Or at least, Blaisdell's ideal teacher is awfully far from my ideal. His is a middle-aged male, so I guess I have that covered. But beyond that, I see little to recommend this ideal. His ideal teacher is
- "a handsome monk in civilian clothing"
- not too enthusiastic, "but very funny and very serious"
- inspirational rather than nagging
- devoid of sexual desire or identity, indeed of any marks of a personal life at all (no spouse, children, etc.)
- "He can drink juice or water, maybe coffee, but it’s better if he doesn’t. He really shouldn’t eat."
- "No bus, no train. He has a car, and it’s an unusual car -- not too expensive, but cute and funny. He does not live too close to the college."
the corrected student laughs without shame and is only momentarily embarrassed. He sees before him an open path back into the good graces of his classmates and of course the professor himself. There is a hazy bliss that descends every day or two in class, wherein all the students realize they love him and they love their classmates and they love everyone in the world equally -- everyone realizes their boundless humility and tolerance -- and the whole class and Ideal Teacher sit for long moments in the glow of mutual respect and appreciation.Kumbaya, eh?
Blaisdell is after ironic caracture, clearly.
Ideal Teacher, this combination of Bill Cosby and the Dalai Lama with a dash or two of the latest superhero, is an angel of light. He will live forever and he was never born.But irony only works if the ironized object remains to some degree an object of respect or veneration. But Blasidell's Paper Chase-inspired stereotype — mildly eccentric, belonging to a fictional class of scholarly aesthetes — is well past its expiration date. No instructor I admire embodies the stereotype, and no student I know desires that instructors conform to it.