What a former college instructor really thinks…

Posts tagged “English

Letter from HR: The Impotence of an English Major

Dear Applicant,

We were not happy to recieve your application for position UNUD666 – Writing Supervisor, and we are kind of sorry to inform you that you are not qualified.  We said that you have to have a degree in english and you don’t have one.  Having that degree is the only way to become an expert in writing and grammer.  Everyone in HR majored in HR and we know for a fact that you can’t have skills you didn’t study in college.  Its offensive that you think you can supervise our writing.  We have a talented english person in our office who proof reads all of our e-mails and and websites.   You can’t do the job as well as him.

Cordially,

HR

 

This post kicks off my new series on the joys of job searching.  I never received the above letter, but it resembles the attitudes and errors I am slowly getting used to.  Lots of English majors can’t write effectively because their professors were more concerned with filling their classrooms (a.k.a. keeping their jobs) and preaching on politics.  I’ve seen plenty of English majors who could not write nearly as well as their counterparts in other subjects.  Meanwhile, I’ve seen plenty of talented writers at WordPress and elsewhere who could never hope to obtain a writing job because they didn’t major in the “correct” subject.

And all of this begs a few simple questions: if HR personnel often can’t recognize correct grammar and spelling, what happens to the requirement that a resume be completely error-free?  Do job applicants have to guess what errors the HR worker thinks is proper English?  How often is correct grammar labeled as incorrect, causing a perfectly good application to land in the circular file?


Christian Conservative Euphemism for Penis

You guessed it!  It’s time for more immature penis jokes from your favorite intellectual blog!

One of my favorite (and least favorite) online writers is Mike Adams; he does satire on some of the same excesses in American higher education I like to write about.  He also does some serious religious columns, which are less to my tastes.

In his columns, Adams occasionally needs to refer to the male reproductive organ.  The term he uses is “hoo-hoo dilly.”  He calls the vagina a “cha cha,” which makes me glad that he doesn’t like to write about Latin dancing.   I know that Adams is not the only person who uses the HHD word, but I’d like to take a closer look at it anyway.   I think we all know that a dilly is a small pickle from “is that a pickle in your pocket?” fame, but what is a hoo-hoo?  You guessed it!  It’s the female reproductive area.  So, the female reproductive area plus a tiny pickle equals what, exactly?  (I’ll let you use your imaginations on that one.)

But let us assume that Adams’ readers are not familiar with the term “hoo-hoo dilly” from anywhere else.  What could make Adams think that a goofy-sounding phrase like that would blend in with his traditional conservative screeds on sex and sexuality?  It makes you wonder just how serious he intends to be, or perhaps he knows something about religious conservatives that the rest of us don’t.  These Creationism-lovers don’t seem to be too fond of science, so perhaps they have moral objections to the correct anatomical terminology.  I know that religious folks sometimes prefer to stick with words that appear in the Bible, so let’s see if that would sound right:

And the LORD created Adam and gave him a hoo-hoo dilly, and it was good.

Yeah, I didn’t think so either…