Category Archives: World Events

President Boren Takes a Paycut

I definitely have a lot of respect for OU’s President, David Boren. He’s a really neat guy in person who absolutely loves talking to students when he gets the chance.

And he has an open-door policy. So if you have a real problem with someone, you can actually just go walking into his office to give him a piece of your mind. I have yet to hear of someone abusing that privilege, and I think it’s pretty neat that Boren does that.

Also, I just found out that, in light of all the projected budget shortfalls, Boren is voluntarily taking a pay cut. Now that is something I really respect. At a time when the OU football assistant coaches are getting a pay raise (I know, it’s a different budget. But still… it’s the principle of the thing), our president, who works tirelessly for this university, is offering to work just as hard for less, in order to help OU succeed. That’s commendable.

OU President David Boren recently addressed the Faculty Senate about potential budget shortfalls, Shilling said. Boren will be taking a 6-percent paycut and OU vice presidents will see a 2- to 3-percent paycut depending on their pay grade. Boren said OU department heads should prepare for budget cuts upward to 5 percent.

From here.

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If the World was a Fempire

. . . 
Here’s a brilliant commentary on equality in the workforce– written by a man. I’m not saying that I agree with everything Daniel Manus says. But a lot of his ideas ring true… True equality means completely ignoring gender and hiring the most capable, qualified candidate — regardless of sex.
But read and ponder. I’d actually love your opinions if you want to chime in below.

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Filed under Filmmaking, Musings, World Events

Happy Veteran’s Day!

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Fail

My excuse for not voting because I don’t live in Montana (and haven’t been following my hometown election races) is no longer valid. If astronauts made it happen, I should have too. I am ashamed.

http://news.blogs.cnn.com/2010/11/02/astronauts-cast-ballots-from-space/

One pitiful excuse I’ll throw your way is that at least I wasn’t completely hiding under a rock these last couple months. I was definitely paying close attention to the gubernatorial race here in Oklahoma, as I had very strong opinions about the outcome. In fact, for the first time in my life, the thought flitted through my mind that I wish I was a resident of this (rather politically backward) state, so I could vote on the next governor. Thankfully, the thought was a brief one. Then all the reasons why I love Montana more came to mind, and my sanity was restored.

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Shake, Rattle and Roll

There was an earthquake in Oklahoma today. Never thought that would happen.

I was at work, sitting at the bottom of Old Science Hall waiting for perspective students to finish their appointment with the Education Abroad office, and all the sudden the building started shaking. I’d say it only lasted about twenty or thirty seconds, but it was long enough to shake everything around me (and apparently knock things off the dresser at home).

It was fun to sit there watching the building shudder and all, but the reactions of people were the best part of the whole thing. I was in the hall, which was prime real estate for listening to conversations in the room around me. Tons of heads popped outside, a few people evacuated the building in case of another one, and most people just wanted to know if other people had felt that too. I overheard the girl telling the perspective students that it was the class getting out of session above them (which I thought was pretty hilarious).

And naturally, after taking the kids to their next appointment, I checked my Facebook and practically everyone in the Norman area had updated their status about it. So those were entertaining to read as well.

Oh, and the emergency text system from OU sent this out to everyone as well:

The following is a message from President David Boren:
The United States Geological Survey has reported a 4.3 magnitude earthquake 6 miles to the east of Norman, OK. No injuries have been reported on the University of Oklahoma Norman campus.

All in all, a pretty eventful morning.

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Filed under Senior Year, World Events

The Height of Selfishness

This morning, after blitzing out of the house half “done-up” to make it to a meeting, I stopped by one of the public restrooms to make sure my hair wasn’t sticking straight out of my head and to apply that much-needed mascara. 

That’s the backstory to this post. However, the real story is that when I entered the restroom, the first thing I noticed was the water running full blast in one of the sinks. 

That’s irresponsible, I grumbled to myself, thinking someone had just forgotten to turn off the water when they left.
As I moved to turn the water off, however, I remembered that sometimes people have what they like to call a “nervous bladder,” and they “need” running water in order to be able to use public restrooms (I assume to mask the sound?). Maybe that was this situation? I checked beneath the stalls, and sure enough, there was a pair of feet. 
So now I’m faced with a dilemma. On the one hand, I want to be a considerate person. This girl obviously thinks she needs to turn on water to use the bathroom, even when she is in there all alone, and I should probably respect that. I also didn’t want to turn off the water right away and then stand there doing my make-up, because inevitably she’d come out and be pissed that I’d turned off the water on her. 
But on the other hand — COME ON, LADY!!! 
It is incredibly selfish to “need” to unnecessarily waste gallons of water just to go to the bathroom (?!?!). There are people in the world that have to walk 2 or 3 miles every day to reach a source of drinkable water. Water is a non-renewable resource, and just because you have always been able to turn on your faucet and see water doesn’t mean you will always be able to do so in the future. 
FACT: A running tap can waste up to six liters (1.5 gallons) per minute.*
I was fuming as I put on my make-up. In retrospect, I should have just turned off the water and made her deal with it. But that’s rude. I don’t want to be rude. And chances are, she’d come out of the stall and I’d end up knowing her (since I was in my department building). 
So I put on my make-up and left — and I am still angry about it forty-five minutes later. 
I guess I’m not angry at her, per se. But I am so so so frustrated at her attitude– one of privilege and self-involvement and a complete lack of disregard for other people.
Okay. So her four or five gallons of wasted water hasn’t drained the Pacific Ocean. And when I run the dishwasher or wash my delicates, I’ll use more water than that (and it can definitely be argued that that’s wasteful as well). 
But what if everyone in the world (blessed enough to have running water) just decided one day to waste a couple extra gallons of water going to the bathroom, just because they had a “nervous bladder”?
People think that the impending shortage of fresh water isn’t their problem. Using up the world’s resources is not their problem. But they’re wrong. Water is important to everyone. 
According to the second UN World Water Development Report** (“Water, A Shared Responsibility”), if present levels of consumption continue, two-thirds of the global population will live in areas of water stress by 2025.* 
That’s nothing to thumb your nose at.
I believe we all have a responsibility to do our part (no matter how small). The beginning of responsible energy usage is to eliminate your waste and increase your efficiency. Recycle. Change your incandescent light bulbs to compact fluorescent bulbs. Unplug your appliances when not in use (including your TV).
The same applies to water. Turn off the water while you are brushing your teeth. Put something large (like a brick) in the toilet cistern to displace water so not as much water is used to flush. Take short showers instead of baths.
We all share Earth. And just because we’ve been lucky enough to grow up in an area of the world where fresh water feels unlimited does not mean we can wrap ourselves up in our bubble of privilege and care only for ourselves. It’s not going to kill you to let others hear you tinkle. Please grow up.
*Article on Water Efficiency — http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_efficiency
** United Nations World Water Development Report 2: Water, A Shared Responsibility — http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0014/001444/144409E.pdf 

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