Ivory Towers (The Improper Bostonian)

A humorous look at OCW from one of our favorite newspapers:

My wife, heather, is in nursing school. She’s constantly studying. In hopes of contributing to the noble pursuit of knowledge, I sometimes volunteer to assist in her academics. For instance, when she was studying a diagram of a dissected cat torso, I posed like a glassy-eyed dissected cat while she pointed to my esophagus, larynx and other upper-body anatomy that has cat-human commonality. It was all going well until I succumbed to the urge to suddenly leap forward and yell, “Pet cemetery!” Nurses should be prepared for surprises.

The recent proliferation of textbooks throughout the house set off a bout of nostalgia for the academic life. I’ll admit that I miss the book learnin’. Good thing, then, that people like me with a hunger for knowledge can find a 24-hour buffet of brain food with MIT’s OpenCourseWare. Spend some time eating virtual lunch at MIT’s cafeteria of erudition and you, too, might learn to devise strained food-related metaphors.

With more than 2,000 courses, the first challenge is deciding where to start. I contemplate a course entitled “Comedy,” but that turns out to be less “ha ha” comedy than “everybody doesn’t die at the end” comedy. In other words, like New Girl.

A course called “Media in Transition” sounded interesting but wasn’t formatted for my laser-disc player. And while I’m glad that there’s a course on air-traffic control, I’d prefer that my air-traffic controllers possess a diploma that they didn’t make themselves with construction paper and macaroni. Read more.

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