I was sitting down to grade papers when I thought of the following dialogue from John Kennedy Toole’s Pullitzer Prize-Winning novel “A Confederacy of Dunces.” The main character, Ignatius explains why he was not cut out to be a college instructor.
“[My students formed] a committee to demand that I grade and return their accumulated essays and examinations. There was even a small demonstration outside the window of my office. It was rather dramatic. For being such simple, ignorant children, they managed it quite well. At the height of the demonstration I dumped all of the old papers — ungraded of course — out of the window and right onto the student’s heads. The college was too small to accept this act of defiance against the abyss of contemporary academia.”
“Ignatius, you never told me that.”
“I did not want to excite you at the time. I also told the students that, for the sake of humanity’s future, I hoped that they were all sterile.” Ignatius arranged the pillows around his head. “I could never have possibly read over the illiteracies and misconceptions burbling from the dark minds of those students.”
Oh well, back to grading papers… I’m making every effort to be more gracious than Ignatius, and the anonymous author of the following.