frenchpony (frenchpony) wrote,

  • Music:

Bureaucracy 1, Pony 0

I am defending Le Thesis on Thursday morning, 9:00, as that is the single solitary time when all my committee members can get together. This is primarily my fault for choosing a committee with mutually incompatible schedules, and I accept that. I have to bring my advisor sign-off sheet and my graduation warrant to the defense. The sign-off sheet is not a problem -- that's on the Web, and after I strip naked and perform the appropriate dance under the full moon on a certain Tuesday of a certain month, I'll be able to find it and print it. The graduation warrant, on the other hand. . .

It's Monday, early afternoon. The defense is on Thursday morning. I decided to go pick up the warrant today so that I'd have it ready. I almost didn't, thinking that I could pick it up Wednesday morning and stand less of a chance of losing it between now and Thursday. But then, Mom Pony's words of wisdom came back to me: Everything Takes Longer Than You Think It Will. I went to the music office to ask about it today:


PONY: Hi. Who do I talk to about picking up my graduation warrant for a thesis defense on Thursday?

SECRETARY: Um. Graduation warrant? Do we do that at this office?

PONY: I don't know. Who should I talk to about that?

SECRETARY: Um. How about Ann?

PONY: Okay. Is Ann in?

SECRETARY: No. She's out until Wednesday.

PONY: Okay. Who else can I talk to?

SECRETARY: How about Molly?


MOLLY: Hi, Pony. What can I do for you?

PONY: Where do I find my graduation warrant? I need it in hand on Thursday morning.

MOLLY: Ann should have it.

PONY: Ann is not here.

(MOLLY and PONY break into Ann's office.)

MOLLY: Well, I think Ann had this all sorted out before she left. There's other people who need their warrants, too, so she had to have done something with them. But I don't know what she did.

PONY: Er, thanks. Do we get exit interviews at this school?

MOLLY: Sort of. Do you have any complaints?

PONY: Well, only that the administrative hoops that graduate students have to jump through are very well concealed. I got half of my information by word of mouth.

MOLLY: We know. We're working on that. In two years, after you've left, we should be pretty close to having a working system of communicating with thesis-crazed graduate students.

PONY: I'm so touched.

MOLLY: In the meantime, try the interim graduate advisor.



INTERIM GRADUATE ADVISOR (IGA): Hi! What can I do for you?

PONY: I'm defending my thesis on Thursday morning.

IGA: Congratulations!

PONY: Thank you. My advisor said I need to bring my graduation warrant. Do you know where I can find that?

IGA: Um.

PONY: We had our official meeting a month and a half ago. Do I pick up the warrant here in the music department or at the general graduate office?

IGA: Actually. . . no. It's not ready yet.

PONY: Please tell me I didn't hear what I thought I heard.

IGA: They only got around to sending the warrants to be processed today. They won't be ready for another two weeks.

PONY: But my defense is on Thursday! I need my warrant on Thursday!

IGA: . . . oops. Sorry.

So. . . no warrant for the Pony until two weeks from now. At least it's not my fault when I show up warrantless to my defense. But come on! They've had months to get this little piece of paper ready for me! I delivered Le Thesis three weeks ago, on the school-mandated due date for spring graduation. I had my advisor meeting to start the process of issuing a warrant back in early February. And the fershlugginer thing isn't ready yet!

"Oops" indeed!
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