Home > College > What I did instead of sleeping

What I did instead of sleeping

One last class to go until the week is over. I’ve made it to all my classes, put in 13 hours of work, and played at least two dozen Guitar Hero songs, to stay sharp. Everything seems to be going according to plan.

Although, there have been surprises. Almost all of these fall into the category of “half-expected.” By that, I mean that I expected them on some sort of subconscious level, but I’m still moderately intrigued when they come to pass. You know, things like having most of my classes taught by grad students instead of tweed-coat wearing professors. Honestly, that’s even better, because nothing makes a better doctor than being operated on, if you follow the metaphor.

I’m sort of disappointed, although not overly, that I’m not actually using my laptop for any direct class work, currently. In all fairness, it’s a decent size laptop, and there’s no way it would stay on top of those little folding chair-desk things endemic to college classrooms. On the other hand, it does allow me to hang around the class-room section of campus and work on homework, instead of trekking back to my dorm to use my desktop. On the gripping hand, if I were going back to my dorm, I might have a chance to catch a nap between classes.

I have to say, though, that my biggest disappointment is my English class. It’s essentially a slightly scaled up version of all the other English I’ve had before, with the scaling affecting the complexity and workload, but not the class size. It’s a group of 20 or 25 of my fellow Freshmen, from all kinds of majors, many of whom are the same types of people who I co-habited high school with. Once again: another “half-expected” surprise: college isn’t full of scholarly intellectuals. Some of the “I only read for class and prefer to have a Marlboro with my Bud Light while riding my dirtbike” crowd came along too.

But also, my English class is taught by and English major, which places it firmly in the “humanities” category, and therefore involves a lot of boring stuff about “what is the self” and “is that really a chair or just language?” (No joke; those are direct quotes from the second day of class.) Also, when did the word for someone who studies the humanities become “humanitarian?”

The upshot of all of this is that I did a lot of “doodling,” except that it’s not picture doodling, it’s doodling with words. Just little bites of comedy that I attempt to create to dispel some of the boredom. A few of my favorites from today:

“If treason is only a matter of dates, then plagiarism is only a matter of words.”-Aristotle

“The university is to knowledge as a house of the holy is to it’s god, with the obvious exception that your pastor doesn’t encourage you to synthesize new gods.” -Hober Short, when asked to “critically respond” to his English text

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Categories: College
  1. August 24, 2007 at 5:17 pm

    I’ve noticed both you and Bob using the phrase “on the gripping hand” in the last week or so. It’s a reference to the novel of the same name, which I don’t think either of you has read. I also notice that you didn’t stop to explain it, presumably because you don’t think it necessary to do so. This is intriguing. Has the phrase become that widely known?

  2. Grandma
    August 24, 2007 at 5:27 pm

    It sounds like a relatively good first week. Unfortunately, you are correct: college isn’t full of scholarly intellectuals. But there are some.

    You’ll have to cut your grad student English instructor some slack. I did have to laugh at the “humanitarian” nomenclature. Hopefully you’ll get more engaged when he hits his stride. Or maybe not.

    Your dad was wise to suggest that you not feel compelled to blog on a regular schedule, although we will always be glad to find out what is going on with you.

    The “doodles” are great, especially the “university is to knowledge” one.

    You will get lots of use out of your laptop when you have papers and assignments to write.

    Hope you can get some sleep this weekend.

  3. hobershort
    August 24, 2007 at 6:16 pm

    I got “the gripping hand” from reading the Jargon File. I mostly don’t bother to explain because I figure that anyone who doesn’t understand can just use Google if they’re interested. (Same idea applies to why I didn’t post a link to the Jargon File: if you’re interested, you have Google.)

    As for getting sleep, there’ll be plenty of that: the contrast between constant school and work during the week and almost nothing scheduled during the weekend is nice.

  4. August 26, 2007 at 11:59 pm

    “He isn’t alive
    So he cannot die
    He’s half a zombie
    So don’t even try.”

    Lawl, one of my teachers is a half-zombie.

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