Attending my Zoom lectures is a privilege, not a right. To that end, prior to attending my first lecture, you must agree to the following expectations in writing. These expectations apply to both synchronous and asynchronous lectures. I am all-knowing.
• Yawning is prohibited.
My lectures are engaging AF. If you yawn, I will assume you had a rough night with Captain Morgan (I’m giving you that benefit of the doubt in presuming your taste for spiced rum), and my opinion of you will be substantially lowered. So will your grade.
• So is sneezing.
Sneezing is disruptive to the learning environment. If you must sneeze, please turn both your microphone and camera off for the duration of the sneeze. You may turn them back on once the sneeze has concluded. However, if you are one of those sneezers who does it a minimum of three times in a row, please add a two-minute buffer period to what you believe to be your final sneeze. Alternatively, return your cat to the shelter.
• If I reveal Bachelorette spoilers, you must sit there and endure it.
If you missed last night’s episode, that’s your problem.
• If you reveal Bachelorette spoilers, I will dock points from your grade.
If I missed last night’s episode, it was because I was busy planning this mesmerizing lecture. It is unkind and unfair to impact my viewing experience in this way. I have so little in life.
• Pets will be admitted into the Zoom room on a case-by-case basis.
Prior to the start of the semester, please submit a picture of your pet for my review. Should I deem them cute enough to meet my admittedly high standards, they are permitted to sit in your lap during my lectures. Otherwise, you must determine an appropriate time-out room for the duration of the lecture. If you live in a studio apartment, I suggest the bathroom.
NB: You must resubmit admitted pets’ photos for re-review at the midsemester point. This is because after the COVID 15, your pet may no longer meet my standards for attractiveness.
• Same goes for children.
• You must shower before every Zoom session.
And would it hurt you to condition your hair?
• If my child enters the room, you must spend 5-7 minutes gushing about their cuteness.
And then you must stop. They should have enough self-esteem to endure middle school but not so much that they believe they can make fetch happen.
NB: If you have a puppy, they must exit the room for the duration of my child’s visit. Cats may stay. You are encouraged to talk about how much responsibility it takes to raise a dog and how they ultimately break you by dying, such that your cold heart will never love again.
Should you elect to complain about any of the aforementioned expectations on your instructor evaluations, please know that I am a 15-year tenured professor, and these evaluations lack all meaning. The onus will fall on your TA, who I’m sure is already having a superb time looking for jobs in the higher education sector about now.