Breakneck Pace

Aside from a week or two this summer, I was a complete bum.

Now, don’t get me wrong. I think I did my time the previous two years and probably some of your share too. Between the previous two school years I had 60+ credit hours, two week-long service trips, a whole lot of homework and a summer-long internship at my church where I got a hand in doing pretty much everything. Then throw in there the fact that I had some health problems concerning what would essentially be classified as low-grade narcolepsy. Not to mention my normal seasonal affective disorder which lasts from about the end of October into March. It was capped off with finishing something a friend warned me about, something every student at my college must endure and that is the Hell Year.

Hell Year is when everything lines up perfectly and you end up taking a course load that no human should ever subject themselves. But because of degree requirements and your desire to graduate in a timely fashion, you take all these classes. For me, it was last year. Why? My degree requires two years of both Biblical Hebrew and Greek. Most students take them staggered, unless you’re my friend B-Rad (His name is Brad, that’s just what I call him) and take them concurrently. I staggered them so I was taking my second year of Hebrew and my first year of Greek in the same year. On top of that, I threw most of my higher-level electives which were taught by the two toughest professors in the college. I barely got out alive.

That’s all there to tell you I justified my laziness this summer by saying that I had survived a very long two years. That sounds fair. But I found it difficult to fill my time, I would get anxious when I didn’t have anything to do. I did my best to fill the time by watching the entire series of Wings on NetFlix, as well as a lot of other stuff that slips my memory at the moment. I did some reading, I did some writing. Towards the end of this summer, I did a lot of writing (obviously).

But, today I started classes again for my last fall semester. I was up early and I was ready and on time for Advanced New Testament Exegesis. Don’t worry about what that means if you don’t know. It doesn’t matter. I saw a familiar face of our New Testament and Theology professor, Dr. Jones. He handed out his syllabus. Something strange happened when we got to the assignment section.

I was actually excited. I was almost giddy. If you saw the workload for this class you’d probably think I was sick. But I guess I missed it.

After class I went back home and got my work out in. Today was Kenpo X which I feel I dominated, mostly because my shirt was completely soaked. I showered, dressed and headed back to the college for Intermediate Greek.

It was here I learned that, due to the pedagogical deficiency of last year’s Greek class, we had a new professor who was going to take us through the first year again in one semester and then try and crunch as much of second year into the second semester as possible. This would probably horrify some people and, admittedly, it’s a little daunting. But I realized something after I headed off to work.

I missed the breakneck pace.

I missed being busy and constantly having something to work on or complete. I went from 0 to 60 between yesterday and today and the shock of being back in that system was enthralling. I even discovered a new drama club had started and signed up to maybe be a part of that.

This is going to be a good last year of college. I can’t wait until it gets moving.


Quick update

Got my syllabi
Lots of reading this semester.
A number of papers to write.
I must revive myself to this pace.
Just letting you know
it hasn’t killed me yet.

Collegiate Catatonia

I actually made it to class for the first time in a little over a week.  I seriously contemplated skipping again, I even had a dream in which I was in a house that was not mine and I was trying to decide whether or not I wanted to roll out of  bed and go to class.  My only real motivating factor was a test that I had not studied for or really attended many of the lectures for either.  But I figured that I had better not burn my bridges with this place.  Ever mindful of the consequences of my actions (in the off chance I should ever have to come back to UNO) I finally heeded my alarm despite only getting about 6 hours of sleep.  I know there are people that would tell me that is a good night’s sleep, but we Bipolar bears need our 8 hours.  At least, I do.

My alarm clock is a cheap one but cooler than most because it plays CDs and uses whatever music I want to wake me up.  This is an interesting to me because I have used the same mix CD for months now to get myself out of bed.  Depending on how I’m feeling when I wake up, I’ll have to listen to a few tracks before I can will myself out of bed.  Today it was Atmosphere’s “They Key’s of Life vs. 15 Minutes of Fame”.  There is something about this song that makes me think of waking up in a movie set in summer time and once Slug starts dropping his rhymes I get this overwhelming urge to exuberantly toss the covers off and get ready for my wonderful day.  That’s not how it went today.  It was more of a rolling motion that got me from lying on the bed to my feet hitting the floor.  Knowing myself well enough, once I got moving I was alright.  I got myself ready, grabbed my Dickies messenger bag, packed with books and laptop, laptop and headed out the garage door at about 9:15 AM.

“The Keys of Life vs. 15 Minutes of Fame” by Atmosphere

This is the real substance, the real question or observation I guess.  Everyone around me seems to be focused or just dead set on getting from point A to point B.  They behave as gorillas in a sense.  No one wants to smile and bear their teeth and no one wants to look anyone else in the eye.  Everyone passes with a strange amount of polarity in their bodies as everyone avoids even coming close to each other in the hallways but the couples meet up and stick together like positive and negative and there’s almost an audible click when they meet.  There will be small groups of friends that seem to have thought it would be cute to collectively keep their high school cliques together and they break some of these rules.  But they all laugh at an inward direction, towards each other, as if collecting their laughs in a well contained in the phalanx, their oddly shaped semi circle collective. 

There was a girl sitting a few feet down from me as I sat in the hall waiting for my next class to start.  I always find it awkward when a girl isn’t self-conscious enough to realize that her underwear is showing.  She got up and joined her friends when they left the classroom I was waiting to enter.  This makes a great example for my point, actually.  It seems as if everyone is walking asleep, somnambulant, on this campus.  Add a little blood, some open wounds and maybe some missing limbs and you could have a zombie film.  I don’t expect people to be super friendly and constantly be saying, “Hi” to everyone they pass or we’d never make it to our respective classrooms.  But in my observations, it seems easier for everyone to pretend that no one else exists and they only have their mission of A to B.  The real proof is the people I had classes with last semester that are in my classes this semester.  No conversations, no nothing.  And people wonder why I hate it here.  Everyone here is walking catatonic, comatose and I feel like the only one awake, a misanthropologist amongst the indigenous.  This environment may be dangerous to my health.

I’ll pray for strength to make it through the coming weeks.  I told myself at the beginning of the school year that failure was not an option.  May I live out the worth of those words and then some.  This place saps the energy from me almost as much as my job, so my patience is wearing thin.  Nodes of Ranvier wrote a great song and the lyrics to the bridge are very helpful to me which is why “Endless Faith” is the first track on my “Wake the F up” mix.

You give and take away. Blessed be Your name.
I cannot comprehend all the workings of Your hand
But still I will wait, hold fast to endless faith.
Overwhelmed and torn apart but never abandoned
When it seems that all is gone.