Dear Reader,

So, you have missed me. I expect you have by now developed the disconcerting little habit of jabbing F5 (Refresh) on your keyboard all day long? I imagine you have been crying out ‘Dr Ada! Come back!’ in your sleep?

I thought as much.

But distract me no longer with your puffy eyes and tear-stained cheeks. Let me tell you about me.

Now that the long summer vac research time is upon us, and the day of liberation redundancy draws ever near, I have taken my first, unfaltering strides in entrepreneurial self-improvement.

Yes, dear Reader. I have built myself a small brick wall (3’x6′).

I have spent the last two weeks crouched on the ground of a portakabin being instructed on the difference between soldiers, sailors, stretchers, shiners, half-bats, and queen closers. These delicate fingertips – which had only ever brushed ancient, cobwebby vellum in the half-light of a library basement – have been concealed by gruff canvas gloves. These tender knees – previously tested only by the occasional consultation of the Great Runic Encyclopaedia on the bottom shelf of the library’s oversize section – have been encased in rugged knee protectors.

I have wielded chisels, worn goggles, mixed concrete, and participated in bawdy banter with my fellow bricklaying pioneers (retired lady wanting to rebuild her horse’s stable; plumber seeking a world beyond the U-bend).

Step forward, Ada Lamb, PhD, Cert. Bricklaying.

Dear, sweet, literal-minded Reader. Remember: bricklaying is but a small step in the construction of the monument to myself that is the global Ada Lamb brand. As I said to Professor Beauregard only the other day, as she summoned me to her sunlit office with its double doors opening onto the quadrangle patio in order to make veiled references to absenteeism, dereliction of duty, and reduction of payout  – ‘Exegi monumentum teaching committee perennius, dear Giselle’.

At this, dear Reader, a small look of bewilderment flitted across Professor Beauregard’s gerbil-like features. Clearly, my esteemed colleague has forgotten the rules of genre, in which the presence of a patio, newly acquired bricklaying skills, and a slow-burning grudge can mean only one thing.

Always remember, dear Reader, to open your mind to new skills as you embrace your entrepreneurial path. You never know when they will come in handy.


2 thoughts on “Exegi monumentum (the importance of the Transferable Skill)

  1. Dear Professor Ada Lamb,

    My name is Marisa and I would like to invite you to give a talk about brick walls at our next blogging meet in Hofftinghempton on Tuesday week. Mary-Lou of Mary-Lou’s Corner will be speaking on pavements and Harriet of Great Me! on better cornices. May we count on you to be there?

    Marisa Shrove,
    UK Blog Promotion Coordinator (East)

  2. Dear Ms Shrove,

    What a delight it was to receive your invitation to speak at Hofftinghempton -surely one of my favorite blogging locations, what with all the lovely wild flowers and the little creatures of the forest frolicking in the glades at this time of year.

    And what further delight to hear that Mary-Lou and Harriet will also be present! I am sure they will have much to learn from me (as I from them).

    I will bring slides of my latest installation, which I call Giselle Sous Patio: Untitled II.

    May I add, dear Marisa, what a lovely name you have. It has an invigorating hint of the sea air about it, with just a touch of graceful austerity, as befits one who carries the considerable responsibility of coordinating UK Blogs (East) on her slender shoulders.

    I look forward to receiving a first class air ticket by return of post, with luxury hotel reservation (5 nights; vegetarian option) – in which case, dear, dear Marisa, you may count on me indeed.


    Dr Professor Ada Lamb

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