Straight Man is the story of a rather absent-minded university professor whose life becomes complicated after he unexpectedly appears on TV to protest budget cuts. While his future as temporary chair of the English department is debated, he struggles to understand his wife, his daughter, his mom, his students, and even his friends — nothing out of the ordinary for him, it seems. Bits and pieces are very funny, including his brief sojourn above the false ceiling of the room in which his future is being debated, but overall the descriptions of the goings on at a small, isolated university seem rather forced. If you’re looking for university stories I would suggest the books by David Lodge including Deaf Sentence and Thinks . . .