This beautiful morning of 2009 I did something I have postponed for a while, constrained by a very practical reason: I moved and I don’t have enough room for all the books.
Although I am still a student (in a master’s degree program), I have already finished a long-term faculty (communication and public relations). And I have kept my manuals from the faculty period. Very likely, I think many of my colleagues have thrown away almost all of their manuals.
So I proceeded to a careful selection… using a kitchen knife. As you can see, before trashing a third of the content of the books, I have made a picture to capture the moment.
(keep reading ↓)
Now…you may notice that the pill from the left (the one I kept) is bigger than the pile from the right (the one I threw away). You may wonder how I made this decision. First of all, I would like to emphasize the concept of “not guilty until proven otherwise”, about which I was talking yesterday at Open Coffee to Viorel Spînu, Mihai Mafteianu, and Val Vlădescu.
So… what I asked myself going through the books, was: “was this ever helpful for me, as a practical utility, what is here?” and “Can this be helpful in the future?”. If the answer to any of these questions was “Yes”, then I kept it. Then I noticed what I threw away. I threw away the theoretical, abstract, complicated nonsense that I considered totally useless, although it may have a strategic appearance.
I noticed that the materials I threw away were usually written by the same people, who couldn’t find a different way of writing, a different style. As a college professor, the real verification of the quality of your writings is done after college, if the students keep the classes or if they throw them away. So this is the moment when the true value of a teacher is measured. If you teach in college, I dare you to ask your former students, how many have they kept your printed classes?
[later edit] Some of my faculty teachers commented on depicting a knife in this post. But, to quote Shakespeare: “I only intend to write about daggers, not to use them [on people]” :)
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Copyright © Marcus Victor Grant, 2009-present