09/21/2016 § 5 Comments
09/18/2016 § Leave a comment
Since I announced 10 days ago that I was invited to design a line of items for sale at VIDA, I have added the following new designs to my tote collection. VIDA IS CURRENTLY HAVING A SALE. Think Christmas Gifts!
See all 22 designs:
09/17/2016 § 7 Comments
See links at bottom for the previous letters.
Most large campuses have ongoing building projects. Lyle’s campus changes every NANOSECOND!
When most people think of old, established universities, they think of ivy-covered buildings in park-like surroundings. Tradition. Stability. Permanence. They haven’t visited here. A person would only need to spend two days here before beginning to wonder if everything on this campus isn’t a mirage.
I usually eat a sack lunch at my desk and then use the rest of my lunch hour to walk around the campus, taking a different route every day. Every day something has changed. For instance, one of my routes takes me down to where a main road passes between the campus and a private student housing complex. Last week the road was nowhere to be seen. In its place was a large parking lot with attractive lighting and landscaping. I asked an elderly woman leaving her car about it (someone who’s been around here since the Garfield administration), and she said, “Where have you been?”
Yesterday I decided to take a walk along the river, which flows right through the center of campus. THEY HAD MOVED THE RIVER. They must have gotten tired of the annual flooding, because now it goes around the campus in a channel so deep that, try as it might, it can’t cause a scene. The old riverbed has already been turned into soccer fields.
This kind of thing happens all the time. Sometimes the changes are more subtle, just involving a building’s facade. We had one building with a front so boring that it looked as if it might house “The Federal Registry of Forms.” I eat my lunch, go out for my walk, and poof! The building has a dramatic three-story entrance that makes it look like an intercontinental hotel.
A while back they began removing the asphalt paving on many of the campus streets to reveal the original brick surface. Then they removed the bricks to uncover the ancient Roman cobblestones, the first such find in America. Two days ago I’m out walking and the cobblestones are gone. They had discovered an even more-ancient surface, dirt.
Today I decided to go out for a sandwich and bring it back to eat at my desk. I was only gone one-half hour. When I got back I should have noticed something different about my building (i.e., the added floors) but I didn’t. It wasn’t until I walked into the entrance that I noticed a slight change—an escalator. I rode it to what-used-to-be-the-top-floor-but-was-now-the-middle and saw a new sign over our reception area: “Federal Registry of Forms: Field Office.” I asked the receptionist where the Correspondence Course Office was.
“Oh, they haven’t been located in this building for at least 15 minutes! I think they’re in a new building on the old riverbed, right at the bend where it used to go around the campus.”
“They’ve moved the river again?”
“No, it’s right where it’s always been since yesterday, and you’d better walk. The street that goes directly there is being worked on.”
“Worked on? They just took it down to the dirt!”
“They found something deeper. Bedrock. It’s as far down as they can go without disturbing the magma.”
Having the information I needed, I tried to cut the conversation short, but she made me fill out several forms, in triplicate. I’m now entitled to death benefits if I served in the Spanish-American War.
[Excerpt from: More Later: Lyle’s Letters from the University, Red Axe Books, UK, 2015. The book contains 42 letters.]