She offered her honor; he honored her offer.
And all night long, it was honor and offer.
Sorry, I couldn’t help it. FLG has engaged in a bit of a scrap with one Laura Sjoberg, who is upset by (among other things) the fact that he referred to her as “Ms. Sjoberg,” rather that by the academic honorifics “Dr.” or “Professor”.
While the nuts and bolts of their argument is out of my field, I have to cop to some of the incredulity that FLG expresses, to wit:
FLG didn’t mean any offense by Ms. If FLG were in your class, then he’d call you professor, but he’s not and so he won’t. But holy fucking shit — “call me professor or doctor” — are you really one of those people?
The whole business of the academic honorific has always amused me. If I’m not in the classroom or otherwise “on the clock,” I find it nearly impossible to call myself “Doctor” without irony. I suppose that’s evident in the fact that I combined my title with a silly nickname in the blog title — ahh, bathos.
And that’s the case throughout my family as well. A couple of days after I defended the diss, the Spawn (then age 5) was playing in the living room, and she said “Daddy, come fix this.”
I laughed and said, “That’s Dr. Daddy,” and without even looking up from her dolls, she said, “You’re not a real doctor; you’re a book doctor.” Keeps me humble.
On the other hand, I’m never more tempted to bust out the post-nominal letters than when someone else drops their degree on me in civilian life. This seems to have happened most frequently when I’m dealing with folks in administrative positions in public ed, many of whom seem to have been the folks who, as my dad’s best friend once said, “hang their degree in the bathroom so visitors have to see it.” If I had a nickel for every vice-principal or assistant superintendent who has introduced him/herself to me as “Dr.” Whatever, I’d have a whole bunch of nickels. Folks like that remind me of Dave Barry’s line that “Ph.D.” has the virtue of being shorter than “G.S.G.,W.I.A.C.A.M.P.” (Graduate School Graduate, Which Is As Common As Milkweed Pollen.)
So no, FLG, I’m not one of those people. And if you ever drop by, Prof. Sjoberg, feel free to call me Mondo.