Oct. 15th, 2010

Thanks to all of my many friends who asked some very probing questions on both LJ and FB about my upcoming dissertation defense. Welcome to the scientific process of question and discussion!

In order to address some of your very specific concerns, I spent some time yesterday digging through old Rackham guidelines and some earlier editions of the Michigan Standard Practice Guide. Take heart, I did find some answers for you!

Rackham rules (paraphrased):

Regarding vuvuzelas: Unless you also cobble together a strings player and a drummer (and appropriate instruments) for every five horns, you are limited to wearing your [wind instrument] as personal decoration. If you DO get a band together, they cannot play other than an introductory segue and an exit march. The drummer is allowed rimshots. (Sorry, I'm not in the School of Music, performances during the presentation are not allowed.)

Regarding signs/posterboards: Sure, as long as they are presented for public display on the nearest non-University property. (Which, if I recall correctly for the departmental seminar room, would be smack in the middle of Ann street. Sorry, I believe it's an anti-Westboro numbskulls thing. Good luck dodging the buses and all.)

Michigan SPG (from an 1843 edition):

"In the eventuality the candidate is challenged.... when the challenger disallows the validity of all of the candidate's claims or findings, there shall be a duel conducted immediately after the presentation. The candidate chooses the weapons."

I will be generous and presumptively announce my choice of weapon now: babies. Remember, if you do not bring your baby to my defense, you default and I automatically win.

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July 2011

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