Monday, August 3, 2009

The One Body Problem

The infamous two body problem is well known and.. you know.. sucks. Not to take anything away from that, but discussion of the two body problem overshaddows the oft overlooked one body problem. Especially in this year's market, you better be happy taking a job whereever you can get it. Flying solo makes getting the job easier, but sometimes makes enjoying the job harder. There are lots of places without many potential suitors. Sure, some of it's that a lot of tiny college towns don't have that many people around. But if a lot of us are pushed into fixed terms, it's not unreasonable for potential partners to be less interested in a philosopher who's moving out of town in a year.

Let's just say that if you took a year or two off before grad school, the Ph.D. took 6-7 years, and at some point you want kids, scraping by a few more years in a place that doesn't have many prospects isn't a recipe for happiness.

-- Second Suitor


Pixelation said...

Too true.

Platowe said...

Newton solved the one-body problem well enough:

1: A single body's state--moving to employment or not--tends to stay the same.

2. F equals MA (where F is Fleeting employment and MA is, well, obvious).

3. Any action toward employment entails an equal and opposite reaction of unemployment. (Take the 1-year VAP and within a week you will receive notice of interest for an interview for a TT position contingent on funding.)

Anonymous said...

This blog used to have a good thing going, and I've always enjoyed the commentary. But now it seems very erratic--sometimes posts and/or comments won't be up for several days, if not weeks. What gives? Have readers stopped commenting, and have the bloggers more or less abandoned the cite? Just wondering.

Anonymous said...



(and then 222 and 223)!

Platowe said...

Anon 10:33 (Couldn't you have waited another 33 minutes to make a Norman conquest-statement?) :-)

I had not seen these--thanks so much!!! Apparently great--or greatly disturbed--minds think alike!!