Pillbox

advice for awkward people

Dear Evan,

My interp teacher just gave me a D on my first essay, and asked me to redo the whole thing, but I dont see the point. Im in business, and its not like Im going to be writing to people any way, as long as I can talk well and do business, Ill be fine. What is event the point of making nonwriting based majors take a writing class? I just dont see the the point.

Cluelessly,
Not Exactly Enthusiastic Doing Script-based Assignments, has No Experience In Teaching Of Rudiments

Dear NEEDS AN EDITOR,

I’m sorry — I couldn’t hear you the first time. Can you see the the sic point of taking Interpretation and Argument? Oh, you can’t? Good to know.

I would put this in terms that you would understand, but frankly, I don’t want to waste time and energy on trying to figure out what you could or couldn’t comprehend. I know, harsh, but eh.

If I were to guess your age based on the quality of your writing, I would say you were an 8-year-old — a lazy, whining 8-year-old. And if you write like an 8-year-old in the job market — any job market — you may as well file for unemployment. This applies to emails, résumés, grant proposals, post-it notes, writings on the walls of restroom stalls: If you can’t get anywhere close to being cogent, clear, and consistent in your writing, and if you can’t make a cohesive argument, then you’re screwed.

The reason why you and many other first-years with similar disabilities (often in STEM disciplines) have to take Interp is to make you realize that fact, and to help you organize an argument. Unfortunately, most Interp professors are so caught up in their respective subjects that they lose sight of this goal, but they can still smell sorry excuses for the English language from miles away.

So, now you know. Your writing sucks. It’s difficult to get better, but work on it. It’ll be good for you.

Or just work a 9-to-5,

Evan