06 December 2015

"Quis custodiet ipsos custodes?" (Connecticut Edition)

 Hey, CT residents, Nicholas M. Donofrio, the man who is the head of the Board of Regents for the Connecticut State Colleges and Universities (ConnSCU), in response to faculty concern that actions by the ConnSCU system may jeopardize the access of all students to a strong liberal arts curriculum, actually said:

"No one argues about the need for a liberal arts base. Everyone needs to walk, talk, and chew gum at some point in time."


Don't the students of CT's largest university system deserve BETTER than this?! If this is what the ones in charge of higher education think about higher education, well then, as the Roman satirist Juvenal once asked, "Who will watch the watchmen?"

If you are justifiably concerned by such an attitude, contact the governor, your state senator, and/or representative.

See Mr. Donofrio's comment here at minute 32:00.

Day 208: Sinatra Centennial Memorabilia Celebration

Shameless Plug #2


02 December 2015

Day 204: Sinatra Centennial Memorabilia Celebration

Good to know other universities had the sense to 
host a Sinatra Centennial Film Fest, like CCSU!

24 November 2015

Sinatra Music Marathon, 12/12/15


Sinatra Centennial

Music Marathon

Saturday, 12/12/15

Midnight-11:59 PM

WFCS 107.7 FM

Calling Dr. Freud! Calling Dr. Freud!

Last night I had a dream. I was the son of Rob Petrie.  Yes, the Rob Petrie from The Dick Van Dyke Show.  But I wasn't Richie Petrie, or, if I was, I was an older Richie Petrie because in my dream I'm pitching a comic musical skit to my dad for Alan Brady, the mercurial star of The Alan Brady Show. 

(And, no, I definitely wasn't staff writer Buddy or Sally.)

Anyway, the song for the skit is Frank Loesser's duet "Baby, It's Cold Outside."  As usual, the guy is trying to get his gal to stay with him, despite her protestations that she "really must go,"  because... well "... it's cold outside."

The Alan Brady Show twist here is that, while Alan is Alan, the woman is Joan of Arc (played by my mom, Laura Petrie), in full battle armor.

Lots of clanking, pratfalls, and at least one close call with a mace ensue.

I woke up before I heard my dad's response.  Do you think it'll make the show?

Help me, Doctor!

Day 196: Sinatra Centennial Memorabilia Celebration

30 October 2015

My comments at the AAUP "Fair Contract Now" Rally @ CCSU

AAUP Rally @ CCSU 10/29/30
My name is Gil Gigliotti, and, with a brand-spankin’-new PhD in hand, I arrived at CCSU in the fall of 1992. They were troubled financial times then; no raises at all for at least the first three years.  In fact, my wife and I even qualified for a low-income mortgage program here in New Britain! Over the years, there have been wage freezes, and furloughs, and give-backs, and I’ve even had good offers to go elsewhere.  I haven’t gone anywhere else because I have become quite fond of my adopted hometown of New Britain and have grown to love and respect CCSU -- my students (current and alumni), my colleagues from across the campus, and the mission we have for all of Connecticut.
Today, in honor of my current ENG 213 students, I was going to serenade ConnSCU President Ojakian with a rendition of Randy Newman’s “Mr. President, Have Pity on the Working Man,” with such verses as,

We’re not asking for you to love us
You may place yourself high above us
Mr. President, have pity on the working man!
But I can’t sing or play the piano, and, more importantly, we are not asking for anyone’s pity.

What we seek today are fairness and respect for our students, our faculty and staff, our university, and our fellow citizens – a fairness and respect that seem oddly lacking in the Board of Regents’ initial contract proposals (not to mention the misbegotten Transform 2020).
What we seek is help in running our university the way a university needs to be run so that it REMAINS a university – that is, a universe of learning, and teaching, and researching, and creating, and building!
Now I’ve written a little something, entitled “DISS-ed,” on which I’ll need your help!
When I say “Dear Board of Regents,” you yell out DON’T DISS CCSU!
DISS-ed (Dear Board of Regents)
It would be easy to be DISS-heartened,
but the students, alumni, and faculty of CCSU have too much heart.
Dear Board of Regents, DON’T DISS CCSU!
It would be easy to get DISS-couraged,
but the students, alumni, and faculty of CCSU display remarkable acts of courage every day.
Dear Board of Regents, DON’T DISS CCSU!

It’s very tempting to DISS-trust each other,
but real negotiation requires mutual trust.
Dear Board of Regents, DON’T DISS CCSU!
and finally
We must never DISS-engage,
for true education
(that is, learning, and teaching, and researching, and creating, and building)
demands our engagement
with each other,
with our cities,
with our state,
with our nation,
with our world!
Dear Board of Regents, DON’T DISS CCSU!

Author's Note:

I should make clear that I'm very aware of what Ben Franklin wrote in his Autobiography about the great effect the Great Awakening preacher George Whitefield had on his audiences and how much he hurt himself by publishing his sermons:

I am of opinion if he had never written any thing, he would have
left behind him a much more numerous and important sect,
 and his reputation might in that case have been still growing,
 even after his death, as there being nothing of his writing
 on which to found a censure and give him a lower character,
 his proselytes would be left at liberty to feign for him as
 great a variety of excellence as their enthusiastic admiration
might wish him to have possessed.

Day 171: The Sinatra Centennial Memorabilia Celebration