Bob Campbell fan club's Journal|
[Most Recent Entries]
Below are the 19 most recent journal entries recorded in
Bob Campbell fan club's LiveJournal:
|Wednesday, June 1st, 2005|
could i be a bigger dork? don't answer that.
a few weeks ago, my good friend kendra came across a cuaa creative writing publication from 1993. inside this lovely little gem, i found this article by prof. campbell.
and... since i haven't had anything important to do since... december... i took a few minutes to type it up. it's about campbell's favorite poem, "song of myself", which some of you will remember from pre-1865 american lit.
yup. and i see you yawning. so here's the article.What’s a loafer to do?
I celebrate myself, and sing myself,
And what I assume you shall assume,
For every atom belonging to me as good belongs to you.
I loafe and invite my soul,
I lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grases.
My tongue, every atom of my blood, form’d from this soil, this air
Born here of parents born here from parents the same, and their parents the same,
I, now thirty-seven years old in perfect health begin,
Hoping to cease not till death.
(Walt Whitman, “Song of Myself”)
In my formative years, I became aware that, though my parents loved me deeply, they thought I was “lazy.” I had no “ambition.” I “wasted” time. I didn’t do things that were “productive.” I remember having a chart with a list of my chores posted in the kitchen. After each chore was a day of the week, and I was to paste a gold star by each chore under each day I completed it. The chart was usually blank. I did well in school, but was no slave to homework, and though I was actually a Boy Scout for several years, I never rose above the rank of First Class – to go further would have meant accumulating merit badges, at which I was no more successful than accumulating those gold stars for chores. The scoutmaster didn’t think I was properly “motivated.”
Then, in my junior year in high school, I read the opening lines of Walt Whitman’s “Song of Myself.” In the fourth line my eyes were snagged by that word “loafe.” It was my word, misspelling and all.
It was a poem about a man who was lazy and felt good about it. Though he claims to have had parents, they apparently couldn’t prevent him from wasting his time and then boasting about it. At 16, I was being asked what I wanted to “do with my life.” Yet here was a man of 37 who was just beginning. I knew this poem spoke for me.
“Song of Myself” is a long poem for a lazy person to read, but I read it, all 1346 lines of it. And I must confess I understood very little of it. Though I was in the flood tide of adolescence, I even missed most of the parts about sex, Whitman’s language was so metaphorical (“love root,” “libidinous prongs”). But for me then it was a poem about “loafing,” daydreaming, letting you mind go where it wants to, and it affirmed the worth of a person who did so.
In my senior year of high school, we had a substitute teacher for English on the day we were to have read Whitman’s poem. As with most substitute teachers in those days, her task was to kill 50 minutes, so she had us read “Song of Myself” aloud, each person reading one of its 52 stanzas. This private poem between me and Walt Whitman suddenly spoke with many voices. I remember the blushing girl who had to read: “Who goes there? Hankering, gross, mystical, nude…?” And the whole class laughed at lines like: “The scent of these arm-pits aroma finer than prayer.” “Myself” had many selves.
When I reached 37, Whitman’s age for beginning, I recognized some of the anxiety in his voice. “Has any one supposed it lucky to be born?/I hasten to inform him or her it is just as lucky to die, and I know it.” These lines had a hollow ring. Death is the great enemy of loafing. To loaf properly, you must believe you are immortal, that nothing matters. At 37, life seems less limitless than at 16.
So what can an old loafer do? Become a teacher, as Whitman did toward the end of his poem. And though the Vice-President for Academics will not permit me to “lean and loafe at my ease observing a spear of summer grass,” I can still follow Whitman’s poem. “He most honors my style who learns under it to destroy the teacher… I teach straying from me…”
I have lived with this poem now for 30 years. While there are many other poems I enjoy, none strikes as deep a chord as does “Song of Myself."
- Prof. Robert Campbell 1993
|Friday, April 29th, 2005|
Need I say more?
|Tuesday, April 12th, 2005|
so, Campbell said "panties" in class last week.
and it was the funniest fucking thing i've ever heard in my life.
so i laughed really loudly.
and he was all, "can we raise the maturity level in here?"
and i was all, "it's only because it's you."
because it is.
Campbell saying panties.
think about it.
|Wednesday, January 5th, 2005|
hey neat... this community does still exist.
did anyone else watch "do you speak american?" on pbs?
i just kept thinking of campbell... and the english language... which i took twice. yeah, i'm dumb.
it's really interesting though, and if campbell doesn't already know about it, someone should alert him to it. i'm sure it will be airing again.
|Wednesday, December 15th, 2004|
|Tuesday, December 14th, 2004|
September 30th Quotes
This was after a discussion of Nicole B talking about how cool it was getting toys at Christmas.
Bob: "Hmm, Tooooooysssssss.... yes."
Later in the day:
This was after the discussion of getting rich and buying many cars.
Bob: "If any of -you- would like to buy -me- a Mercedes Benz... please feel free to do so."
|Saturday, October 30th, 2004|
In Romantic Movement Thursday...
CAMPBELL: "Has anyone ever read David Copperfield
KINNEY: "I did, but I don't remember it. I read it when i was young."
CAMPBELL: "How young?"
KINNEY: "Like, when I was eight?"
CAMPBELL: "Oh, nevermind. Nothing that happens before the age of twelve has any relevance."
|Friday, April 2nd, 2004|
Does anyone else think there's a market for Bob Campbell fan fiction?
|Sunday, March 28th, 2004|
so, friday was do art day, and for two of my classes i had to listen to this poet do her thang, which was sweet, 'cause she was really good. so, i see campbell sitting next to the wall o'sound for the riverside rooms, and the lady has some of her work on CD she wants to play for us, in addition to the live performance. so she's like "start track one." and there's silence. for about a minute or so. no one is making any noise. finally, campbell pipes up, "are we ready for track one?"
yea, bob: i hear a voice.
|Friday, March 19th, 2004|
Man, campbell was hollerin' today.
He was so loud, I had a headache.
He opened up an argument with this:
"I bet you didn't know that the male emperor penguin actually sits on the egg. FOR MONTHS he does this. He gets skinnier and skinnier.Pause
"THE MALE! Isn't that exciting? I think that's exciting."
I wish I could remember more through my throbbing St Patty's-day-hangover-slash-Campbell-yell
ing induced headache.
Ughh. Current Mood: silly
|Tuesday, March 9th, 2004|
Just wanted to let you all know that I had Campbell in my student teaching interview yesterday - you all should be jealous. Actually, you shouldn't, because I really sucked and couldn't form a coherent thought to save my life.
|Tuesday, February 17th, 2004|
Two more for you to throw on the pile of evidence proving Campbell's superiority:
Liz brought up this one in a comment recently. In the English language, we were talking about romantic language. And Campbell said:
"Now, guys, if you're out with your girlfriend," then he looks DIRECTLY AT ME, and continues, "or whatever gender you prefer...."
Yesterday in Intro-Po we were discussing accented syllables in poetry. We clapped on the accents of words. It was very first-grade. But it was awesome. And Campbell allowed a short game of "Find all the words that rhyme with 'Ruth'" to commence.
etc.... Current Mood: amused
|Wednesday, February 11th, 2004|
Campbell teaching style
I love how Bob occasionally will bait traps for students. On Monday we were reading a greusome war poem about gore and death and guts.
"Is there anybody who thinks this is a happy poem?" asked Campbell.
Nobody raised a hand.
"RIGHT!" he bellowed, loud enough to be heard anywhere in Krieger Hall. "THIS IS NOT A HAPPY POEM! NOW TELL ME WHY!"
We were smart enough to evade that trap. But Campbell became more sly today. We read a really symbolic poem, and were trying to figure out the analogies, and Campbell asked us what it means.
"It's about life," said Ruth.
"She's losing her virginity," said I.
"It's about marriage," chimed in Becca.
"We don't know what it's about!" exclaimed Campbell.
Score, at the end of Round One:
Everyone in Intro to Poetry- 1 Current Mood: working
This is an excerpt from a journal update I just posted. In it, I am just saying people that I like and why. I think it bears posting here...Campbell for being so meta-lectural. You can take a Campbell class and not like it, but that's probably because you weren't really paying attention to the funny shit that beautiful man says, or the fact that he's an amazingly effective language instructor.
Bob's Brigade rides at the front of the line, chopping down shitty English majors and jocks who shouldn't talk in class.
"I hear a voice..."
As far as my favorite Campbell quote, I guess you might have had to be there. We were addressing Bush's "axis of evil" presidential speech in Advanced Comp last year, and he got on great anti-bush soapbox.
"Yes, when you refer to these people as "evil," they cease to become people. They are just these monsters, these evil things, and then we're in Lord of the Rings, right? You know, we're in Mordor, and there's Sadam, he's Sauron or whatever"
just the smart-assed way he said it made me die.
so if anyone ever wants to chat about the inner workings of campbell this semester i am your girl! i have three campbell classes this semester--back to back on mwf.
it is great to go to a college so small that one doesn't have to work hard at all to take classes taught by professors they enjoy. Current Mood: accomplished
|Tuesday, February 10th, 2004|
Who said that??!!!
It's been over 2 years since I've had a Campbell class, so I envy those of you that do. :/ I wish I could remember some of the things he used to say... but it's been too long.
Either way, he's a great prof and I always enjoyed his class. This community is a wonderful idea steve-o, and I will be looking forward to each and every post.
*waits for more stories* Current Mood: campbell-rific
American Literature and Sex
So, last semester when discussing the domestic activities of the infamous wearer of the scarlet letter, Hester Prynne, I made a comment about her time spent upon the employment of needlework. Campbell included my suggestion in the list on the board, spun around, looked me in the eye, and said very matter-of-factly "Is needlework a substitute for sex?"
Later in the semester, we were studying Moby Dick, which contains absolutely NO SEX. It doesn't even contain any women. Nevertheless, Campell informed the class that the whale was none other than a giant, white, swimming... phallic symbol.
It's about time this man received some recognition....
And some favorites from the English Language today:
Emily was describing her security duties of kicking people off of the ball fields in the middle of the night, to which Campbell's response with great interest and concern was, "So where are you supposed to go to make out?"
Dan was asking if there was a specific word to refer to guys who talk more after they loosen up with a few alcoholic drinks, to which Campbell simply wrote on the board, "Lubrication."
Oh yes, you should envy me. I have a Campbell class EVERY SINGLE DAY of the week! Current Mood: ecstatic
to the Bob Campbell community! Here is your place to talk about your favorite Campbell courses, proverbs of Bob Campbell, and just generally bask in the greatness of Professor Bob Campbell!
Campbell quote of the day:
"Smoking crack is not my bag." Current Mood: amused