i ran into dean duncan yesterday in the bookstore. we exchanged passing pleasantries, and then i remembered something i wanted to ask him. i called him back, only to watch him turn around and almost hit another girl. dean manages to be cool even when he's clumsy.
in fact, he's probably the coolest professor in the film department. the only who ever really intimidated me, anyway, and that was because he knew that i knew that he was smarter than me.
i asked his opinion on 'le samurai', as i had earlier expressed my feelings on another french-japanese movie, 'hiroshima mon amour', using the phrase 'hated, hated, hated.'
dean has surely seen every movie ever made. he can provide insights on movies that most of the other faculty have never heard of.
and in his oh-so-cool way he talked with me for a few minutes about 'le samurai', giving me his thoughts on it as well as some history on the director [i felt secretly but deeply validated when his observations resembled my own] . he even asked what i thought, and i daresay he was genuinely interested in what i had to say.
and when we parted, he said, 'it was good seeing you, jeff.'
what a cool guy.
final word: the nicest thing dean ever did for me was when he announced, in a class that i was neither present nor enrolled in, that 'jeff gustafson is a moron.'
he may have said 'idiot'; i forget the exact word.