Oh, it is late, but I feel that if I don’t write something down, I will fall into the abyss of laziness, making excuses for never having the time to write. My most current thoughts are of the Brazilian Bash that was held in honor of Dr. Kintz, Department Chair of Anthropology, and devoted professor, fundraiser, caregiver, and friend to many for the past 29 years! 29 years! I’m only about a third of the way there. The idea of the Bash was devised through a collaborative brainstorming session before the beginning of the spring semester. After witnessing ANTH 235 students reading their original poems on the Maya view of the universe, Ellen and I knew we had to create another activity for this semester’s students that could be just as fun and rewarding. Sometimes, the best laid plans go unfinished, however. The initial thought was to have students separate into groups throughout the semester and create party planning committees. One would focus on Brazilian food. Another on Brazilian music. And others on decorations, costumes, dancing, etc. The research would be done in small chunks month by month and students would be responsible for coordinating vendors, pricing, schedules, etc. Not only would a Brazilian-themed retirement party be constructed for Ellen’s last few weeks as an official full-time professor, her students would immerse themselves in Brazilian life and culture. Unfortunately, since I miss so many of the ANTH class sessions (a librarian can only be in so many places at one time), I wasn’t able to stay abreast of the progress or push Ellen and the students had I known they were falling behind. It was in my “books” session with the students, while Ellen was away on business, that I encouraged party-specific research. But after that, the planning went nowhere. I know that Ellen is just as swamped with work as I am, if not more so, so I certainly don’t fault her. The students have learned enormous amounts of information on Brazil as it is, and my guess is that they were already bogged down with reading assignments, wiki posts, powerpoint presentation development, etc. Ellen asks a lot of her students but they always rise to the challenge and come out a better student – a better person – for it.

Despite a hectic week of throwing the party together, I think it went fabulously. Ellen must have worked her butt off to create six different powerpoints, each with its own focus on issues affecting Brazil. She read numerous quotes from Brazilian authors, sharing with her audience a glimpse of the good and bad of the largest country within South America. Cake and punch were served and the coup de gras was the amazing Buddhahood. What a terrific group of guys, and so talented. They whole-heartedly entertained Ellen’s family, friends, co-workers and students with their drums, horns and dancing. I am so pleased that I was able to book them with such late notice and without too much to offer in the way of financial gain. I do hope that our little business venture (in the way of Geneseo connections) will lead to even further librarian-faculty-student collaboration on campus. Already, a COMN professor has suggested a possible student project that could benefit her students as well as The Buddhahood. Isn’t networking a wonderful thing?

Advertisements