Megan McIntyre is a third year PhD student in the Rhetoric and Composition program at the University of South Florida. Her research interests include postpedagogy, material rhetorics, first year composition, and political rhetoric. Her dissertation will focus on the intersections between the postpedagogical work of Thomas Rickert and the material network theories of Bruno Latour and the other new materialists.

Mystory: Obtuse Meanings

"Maybe Christmas, the Grinch thought, doesn't come from a store." — Dr. Suess

Chistmas lights

Noun, the best memory of all of your siblings together.

Noun, the time when you all pile into a tiny car and drive from neighborhood to neighborhood looking at Christmas lights and getting to know someone you've been missing your whole life.

close up picture of Christmas tree lights

Another First Chirstmas

Pictures of Christmas lights always remind me of the first time I met my sister. It's a complicated story, but I was 8 and she was 21 the first time we met. It was sometime in the summer before 3rd grade, and I was excited. I'd been wishing for a sister as long as I could remember. I told my mom I knew I had a sister out there. She laughed. And the summer I turned 8, it wasn't a joke. My dad's long lost daughter.

That first Christmas with my sister is still my favorite Christmas. My oldest brother drove us around looking at lights. And I thought: I knew it. I have a sister.

Of course, there's more to the story. Fights and frustration and loud voices and awkward hugs. But that's for another moment, another meaning.

"Christmas can have a real melancholy aspect, 'cause it packages itself as this idea of perfect family cohesion and love, and you're always going to come up short when you measure your personal life against the idealized personal lives that are constantly thrust in our faces" — Dan Savage

green and blue christmas lights in a bush

"Responsibility educates." Wendell Phillips

Toward a Career Discourse

What has this to do, I wonder, with the career discourse? I'm not sure except that when I read Ulmer and Rickert's articulations of post-pedagogy, particularly that attention to building affect (back) into writing, I think of the relationship with my sister. And when I think of Bruno Latour's composition of the common world, of his insistence that all those denied addmittance to the collective be reintroduced again and again, I think of my relationship with my sister. These calls for affective attachment and caring for those not-yet-part of the collective sound the same as a phone call announcing the arrival of an always existing but not yet known member of the family.

Haiku Remediation: Christmas Lights

This sarcastic ecard acts as a relay for the connection between responsibility, obligation, family, and affect as represented by Christmas lights.

you're obliged to love what I made you