An offer they can't refuse

August 11, 2006

Readers are recommended to follow the example of Dr Smith (not his real name) who had one too many rejection letters. In a letter to a university head of department, he writes: "Thank you for your letter of July 6. After careful consideration, I regret to inform you that I am unable to accept your refusal to offer me an assistant professor position in your department.

"This year I have been particularly fortunate in receiving an unusually large number of rejection letters. With such a varied and promising field of candidates, it is impossible for me to accept all refusals.

"Despite the university's outstanding qualifications and previous experience in rejecting applicants, I find that your rejection does not meet my needs at this time.

"Therefore, I will assume the position of assistant professor in your department this May. I look forward to seeing you then.

"Best of luck in rejecting future applicants."

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