Friday, January 18, 2013

Executive Orders

I like my colleagues. We work hard and I think we do a lot of good things for our students, but we also have fun.  When I was chair back many years ago now, I used to send out the occasional “executive order” addressed to the “Workers” of the Psychology Department. These might require things like posting a photograph of me on all walls, or the requirement that all members of the Department purchase a motorcycle for transportation, or 100 other things.  I often referred to my small red book of The Sayings of Chairman Gramlich. There were lots of German jokes, in keeping with my name.

Recently, our current chair, Elliott Hammer, was going to be out of commission on a couple of Fridays, leaving my friend, Lisa Schulte as acting chair one Friday, and me as acting chair the next.  Lisa and I got together and decided that she would issue an executive order that I would then rescind as soon as I took “command.” 

Lisa’s Executive order read something like this:

From the Office of Dr. Schulte-Gipson:
Day 1 of the New Departmental Order
To all workers of the Department of Psychology
Executive Order #1718A

"Henceforth and in perpetuity, all eggs used for any purpose, such as cooking, shall be cracked only at the small end of the egg."

 My executive order won’t go out until next week but will read:

From the Bunker of Dr. Charles Gramlich
Day 1 of the New New Departmental Order
To all remaining workers of the Department of Psychology, henceforth to be known as Department Q
Executive Order 78483838027817304721639964151

Part A: All previous executive orders issued by the previous chair in exile, whose name shall not be mentioned here, are rescinded.

Part B: Henceforth and in perpetuity, all eggs used for any purpose, such as cooking, shall be cracked only at the large end.

I don't know about you, but I got a laugh out of it.



Riot Kitty said...

That is hilarious! Life is too short to be serious.

Prashant C. Trikannad said...

Charles, you teach psychology and you get to have fun too. How cool is that!

Deka Black said...

If suddenly, a really humongous giant appears in this world, i wil be not surprised!

Btw, all people know the eggs are cracked best with a jackhammer.

Angie said...

Hee! Sounds like you have a fun department. :D


BernardL said...

I'll admit executive orders by psychology professors are much more humorous than Presidential ones. :)

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

If you can't have fun at work, then what's the point?

Charles Gramlich said...

Riot Kitty, with a name like Riot Kitty, you ought to know. :)

Prashant, tis fun indeed.

Deka, lol.

Angie, we do. we all get along really well.

Bernard, indeed, and less dangerous as well because nobody actually heads them.

Charles Gramlich said...

Alex, tis true.

Anonymous said...

If you teach psychology, & you are not inclined to see the humor in things, that would be very sad indeed.

And the egg beater carton, is there a special way one should open that too?~Mary

pattinase (abbott) said...

The current state of perpetual conflict between the administration and the faculty at WSU does not permit any sort of congeniality. The administration seems the faculty as an impediment to a virtual university, which they would like. Quite a shame.

Oscar Case said...

Reminds me of the Navy's Plan of the Day which the Executive Officer promulgates daily for ship's company to follow. Some of them were really funny.

Ron Scheer said...

I thought that stuff only went on in English Departments.

ivan said...

Well, if it were the english department, the hippies would immediately know that it was Jonathan Swift who first cited the Big Enders and the Little Enders when it came to the famous cracking- of the- egg wars. :)

G. B. Miller said...

Perhaps what one should do at Christmas time, is give the newest staff member the ultimate Christmas present.

You know the type, where having a knife, scissors and any other implements of destruction are needed to open said present.

As for other kinds of silliness, sadly where I work, that kind of silliness often becomes official agency/state policy.

Greg said...

that's awesome! your dept sounds like a fun place to work.

Charles Gramlich said...

Frankandmary, gotta get a laugh when you can. Thanks for dropping by to visit. I had not thought of the egg beater carton. Egads this new world causes us problems. :)

Patti, I wouldn't send that to any administrators at Xavier either, but we don't count chairs as administrators in our department since they are always elected by us and they are all folks who are really doing it for the good of the department and would rather not do it.

Oscar, that sounds intriguing!

Ron, I did have to explain the significance of the egg breaking war to my psychology colleague.

Ivan, yes, as I mentioned to Ron, I had to give a little background on it to some of my colleagues.

G.B., Unfortunately with humans, almost nothing is too ridiculous to have been tried seriously at some point.

Greg, it definitely is.

Travis Cody said...

That's hilarious. Work is work. But there should be moments of silliness too.

X. Dell said...

Effin' hilarious.

Charles Gramlich said...

Travis Cody, absolutely.

X. Dell, thanks!

laughingwolf said...


jonathan swift did something along those lines in his works...

Anonymous-9 said...

Hysterical! Love it.

Charles Gramlich said...

Laughingwolf, yeah, that's where I got the egg thing.

Anonymous-9, thankee! :)