Thank your lucky stars!

March 27, 2008

This autumn our newly formed Department of Zodiac Studies will be accepting its very first students.

This development is not without its critics, but when The Poppletonian spoke to the new Head of Department, Professor Mike Draco, he was keen to point out that this had often been the case with previous academic developments. "There was a time," he told our reporter Keith Ponting (29), "when Media Studies was denounced as nothing more than a lot of people sitting around using long words to explain what everybody already knew about Coronation Street. But look at it now."

Draco stressed that his new department would rigorously eschew what he described as the "gypsy-oriented" side of astrology and focus on its more intellectual perspectives. So here's Mike's specially prepared horoscope for all academics born this week:

With the moon in Leo, this is an ideal time for those born under the sign of Aries to seek new friends and resolve any nagging ontological insecurity. Romance could well be in the air for those prepared to abandon their historical relativism.

Lucky colour: Dark khaki

Lucky number: 1.7999 (recurring)

OUR LIBRARY WINS TOP DESIGN AWARD

Yet another success for our university! Last Thursday the judges of the prestigious New Brutalism Architecture Prize announced that they were awarding this year's gold medal to Poppleton Library.

In their report, the judges praised the manner in which library staff had used the space provided by the dismantling of the traditional bookshelves to create "a completely open barren environment" that allowed visitors an uncluttered view of the prefabricated walls.

Accepting the award, our Director of Advanced Information Services (formerly the Head Librarian) praised his team for the speed and skill with which they had disposed of the many thousands of books that previously disfigured the building. "Now that we've sorted out that little problem," he declared, "we can get down to our real business of showing students how to connect to Google."

NEW URGENT BAN

In a shock statement this week, Jamie Targett, our Director of Corporate Affairs, announced that he was introducing an "urgent" quota system in response to the dramatic increase in campus e-mails bearing the word "urgent".

While administrative staff would retain the right to use "urgent" at all times, academics would be restricted to 12 "urgent" e-mails per term. He believed this was the only way in which "urgent" could regain the original meaning of "urgent".

Targett also announced a campus-wide ban on "urgent escalation": the use of phrases such as "very urgent", "really really urgent" and (in two recent examples) "unless you pay attention to this e-mail your loved ones could suffer".

He explained that he was asking The Poppletonian to pass on this news because of the likelihood that, in the present climate, an "urgent" e-mail might well be overlooked.

NO MORE FRIENDS

Doctor Piercemuller e-mails from his research base in the Cayman Islands to say that while he welcomes the large number of students who have contacted him through his Facebook site, he regrets that he now has quite enough virtual companions to be going on with and will henceforth be rejecting all future offers of friendship.

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK

(contributed by Jennifer Doubleday, Head of Personal Development)

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