But I was e-talking to Isis today about my childcare woes, and she helped me realize the truth. On campus childcare is like the mighty unicorn, with its strong mane and glowing horn to light us to a new age of working motherhood. The unicorn that lives in rainbow land, dancing from baby to baby bestowing its magical wisdom into their tiny brains.
But you see, also like the mighty unicorn, on campus childcare is ACTUALLY NOT REAL. You get to see this cute, rainbow happy place with all (*8 of*) the little babies there (for a campus with thousands of faculty, at least a few tens of whom, if not hundreds, are probably gestating/newborning at any given time... not to mention the tens of thousands of students/trainees) and think "How wonderful! Here's an institution that is ready to support working moms!" But if you look real close up, such as when you're actually trying to get a spot in it, you see that the unicorn is actually a mutated goat with sparkle hair paint sprayed on (please see Figure 1 for illustration--note*: style copied directly from Isis for this message).
When it comes to putting the money and resources into something that would actually WORK for students, postdocs and faculty, it all gets revealed as an elaborate hoax. Just like unicorns, it's a lovely idea but must be a fantasy because your kid will never get to hold one and pet its sweet, shiny hair. You'll have to settle for the former petting zoo pony at best--at least it doesn't bite.