Tuesday, August 22
I want to take a moment to clarify my Fraud identity. I might feel like I'm undeserving of my current position, or that people think that I'm more capable than I am, but I believe whole-heartedly that I am bright and capable. These past couple weeks I've also learned that I am great at getting things done.

My partner, adept in all the ways I feel inept, is brilliant. His vita looks like a full professor's (and he doesn't even have his PhD yet). He reads incessantly, and now writes as much, and has the broadest understanding of anyone I know in his field. He does have one kryptonetic weakness; he is really bad at getting things done.

We're both new faculty at our institution and both of us had more orientations than any human should endure and more luncheons, retreats, and gatherings than I think is necessary (despite the usually excellent food, and sometimes booze, served there). I RSVP'd to each of them, and gave my menu choices. I balanced my time and wrote them in my calendar. I arrived at each and every one on time and prepared. I got things done. My partner, on the other hand...

It won't get me tenure, but I derive some sick sense of pleasure that I was able to juggle it all (plus kid, who's mine) and not skip a beat, whereas Mr. Brilliant couldn't.

Maybe it was trading in my denim for some dress pants for the first day of teaching, but I'm feeling a little less fraud-like today.

4 comments:

Clear said...

In academia, the ability to get things done is a precious commodity indeed. Don't flaunt it too much, or you'll have people who struggle with getting things done besiege you with schemes to work together with them.

kodachrome said...

See. I think clear is right. And, here the gender thing emerges. It's great that you feel less fraudulent, but competence is not necessarily your friend. I think there may be a motive behind the "absent-minded professor" persona.

But since this is all a.secret: congratulations!

fraud, in denim said...

I know exactly what you mean, Kodachrome. I've always been organized, but I think at this instituion it might be more rewarded than at my last one. Here they're intent on building community, not just building budgets and research agendas. It might be one place where - in some situations - the absent-minded professor thing doesn't get you as far (especially the absent-minded professor sans organized enabler, which is a role I once played).

Navy Blue Blob said...

Good for you, Fraud, glad to hear you're feeling so good about yourself! I find sometimes such feelings also translate into good feelings in other realms of my life.

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