Numbers from an Academic Conference (APSA 2018)

Robert Maranto

Sometimes, small numbers mean all

and large ones seem null

Consider numbers we never teach in school:

300 Spartans saved civilization

12 Apostles spread Christ’s doctrine

The 20th Maine preserved the union

3,000 won the Battle of Britain.

Back then, numbers made history

Today, in time postmodern

assemble World War II’s grandchildren

In 37 pretentious sections

4,000 professors present in Boston

on vacation or vocation

in elitist introspection

at the Hilton or the Westin

high on merlot or manhattan

they spout anger at their nation

as they praise globalization

Marxism, sexism, they are chanting intersection

And yet for whatever reason, the ivory towers’ numbers

who care for 99 percenters . . . are the world’s most stingy tippers.

When we 4,000 come to Boston

800 hotel maids and waiters, and 400 Uber drivers

wish they had taken vacation

until professors who are asses

leave behind the toiling masses.

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