I preface all of this by saying this is nothing personal against the HR folks here, who were actually quite pleasant today; I just feel the need to rage against the machine.
My day began way too early with a 22-year-old video with the production values of a small-market cable TV ad detailing the fun and excitement of the Texas Hazard Communication Act, which explained that huffing paint fumes and drinking benzene for the next 30 years probably wouldn’t be smart. Later on I spent waaay too much time doing five separate training modules online on things that either would be blindingly obvious to someone with a postgraduate degree or wouldn’t be so obvious if I hadn’t been already subjected to training in such matters at all of my previous employers as well. All of the training, needless to say, was presented in such a way that none of the examples were actually relevant to the work situation that professors find themselves in—instead of “don’t take bribes from the textbook companies” and “don’t fondle your students in exchange for grades,” it was “don’t use the on-campus physical plant facilities to fix your buddies’ cars.”
Also needless to say, none of these training modules included the only one that would be useful—namely the one I have to do to get IRB approval to sneeze in the direction of data collected from people I’ll never meet, because without the training I’d apparently be the first political scientist in history capable of abusing human subjects backwards through time.
And to top things off I think the thunderstorms killed
my the state’s computer over the weekend.