Optatio (op-ta’-ti-o): Expressing a wish, often ardently.

I wish I was a pipe. I would carry water in and sewage out. In and out. I would have a clear set of responsibilities, unlike now. I am the Dean of a small liberal arts college where I spend my time tricking the faculty into believing unilateral decision making is best for them, that “it’s really what they want” even though they don’t think so. Like all deans, I’ll be leaving after four years, where my skill as a bullshitter will land me a presidency, and I’ll get to tell bigger and bigger lies. Only the Trustees can stop me. The faculty is a weenie-wimp breeding ground—they’re like intellectually active comical bedbugs— they suck each other’s blood and make each other itch, and they think it’s funny. They’re going to do nothing, except make tokens of tokens ad infinitum.

Hmm. I wish to change my wish. I wish I was a pandemic. My “disease” would be called “Academic Administritus,” mild, but ubiquitous and mostly psychological. It will make faculty constantly affect righteous indignation. If it’s “their way” they’ll never get it, but they will believe they did because they got mad, shook their fist, and felt good afterwards. I’ll just make sure they have a parking place and the process will repeat itself until they retire, or go somewhere else. If you take away their parking, they will be cured and will kill you.

Definition courtesy of “Silva Rhetorica” (rhetoric.byu.edu).

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