I received this email from Dean Wilson this evening, relating her conversation with our Provost, Bob Marlow:

There was a deans meeting yesterday afternoon, and I talked to Marlow right afterwards for about two minutes. I told him the situation, without naming name, department, or gender. He didn’t ask, either. He said that if he is approached negatively about this, he’ll say that it’s none of anybody’s business, end of story. He has no need to meet or speak further. He did say that if in future he encounters this person, I should make a new introduction. Janet

Fireworks? Battle over freedom of gender expression? Tough legal battle? Winning over hearts and minds?

Hardly. While it’s possible that the provost’s tone reveals a desire to pretend like there’s no trans-ness at our university, I think it’s generally quite positive, and leaves the cultural issues of transsexual assimilation to the colleges and their departments.

In a comment on the Dean entry from last week, Kevin wondered why I have been using terms of confrontation to describe my possible relations with my administration, and I had not noticed my use of these concepts at all. This note from Janet Wilson and Provost Marlow’s obvious acceptance of my situation suggest to me that maybe walking around expecting resistance is no longer a supportable position.

What if you got all suited up for a fight, with archers and riflemen and calvary, and no enemy ever showed up?

Note: Here’s a refresher on my academic org chart if you need it.