At the beginning of the semester, I had a problem in my seminar. Everyone wanted to talk too much, and there wasn't enough time. Grad students started emailing me to see if we could meet longer (I checked; we couldn't). I blogged about that problem here. In my request for a seminar next year, I have tried to remedy the problem by following the advice of my sabbaticaling colleague who left a comment suggesting that I request a 2.5 hour seminar. I also set up a facebook group.
Last week, we actually got through most everything for the first time all semester, and I started thinking that the early enthusiasm might be settling a bit; everyone's tired. It is, after all, mid-term.
And then this morning I got this week's batch of response papers. A few people went over my (strict!) two page limit. I scolded them, sent emails asking them not to do that any more. And then I read the things, and damn, were they good. But still, this problem is kind of like the one we had with the duration of each seminar meeting--people's exuberance is making them spill past the limits. It's very strange.
Today's topic is Daniel Gross's The Secret History of Emotion, and he's got everybody--including me--all stirred up. I think I better show up early.