Hi, this is a blog. A cranky academic blog, to be specific. I am a tenured faculty member in the physical sciences at a small non-elite college or university. I.e., pretty much at the ass-end of academia in the U.S. I’m male, approaching middle-age, and at the ass-end of having much of a social life. “Wadia” is an acronym for the title of the blog, and it sounds kinda funny to say “wadiablog?” out loud. You can contact me at gmail using the username wadiablog.
FYI, this blog has no relationship to the book “Not Drowning, But Waving” or any other book or media of any sort. It’s just a play on the classic phrase in the sense that you could be both waving and drowning, which is the way I’ve been internally thinking of my mediocre career and life for many years. Google did not return any results for the exact phrase “waving and drowning in academia” on the Web or in Books when I started this blog in November 2013, so that was good enough for me.
I don’t think this is going to turn into any sort of blow-by-blow account of career activities; I don’t work at the kind of school where that would go over very well if my identity were to become known, tenure or not. Plus, I don’t do anything particularly interesting. Maybe that will change – the blow-by-blow thing, not the lack of interesting, which is getting much worse with tenure.
One thing I hope to do is maybe give some perspective on aspects of academia that aren’t frequently written about or at least I want to say something different (or perhaps with more profanity). For obvious reasons, there seem to be more bloggers in the humanities than the sciences. Plus, most of the latter seem to live in the rarefied R1 la-la land where it’s all about grants and their posts about teaching and many other things come off as, well, “quaint” would be the nicest word. Also, unlike nearly all academics my age, I didn’t have a cushy middle-class, decent-school background. Thus, I find that I often have different perspectives and experiences than most other bloggers, even though my job is more like “normal”. Some of these are interesting and insightful, while some are probably stupid. I will try to write up the stupid ones and skip the insightful ones…or something like that.