Alan meets the university - a slightly musical

This epic is to be sung as an obbligato to the bass part of Pachelbel's Canon. It recounts, in somewhat abbreviated form, the history of Alan's association with the university.

Possibly long before your time it was,
    Way back in history,
I came to join the computer centre
    Back in the year of 19731.

Those were the days when we had real machines
    Before these micros came -
There stood the B67002,
    That's what you really call a big main frame.

I gave a course in Fortran programming,
    And WorkFlow Language too;
Taught Cobol to the stage 33 accountants,
    And there were lots of other things to do.

But there were stirrings in the undergrowth -
    "Give us an academic course".
So came the Board of Computer Studies,
    Like a committee might design a horse.

After a year or two of making do
    The university
Said we could set up a real department
    If we could find a way to do it free.

Mathematicians were available
    At very modest cost,
But I was far too expensive for them,
    So somewhere in the process I got lost.

But in the end the Governor-General,
    On hearing of my plight,
Proclaimed an order-in-council for me
    Which accidentally made things all right.

So I came back to academia
    With no trace of regret,
Once more to give a few lecture courses,
    With tests, assignments, and exams to set.

The operating systems lecture course
    Was what I had to do,
And artificial intelligence,
    And 1054 for just a year or two.

Settling down took quite a little while,
    But happened finally -
Real-time control for the graduates,
    And operating systems at stage 33.

After a quarter of a century
    I think I've done my bit
Of marking tests and examinations -
    I've had enough of it, and so I quit.

At the first and only public performance of this composition, at the ceremony early in 19995 wherein the department celebrated my retirement, the bass part of the Canon was sung by Peter Gibbons, using these evocative words taken from Dorothy Sayers's novel The Nine Tailors :

Tin tan
din dan
bim bam
bom bo.

He did it very well, considering.

Pronunciation guide.

1 :    1973    nineteen sev'nty three
2 :B6700bee sixty seven hundred
3 :3three
4 :105one oh five
5 :1999nineteen ninety nine
6 :2001two thousand and one

Alan Creak,
20016 January.

Go to me