Sine Qua Nonsense

To the Next Telecom Blogger

When presidents and vice presidents leave office, they write a letter to their successors with words of advice. As I prepare for the end of my term at the Telecom blog, I feel compelled to write a public letter to whoever will replace me on the team. I am, after all, a wise man whose every word is sought by all, or at the very least by me.

The most important part of the blog experience is Monday morning team meetings. There is assigned seating. Never, ever try to sit in Harmeet’s chair. I tried that once and Harmeet did not appreciate it, especially since he was still sitting there. Mona will sit on the left. Tamera, who has recently joined the team, will sit on the right. You will sit in the middle, swinging your head around frantically to ensure all three of your colleagues get adequate eyeball time. If you feel you cannot do this, concentrate on Harmeet and Tamera. Mona cannot derail your graduate career.

To make Harmeet happy, come up with creative ideas, or ideas about creativity, or creative ideas about creativity. Bring in stories that show the social fabric of the department – its texture, if you will. Make the department look good. Do not mention the time graduate students challenged each other to a duel with Civil War muskets. “I never heard of graduate students challenging each other to a duel with Civil War muskets,” you say? Good, you got it.

Never use gifs. That is Mona’s thing. If you use a gif, you will be a copycat. Mona does not like copycats. She is a dog person. Always ask about her dog Harry before you ask her for favors.

Keep your posts reasonably short. If you don’t, only your mother and Harmeet will read them. Even the person who is the subject of the post will quit half way through, saying “I know where this is going anyway.” This is why you should always put your misquotes and character assassinations at the end of long posts.

When interviewing people, they will almost always tell you something along the lines of “this must be too boring for the blog.” Usually, this is just them being insecure and it will come out interesting. Sometimes, it will indeed be a dud. In either case, always say “no, this will be great!” I have learned that screaming “you are a terrible interviewee” at people only makes them cry harder, though it makes for a terrific gif.

I will continue to write Sine Qua Nonsense once a month, so you’ll also need to know how to deal with me. Just stroke my ego and you should be fine.

Welcome to the blog team, whoever you may be!


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