what a waste

I’m feeling a little sad about my paper at ETS yesterday. Someone had the bright idea to schedule a Friday afternoon full of papers, even though the conference effectively ended before noon. I walked past room after room of speakers gamely lecturing to empty chairs until I find my room, tucked away in the back of the Hilton, as far away from the action as you can get, both geographically and chronologically. I’m grateful for the friends and a few others who stuck around for it, and for the good comments that followed. But I’ll never put in all that effort for a Friday afternoon paper again.

I humbly think that ETS blew it by scheduling my paper when it did, but for the biggest blown opportunity ever, it’s hard to top my local news station. Watch this two minute video for the largest waste of talent ever. How can they not know who they are talking to?







12 responses to “what a waste”

  1. mikewittmer

    Okay, I’ll make the first inside joke, courtesy of Jordan Ballor. Is your AC properly functioning?

  2. What was your paper topic?

  3. mikewittmer

    It was on the biblical view of creation and how to properly integrate our cultural and redemptive tasks. In Niebuhr’s words, it was on “Christ and culture.” I’d say more, but it’s getting colder, and someone needs to call Alvin Plantinga and make sure his furnace is properly functioning.

    Another joke: how did this conversation go between the reporter and headquarters? Are you at Alvin Plantinga’s condo? Great! He’s a tough interview to get. Ask him how he likes his wifi!

  4. Gary

    Apparently, epistemological problems exist even the world of appliance maintenance. And leave it to Prof. Plantinga to prove it!

  5. So, if I’m really eager to get a few moments of Alvin Plantiga’s time, I just dress in HVAC gear?

  6. Had I not departed before noon on Friday, I would have attended. I’m sorry I didn’t see you. Next year!

  7. Stan Fowler

    I’m with you on this one, Mike. My paper was at 12:50 on Friday, and I’m grateful for about 20 people who did show up. My paper was an assessment of John Piper’s proposal about baptism and church membership, but not even Piper’s name in the title could draw a crowd. But it wasn’t as bad as my 5:00 Friday time in New Orleans, when the crowd was largely colleagues from my school. I was very disappointed to see the planners go back to a Friday afternoon session, especially when many were leaving early to get to Chicago. If only the powers would listen to people like you and me!

  8. I knew that, if I waited long enough, the internet would eventually create a place where I could share my “Alvin Plantiga” + “air-conditioner” jokes. That day is today and that place is here! Here goes everything!

    – “God and Other Winds”
    – “The Necessity of Nature”

    … and the big finale:
    – “Air Conditioning: Warranted Christian Relief”

  9. mikewittmer

    One out of three ain’t bad. Get ready for next week’s special report: Alvin programs his coffee maker, which causes him to grapple anew with the problem of evil.

  10. […] Wittmer was one of the poor souls who presented Friday afternoon when everyone had already left for SBL in […]

  11. Seth Horton

    Surely his brother could have warned him something was not the way it’s supposed to be. If only one of them had gotten that Ph.D. in Engineering.

  12. […] Wittmer noted a missed opportunity on the local news a while back. Watch the video and be […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: