11 Things I've Overheard During The Fall Semester Of 2017

11 Things I've Overheard During The Fall Semester Of 2017

These moments are worth noting – the weird, the passionate, and the hilarious.

College continues to be one of the weirdest places I’ve ever had the pleasure to be in. It’s somewhat of a liminal space – like an abandoned warehouse or an airport waiting area at 5 in the morning – but the kind of liminal space with bright light and is always loud in motion. Every semester is a new set of paper, a new set of challenges, and a new set of jokes that we make at the expensive of our own suffering. If you don’t laugh at the number of final papers you have due this week, are you even alive still?

As much as laughter has proven to be a coping mechanism, college isn’t all that bad at times, especially if you’re into what you’re studying. Despite the occasional professor who has zero ideas how to be a competent resource for information, there’s a lot to gain from peers and teachers alike. There’s nothing like getting intensely and ridiculously passionate about a novel as a class, except maybe getting weird about that passion, which has definitely happened a bit often this semester. These moments are worth noting – the weird, the passionate, and the hilarious – even if they’re just scribbled into the margins of your notebook as they are in mine.

1. Spot the English professor

Professor: *Sits cross-legged on the table up front and rants*

2. When the professor says what everyone is thinking

"I should shut up, class is gonna be over soon."

3. Just because it's true, doesn't mean you should say it

Student #1: "Why did everyone get sick?"

Student #2: "When you don't drink, eat, or sleep for three days, your body kinda goes 'f*ck you!'"

4. So progressive

Student: *About W.E.B. Du Bois* "I'm not objectifying him! I'm objectifying his ideas."

5. The English major motto

*Lengthy discussion about grammar and structure* "English is fake anyway."

6. An alternative analysis of "Little Women"

*Heard in an English class during a discussion of "Little Women"

Professor: "I just don't think it's a sugar daddy thing!"

7. Get political

*Heard in the same English class during the same discussion*

Student: *In a tone of legitimate, genuine offense* "Hillary Clinton is NOTHING like Amy!"

8. Me too, honestly

Professor: "I study literature because I can't be held accountable to reality."

9. When your professor is #done too

Professor: "The best rest you'll ever get is when you're six feet under."

10. Young and broke

Student: "I be spending money like I have it."

11. Best advice

Professor: "Writing, above all, is thinking."

Cover Image Credit: Nelson Pavlosky / Flickr

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To The Headmistress Who Let My Bullying Continue, I Finally Bleached The Hair They Hated

If it wasn't "that bad," then why did I dye away my innocence after all these years?

It has always stunned me that a teacher/principal, someone who is meant to be caring and loving towards children, can sit back and let torment continue. That an authority figure, who is meant to make school a safe environment, can allow an innocent child be the victim of cruelty and mistreatment.

I remember starting off the school year wanting nothing more than to learn for six hours a day, five days a week. But boy, you let that perfect image my innocent self-had get shut down very quickly, didn't you?

I still feel sick thinking of those awful children who made my life miserable, just because of my hair color.

Now, why on earth was 10-year-old Amber Armstrong a target you let receive verbal attacks?

Why did you let my tears drop when you should've offered me a tissue?

How could you look me in the eyes while making me feel as though I wasn't good enough for your intervention?

How in the world did you stand by and watch nine months of me, and my mother, continuously ask you to address this issue and not bat an eyelid? You eventually stopped letting my mum schedule time to discuss this with you because I'm guessing you were "over it."

You knew damn well I received comments such as "ginger piss" and "ugly, ginger ninja" at least multiple times a day. When I realized the only adult I knew who could help my struggle wouldn't even give me the time of day, I admitted defeat.

I came home and wanted to dye my red hair. This was the only control I had over the situation, to change the "flaw" that was the root of the issue. Just because YOU wouldn't intervene. YOU refused to see the problem, even though my mother had stared you in the eye and expressed the trouble I was having.

How DARE you let my mother watch me go through something she couldn't control, but you had the power to. How can anyone in the education system not feel empathy for a mother who is begging them for help?

You changed the perception I had of teachers and higher authority figures in the education system. You hurt the trust and confidence I once possessed in this section of my life. I tried not to show emotions or ask for help in class. I always had a voice in the back of my head explaining "they don't care about your well-being, put your hand down before you embarrass yourself."

I wanted to change something so gorgeous just because "there was nothing" you could do while constantly reassuring yourself, "it really isn't that bad."

You're probably wondering how in the world this still affects me today. Well, a year ago, I dyed my hair blonde because I still felt the "ugly" color defined me as "soulless" and reminded people of "orange piss." Your prayers have been answered, bullies from my year four, my hair is no longer the disgusting red you once remembered it as!

If it wasn’t “that bad,” then why did I bleach away the pain after all these years?

The beautiful red has stopped growing in and a dark, brown color has taken its place. All because I let those childish boys, and yourself, force me to believe I was the issue. That I had to put up with psychologically being attacked because something I couldn't control became my fault.

I hope when you talk to the next victimized child that stumbles into your office who "you can't help," think of me, the ten-year-old who could "handle it." Don't ignore this individual, don't add gasoline to their fire because you know damn well they deserve what you never gave me.

I guess after the conversation that went a little like “he didn't mean it, did you, Cain?" YOU decided my pain was "fixed," right?

If it was “fixed,” my hair would still be natural and you wouldn't be stuck reading this.


"Ginger Piss"

Cover Image Credit: Alice Fowle

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How To Conquer Your Finals

You got this!

The last few weeks of the semester are always the worst. It feels like everything is being thrown at you at once. Everyone is in a high stress mode at the end of the semester, due to the stress of finals, final projects, final papers, presentations and the list goes on.. Here are some tips that can help you conquer your finals.

#1 Make flash cards.

Making flashcards are the best, because you can bring them anywhere and study them anytime. For me this includes, on the train while I commute to school. Also, if you're more into flashcards online, Quizlet is great for this!

#2 Create your own study guide.

Making your own study guides is super helpful because you're putting the material into your own words. As a result, you were be able to memorize everything easier.

#3 Caffeine.

Whether it’s coffee or red bull, in my case it’s both, caffeine helps you go through the long days and nights of studying and preparing for finals.

#4 Sleep.

Because it’s so necessary. You need your rest, so you can perform best on your finals.

#5 Study breaks.

Have a snack. Breathe. Stretch. Take a break. Don’t study for too long. Always take 10-15 minute breaks to let yourself relax, then get back to it!

#6 Prioritize & plan.

Organization is key! This includes organizing your time to study. Set aside specific times on specific days to study for each of your individual finals. Make more time for the finals that you know will be harder for you.

#7 Teach the material you need to know.

By teaching someone else the material that will be on your final, you will be studying. For instance, you and a classmate could take turns teaching each other about what is on the final and it will be a win, win for both of you!

#8 Reorganize your notes.

Make sure all your notes are in order. Again, organization is key here! You will feel more prepared for your finals, if you organize your notes in order to help you study.

#9 Snacks.

Don't forget, food will help you survive finals! Make sure you get your favorite snacks for studying. Try to even sneak some healthy snacks in there. Specifically, ones that will help you get some energy.

#10 Pat yourself on the back!

Lastly, pat yourself on the back. Enjoy some well deserved me time, and be proud of yourself for making it through this semester!

Cover Image Credit: https://pixabay.com/en/adult-laptop-computer-human-paper-3052244/

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