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Rejection letters, correspondence, and miscellanea from the otherwise empty annals of the Journal of Universal Rejection.

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Thursday, March 31, 2011

Blast from the Past: Rejecting the First Submission.

Editor's note: A bit of history to share today.  We dug up the rejection letter that went to the very first person to submit to JofUR.  Back then (i.e., two months ago) we had more energy for this whole endeavor, and actually sent the paper out for review as promised on the website.

Dear NB,

We have received the referee's report on your paper "Defending Tarski."  It read:
"Hi Caleb, You don't really need feedback on this, do you?"

As you can see, this was not the most glowing endorsement.  I'm afraid we're going to have to pass on publication of your manuscript.  Don't take it too hard; it's just a policy we have.

Best,
Caleb

p.s.  You have the very distinct honor of being the very first person to submit to JofUR.  I hope you cherish it, and print and frame this email for your wall.

---
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Nonstandard Usages

Dear Dr. M., et al,

Thank you for your submission to the Journal of Universal Rejection.  We have studied it in detail, but can't make heads or tails of it.  Perhaps it would help if we looked up the word 'autoclave.' 

We do appreciate your premise of testing whether things can be used in nonstandard ways.  For example, I was just using a toothpick to clean underneath my fingernails.  Then I ate some yogurt with a soup spoon.  If this infernal rain clears up, I'll probably be using the clothesline to dry my clothes. (Oh, I guess that is the standard use.)  I also use the awesome power of this computer and the Internets to carry out a completely pointless task over and over and over again.  (Oh, I guess that is the standard use.)

Congratulations on having your manuscript published in the
Journal of Molecular Proctology.  We at JofUR, however, must pass on it.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Readers Reject II: TPDU

 Editor's note: From a highbrow first installment of Readers Reject, we now stoop to this in our second installment.  Please post your rejection letters in the Comments section.  The results will be announced in a week.

Hello,

I would like you to consider my TPDU (Toilet Paper Dispensing Unit) efficiency paper for publication.

The following the abstract of my paper:
TPDU's are used every day in many of the countries around the world. They are sometimes positioned to allow the client to dispense from the top, and sometimes from the bottom. Another less common method is the have them dispense vertically, and then they are described as wall and anti-wall dispensers. This paper will show that there is a greater wiping efficiency and less TPDU waste with the top/anti-wall dispensers. Pictures have been taken both of many dispensers, but also pics of the wiping efficiency.

I have over 33 years of TPDU usage experience, and also more experience with my 2 sons both of which I taught the joys of TPDU usage. If you would like to know more, please contact me and I will send the entire paper with references, pictures, videos, etc.

Thank you for the consideration.

Gregory Weaver
BS, PhD, and MA in Bowel Clearing Studies.

(Note the acronyms after my name are not to be confused with accredited degrees, they are BS- BullShit, PhD-Piled Higher and Deeper, MA-Master of Ass)

Monday, March 28, 2011

The Ann and Teresa and Ann Show

Editor's note: We received a submission from Ann and Teresa and Ann who host the Ann and Teresa and Ann Show on KBGA 89.9 – College Radio at the University of Montana.  They were nice enough to pre-write their own rejection letter. (Attention submitters--this is a great idea.)  It appears below in edited form.

Dear Ann and Teresa and Ann,

Thank you for your recent submission.  While your show made me scream “top of the morning”, we unfortunately must reject it.  What academic journal have you ever heard of that accepts radio shows for publication?  One might think you know nothing about this process.  While you are the first radio show to be rejected, we’ve rejected several music recordings and three dogs.  Feel free to list us as an untrustworthy reference on any further attempts at syndication.  I’d have almost nothing to say about you other than that you had a cool submission.  I shan't be calling you on March 30th, at 8:30 AM Mountain Time, at (406) 243-6226 to reject you by phone because that's smack dab in the middle of my morning commute and we're not allowed to use our cell phones while driving in Oregon.  If you send a SASE, I'll send you a post-it note instead.  Perhaps one of Reprobatio Certa's readers will use the codeword:  CLARKISSTUPID, so you will know the call is from a loyal reader.  Please respond with: NOTASSTUPIDASCALEB.  Maybe you can buy me lunch if I'm ever in Montana. 

Warmly,
Caleb
 
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Application to Editorial Board I: The Results

A week ago we posted Jeff Boyles' application to join the Editorial Board of JofUR.  The votes are in.  A strong majority of voters expressed a preference that the application be rejected.  It hereby is.  The best explanation for why to reject came from Fredrik Stenshamn; I kept chuckling at random times throughout the week thinking about it.  Kudos.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Implausible Deniability

Dear Prof B,

I deny the importance of music technology on today's popular music climate.  I've been doing it for years.  Therefore when I hit the sentence "No one can deny the importance of music technology on today's popular music climate," it was like chalk and cheese in a rainstorm.  I'm afraid I must let you know that we are rejecting your piece.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Saturday, March 26, 2011

The Echo

Editor's note: James sent us a poem which ended with the line:
"Where is my echo?"

Dear James,

If you listen closely you can hear it. . . .



. . . .




RE. . . .J. . . . .ECH. . .TO


. . . .


Wow, it bounced back as a rejechto.  Sad day for you.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Friday, March 25, 2011

Metonymy

Editor's note: Being the Editor-in-Chief of such a prestigious Journal is a great learning experience.  For example I learned a new word yesterday, and am already trying to make a joke with it.  I hope I don't blow it.

Dear Dr. H,

Thank you for submitting to the august Journal of Universal Rejection.  In your introduction you claim certain things "are contextualized metonymically."

But I posit we in the Ivory Tower should give a thumbs down to every crumb of metonymy so as to retain the ear of Main Street.

Therefore your paper is rejected.

Best regards,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Dah-dah Dah-dah-dah Di-dah-dit Di-di-dit Dit, Dah-di-dah-dit Dah-dah-dah Dah-di-dit Dit

Editor's Note: I once dredged a poem out of the binary digits of π by converting 1s to dashes and 0s to dots and parsing the result into Morse code words.  So rejecting a Morse code submission was like a piece of π.
  
-.. . .- .-. / -- .-. / ...-  --..-- - .... .- -. -.- / -.-- --- ..- / ..-. --- .-. / -.-- --- ..- .-. / ... .... --- .-. - / ... - --- .-. -.-- / .. -. / -- --- .-. ... . / -.-. --- -.. . .-.-.- / / .-- . / .... .- ...- . / .-. . .- -.. / .. - .-.-.- / / .- .-.. - .... --- ..- --. .... / .. - / .... .- -.. / --. --- --- -.. / -.. . - .- .. .-.. ... --..-- / -. .. -.-. . / .-- --- .-. -.. ... --..-- / .- -. -.. / .-.. --- - ... / --- ..-. / - . -. ... .. --- -. / ..-. --- .-. / ... ..- -.-. .... / .- / ... .... --- .-. - / .--. .. . -.-. . --..-- / .. - / .-- .- ... / -- ..- -.-. .... / - --- --- / --. --- .-. -.-- / ..-. --- .-. / .--. ..- -... .-.. .. -.-. .- - .. --- -. / .. -. / - .... . / .--- --- ..- .-. -. .- .-.. / --- ..-. / ..- -. .. ...- . .-. ... .- .-.. / .-. . .--- . -.-. - .. --- -. .-.-.- / / .-- . / -.. --- -. .----. - / .-. . .- .-.. .-.. -.-- / --. --- / .. -. / ..-. --- .-. / - .... .- - / --.. --- -- -... .. . / ... - ..- ..-. ..-. .-.-.- / / -- .- -.-- -... . / .-- . / ... .... --- ..- .-.. -.. / -.-. --- -. ... .. -.. . .-. / .. - --..-- / .- ... / .. - / -- .. --. .... - / .--. .-. --- ...- .. -.. . / .- / -... . - - . .-. / .-. . ...- . -. ..- . / ... - .-. . .- -- / - .... .- -. / --- ..- .-. / -.-. ..- .-. .-. . -. - / -.-. --- -. - . -. - .-.-.- / / .-- . .----. .-.. .-.. / --. . - / -... .- -.-. -.- / - --- / -.-- --- ..- / .. ..-. / .-- . / -.-. .... .- -. --. . / --- ..- .-. / -- .. -. -.. --..-- / -... ..- - / ..-. --- .-. / -. --- .-- / -.-- --- ..- .-. / ... - --- .-. -.-- / .. ... / .-. . .--- . -.-. - . -.. .-.-.- ... .. -. -.-. . .-. . .-.. -.-- --..-- -.-. .- .-.. . -... -....- -....- / -.-. .- .-.. . -... / . -- -- --- -. ... --..-- / .--. .... -.. . -.. .. - --- .-. -....- .. -. -....- -.-. .... .. . ..-. .--- --- ..- .-. -. .- .-.. / --- ..-. / ..- -. .. ...- . .-. ... .- .-.. / .-. . .--- . -.-. - .. --- -. .... - - .--. ---... -..-. -..-. .-- .-- .-- .-.-.- ..- -. .. ...- . .-. ... .- .-.. .-. . .--- . -.-. - .. --- -. .-.-.- --- .-. --. -..-. .... - - .--. ---... -..-. -..-. .-. . .--. .-. --- -... .- - .. --- -.-. . .-. - .- .-.-.- -... .-.. --- --. ... .--. --- - .-.-.- -.-. --- -- -..-.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Spotlight on Associate Editor: Karl M. Petruso

Biographical Sketch for Karl M. Petruso, Ph.D.

Dr. Karl M. “Karl” Petruso is a professor of anthropology and recovering archaeologist who has excavated mainly in the Mediterranean—Greece, Egypt and Albania—over the past four decades. He specializes in Bronze Age economics (which is much less complicated than modern economics, what with all those financial collapses, mortgage defaults and so forth).

In his spare time Dr. Petruso is Dean of the Honors College at the University of Texas at Arlington, where he oversees some 600 hyperachieving, very nice undergraduates. He has clocked 21 years in Texas, a state whose citizens’ security will likely soon be enhanced by a law permitting college students to carry concealed firearms on campus. Because, hey, if you have no idea who’s packing heat, you’re likely to be very nice to everybody. (Did Dr. Petruso mention that he really likes his students?)

In addition to writing for the usual dry-as-dirt archaeological journals, Dr. Petruso is the only person he knows who has actually been published—twice, no less—in the Journal of Irreproducible Results. His seminal deconstruction of the stuff university faculty post on their office doors, which appeared in Academe 92 (2006), continues to generate offprint requests that now total in the high single digits.

Dr. Petruso’s hobbies include watching The New Yankee Workshop and The Woodwright’s Shop, programs that make him feel both skilled and productive, and suggest that any beautiful woodworking creation can be completed from scratch in a tidy twenty-four minutes flat.

Full disclosure: Dr. Petruso has himself experienced the sting of rejection. He recently received a breathtakingly insolent response to a manuscript submission from the obtuse editor of a formerly well-respected Chicago-based critical inquiry journal that shall not be named here because Dr. Petruso is, after all, a discreet professional who neither holds a grudge nor wallows in self-pity. In the fullness of time, he might even post that heartless response on the JofUR blog. His Psych Department colleagues advise him that doing so may well bring closure. And healing.

Lately Dr. Petruso has been giving consideration to founding his own academic journal, one that will be rather more collegial than JofUR. Provisionally titled Flying Dutchman, his journal will publish manuscripts in all disciplines so long as they have already been rejected by at least one other peer-reviewed journal (e.g., the JofUR). His business plan predicts that FD will appeal especially to young assistant professors desperate to show their P&T committees that they have something in print or in press. To offset the enormous start-up costs typically faced by scholarly journals, FD will charge a review fee of $50 per typescript page (double-spaced, minimum 12-point font). Every manuscript accepted for publication—that is, every manuscript submitted—will be guaranteed a review decision within 24 hours after the check clears.

But founding yet another academic journal in these economically challenging times is intensely hard work. Dr. Petruso is exhausted just thinking about it. Yes, he believes he will crank up PBS, apply a cool compress to his forehead, and lie down to watch a rerun of “Continuous Arm Rocking Chair, Part 1” before investing any more energy in the endeavor.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Haiku II

Thank you for trying
Your submission was reviewed
And found unworthy

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Monday, March 21, 2011

Application to Editorial Board I

Dear readership of Reprobatio Certa, 

We received yet another application to join the prestigious Editorial Board of JofUR.  I am tired of making these difficult decisions, so I thought I'd pawn this one off on y'all. Please leave your vote in the Comments section.  Impassioned responses will carry extra weight.  The tally will be announced in one week.

Dear Editors,

            I find the premise of your journal inspiring, and I would like to apply for a position as manuscript editor, junior manuscript editor, copy editor, assistant copy editor, or any similar position that might be available.

            I have been a free-lance editor of scientific texts for over ten years, and I have edited many papers that were destined for rejection.  More importantly, I have extensive experience in not editing papers assigned to me, ignoring them while I'm at the horse races, at the karaoke bar, or simply napping on my couch.  I feel that I am capable of ignoring, in great detail, any and all manuscripts, regardless of subject matter.  Although I do have a résumé, sending it to you would, in my estimation, not be in keeping with the ideals of the JofUR.

            Because I recognize the fact that yours is a fledgling journal, I would be willing to provide my services for a nominal fee—perhaps even at no charge (on a trial basis, of course)—although I am certainly interested to know what type of health/dental plan you offer.

            My five-year plan is to become the editor-in-chief of your journal or a similar journal, so that I would only have to tell other editors to ignore manuscripts, rather than doing all of the heavy lifting myself.  However, my immediate goal is the swift and definitive rejection of my application, which will provide me with a stepping stone to even greater rejections in the future. 

            I thank you in advance for any assistance you can provide in helping me achieve my goals.

                        With mustered regards,

                                  Jeff Boyles



PS - I hope the cordial tone of this letter has not harmed my chances of rejection.



Jeff Boyles, ELS
Chief Editor
Precise Editing - Tradução e Edição de Textos Ltda.

Dear Jeff,

Your application is a tough nut to crack.  I'm inclined to leave the decision up to the readership of JofUR, or rather of Reprobatio Certa.  Would it be okay to post your application on the blog and let our readership vote on whether to add you to the board?

If not, I shall have to think about it myself, and I don't like to do that as it can give me a headache.

With asparagus,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

 
Dear Caleb,

            I assume that the JofUR readership cannot be trusted, so I would be happy to have them vote on it.

                        Best radishes,

                                Jeff


Sunday, March 20, 2011

El Abrazo

Dear Juan,

Yes, actually the fact that it is in Spanish is helpful to this editor.  We appreciate your submission, but we have to let you know immediately that we cannot publish your work.

Thanks for trying (and for the hug),
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Spotlight on Associate Editor: Kip Williams

Biographical sketch for Kip Williams, Purdue University Department of Psychological Sciences

Kip Williams (BS, psychology, University of Washington; PhD, social psychology, Ohio State University) is Editor of Social Influence, which has a rejection rate slightly lower than JofUR. He is an expert on ostracism, social exclusion, and rejection. He views his service to this journal as a field experiment.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Spitting Distance

Dear Michael,

Thank you for your submission "A desk under observation: an analysis of objects located on or within spitting distance of a working science journalist" to the Journal of Universal Rejection.

We read your piece with interest.  Our first question was: did you actually test your claim by spitting on each of the named objects?  It seemed from a very cursory read that you did not.  However, perhaps you spat about randomly for awhile to get some kind of general radius and worked with that: assuming your salivary glands could continue to produce the necessary spittle, you would have been able to hit the named objects.  Our second question was about your wallet.  Apparently it did not contain very much cash, which was a disappointment.  However sure it must contain perfectly good credit cards.  Perhaps you were thinking about a subscription to our Journal?  Very good idea!

In the mean time however, I must let you know that despite the obvious effort you have made polishing your article, or not, we must reject it.

Best regards,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Thursday, March 17, 2011

My Bad German

I decided to reply to Werner in German.  Unfortunately for him, my German is very bad.  To aid those (like myself) who don't really know German, I have had my wife (who is German) mark every mistake in my letter with an asterisk.  You'll notice that I totally nailed two sentences!  A translation is provided after the letter.

Sehr geehrter Werner,

Bitte verziehen* Sie mir mein sehr schlecht* deutsch*.  Wir danken Sie* fuer das* Artikel.  Ich habe es* nicht gelesen, weil meine* Wortshatz* nicht gross genug ist, um es* zu verstehen.  Ich habe keine Zeit, um ein Woerterbuch zu benutzen.  Dafuer muss ich Sie* sofort berichten dass wir Ihre* Artikel ins* Muell geworfen haben.  Es tut mir leid. 

Tschuess,
Caleb

 
Dear Werner,

Please excuse me for my very bad German.  We thank you for the article.  I have not read it because my vocabulary is not big enough to understand it.  I don't have time to use a dictionary.  Therefore I have to immediately report that we have thrown your article in the trash.  I'm sorry.

Bye,
 Caleb



Wednesday, March 16, 2011

The Empty Box

Dear Prof. H.,

Thank you for your submission to the august Journal of Universal Rejection.

We paged through your document in a semi-interested sort of way until we got to Table 1.1.  At that point we were shocked that, although the other three quadrants had entries, there was nothing in the quadrant [Consistent concepts/differentiable concepts].  We weren't reading closely enough to know what this meant, but it seemed too bad to have that box be empty.  Maybe you should make up a theory that fits in that box.  Or maybe you have and that is what your paper is about?  If so, put "this paper" in that box.  Or maybe you prove that the box must be empty, in which case you should put "this paper proves that this box is empty" inside of the box.  That way if there is someone (like this Editor) who really only wants to focus on the Tables, they won't be left in the dark.   Oooo, or you could put "This space intentionally left blank," like they do on those standardized exams (though if you ask me the whole thing seems a little self-defeating, like the sign on the glass entryway of a building here which reads PLEASE DO NOT POST SIGNS ON BERGLUND HALL EXCEPT ON BULLETIN BOARDS LOCATED ON THE GROUND AND FIRST FLOORS.  THANK YOU).

We have decided that although it seemed pretty impressive, we cannot accept your paper for publication.  Try to not take it too hard.

Best regards,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Roses are red.... Part Deux

Regarding yesterday's blog post, here is some follow-up from Naomi:

Dear Caleb,
Its not like I threw it in the dirt
Im a college student with just one shirt
I did not have toilet paper
Now my feelings are hurt


Dear Naomi,

Ok, thanks for clearing the air on that issue.  We are replacing the *'ed line from our last letter with:
"And your second poem too."

So it reads:

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Your poem is rejected
And your second poem too

Best regards,
Caleb

---------------

Hi Naomi,

FYI, I posted this rejection letter on the blog today:
http://reprobatiocerta.blogspot.com/

I was wondering if you'd mind if I posted your reply on a later day?
Either way.

I hope you have found enough money for basic supplies.

Cheers,
Caleb

And I think we've made up:


That is fine. Your concern touches my heart.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Roses are red...

Editor's Note:  We received a "roses are red" poem from Naomi.  At the end of the poem, she claimed to have "thrown [our] magazine in the toilet."

Dear Naomi,

Roses are red
Violets are blue
Your poem is rejected
And so are you*


Best regards,
Caleb

* Though we're only saying that now because you hurt our feelings.
Were you out of toilet paper?  I mean I almost cried.

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Readers Reject I: The Results

Last week we asked readers to reject an abstract.  There were three responses: by Pretentious Illiterate, Anonymous and Anonymous.  The last comment mysteriously disappeared.  Although tempted, I cannot award the title of best rejection to that poster.  So the winner is (fanfare):

Pretentious Illiterate

The sentence which clenched the victory was "If so, then you are to be congratulated (as was Socrates by Meno) by being likened to a 'torpedo fish' which stuns its victims.Very pretentious!

I offer my hearty congratulations.  I hope you weren't expecting a prize, because we have no money.  Subscription, anyone?
 

Sunday, March 13, 2011

E-voting

Dear Dr. F.,

Thank you for submitting your paper on e-voting technology to the Journal of Universal Rejection.  We set up an e-voting system to see whether your paper should be accepted or not.  That took awhile.  Then the results came in.  It turns out that our system has elected G.W.Bush, but rejected your paper.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Enigmatic Brooding Moai Statues Under Foreboding Skies

Dear Dr. F.,

Thank you for submitting your thoughtful critique of chapter 2 of Jared Diamond’s Collapse. On behalf of the Editor of the JofUR, it gives me great pleasure to reject it. 

                                                                                 Photo by Alan Guy
Although your manuscript is well written, and while the mysteries of Easter Island have long been topics of intense interest among scholars and the general public alike, I’m afraid the JofUR does not publish review articles. Come to think of it, the JofUR does not publish non-review articles, either.
You might try punching up your manuscript with a few graphs and tables. Then you could send it to Science or Nature, both of which like that sort of thing. Or maybe insert a few color photos of those enigmatic brooding moai statues under foreboding skies. Images might make your paper palatable to the editors of Discover or National Geographic, or maybe even Popular Science.
In any case, thank you again for thinking of the JofUR. Please accept my best wishes.

Karl M. Petruso
Dean of the Honors College and
Professor of Anthropology
University of Texas at Arlington
Associate Editor, Journal of Universal Rejection

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Unsuccessful Attempt at a Humorous Blog Post

Dear Paul,

I am entitling your submission "The Unsuccessful Attempt to Follow Simple Directions."  Why that moniker for your resplendent work?  Because our submission guidelines clearly state "small files only, please."  And a 4MB Powerpoint can hardly be dubbed small.

As to the content of the ppt, I took the time to view it.  I have seen "The unsuccessful self-treatment of a case of 'Writer's block'," etc., before and gotten a hearty laugh from it.  This time, nothing.  Perhaps because I couldn't successfully repeat my previous experience (humor qualia).

I must let you know that your work is rejected.  If you should choose to resubmit a smaller file, I wouldn't hope for any great change in this status.

Best regards,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Thursday, March 10, 2011

Bipolar

Dear Bjørg,

Thank you for submitting "Studying Memory in Children and Adolescents with Bipolar Disorder" to the Journal of Universal Rejection.

Sorry it's taken so long to get back to you.  I was never able to sit down for more than two seconds and take a look at your document.  I kept losing focus and running from task to task and banging the cymbals.   Then I was off buying that convertible and racing around.  The next week I felt very sad and barely left my darkened room.  I couldn't even remember that I had articles to reject.  But now I'm feeling pretty jazzed again, and I found your paper.  Therefore your paper is rejected.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Spotlight on Associate Editor: Charles M. Shrub

Biographical Sketch for Charles M. Shrub

After a brief sojourn at Cornell University, Dr. Shub spent two years, ten months, and twenty nine days (but who was counting) in the U.S. Army.  His escapades there were recognized by his receipt of the AIR FORCE's outstanding unit award.  He then received a BSEE with high honors from the University of Maryland in 1967 and an MS, also at Maryland, in 1968.  He then served as a three fourths time instructor in Computer Science at the University of Kansas until he finally, at long last, and much to the surprise of his parents earned his Ph. D.  in that discipline in 1974.  For the next five years, he was an assistant and associate professor of Computer Science and (in name only) Electrical Engineering at the University of Wyoming, the nations highest institute of higher education (7200 feet).  While in Laramie, he was elected as the Vice Chairman (a suitable honor for the only member from that state) of ACM's Special Interest Group in Simulation.

In 1979, he moved to Shelburne, Vermont, to campaign in the Lake Champlain yacht racing conference and supported that endeavor as an Associate Professor of Computer Science at the University of Vermont.Tiring of a part time job (and the part time salary that went with it) Dr.  Shub opted in 1982 to seek industrial employment. From 1982 to 1984, (during the breakup of the Bell System) he held a number of positions with Bell Laboratories, American Bell, and A. T. and T. Information Systems working at the same desk for all three companies under the ultimate direction of Judge Green and the F.C.C.  Over a quarter century ago, he returned to academia at the University of Colorado at Colorado Springs where he supplements his losses on the golf course with his research, committee work, advising, and occasional teaching.

In the prior century, he was punished with a promotion to Full Professor and a 9 month sentence to Iowa City, Iowa, where he learned to overturn sailboats on Lake McBride, discovered the similarities among all Computer Science Departments everywhere, and enjoyed the vagaries of road trips (though not quite in the Belushi tradition) to many diverse yet windy (and even snowy and icy) cities.

Dr. Shub has published a number of papers on the simulation of computer systems and computer science education.  He is also an infrequent contributor to other journals.  His current major research interest is securing funding to pursue his major research interests.  He also has interest in performance modeling and construction of loosely coupled distributed systems.  This week, he is focusing on a variety of application areas including pointwise equivalence of computer programs and dynamic heterogeneous migration.

A ten year veteran of the National Ski Patrol, Dr. Shub is also a member of the International Association of Turtles and the Society for Basic Irreproducible Research. He has been named a fellow of the Society For Computer Simulation, and spent a decade on the steering committee for the National Educational Computing Conference.  At 490 in dog years, he continues to demonstrate his inability to referee youth, high school, and adult soccer matches to the satisfaction of the players, coaches, and attendees. He is survived by three children, Wesley, Sarah, and Jonathan.  He is not now, nor has he ever been affiliated with the University of Southern North Dakota at Hoople.

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

P≠NP

Dear Guillaume,

Thank you for submitting your proof that P ≠ NP to the Journal of Universal Rejection.  Although it must have taken you nondeterministic polynomial time to write it, it has taken me polynomial time to reject it. That is simply because we believe your proof is flawed.  If you are quite convinced of its veracity, then JofUR may be willing to accept it on the condition of making this editor a co-winner--I mean co-author.  Of course accepting your paper for publication would completely violate our founding principles, but for $500000 that may be worth it.

As to what type of paper we mostly receive, I'd say blank documents top the list, then random bits of poetry, then philosophy, theology, CS, and on down the list of different disciplines at that point.  You European folks seem to like submitting a lot (of real papers) too--definitely more than proportional to the number of page-views from Europe.

Cheers,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Monday, March 7, 2011

Readers Reject I: Gombrichian text-subject relationship(s), as it relates to the nihilism of mathematical malfunction revealed in the Journal of Universal Rejection

Dear reader: We are starting a new series called Readers Reject.  In this series we will (with the author's permission of course) post a cover letter or abstract and invite you the reader to craft a rejection letter.  (To those worrywarts who believe JofUR is violating its core principle, rest assured these cover letters / abstracts are not being published in JofUR, but in Reprobatio Certa.  Indeed our essential law is being intensified: the author is receiving extra rejection from a wider community.)

Our first Readers Reject abstract is below.  Please post your rejection letters in the Comments section.  After one week, the Editor-in-Chief shall announce the winning rejection. 


Gombrichian text-subject relationship(s), as it relates to the nihilism of mathematical malfunction revealed in the Journal of Universal Rejection

by Peter Wallis

Abstract submitted for consideration of Journal of Universal Rejection, Febuary, 2011

abstract:
Derrida said of deconstructionists who deconstruct popular media (eg Seinfeld, et al) that they should "read something academic." Thus he put what one might call a lower limit on deconstruction - lower, being only defined as lower or read as lower by the system in which this deconstruction takes place. The Journal of Universal Rejection (JoUR) extends this line, and actively deconstructs the idea of a high text, which is "academic" - the idea of an academic text as a whole. In doing so, the JoUR reveals the fundamental flaw in all reasoning, by creating a system in which no mathematics can function. Gombrich, in his own work, reveals the nature of the text (for him, mostly painting) and its transformative nature through the division of high art and low art by umbra and penumbra of subject-text relationships, in form as in fact. The JoUR reconfirms the Gombrichian idea that art has as its end a transformation of the seeing act, and even of the underpinnings of this act, while at the same time deconstructing all boundaries of quality and quantity of high art and low art, of umbra and penumbra, of subject and text, and thereby, long sentences which try to evaid understanding through the imposition of interior clauses, not excepted, reveals a nhilism which has always surrounded the heart of the academic-capitalist construct.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Persistence

Dear Editor for Journal of Universal Rejection,

Re: Your solicitation for submissions listed on http://www.universalrejection.org/#instructions

After careful consideration, I regret to inform you that your journal does not seem suitable for my particular type of writing at this time. Should my focus change (which is unlikely), I will certainly contact you.

Sincerely,
Fredrik Stenshamn, M.Sc.  


Dear Fredrik,

Thank you for your email.  However, I regret to inform you that we cannot accept your assertion that our Journal is not suitable for your type of writing.  Didn't you see the bit where we said we take everything?

I'm afraid you'll have to submit something.

Best regards,
Caleb
--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Dear Editor,

Per your request, I have carefully reviewed my previous writings and must once again inform you that they are not suitable for your publication at this time. 

As endearing as your persistency is, and I suspect it brings you success in other circumstances (such as, but not limited to, grant applications, thesis presentations, and speed-dating), I regret to inform you that your call for submissions has been declined.

Best regards,
Fredrik Stenshamn, M.Sc.

P.S. Come to think of it, I actually did have a paper on "Theory of Endearing Persistency", but have since discarded it due to a rare case of premature rejection.

Dear Fredrik,

We have decided to consider your two emails as submissions.  We have attached our standard copyright form, which you can sign, date, and fax to the number 0-000-00-000.  There is no reason to do this, however, since both of your submissions have been rejected by our editorial board.

Best of luck to you sir,
Caleb

Dear Caleb,

I see here that you have decided to accept my submission of the standard copyright form, without prior review even. That is excellent news! I shall submit it post-haste.

Best regards,
Fredrik

Dear Fredrik,

We have done no such thing.  You have gone beyond "endearing" in your persistence and are approaching "annoying" quickly.  Well done sir.  Don't make us add you to the dreaded auto-reject list. 

 Cheers,
Caleb


Dear Fredrik,

How do you feel about our correspondence being posted on the Journal's blog:
http://reprobatiocerta.blogspot.com/

Does that sound good to you?
(You want to agree--I am using a Jedi mind trick on you.)

Best,
Caleb


Go for it. 
 
These are not the droids we're looking for...

Saturday, March 5, 2011

The Condorcet Loser

Dear Job,

Nicolas de Caritat,
marquis de Condorcet
We pitted your submission "Properties of Voting Procedures" head-to-head with every other submission and it did not win any of those battles.  We have dubbed your paper the "Condorcet Loser."  Sorry to have to let you know this; it must be hard to hear.  Also, we are rejecting your submission.  But we hear you are used to withstanding hardships (such as your children's tragic death in that house-collapse, or the time you were covered with boils) so I doubt you will complain much about this.

Regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Friday, March 4, 2011

Lord of the Traffic Lights

Dear Erin,

                                     Photo by esti-
Thank you for your submission "I Like Traffic Lights."

I, too, like traffic lights.  When I'm walking down a big hill with a traffic light at the bottom, I like to try to walk at exactly the right rate so that when I arrive at the pole and push the little "Walk" button, the traffic light switches right away and I get to walk across the crosswalk.  It's like having great power.

Unfortunately I must tell you that your submission has been rejected for publication in our Journal.  Don't take it too hard; it's just a policy we have.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Square Poem

Rejecting a square poem:

Dear Cabbage,

Your square poem is
square and also a
poem.  Also our decision
is a decision: rejection!

Cheers,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Spotlight on Associate Editor: David J. Elton

The first in an irregular series of biographical sketches of editorial board members:

Biographical Sketch for Dr. David J. Elton, P.E.

Dr. David Elton has taught geotechnical engineering for over 25 years, at the university level and in numerous short courses. His teaching is marked by humor, insights into the profession and burdensome homework assignments, for which he has received notoriety amongst students. He is a professional civil engineer with degrees from Clarkson College of Technology, Utah State University, and Purdue University. Having run out of degrees, he had to work for a living for whoever would take him; first at The Citadel and later Auburn University, where he is a vested member of the Alabama Retirement System.

In a career characterized by its lack of focus, he has done research in geotechnical engineering, pavements, deep foundations, geosynthetics, expert systems, highway engineering, earthquake engineering, Soils Magic and fuzzy sets, authoring many technical publications. His honors include a US patent, the Fred Burggraf Award of the Transportation Research Board, the inaugural Distinguished Educator award from US Universities’ Council on Geotechnical Engineering Research and the IGS Service Award, and a sheaf of certificates from short courses. Dr. Elton serves on ASCE, TRB, USUCGER committees, and recently ascended to the lofty position of El Presidente of the North American Geosynthetics Society in a small, bloodless coup in Cancun. His website, http://www.eng.auburn.edu/users/elton/ had details, but is largely shameless self-promotion of his videotapes.

He was editor of the International Geosynthetics Society Newsletter for five years which no one reads, is active in geosynthetics research which no one funds, writes refereed papers which have been ignored, and, in 1994, organized and directed five years of the NSF/IFAI Professor Training Course for Geosynthetics, which was met with wild acclaim.

His illustrious history of rejection begin in 1963, when, after being born, he was immediately rejected by his parents. Other notable rejections include:

1958-1966 Rejected by almost all of my peers for participation in kickball, soccer and later sandlot baseball games. I wasn't merely picked last, I wasn't picked.

1966-1980 (the academic years). I was rejected for parts in school plays,  choral recitals (can't carry a tune in a bucket I was told!). Continued rejection took the form of never having a date in the first five years of college.

1980-present. While becoming a Full Professor, he experienced rejection from many prestigious journals, federal funding agencies (incl. the National Science Foundation!), the state Department of Transportation research bureau and, largely, by my colleagues, who maintain that they don’t have time Elton’s nonsense, and my supervisor, who has rejected numberless pleas for pay raises.

His journal paper rejection rate stands at a hearty 42%, and his funded proposal rejection rate at a healthy 81%.

He is the father of five children, all of whom, out of respect for their father’s profession, have declined to pursue bachelor’s degrees in engineering.

He’s been honored with membership in tbp, the National Engineering Honor Society, FKF a National Scholastic Honor Society, and the National Civil Engineering Honor Society, and is a Professional Engineer, Soils Magician and, after 25 years, a full Professor of Civil Engineering. Every publication of his contains at least three Greek letters. Amazing.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Noam

Editor's note: We received a submission from Noam Shabtai, The Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Beer Sheva, Israel.

Dear Noam,

We are rejecting your submission on the following grounds: (A) you are not Noam Chomsky, and (B) you live in Beer Sheva, but did not include any beer in your submission.  I hope you can see how thorough and agonizing our decision process was.

Best regards,
Caleb

--
Caleb Emmons, PhD
Editor-in-Chief
Journal of Universal Rejection


Dear Caleb,
I would like to thank you for the thorough review process, and for teaching me how to differ between right and wrong.
After revising the paper, it was submitted and accepted to the journal of universal acception (it is also known as the broadcast news on TV, in case you were wondering)..

Best Regards,
Noam.