Don’t mind me, I’ll just be curled up in the corner, gibbering

It’s been a long night and a busily obsessive day ahead of me. This is what has been and will be tying me up for a while.


Yeah, first pass page proofs for some book. It’s perfect timing: I’ve been trying to get students status reports for my classes, I’ve been grading stuff, I’ve had meetings, we had a blizzard, and oh, right, aren’t taxes due sometime soon? I think I’m going to break soon.


  1. says

    I notice my list of open orders on still shows a release date of August 13. Phooey. Well, at least I have the Skeptic’s Annotated Bible to entertain me. I showed it my Catholic wife and she was laughing within seconds after opening it.

  2. blf says

    Needs banana skins, coffee grids, and a rusty nail.  ;-)

    Handle carefully. It’ll burst into flame as soon as you touch it (unless they remembered to print it on asbestos or something).

  3. birgerjohansson says

    You ned to cap this with listening to the flute of N’yarlat’hotep. It will purge you of any remaining sanity.

  4. says

    If only you had thought to ask me to proofread for you, PZ! I’m wicked good at it. (Lots and lots and lots of practice — and quite a bit better at proofing others’ work than my own, as you might expect.) Good luck! (And good reading.)

  5. pHred says

    I hate to say this but that sounds like a pretty much normal spring semester. The only difference is that rather than snow right now I have rain … falling in my office… right next to my desk … from at least four places. It gets downright interesting when the wind is blowing from the right direction.

    On an unrelated note we have to shut down all the equipment that uses water in the new science building because the water lines are contaminated and they have to do a chlorine shock. No water for labs next week.

    Ok the plus side – at least you are looking at hard copy for proofreading. I had to do it all elctronically with someone in London (a nonscientist – lovely man but he kept trying to “correct” things that were technical terms and phrases. I did decide to stop arguing about commas most of the time though) and someone else in Singapore. It was educational.

  6. blf says

    I have rain … falling in my office… right next to my desk

    Try closing the window?  ;-)

  7. otrame says

    Ah, yes, I remember the days of corner-gibbering. Retirement is kind of lacking in that. I don’t miss it much.

  8. Sastra says

    Well, one solution to your problem is obvious: change the title of your book. Think about it. Right now wouldn’t it be easier to proofread The Gibbering Atheist Who Is On The Verge of Collapsing than it is to proofread The Happy Atheist? It would be a breeze! Any errors you pass over — any pissing and moaning you indulge in — will simply be ascribed to your cleverness. I mean, look at the title. Oh, I just love how he managed to keep the tone and spirit up so well throughout!

    Yes — easy as pie once you look at it from that angle, isn’t it? You’re welcome.

  9. says


    Better for proofreading, in my experience. I can read a document onscreen 12 times and miss typos, infelicitous phrasings, and other such annoyances that leap out at me once they’re on cellulose.

  10. pHred says

    @blf #7
    Alas, the windows are closed. It is the walls and ceiling that I can’t seem to find the off switch for. I have found it is kind of hard to write an exam with water plunking into buckets around your office

  11. intelligentdesigner says

    You’d better take up Zeno’s offer. You spelled Athiest wrong ;)

    Your suggestion is 11 days too late.

  12. FossilFishy(Anti-Vulcanist) says

    Huh, I never expected an eldritch horror to be quite so…..flat. Hell, it looks positively Euclidian.