Now I don't know how one should judge attendance at such a thing (any more than that for the protest outside), but the set-up for the ceremony--one was supposed to secure a ticket ahead of time to secure a seat, though tickets were free--seems to have been predicated on the notion that the place would be filled. But unless there were lots of people hiding in the back rows, the installation could have been held in a classroom in Lawson. Speaking of pictures, Cheng looks shell-shocked in most of the WSIL video, as the story went on about her troubles with the union; someone needs to tell her that she needs to look more regal, or at least less downbeaten, when the cameras are going.
The voice-over said, oddly, that one reason Cheng waited this long to be "installed" was because "she wanted to be sure she lasted that long". Now let's not exaggerate: since SIUC named our last woman Chancellor, Jo Ann Argersinger, in 1998, the average Chancellor has lasted a bit more than two years. At that rate, Chancellor Cheng has well over a year to go. Still, best to start shining.
The Chancellor's remarks are now up on her website. If my nine year old gives me a few moments respite any time soon, I may post sage reflections on her remarks, but I can't resist one quick observation: no quotations (save for a closing reference to a poem by Allison Joseph, read at the ceremony, that itself quoted an old saying in slightly altered form: "reach should always exceed grasp"). Perhaps someone in the Chancellor's office has been surfing this blog. You out there, Dr. Cheng? We'll know for sure if the next time you see our Chancellor on WSIL, she's looking less dumbstruck, even if she's feeling dumbstruck.
So there are certain advantages to blogging from home in the obligatory pajamas, where how one looks is one's own business. But of course I'm not making $350k, now, either, am I? I just did the math and figured out that Chancellor Cheng's 6 furlough days would amount to about 36 furlough days for me, in dollar terms--over seven weeks of work. Picture me dumbstruck. No wonder she wanted to take off only four days. But you just wait, Chancellor Cheng, until sales of Deo volente t-shirts start taking off. Then we'll see who's pulling in the big money.
Finally, speaking of quotations, the union flier distributed outside Shryock made considerable use of "There is No Excellence Without Labor". Whoever came up with that idea must have thought he was plenty clever.
Installation Supplementary Program