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Blind Dates, Cramps & Other Excuses!

Blind Dates, Cramps & Other Excuses!

In my 61 years I have learned many things and have some good old-fashioned common sense. Send your questions to

Dear Battle Axe,

I’m a professor at a State College in a major city, I have to say I am appalled at the excuses the students come up with for not attending class or not finishing their papers. They all have my email address so that is the best way to get a hold of me. Last week a young woman sent me an email and in the subject line, in caps, just wrote “CRAMPS” I wrote back to her with my response “DRUGS!” and essentially told her that was not an excuse and I expected her in class. When I first started teaching I gave everyone a break but 8 years later I have seen and heard it all. At the beginning of the semester I offer my condolences for all the grandmothers that will die. Am I being too harsh?  I’ve heard every excuse in the book.

Dear Every Excuse,

No, you are not being harsh, in fact that is what all these spoiled, entitled kids need. (Where is Sue Sylvester, when we need her?) What are parents thinking? They are not doing their kids any favors by giving in to them all the time. Obviously there are exceptions and sometimes students need a break especially those who are working, going to school full time, or have children. But those are the ones that always show up. Hang in there, be tough.

Dear Battle Axe,


I teach at a University and when one of my students did not get an A, he had his mother contact me. HIS MOTHER! I suddenly felt that I was in kindergarten and talking to the mom who can’t seem to leave her child in the class. I told her the same thing I told her son. He did not follow the guidelines clearly stated in the syllabus I handed out at the beginning of class. I have to admit she was tough, and would not give up. I almost had to hang up on her, she exhausted me. It gave me a better understanding of why he acted the way he did, and I believe I did the right thing.

Dear Believer,

You definitely did the right thing. What people seem to forget is that it is not fair to the students who follow the guidelines and do show up for class, or as stated above have all this adversity in their lives and still succeed.

Dear Battle Axe,


About two years ago, I broke up with a partner of many years. I find that I do not want to date and I am not ready to get involved with anyone. I just want time for myself but I also find that many friends and acquaintances are trying to set me up or constantly telling me to go out on a blind date. What do you recommend I do about these well intentioned people? Still soul searching and trying to find myself.

Dear Soul Searcher,

I say keep on searching. It takes time to get over relationships. You do say well intentioned people and that is exactly what it is. I find that interesting that people always want to match us up with someone, I think it is just human nature. It sounds like you need time for yourself and its good that you realize that. I say xnay on the atingday. Thanks but no thanks!

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