mother...

    I could be a dentist right now!

    Wellington • Since Apr 2008 • 67 posts Report Reply

  • Tess Rooney,

    ROTFL!! The phil depatment ought to have warnings posted - "This Way Poverty Lies". Still, it's really well educated poverty.

    Since May 2009 • 257 posts Report Reply

  • liam,

    Of course my mother's absolute conviction that a degree is a necessity for a successful life is the prime reason that I didn't go to university.

    NC, USA • Since Oct 2008 • 11 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    All that unemployment time would be wasted if you didn't have a whole heap of philosophy to guide your thinking.

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 572 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Without anyone looking over their shoulders, they spent at least a year falling down, throwing up, and smashing letterboxes. Any course-work handed in would be done in a blaze of panic; a couple of hastily-typed pages thrown together and sprinted across campus to be flung in a submissions box seconds before the deadline.

    At my university, they even have a name: engineering students. (Don't ever let anyone induce you to help mark first-year engineering essays. Your belief in humanity will never recover.)

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    At my university, they even have a name: engineering students.

    Lucy, did we by any chance go to the same university?

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4366 posts Report Reply

  • Donald Reid,

    I have two pre-school daughters. The only thing they know of their father's shadowy day-habits is that one day he'll have a PhD in (gasp!) media studies (oh God!).

    We are a shameful mess of a family and deserve all the derision we get.

    NB In possibly the most horrible example of our sad domestic life, my eldest daughter said the word "discourse" before she ever saw the Wiggles. (Actually, I don't think she's ever seen the Wiggles).

    Dunedin, New Zealand • Since Nov 2006 • 17 posts Report Reply

  • Stewart,

    Isn't that tantamount to (whisper it now) abuse ?

    Te Ika A Maui - Waitakere… • Since Oct 2008 • 572 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    Lucy, did we by any chance go to the same university?

    If you refer to the tertiary education system of the fair city which we both inhabit, then yes. I sit in one of its offices as we speak.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Tim Darlington,

    PHIL 120 is a gateway drug._

    HIST 110 for me - dropped my science papers after the first HIST 110 lecture (also at the university featuring the engineering students, as it happens). Megan Wegan is right - surely there must be some legal comeback against our parents for permitting this descent into a lifetime of unpaid thinking?

    Since Nov 2006 • 43 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    my eldest daughter said the word "discourse" before she ever saw the Wiggles.

    High five, sir.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16665 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    a lifetime of unpaid thinking

    Surely the opposite of politics.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16665 posts Report Reply

  • Lucy Stewart,

    HIST 110 for me - dropped my science papers after the first HIST 110 lecture (also at the university featuring the engineering students, as it happens).

    For me it was HIST 133 (Medieval Europe) - although I still managed to complete my science degree, so my employability hasn't been totally sunk. But the history degree was totally the fun bit.

    Amherst, MA • Since Nov 2006 • 2093 posts Report Reply

  • Kyle Matthews,

    NB In possibly the most horrible example of our sad domestic life, my eldest daughter said the word "discourse" before she ever saw the Wiggles. (Actually, I don't think she's ever seen the Wiggles).

    Christ. Someone engineer a rescue of these poor tikes. Someone in red, yellow, purple, and blue tops!

    Since Nov 2006 • 6175 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Dear Emma -

    Do you think renaming my son "Pension Plan" would imbue him with an appropriate sense of purpose whilst studying at University ?

    Yours sincerely

    Bay Brown

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Josh Addison,

    I remember reading an article a while ago about the so-called "helicopter Moms" at American universities - the mothers who are constantly hovering around their children, even while the kids are living on campus. While I never encountered their like while at uni myself, I'm sure they exist here.

    I sort of fit the "Philosphy as gateway drug" scenario myself, but it was entirely self-inflicted: I was always best at Classics and English at high school, but figured an Arts degree was too impractical. One and a half years of a BE later (having taken Philosophy and Anthro papers as my electvies), I found myself hating what I was doing, so thought "fuck it" and changed to a BA in Philosphy. My parents were fine with it, and it got me a job in Tech Writing (eventually), so I can't complain.

    Onehunga, Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 297 posts Report Reply

  • James Butler,

    But I took Physics and Music, and Physics sooo won. Protip: The only student worse than an Engineering student is a Performance Voice student.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 801 posts Report Reply

  • 81stcolumn,

    Oh and I was gonna say shouldn't the door to the History department say "here lies madness...to watch them do it again and again and again..."

    Gotta admit tho' - Auckland Uni's ploy of whipping up middle class hysteria via the scarcity of educational resources is a coup of marketting.

    Nawthshaw • Since Nov 2006 • 724 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha,

    The world needs more philosophical tech writers.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 16665 posts Report Reply

  • Emma Hart,

    The only student worse than an Engineering student is a Performance Voice student.

    On behalf of my best friend, hey! And also, possibly, fair point.

    For me it was HIST 133 (Medieval Europe)

    I did that! Retained facts: Charlemagne was really, really tall.

    The most seriously I nearly went astray (and bear in mind I was doing English lit on purpose) was loving CLAS 215 Hellenistic Egypt so much I nearly changed to one of the few majors of less use than mine.

    Christchurch • Since Nov 2006 • 4366 posts Report Reply

  • James Butler,

    The world needs more philosophical tech writers.

    I know one who has a PhD in the Philosophy of Theology. So there are some around (well, at least two).

    Auckland • Since Jan 2009 • 801 posts Report Reply

  • George Darroch,

    PHIL 120 is a gateway drug.

    HIST 110 for me

    They are totally the gateway drugs. I did Phil 102 and Hist 101, and now I'm just about to complete a Masters in Unemployability (History).

    The People's Republic of … • Since Nov 2006 • 2135 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    I remember reading an article a while ago about the so-called "helicopter Moms" at American universities - the mothers who are constantly hovering around their children, even while the kids are living on campus. While I never encountered their like while at uni myself, I'm sure they exist here.

    They have their own wiki article.

    This is also quite amusing.

    At my university, they even have a name: engineering students.

    The only student worse than an Engineering student is a Performance Voice student.

    Laugh it up while you can, arts grads.

    You'll be laughing on the other sides of your faces as soon as you need a bridge built, or a new sewage farm, or an electic-petrol hybrid with an improved cupholder to hold your soy moccachino while you drive to your organic farmers market.

    Then we'll see whose laughing.

    And if that doesn't work, you wait until my army of giant robots is ready....

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2396 posts Report Reply

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