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Folks, I think I figured it out.

I look at the people who are in programs and doing things I want to do. Fuzzy Suessian, Resurgence(ZN), etc and I notice a particular thing they have in common.

They’re all above 200 internet/reputation points.

THAT’S what you turn these in for, an acceptance! I dunno how the adcomms figure out who is who but they’re sneaky… good thing you have me here to keep them honest.

Muwahahaha all I need to do now is post more puppy pics and I’ll be in for sure!

*ring ring* Hello, Berkeley (BARKley?)This is Bowties – my puppy pics are trending and I’ve got 500 internet points… I think that entitles me to a spot in your program.

Perhaps I’m going crazy…


Today I joined the ranks of the many wonderful people who have been rejected from a school.

We plenty, we miserable plenty, we band of rejects;

For y’all today that sheds your tears with me

Shall be my peer; be us ne’er so naive,

This day shall gentle our condition;

And the accepted in programs now-a-bed

Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,

And hold their research cheap whiles any speaks

That w‘er rejected with us upon Saint Valentine’s day.


BowTiesAreCool, here is my remedy to the angst. Hope it helps. (Can you tell I have a cold, and am therefore avoiding doing all and any work right now?)


You started this cycle by throwing yourself into your applications, reaching for the dream of an acceptance letter.


Applications took everything you had, leaving you in a dazed state.


Now, you are on the waiting period, moving frantically with no destination in sight...


Trying to find ways to distract yourself from your email...


And attacking any friend or family member who claims confidently, "You're gonna get into all the schools!"


But eventually you'll hear some good news, and you will love the DGS more than you've ever loved anyone before.


It's pretty much the greatest feeling, the feeling of being wanted.


Then, in a few months time, you'll be starting the PhD student journey alongside new friends who are nervous, thrilled, and curious, just like you.


And if it doesn't happen this year, it will happen when it's time. Lots of us here had multiple rounds before ending up where we wanted.


Until then, here are a bunch of puppies to make the waiting easier.



I've learned the hard way; never tell a woman to calm down, chill, or relax.

But my relationships (thankfully) aren’t the point of this post.

I think I’m managing all the waiting pretty well. No matter what the AdCom tells me – I’ll figure out a way to live the life I want. Pffft, It’s only the first week of February. Pffft, that “Results Post” from UT Austin Rhetoric… it’s probably imaginary,

I think I’m doing well – and then I think, “they’d tell me first, right?”

I think, “I’ll get an early acceptance. It should be right around the corner – never mind that they haven’t notified until much later in the month. Never mind any of that. They’d look at my file and decide to notify me early… because I’m special.”

I need to quit thinking.

I suppose I prefer the optimistic premonitions rather than my previously pessimistic doubt filled daydreams.

But. I need to quit thinking.

Soooo – regular readers will remember that I’m a (self-described) ruggedly handsome dude.

So have at it. Tell me to calm down, chill, and relax.


If I had a time machine.

My time machine would be a sledgehammer: just a sledgehammer. Nothing elaborate. To operate it I’d stick it between my legs (like a Harry Potter riding his Firebolt) and swish off to a far away time. Or perhaps I’d stand on the hammer. I dunno, I’ll let the engineers and the designers debate. This TimeHammerMachine would smash through dimensions and temporal structure, to hell with paradox… I smash paradox. How? I’ll let the physics and philosophy students explain.

Meanwhile – my plan!

I’d go back to that Argumentation class. It was super easy – why didn’t I just follow the directions and video tape myself in the communications lab? It dropped my grade from an A to an A -.

I bet the grad committees are looking at that A- and saying, “HA! Bowties can’t even get an A in this 100 level class. How is he ever going to change the world?!?!?” (That’s what we’re doing right, didn’t we all sign up to change the world?)

Of course it’s hyperbole… I can’t change the world.

Classic misdirection! Seriously: we can all change the world. And the committees won’t care about an A minus THAT much.

(This blog has been brought to you by the font Trebuchet MS: Exterminate Smash In Style)



I see my fellow bloggers have taken the time to update recently. Perhaps I’m a bit narcissistic but I’d feel better if I had another of my TARDIS pictures in the blog listings.

(This is an interesting phenomenon. A lot like when your neighbor mows his law and you feel compelled to mow yours.)

So here I am – updating: My grass isn’t any greener than yours.

I have officially started my final semester of my undergrad education. For the first time in my college experience I feel confident in my abilities to contribute to the world/knowledge base. I have self-efficacy in academia. I take the classroom concepts with me when I leave campus. I can be responsible for my own education.

But in sneaks the doubts.

Not your run-of-the-mill angsty, “I’m not good enough - nobody wants me” type of doubt. To hell with that – I’m confident in myself. Instead I have this very different “academic rubber-necking” type of doubt. I think to myself, “anthropology is fascinating, I love physics, biology makes soooo much sense… I could do that. Why not philosophy?”

I’m falling in love with the concepts on the other side of the fence. But I can still cultivate my interest in Rhetoric. Hell, part of what interested me in Rhetoric to start with was the inter-disciplinary (is it cool if I say “generalist”) approach the scholars are allowed to take. I can keep my little Rhetoric lawn at home but lay out a paper proposal that looks oddly like a picnic blanket on the lush pasture of cultural psychology.

Grass metaphors? It’s winter in Michigan… I must miss my lawn.

(This update is brought to you by: Lucida Sans Unicode "​when you want a font named after your Grandmother's bridge partner")


My apps are better than good - they're done. nearly

My writing sample is solid!

My SOP sets me apart!

Everyone likes me in the GradCafe chatroom!

This overwhelming doubt and second guessing (do I really want to specialize in anything? why can't I just drink coffee and talk big theories with neck bearded folks at the local coffee shop) will fade away.

It's not a matter of IF I get accepted it is only a matter of WHEN.

I won't lose friends.

Relationships won't deteriorate.

At least I can play the guitar.

I'll get in - I'm personable, intelligent, hardworking, lucky.

I'm lucky.

WHEW! it sure feels good to admit these.



The blog is titled “The Many Flavors of Rhetoric” because they told me I could name it whatever I want and I was hungry.

So: Here I am in the middle of Grad School app season. Follow my angst, share my excitement, and (some other tagline because someone told me things look good in threes).

Meet me:


Male, ruggedly handsome.

Middle-of-Nowhere Uni that accepts everyone and graduates few. (GPA 3.69)

Major: Rhetoricish

Minor: Psychology

GRE V164 Q150 AW 4

I have two conference presentations.

I don’t take myself seriously.

I’m kind and easy to get along with.

I can’t promise many insights from this blog – hell it’ll probably be as much about Grad School as it is Netflix – but I hope you enjoy watching me find my future.

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