So, like the title says, have you ever felt like you were stuck in a Kafka story? I had that feeling today. Right now I do not think anyone will be dying randomly a the end, but today did feel like the middle bit of one of his stories, where everything you thought you understood about the way the plot is going gets turned on its head.
I started the day by getting something in writing from Dr. D, the chairman of the Modern Languages Department, saying which courses that I have taken (or will take in the Spring) will count for which requirements for the Comparative Lit major. Thinking life was good, I went on down to the registrars office to review my degree plan.
I was told that I should be alright for German, just as soon as Dr. E tells them exactly what was being substituted for what. I've been nagging him for a week, and he still has not forwarded me that information. We worked it out last month, I just did not get a copy of it at the time, and I can not remember which of the classes I took we decided counted as the introduction to German lit, and which one was most like Lit Trad III.
I was told that my Medieval and Renaissance Studies concentration is good to go, because I already have everything in order for that, and am currently enrolled in the last class I need for it. For the Core, I am likewise in good shape, all I have to do is take a biology class next Spring (either Basic Ideas of Biology or Darwin) and I will be done just in time for graduation.
Then I said, that's great, but I want do double major with Comparative Lit Trad. Here's Dr. E's signature on the major change request, and here's the list of what classes I have/am/shall take(-n)(-ing) [select appropriate]. She looks at the list and says something to the effect of, "you want to major in what? I don't know if that is allowed."
It's new I say. It is in the latest bulletin, the one that I did the paper work two months ago in order to graduate under. I show her the page number. I show her the print out from the department website with all the pretty colors that Dr. M gave me to line out the requirements in a clearer fashion. I show her the list of courses from Dr. D and his signature. The Department head is on board with this, I remind her.
Yes, she says, but some things got into the bulletin that were not actually approved, and she thinks that this is one of them because she does not have the forms for the degree audit. We need to talk to the dean she says. The dean is naturally not in her office when the call is placed.
I'm told to take the major change form upstairs for the filing minions to deal with, and to go ahead and sign up for what ever classes the Modern Language Department thinks I need. I now have an appointment to see someone with the authority to make a decision on the 27th, and the assurances that I will be allowed to do any and all add/drops that I might need.
I leave, fighting the urge to shout "IF THE MAJOR HAS NOT BEEN APPROVED, WHY IS IT EVEN IN THE BOOK? DID NO ONE READ THE BULLETIN BEFORE IT WAS PUBLISHED? IF IT IS NOT OFFICIAL, WHY DID NO ONE TELL ANY OF THE PROFESSORS IN THE MODERN LANGUAGE DEPARTMENT? WHY ARE THERE COURSES LISTED IN THE CATALOGUE BOTH THIS FALL AND NEXT SPRING WITH A CLT NUMBER IF IT DOES NOT EXIST? WHY CAN YOU NOT USE AN OUNCE OF COMMON SENSE AND TELL ME WHETHER OR NOT I AM GOING TO GRADUATE?" But I didn't shout anything, nor did I throw anything, I just said "Thank you for your time."
So, long story short, I still do not know if I have the number of credits I need to graduate, if I will have to take a class over Christmas break, or if I need to do a Directed Readings class, because according to the registrar, my proposed degree does not, in fact, exist.
On another note, my Philosophy mid term and Linguistics Presentations (both of which were last Wednesday) went pretty well. Dr. M finally finished grading our French mid-terms and I got an 87, which makes me pretty happy. Some days I am sure that Joseph of Cupertino has my back.
On the NaNo front, I am storming right along at 14,404 words, not nearly as far behind as I have been in previous years (in fact, I'm on target and hopping to hit 16,667 tonight). Aerisith is no were near the mark to keep on pace for 50k, but she has passed 5,000 and is so thrilled about having written this much of one story that I can not help but be happy for her. Keep cheering us both on, because the writing is going well.