It took me a while to track down the source of the cinnamon scent suffusing my office--at first I thought it was residual aroma from the spiced chai I usually drink. But then the scent followed me home and invaded my living room, and finally I found it: a student has been turning in her reading responses on scented paper. Cinnamon plus vanilla plus a hint of butter--Snickerdoodles!
Is the smell of Snickerdoodles supposed to put me in a good mood so I'll go easy on the grade? Or am I more likely to grade harshly because the aroma makes me hungry without satisfying that hunger? Someone should do a research study to find me some answers.
And while you're at it, why not work on the Case of the Absent Onslaught? Over the weekend I sent out a host of e-mails returning students' papers with grades attached, and I'm fairly certain some of those students will be disappointed with their grades so I steeled myself for an onslaught of desperate e-mails. Now here I sit 24 hours later entirely onslaught-free. Do they not care about their grades or do they simply never read their college e-mail?
Inquiring minds want to know! (But if I take the time to figure it out, I'll never get the next pile of papers graded.)