FUNNY WOMEN #119: Why Jeannie Drank, a Colloquium


The Faculty of Arts and Philosophy at the University of Muskegon announces its national conference on their common research theme: “Why Jeannie Drank.” At the core of the theme is the signal question of alternative points of view. The aim of this inter-, multi-, trans-disciplinary conference is to open discussion on how personal vs. community responsibility can be apportioned and other jargon. The conference consists of a series of colloquia on the following topics, led by our distinguished visiting experts:

1. Donna Diehl, former Full Professor at Bachelder University, now teaching at Northern Parkway State. Her paper is entitled: “Dangers of the ‘Sibling Society’: Failure to Take Responsibility and Its Repercussions.” Prof. Diehl will require a ride to and from the colloquium as well as a colleague to push her wheelchair, although she is not differently abled (it’s a metaphor). After her presentation, cake will be served to everyone who claps. Could someone please bring a sharps disposal box?


2. Viv Henry, Professor Emeritus of Balthus University. Her paper is going with the title: “‘I know, I know, it’s very hard. By the way, I’m mad at you’: An Appreciation of the Role of Dysfunctional Parenting in the Makings of Alcoholics.” She will attempt to read her paper in one long breath but will need a cigarette break.

3. Peter Danziger, Assistant “Professor” of “Psychotrophy” at “Wayland University.” He will be presenting, “It’s All Chromium Deficiency: A Theory of Bioactivated Trace Metals.” He’ll have several other papers available for purchase afterward, including “Other Papers,” “The Great Mozzarella Conspiracy,” and “The Real Margaritaville.”

4. Ellen Lunden, Associate Professor of Media Studies in Boulder. Her ebook, “‘Don’t you tell ME about hard; come over here and whine about how your dinner party flopped, why don’t you?’: A Study in the Radical Opposite of Narcissism,” will be read aloud by her son (who is rich and good-looking and will do anything for his mother; and don’t you say anything—you don’t get to wonder if he is gay; I’m his mother, and I’d know if he was gay!). She regrets she is unable to attend personally, but the sight of certain full professors makes her sick.

5. Clare Willens, Adjunct Professor of Intonation and Body Language at Richard “Dick” Dumphy University will present: “Gender Inequities in Married Substance Abusers; or Does It Matter Who Took the First Drink?,” her chapbook of linked haiku.


6. Annette Scharf, Professor of Rationality in the Philosophy Department at Beeline Community of Higher Learning, a two-year program in common sense. Her paper is still at the printers, but the provisional title may be: “‘When is it going to stop being about YOU?'” or “‘If that was the way you felt, why didn’t you tell me?'” or “‘Why can’t we all just get along—like we used to?'” Title regardless, Prof. Scharf invites all members of the colloquium and the audience to her home after the proceedings, if all goes well. Sparkling pear cider and Diet Coke will be rationed. Cribbage boards will be made available, and if it gets late, then she has floors enough for everyone.

7. Jeannie S. Halbich, the Francis and Morine Kleborn Professor of Practice for Leadership and Progress at the University of the Grand Tetons. Her paper is “Say That to My Face, I Dare You!: An Epic Complaint, a Poetic Rant in Iambic Pentameter, a Settling of All Accounts Due.” Prof. Jeannie Halbich would like to remind all the gathered experts that next Christmas they will have to get together elsewhere, and, finally, at last they’ll see what they have done.

These papers will be additionally collected in a Festschrift, curated by our moderator and department chair, Prof. Jo Johnstone, and scheduled to be published by Rose Red Presse in 20TK. Copies will be available by mail-in subscription only.


Rumpus original art by Annie Daly.


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Originally from Minnesota, Julie Hart has lived in London, Zurich, and Tokyo, and now in Brooklyn Heights. Her work can be found in Five Quarterly, Denim Skin, PANK magazine, and forthcoming in Floor Plan Journal. Follow her on Twitter or Tumblr. More from this author →