3On Tuesday, 11/11 (the date chosen, no doubt, for the lovely sadness of all those lonely numbers standing side by side), the Nein Quarterly #FailedIntellectual Goodwill Tour crept into Chicago, making stops at some university and the Goethe Institut (where severe eyewear abounds, as you would expect).  If you are not hip to Nein (a “compendium of utopian negation”), by all means fix that.  Go, now: we’ll wait right here.

Dr. Eric Jarosinski, the mind behind the Twitterfeed, is no caricature; he just plays one on the interwebs.  His presentation and the ensuing Q & A included observations on social media, academic life, dumb luck, the mathematics of humor and the virtues of being nice, and of course the awful beauty of the German language.

We left with questions:

  • Why is the umlaut funny but the ß not so much?
  • How many #SuccessfulIntellectuals are just #FailedSomethingElses?
  • Will the monster under the bed ever open his own Twitter account?

If the #FailedIntellectual Goodwill Tour comes to your town, go.  In proper Nein fashion, expect nothing.  But we warn you: your expectations will be disappointed.


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