Believe it or not, I went to university. *waits for you to stop laughing…waits longer…*
I was a young, naive eighteen year old girl who actually still believed that Laika, the Soviet space dog, had survived her perilous voyage into low earth orbit because no one had ever wanted to tell this animal lover the cold, hard truth. As you can imagine, the thought of moving out into the big bad world was pretty daunting for me. Despite the fears and apprehension that I had, I was also quite excited. I envisioned myself sashaying into lectures theatres wearing an oversized scarf and rimless glasses, carrying only the finest coffee from the goateed barista around the corner, surrounded by enlightened students and partaking in witty debates with our charismatic lecturer who I basically imagined as this guy:
In reality, once I looked up what sashaying is in the dictionary, I realised things would be very very different. Firstly, I was usually awkwardly sidestepping into whatever seat was available twenty minutes into the lecture. Secondly, I could never afford coffee. Many a lecture was spent gazing longingly at the rich girls sitting up front, sipping their latte macchiatos and looking radiant because of their ability to afford solid food and central heating. And finally, my lecturers were no where near as charismatic as Professor Lasky (except for the Canadian guy who wore flowery shirts and played Sinatra on Fridays). Instead, they picked their noses, mumbled apathetically through lecture notes and seemed to only converse with the mature students who eagerly sat in the front row using words like “utilitarian” and “stentorian”.
I had always thought of myself as somewhat intelligent and knowledgeable (I’ll conveniently ignore the time I put an egg on the grill) but university just served to inform me that what I don’t know could fill a rather large warehouse. There is nothing like sitting in a lecture while your professor and classmates are actually speaking in Middle English to make you feel out of place. I had my I have no idea what’s going on but the professor is looking at me nod down to a T though.
I had assumed that having read the main four Shakespearean tragedies, knowing a sonnet from a sestina and being able to use the word modicum in a sentence provided me with the basic requirements for university level English, but apparently I was wrong. Many students in my class had seemingly spent their teenage years reading Tolstoy, Dostoyevsky and the more obscure Shakespearean plays, like
But then there were days where I was lazy and disinterested. I made some bad module choices; like when I chose a course called Information Revolutions because it sounded really exciting but turned out to be a history of technology and made me want to staple my eyelids shut. I got pretty lost pretty quickly.
No, really. And then I got another one. And then a diploma. Underneath all this madness, there’s a brain that can retain quite a lot of useless information and some useful information.
So what did my college experience teach me? Attending classes does not necessarily mean you will become enlightened and all-knowing. Feeling inadequate is totally normal, and while there are five people who may pipe up in lectures and seem like they really know their stuff, there are 195 more people who are just as silently insecure as you are. And finally, there is no substitute for life experience. I learned far more about self-reliance and independence (freezing my ass off when I couldn’t afford my heating bill), than any lecture could ever have taught me.
Cupid or Cats has been chosen as a finalist in the Most Humorous Blog category for the Weblog Awards 2015. I would be delighted and emotional if you could vote for me, because I can’t even ask my mother to. To vote, just click on the link below, select Cupid or Cats under the Most Humorous category and submit your email address. You then just have to verify your vote and presto, I love you. Thank you!
And to those who have already voted, thank you so much. *hugs you and sniffs your hair*