Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Open letter to academia

Honored faculty:

I came to college to learn. I take classes on things I want to learn about. Thus, I do not appreciate it when you make it physically impossible for me to learn. You assign readings and papers as if yours is the only class I'm enrolled in. What purpose can it possibly serve to snow me under with an enormous workload? It only makes me rush through each assignment, looking for what I'll need to know for a paper or a test. I forget what I read as quickly as I read it. The problem is not with me: the grand majority of my waking day is spent either in class or preparing for the following day's classes. I don't drink, so don't blame it on that, and I work nearly as hard on weekends as I do during the week. I can play your game; my 3.98 GPA attests to that. I make the grades, but don't fool yourselves that you're teaching me anything. What ticking clock are you running against? Why push so hard to get through so much? I would learn so much more if you gave me the time to think about what you're having me read. You say that if you were easier on your students then none of us would do the work. Well, as it is, none of us can do the work. I don't understand what you're trying to prove here. At this point in our lives, at this institution of higher learning, I don't understand how the argument I'm still getting for why things are the way they are is that the worst students need it to be this way. Hello, there are no bad students here. There might be slacking students, but intelligence is not lacking. Why not do something truly revolutionary and give us time to actually understand a piece, to discuss it and question its assumptions? Then we might remember something about it this time next year. I'm not learning; I'm walking miles on a treadmill and getting nowhere. My parents are not paying you 40k a year so that I can hate going to class.

Much love, Laura

Monday, October 01, 2007

Story of a Purdue Game

Fortunately for readers, this story does not capture the 6:15 wakeup call or the 7AM bus boarding. The bus trip isn't covered either, because the photographer was asleep. Nor did she document the incredibly rude Purdue fans she encountered before the game, because they are not worthy of space on her blog. That might have been slightly harsh. And she was too busy wolfing down her brat to provide photo evidence of that. Instead, we begin with the game, which took place in a even more out of the way part of Indiana than where her university lives.

Gooo Irish!

We sat almost on the top row beneath the Jumbotron. Yay shade. I still managed to get sunburned. Weirdest coincidence ever: one of my roommates from last year was sitting in the row in front of us. Go figure.

LOOK at our positive yardage. Oh man, I was so happy. If my Irish could just play a whole game like they played in the second half, we would be good to go. Bring it, Duke. Anyway, I loved the game. Forward motion, Irish fans; forward motion.

Post-game, we embarked on a mission to find tasty liquid for our parched throats. Usually for college students this refers to alcohol; for us it means Starbucks. We're so cool. Purdue's Student Union building is not. Fortunately for them, we still found our Starbucks.

"You cannot see me, I am a ninja!"

This would be when we were waiting for the bus to move to take us back to ND. Joey was trying (and failing) to make a ninja mask out of his sweatshirt.

Much better. We got back to school by 7PM- that's 12 hours of football awayness. Shweet. Upon getting back to my dorm, we refused to move another inch and elected to experience ordered-in restaurant food for the first time in our college careers. Due to our incredible luck, we ended up ordering the best Mexican food I've ever had this far north, and it gave southern places a run for their money too. We capped off the day with, what else, a football movie- We Are Marshall. Apparently Marshall is a college, not a high school. Who knew? (Answer: Everyone on the planet but me). Good times.