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07 May 2007

Am I wrong in being annoyed that my professors are making the students organize and bring in food for our final classes? I mean, it's nice to be social and whatever, but these are also days when final papers are due for these classes, which makes "Bake something" seem like another assignment. [More:]I'm currently just refusing to respond to the emails from classmates about it, and I feel bad making them organize without any support, but... annoyed.
Make some hash brownies. Should make class more entertaining.
posted by jonmc 07 May | 13:46
Yeah, they're way out of line--you're stressed enough as it is.
posted by brujita 07 May | 13:47
I also feel it would be different if it were a student-led effort, but this is really just the professors saying, "We should have a party! Everyone coordinate and bring things."

Um, no.

Though hash brownies would be fun...
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 13:49
Just buy some crap and take it out of the pack and put it on a plate and wrap in cling film... that's what I'd do. :)
posted by By the Grace of God 07 May | 13:52
Though hash brownies would be fun...

"So, students, Jung's central thesis on .....WHY ARE YOU ALL LOOKING AT ME??"
posted by jonmc 07 May | 13:56
Wow, is that inconsiderate! I would be very annoyed.
posted by small_ruminant 07 May | 14:01
I'm of two minds on this custom. Every time we've done it, it's been great fun. But hell yeah do I have enough to do at the end of a semester. Once I came this close to offering my prof a choice: I bring either my justly famous flourless chocolate cake or my 20-page paper. Can't have both, baby.

(Once I did very nearly that. I asked a prof if I could possibly oh please possibly deliver the hard copy of my paper on Tuesday, not Monday, as I was working a full pre-Chistmas shift at my sister's bakery Monday and wouldn't be near campus. He joked, "Sure, drop it in my box with a linzer torte and we'll call it even!"

So I did. I left the paper and a linzer mini. He loved it.)
posted by Elsa 07 May | 14:01
Also, we actually have a quiz in one of those classes that day, in addition to a final paper being due. WTF, teacher people??
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 14:07
This situation calls for take-out cold sesame noodles.
posted by Miko 07 May | 14:14
I never make stuff for things like this. I go to the supermarket and if people ask "did you make this?" I say "yes, I made it down to Morrisons".
posted by essexjan 07 May | 14:17
I have never heard of anything like this occurring in a college classroom.

Just goes to show how miserable and lifeless engineers are, I suppose.
posted by backseatpilot 07 May | 14:21
I'm annoyed enough that I don't really want to go buy anything, either, which is partly why I'm wondering if I'm being slightly too peevish. I've got a big project/event this week at work, I've got three papers and a quiz for school, I don't want to spend time hauling my ass to Trader Joe's or to spend money buying food for two "parties" with the same classmates.
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 14:26
I usually had professors who would send around a signup sheet in class and then make copies for everyone, but the students still ended up bringing the food.

I admit, I never made anything for these parties. And because most people took the train and didn't want to lug things in, neither did anyone else. Chips, mixed nuts, cheese and crackers, or paper goods were my usual contributions -- depending on where I sat in class on the day that the signup sheet was passed around, and whether those things had already been claimed.
posted by initapplette 07 May | 14:27
These things have led to student revolts in several of my classes. When they do come off, they're always vaguely depressing chip-'n'-dip affairs (btw, who puts cottage cheese in a 7-layer dip? Fucking savages).
But Eastern had the policy of failing any student who didn't show up on the day of the final, so we had to be there at least for a few minutes. Fucking sucked.
posted by klangklangston 07 May | 14:30
How about ordering a pizza? You can have them chop it into little squares instead of slices and serve it with toothpicks stuck in each square.
posted by small_ruminant 07 May | 14:37
Or how about a dozen random packages out of the hallway vending machine?
posted by small_ruminant 07 May | 14:38
That just gave me fond memories of pizza parties in elementary school, with Little Caesar's pizza. It was SQUARE! A SQUARE PIZZA! EVEN THE PIECES WERE SQUARE!
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 14:38
I've always hated compulsory potlucks, period. NOT EVERYBODY COOKS, people. Plus you end up with a horrible cacophony of flavors.

By the end of ten years in the Midwest I'd managed to tone down my ranting to a complaisant whimper. I generally combined mild protest with homage to L. Anderson by showing up with a pineapple and a knife.

I have no problem at all with collaborative dinners among friends. If friends are hosting dinner I might offer to bring something. But expecting people to make food effectively turns what would have been a party into an event with an admission charge.
posted by tangerine 07 May | 14:58
I love potlucks. It's the only time you get to eat crazy crap like pretzel salad and ambrosia.

But I've never heard of anyone doing it after finals. That's weird. When I went to Big Urban University, we'd sometimes ask the prof to go out for a beer afterward(hooray on-campus bar!), but that was about it.
posted by jrossi4r 07 May | 15:13
Oh god, this happens where I work. There's a woman in another department (which my department works with very closely all the time) who will periodically ANNOUNCE that we're having a co-departmental potluck (for various, random-seeming birthdays and special events), invite various other departments, and send around signup sheets for what we're bringing (although occasionally we just get assigned certain things).

This usually happens right as our department is particularly swamped trying to meet a ridiculous deadline. It drives us NUTS, but she keeps doing it, no matter how many times we've (both politely and firmly) explained that it would be nice if we were consulted before being ordered to show up with cakes, cheese plates, pizza, and salads on a random, last-minute basis.
posted by scody 07 May | 15:55
Heh, since no grades were on the line, in scody's case I'd just tell them that "sorry, that won't work for me."
posted by small_ruminant 07 May | 16:34
"sorry, that won't work for me."

Heh. Sometimes this is possible (we rebelled en masse for the potluck we were all being dragooned into for this week), but the problem is that sometimes these potlucks are "attached" to other interdepartmental meetings (such as production schedule updates), or are designed to commemorate numerous birthdays/going-away/holiday things all at once.

I was once informed of a massive potluck in honor of my own birtday that she not only had scheduled, but had invited several dozen other people to attend...despite the fact that I had already planned on taking the day off (which she didn't know, because she didn't bother to ask ahead of time). By the time I got the email, about 20+ people had already responded saying they'd be there.
posted by scody 07 May | 17:08

Sicilian square pizza, my friend, Sicilian.
posted by ericb 07 May | 17:52
Granted a Little Caesar's pizza pales in comparison to the real thing in Italy, New York or Boston.
posted by ericb 07 May | 17:53
Well, yes. I was, you know, seven, and therefore even more easily impressed than I am now. :-)
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 17:57
Also, I miss sicilian pizza. Stupid bad San Francisco pizza.
posted by occhiblu 07 May | 17:58
Joining the discussion late. Yeah, it's sort of annoying. I'm such a bah humbug about these things. I did have a couple close friends in my college program, and I didn't mind sticking around for social gatherings afterward. But most of the time I preferred to haul ass after class. I especially didn't want to prepare anything. Once we were required to bring a dish in for cultural awareness week. I felt like I was back in elementary school. I made macaroni and cheese with goat cheese and hot sauce and called it Soul Food.
posted by LoriFLA 08 May | 06:07
I made macaroni and cheese with goat cheese and hot sauce and called it Soul Food.


I so far have managed to hold off on sending the response to my classmates that's on the tip of my tongue, which is "Some of us have JOBS, you know. And FAMILIES." Because I personally feel that anyone who can afford to go to school without also working or having to look after young kids should, in fact, bake me some cookies. :-)
posted by occhiblu 08 May | 09:14
How about a new HELLO! de-lurking thread? || I recommend OSX editing/mySQL tools.