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My Last Cornell Photo?

My Last Cornell Photo?

It’s been 15 years since I joined Cornell, and yesterday my contract was renewed for another 5 years. I’ll be 69-years-old at that point. Assuming I stay until then, I’m still not taking another official photo. Enough is enough.

I recently received my updated Cornell Law School official headshot. So I dug back into the archives, and found the two prior photos.

For some unkown reason, I thought it would be good to put them in a timeline.


It’s been 15 years since I joined Cornell. Yesterday my contract was renewed for another 5 years as a “consent” item at a faculty meeting. That will make 20 years by the time it’s over. I’ll be 69-years-old at that point. Assuming I stay until then, I’m still not taking another official photo. Enough is enough.

It’s been a long time coming. But mentally and emotionally I’m still 17, it’s 1977.

What I most remember was the freedom of movement. “Be home for dinner” was about all the parental monitoring we had. We hitchhiked, hung out at Jones Beach and the Roslyn Duck Pond, and once we got wheels, pretty much roamed around unencumbered.

We didn’t have personal computers (those were just a few years away) though some of my classmates were early tinkerers who went on to great success in computer science. We also didn’t have cell phones — those were more than a few years away, so we weren’t constantly monitored. Thankfully, we also didn’t have social media. Whatever normal cliquish and catty behavior took place wasn’t amplified as it is now.

That’s not to say we didn’t have the usual growing pains, including in high school. But all in all it was a great time and place.

I’m getting philosophical folks, self-reflective. Stop me right here, please.

I’m very satified to say I haven’t wasted much on the way. One wife, three kids, five grandchildren, with a sixth on the way. The grandchildren, at least, think I’m amazing.

There’s not much more one could ask for.

(In memory of David Crosby)


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Professor, you’ve aged gracefully. Well done. Some of us look rode hard and put up wet.

“Some of us look rode hard and put up wet.”

For some of us, it is not the age, but the mileage…

Morning Sunshine | February 2, 2023 at 9:26 pm

you changed your tie for this one….

When you get to be 80, you’ll realize just how young you were at 64. Make the most of it.

    Whitewall in reply to txvet2. | February 3, 2023 at 8:18 am

    After 80 your age is no longer measured by birthdays, but by carbon dating instead.

    Massinsanity in reply to txvet2. | February 3, 2023 at 4:22 pm

    I love this comment, thanks

      livfreeordi in reply to Massinsanity. | February 3, 2023 at 5:14 pm

      Two milestones I remember:
      1. Walking down the street as a freshman in college at the age of 17… and a little boy comes up to me and calls me “sir”! I was dumbstruck. I realized that I was now an adult!
      2. Many many years later, putting a shopping cart away in the parking lot of a supermarket…and a middle aged guy comes running over and says, “I’ll take care of that for you…Pops!”
      I was dumbstruck. I suddenly realized that I had become…OLD! How did THAT happen? How did it happen so fast? Where did the years go?
      I always knew that I would grow old…but, somehow, I thought it would take longer!🙄😉

        You aren’t old, you just have a lot of miles on you. That’s what a doc checking on my arthritis said to me last month. Good thing we don’t tip doctors, saved me some cash.

Fabulous news Professor!!

“Assuming I stay until then, I’m still not taking another official photo.”

By then you’re off the hook, as they will have pulled down all the white guys’ photos anyway.

PatriotGal_2257 | February 2, 2023 at 9:52 pm

Is that a puka shell choker necklace you’re wearing? 🙂

You were damn good looking then and you wear your age very well now.

I’m Class of ‘76 from a small school in western Pennsylvania and almost all the guys in my yearbook are dressed like you. I and a lot of other girls had the backswept Farah Fawcett hairstyle. I don’t miss the polyester-everything of the 70s at all, but yes, it was a great time to be alive.

The photo of the seventies make me glad I was a teen in the ’80s with a Dad who required conservative haircuts and clothing. We just had a blast at my 35th HS reunion going through the photos. The girls were all rocking the typical 80’s teased up hair w/can of hair spray applied. In contrast I looked like I could have stepped out of 1954.

So glad I was born last century. Freedom was glorious.

Heck – I am Cornell MBA 77. You look great!

Maybe some day, we’ll meet up somewhere….I’ll be planning a trip to Michigan and other other sites… would like to see those gorges in Ithaca.

Katya Rapoport Sedgwick | February 2, 2023 at 10:50 pm

Congratulations, professor!

I was talking to a colleague today and said I’d gladly trade away the internet to go back in time.

His response was essentially ‘right on…let’s go back to the Reagan 80s’

It’s good to have those colleagues in higher Ed because they are def few and far between.

I think you should always wear your reunion badge to class and around campus. Show today’s kids who the groovy, bitchen, boss man is behind the stodgy conservative exterior.

What better way to bond with today’s students? Show them you were a victim, too … of 1970s fashion.

Thought you had tenure.

I am certain you have given the Left more gray hairs than you got in return!

G. de La Hoya | February 3, 2023 at 1:25 am

Congrats, professor! Long time reader. I enjoy your writings and many of the commenters’ opinions 🙂

Colonel Travis | February 3, 2023 at 3:31 am

That HS photo is awesome! Man, I looked like an idiot in those days. Still do now, but back then? Guaranteed even-more-idiotic.

Congrats, prof. I wish I could say you were once my professor, it would be an honor. Thank you for fighting the good fight.

Congratulations, Professor.

I will confess — when I read the headline, my first reaction was that “they’ve finally gotten him” and that the article would provide some of the less gory particulars.

So it was delightful to learn that apparently it pleases the powers that be at Cornell for you to continue on there.

Fwiw I found my way here when, about five years ago, Tucker Carlson told his viewers to read your blog.

Thank yous to Prof Jacobson, and to those who contribute articles, and to those who contribute comments.

(That’s a very funny line — about how the grandkids think you’re terrific … perhaps tactfully skipping over a generation. Made me laugh out loud, as the kids put it these days)

Another Voice | February 3, 2023 at 5:16 am

Congratulations Prof. J. ! I came upon your site in the summer of 2008 when you were living down-town Ithaca and took it upon yourself via this new venture at point out the absurdities of Democrat Martha Robertson for our Congressional District and played a key role in swinging voters to Republican Tom Reed by covering the far left nature of voters in this small college town/city. I was campaigning for Tom next door in Tioga County.

There is so much you bring from that first in covering government locally to national, from Oberlin to Israel. You have achieved both name and content recognition for your outstanding in depth coverage and in no small part for having brought on board a terrific staff.

When, not If, you bale from academics to enjoy the fruits of you labor, I hope you keep this ‘baby’ who has attained the age of maturity and hitting it’s stride.

This 75 year old Bronx boy, SUNY Oswego graduate appreciates the freedom he grew with and reveled in. Professor, thank you everything you do and enjoy your next five years. I still feel like I am 21 and it’s 1969…some things are worth keeping!

E Howard Hunt | February 3, 2023 at 7:47 am

I hope that you give serious consideration to never quitting.

From a minor league academic and Peabody grad (MA ’63, Ed.S. ’67): I realize you’re not retiring yet, but congratulations on a long, successful, and influential career thus far. Today the atmosphere and environment in academe is so restricted and Leftist, especially in my field, English, I’m not sure I would choose it as a career if I were starting over today. BTW, As a long time reader, I greatly appreciate the information provided in the Quick Takes section on what’s happening in America’s colleges and universities. Much of it is frightening, but I see some hopeful signs (e.g. Troy U’s anti-woke Business program, Oklahoma’s State Admin requesting info on DEI, etc.).

Kickin’ ass at all ages!!!

Cornell Class of 1957 here. Please don’t retire. We need you inside the castle. Yes, you have the wife, kids and grandkids, all good, but don’t forget the thousands of admirers.

Did they really make shirts with such wide collars? Did people actually wear them? (Hey, I just turned 69, turned into a hippie after high school, so I wouldn’t dare post a photo of myself at that young age)

Steven Brizel | February 3, 2023 at 8:43 am

Keep up the great work!

Ohhh Professor,, we are contemporaries, within a few months.. and I have been feeling the same way. I know it’s corny, but Garth Brooks nailed it, more or less,,

And now, I’m glad I didn’t know
The way it all would end, the way it all would go
Our lives are better left to chance
I could have missed the pain, but I’da had to miss
The dance.

Thank you for so many years.. hopefully many more to come.

Professor! You are just now starting to look good! It was the same with Sean Connery: He didn’t begin to look good until he got some age on him. You can take my word on it. I’m an expert on this.

Wish I had aged as well.

Heh. I look in the mirror and go “When did *that* happen?”

Yes grandkids are great. But their attitude towards grandparents can change when they get in high school.

Well done professor. You are holding up remarkably well.

What a hottie you were Professor and still kicking it.

You have lived a life worth living, not all do, must hope, but don’t reach your splendor.

You worked for every moment of it and are deserving …

Thanks for letting us ride along for part of it and enriching our lives.

Your hair may have turned a bit grey…but your face is still young!
You have “aged” gracefully!
I wish I could say the same, Hair thinning and overweight and looking my age…and I have a few years on you!
It’s been only 15 years at Cornell?
Glad that that woke institution hasn’t found an excuse to terminate you!
PS: I’m only 45 minutes away.
I’d like to take you up on that offer of having a cup of coffee together some day!
I’d like to tell you again..and to your face You’re a hero of mine.

Hey, Professor, in ten years, nobody gave you a new tie for Christmas or Hanukkah?

Glad you’re around for another five years (at least!). Be grateful for the consent agenda.

Love the ’70s era spread collar! Yikes!

Ya got me! I read that headline, and wondered what goofy thing the bad guys were up to. I’m glad your contract was renewed.

I stumbled on this blog when I was trying to hunt down the text of a bill as passed: a New York Times lawyer had just written a scathing review of something I knew wasn’t right, and turned out to be — a draft. It is much easier to track legislation, now!

Enjoy your anniversary, I find that time just keeps accelerating, and it’s hard to slow down enough to savor the moments.

Well, said, Bill.
Today, they’re called “free range” children but back in the ‘60s and ‘70s, just about every kids was “free range”. The few parents who hovered above their children and scheduled their day, were considered weird, and their children, isolated, were not well-socialized.

God speed. Keep up the good work.

Thank you Professor for all that you do and what you stand for.

I was 6yrs old in Western NY in ‘77 with many teen relatives and neighbors as primary influences. CSN was part of the culture, and this song cuts to the heart of it. Never would I have imagined how far, in so many ways, that life would be compared to what it is now. It’s been grounding and orienting making your acquaintance here in Barrington. Thank you for the work you do. ~ Ellen

As some one who retired for two years(at 65), I returned to work. I found that watching “Who’s the Daddy?” wasn’t of value. I missed seeing people and exchanging views. Now at 77, I find work is gratifying. It makes me get up, leave the house and pursue the work I like. All my close friends who retired have now passed away (the curse of old age). It may sound silly but if you are an active person, Don’t Retire! Oh yeah, I’m still 19 but 58 times.