This is making the rounds among my English professor Facebook friends.
Good morning, and welcome to Advanced English Literature—I’m Professor Anglosoundingname. As you can see, I have a mane of silver hair and wear a corduroy blazer with leather elbow patches stitched with corduroy threads that have their own leather thread-patches, and pace briskly into this lecture hall from the New England autumn just as class starts.
I’m waiting sternly as the laggards straggle in like Leopold Bloom wearily climbing into his bed in the “Penelope” episode ofUlysses… yes, I expected you all to laugh at that impromptu erudite quip, with the exception of one newcomer, that Midwestern freshman in the middle row looking around anxiously with her neatly arranged panoply of multicolored pens, wondering if she’s out of her depth because she can’t understand an offhand literary joke at this elite institution which is, once again, in New England—take a quick, establishing gander at the outside foliage.
My hair isn’t white, though it’s getting there. I don’t own a corduroy blazer with leather elbow patches, but that’s only because I’m a little broader than I was when I bought one as a skinny young graduate student, and have since given it to my son.
Here’s the jacket, worn by my son, appearing as The Professor in a musical version of “The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe.” (I had to look that up just now, to see whether the title uses the serial comma.) Gosh, I wonder who his inspiration was for the role. (And that’s my daughter as Lucy Pevensie.)