Category Archives: Midd Blogosphere

On A Real Tip: Slang In Trying Times

Like myself, many of the MiddKids with whom I frequently interact are people of color. Many, too, are New Yorkers, come from urban environments and employ a colorful use of language I have yet to encounter outside of the North. In a loosely anthropological study, I have prepared  the briefest of satirical dictionaries to highlight some of my favorite uses of the students’ slang. Let me know if I get them right– or, more likely, wrong. And also, like, #fuhrealsies, use the tips. Here are five examples of contemporary slang in trying times:

a image including 12 librarians

The Middlebury College librarians are pictured here. Make an appointment with any one of them by visiting go.middlebury.edu/librarians.

brand new | This adjective is used in a scenario when a person acts as though information is novel to them and a speaker wants to call out their interlocutor’s inauthenticity. Example of usage:

Speaker 1: Aw, man! I only have two of five required sources and my prof set the deadline for this paper at 5:00 p.m. today. There’s no way I can turn it in tomorrow.

Speaker 2: Who? Prof. Jenkins! You been knowin’ that. That’s her standard practice. Stop actin’ brand new!

Tip: Monday through Friday, you can make a one-on-one appointment with a librarian and get all the sources you need. Visit go.middlebury.edu/librarians.

 

a calendar with a highlighted week

Depicted, review the hours the Research Desk is staffed for the third week of April 2018: Sunday 1-5 p.m.; Monday- Wednesday from 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. and 7 p.m.- 10 p.m.; Thursday from 11 a.m.- 5 p.m.; and Fridays 1- 5 p.m.

deadass | an interjection used to express unquestioning support and/or fealty for a premise, suggestion, opinion or idea. It is synonymous with “seriously.” This term is often used in a deadpan fashion, its understated delivery lending irony to its meaning. It is often accompanied by meaningful glances for emphasis. Example of usage:

Speaker 1: Yo, so um… this paper is 40,000 pages long and it’s due in 5 minutes. I’ma haveta request an extension.

Speaker 2: Deadass. Me, too!

Tip: If you need to help orienting your 40,000 page paper, librarians staff the Research Desk over 40 hours a week. See our hours at go.middlebury.edu/hours.

 

a screenshot of two men at a radio station

A screenshot from an interview with a radio deejay named Sway and Kanye West, the supposed origin of the phrase, “How, Sway?”

How, Sway? | This interrogative is a rhetorical device used to express befuddlement when one is facing an incredulous situation. It is synonymous with, “That’s ridiculous!” Note: no one posing this question actually wants an answer. This term is often accompanied by meaningful glances and gesticulations for emphasis. Example of usage:

Speaker 1: I’m about to write this paper and edit my bibliography before my night shift in 30 minutes.

Speaker 2: How, Sway? You are a whole procrastinator.

Tip: If your works cited list needs a touch up, there’s a research guide dedicated specifically to citations at go.middlebury.edu/citations. You can also ask for help at the Research Desk in the Davis Family Library.

 

Cover Art for a Simon and Garfunkel album, Wednesday Morning, 3AM

Cover Art for a Simon and Garfunkel album, Wednesday Morning, 3AM, which includes the track “Sound of Silence.”

shook | Used with the first person singular, this adjective is used to describe one’s state when they are rattled, surprised or overwhelmed with emotion. It is occasionally synonymous with the more hegemonic, “I can’t even,” and often accompanied by meaningful, unfocused stares into the distance. Example of usage:

Speaker 1: Did you hear? The prof canceled their term paper altogether and was like, “Bucket.”

Speaker 2: What?! I can’t believe that. That must be an urban legend.

Speaker 1: I know, right?! But then I saw the receipts!

Speaker 2: [look of surprise] I’m shook. 

[Cue: ♪♪♪ “The Sound of Silence” by Simon & Garfunkel. Lyrics: “Hello, darkness, my old friend…” ♪♪♪]

Tip: For those of you not living a mythology, plan out your papers with writing tutors at the Center for Teaching, Learning and Research (CTLR) in the Davis Family Library, main level. Make an appointment at go.middlebury.edu/appt.

 

A yellow highlighter

A yellow highlighter

weak | Always used in in conjunction with the first-person singular pronoun or perhaps a hashtag, this term expresses that the speaker is humored or “tickled” by their interlocutor’s musings. Curiously, for emphasis, this phrase is often unaccompanied by meaningful glances, eye contact or even laughter. Example of usage:

Speaker 1: Last night I tried to finish the last reading for class.

Speaker 2: An’ wha’ happen?

Speaker 1: I woke up, rested– drool on the  the book and highlighter all over my face.

Speaker 2: I’m weak.

Tip: If you need a quiet space to study that is not your dorm room, where the tempting sheets of doom call you to your bed, use go.middlebury.edu/groupstudy to reserve a room in the libraries.

For etymologies/origins of the studied terms, please contact Spanish and Linguistics professor Dr. Marcos Rohena-Madrazo or refer to urbandictionary.com. For “highkey” and “lowkey,” see Athena. For “I’m dead,” see Rahat. For “Yikes!, talk to Treasure. I’d offer you Kory Stamper’s Word By Word: the Secret Life of Dictionaries, but it’s currently checked out to me, so. . .

Wild N Out No GIF by Identity - Find & Share on GIPHY

 

Keeping up with Staff Council

In order to keep our ever growing community connected and informed, Staff Council will be reaching out in several new ways, both on this blog and elsewhere.

We now have an Instagram account, @middstaffcouncil, https://www.instagram.com/middstaffcouncil/ . We’ll use this for announcements of events, fun pictures and profiles of staff, and little news flashes to keep you informed on Middlebury.

Also new is a twitter account, @middstaff, https://twitter.com/MiddStaff, where we’ll be posting news and information pertaining to staff life here at Middlebury.

Finally, we are also going to be using this blog quite a bit more as well. It’s hard to stay in touch on campus, and harder still to share feedback and suggestions to staff council. There is a handy link on the left bar of this site that allows a user to subscribe to this blog, so you won’t miss any new posts. Comment threads, such as this one, can be subscribed to as well, just look for the check boxes at the bottom of the screen.

Accessing this blog is a little confusing, but worth understanding to be able to leave anonymous comments. The blog is only visible either physically on campus, or connecting remotely via VPN. If you are off campus and want to read the blog, you can log into the blog (upper right corner), but the blog will now post your comments with your name. Posting anonymous comments is possible ONLY when on campus or through Midd VPN connection.

As always, we are open to suggestions, comments, criticism, and ideas. We’d love for everybody to be in touch and a little more connected together.

25 Years @ Midd with Lisa Terrier

In this post we recognize Lisa Terrier, Manager of Helpdesk Service Requests, for her 25 years of Service to Middlebury. Lisa discusses her work outside of the College, her favorite hobbies, and her fondest Midd memories. Read on to learn more about Midd from Lisa’s point of view.

What did you do prior to work at Middlebury College and where were you located?

I worked at Simmonds Precision during its transition to Hercules, BF Goodrich and then Goodrich. It’s now known as UTC in Vergennes.  I started there right out of high school and worked my way to the data center on the night shift running batch jobs, backups, and printing.  There were classes that helped in my work in the technology field which Simmonds helped pay for and started me on my way to a college degree.

What job titles have you held while working at Middlebury?

From most recent:

Manager, Helpdesk Svc Requests

Senior Technology Specialist

Technology Distribution Mngr

Desktop Computing Oper Analyst

Athletics Office Coordinator

Take us back to your first year as an employee at the College. What were the most significant things happening in your life outside of work then?

My husband and I were starting up our dairy farm, moving from Ferrisburgh to Middlebury. I was competing in Gymkhana’s and Team Penning with my horse every weekend.  And working on acquiring my college degree a few classes at a time.

What are the most significant things happening in your life outside of work now (that you’d like to share)?

Lee and I have transitioned away from dairy and now focus on raising naturally grass fed beef and hay. We raised an absolutely wonderful young man who will be turning 19 this year.  Wade currently works at Midd in the facilities department.

Have your interests/hobbies/athletic endeavors changed over the past 25 years? Have any of these been influenced by your work at the College or due to your association with others who work here?

I am even more energetic and yes due to some of the fantastic people I work with. I have a fitbit and compete in steps with Gary Weiss and Nate Burt, they sure keep me on my toes.  I still ride horses, though more for pleasure instead of competing.  I admit raising an energetic son has really been the highlight, he pushed me to try new things.  We joined an ATV club and went 4 wheeling all over Vermont.   With boy scouts, I met many Midd parents and their kids, who we are still friends with today.

What is your fondest memory or experience that you’ve had while working at Middlebury?

I loved that we did the all campus photo and I guess it would have the be the diaper drop event ITS held for me when I was due to have my son. I received so many packages of diapers they literally filled a closet at my home.

Many people change jobs/careers multiple times in their working life. Something must have kept you here for 25 years. Is it anything that you can put into words?

I like technology and have learned many new systems over the years. Though it’s the people I work with that make me want to stay.

What are your plans for the next 25 years?

I plan to enjoy every minute I can with my family, and to be here at Midd with my work family until I retire.

Do you have a favorite place on campus?

I can’t say I have a favorite place or building on campus, I do enjoy the trails though.

Is there any person on campus (or retiree, former employer) that mentored you, or you feel helped you grow into your job, grow to enjoy your work and your time at the College?

I don’t know if Marty New helped me grow, though she did make work more enjoyable. Her retirement means I will miss having her smile and humor to start the day.

If you could give one piece of advice to a new employee at Middlebury, what would it be?

Learn what you need when it comes to technology and how it can help you in your work. Most of all make friendships and participate in college events.  There is so much more at Midd than just coming to work and doing your job.

Is there anything else that you would like to share about your time at Middlebury?

I am hopeful that the environment and the morale will be uplifted with the recent discussions around performance, pay, staff resources and recognition. For some, it may look like Middlebury is not the best place to work, though it has been and will be again.

25 Years @ Midd with Christopher Ayers

In this post we recognize Christopher Ayers, HVAC Electrician, for his 25 years of Service to Middlebury. Christopher shares his favorite spot on campus, his love of golf, and some advice for new employees. Read on to learn more about Midd from Christopher’s point of view.

What did you do prior to work at Middlebury College and where were you located?

I operated my own Electrical Contracting business. I lived in Bristol Vt.

What job titles have you held while working at Middlebury?    

I started in 1993 in the Electric Dept. as an Electrician A. I then in 1999 was offered a position in the newly formed HVAC Dept. which I accepted and have been there until present.

Take us back to your first year as an employee at the College. What were the most significant things happening in your life outside of work then?

Figuring out how to put my 2 children through college.

What are the most significant things happening in your life outside of work now (that you’d like to share)?

Planning the next phase of my life away from Middlebury College.

Have your interests/hobbies/athletic endeavors changed over the past 25 years? Have any of these been influenced by your work at the College or due to your association with others who work here?

After starting work here at the college with the college benefit at the golf course I played a lot more golf. This included playing a lot with other staff members.

What is your fondest memory or experience that you’ve had while working at Middlebury?

The memory of working with so many wonderful co-workers.

Many people change jobs/careers multiple times in their working life. Something must have kept you here for 25 years. Is it anything that you can put into words?

The fact that I liked my job and still do. Of course the benefits were great and the opportunity to work with so many exceptional people was truly enjoyable.

What are your plans for the next 25 years?

Play a lot more golf with my wife and try to hang out with my children and grandchildren more.

Do you have a favorite place on campus?

I would have to say on the roof of MBH (McCardell Bicentennial Hall) looking back across campus.

Is there any person on campus (or retiree, former employer) that mentored you, or you feel helped you grow into your job, grow to enjoy your work and your time at the College?

As a new employee Tom Ball helped me navigate through the different ways of the college. Art Thorne helped me take on more challenging work.

If you could give one piece of advice to a new employee at Middlebury, what would it be?

Take advantage of any training the college is willing to offer. Then apply it to your job you will be rewarded.

Is there anything else that you would like to share about your time at Middlebury?

It has been a great place to work and I am happy to have been afforded the opportunity to work here.

Multiple Internships with General Dynamics

General Dynamics is a global aerospace and defense company. Every day, people around the world depend on their products for their safety and security. They’re looking for talented, motivated individuals who want to become part of a company with a culture driven by diversity, innovation and agility.

GD has posted a number of great internships in Handshake – deadline April 30th. Check them out!

and more! Search for General Dynamics in Handshake for a full list of opportunities.

Vermont Employer Highlight: Logic Supply

Logic Supply is a global Industrial PC company building custom computers for harsh environments and the Internet of Things. Grounded by their core values and fueled by an innovative delivery model, they’ve achieved an annual growth rate of 25% over the last 14 years.

Check out their postings in Handshake: