Monday, July 14, 2008

go forth to serve

Part of my job (most of my job) entails administering surveys to people associated with Brigham Young University--students, alumni, faculty, surrounding community members, blah blah blah. Before we send out one such survey, for obvious reasons, we test it out ourselves, to make sure the questions make sense and the links on the interweb work and that we didn't accidentally write "extreamly satsifide." That is not how either of those words should be spelled, though it does look kind of cutely old-timey. So in preparation for our upcoming Freshman Pre-Arrival Survey, today I had the opportunity to reflect on my state of mind before arriving in Provo that fall of 2001, and remember what I would have said were I given the survey at that time.

I don't really want to talk very much about that, except to use it as a point of introduction to what I actually do want to talk about. Today I reveled, gloried, in the reminiscing of one of the greatest and most important breakthroughs that I ever made in my college career. An epiphany that struck me with the full force of a thousand thunderbolts about two months into my first semester. It's laughable, now, to think that it took me that long--it was staring me right in the face! How could I have lasted so unaware for so long?! The signs were all around me! Nevertheless, despite being a little slow in finally picking up on this vital piece of knowledge, it came. Eventually, it came. I learned possibly the singular most significant reality that would come to have an impact on the rest of of my college career; nay, on the rest of my life.

Holy crap, I didn't have to go to class.

It happened one morning around 9:30, on a day after I had been up probably until about 3am flirting with a boy studying for a test. Psychology started in half an hour, I hadn't showered, my eyes would barely open, I had time to brush my teeth and pull some jeans on and get to the SFLC. I did these things, and proceeded to gather up my materials for class. I looked in my notebook to make sure I had my assignment in there, ready to turn in, when the syllabus coyly hinted at me that I had nothing due. There wasn't a quiz, either. In fact, the chapter we'd be going over that day was only a continuation of the previous class, because many people have difficulty with that particular section (synapses--who knew?), but I felt rather comfortable with the material. Suddenly, the room brightened. All became clear. I could get right back into bed! Nothing would change--not my grade, not my academic standing, not the amount of tuition BYU wanted from me, not one thing. The only consequence would be that I could get an extra hour and a half of sleep, and be that much more alert for American Heritage later in the day. My oh my. Universe, I accept.

Things were never the same after that. Sure, I went to class most of the time. But I realized that sometimes things needed to be prioritized, sometimes the prescribed course of action was not the best course of action, and sometimes, sometimes, I knew what was better for me than my professors or administrators did. And that may just mean taking a break from class at times when going to class would break me. Thank you, heart and mind, for enlightening me, and making my academic experience all that it could possibly be.





Note: Mom, this post is a complete joke, I totally went to every single class I was ever registered for, always.

Second Note: Erica, you better go to all your classes this fall. If you don't go even once you will probably fail college.

11 comments:

Kyle said...

> Sure, I went to class most of the time.

mentirosa!

Ethan T said...

I went to exactly 15 minutes of the first lecture of CS2 (Java) at Tech. The only other times I ever appeared in the lecture hall were for tests. I believe I got a 98 in that class...

Kyle said...

how did you get a 98 without finishing minesweeper??

Erica said...

Oh dang, until I read that note I thought you were giving me some of the best college counsel I had received yet. Also, you're not allowed to "study" until 3 that's crazyness...

The Mediocre Gatsby said...

Haha Great post!

Brad said...

I just have one question. You, of course, use the word "interweb" only in an ironic fashion, right?

Tracy said...

You know it's true
Everything I do
I do it in an ironic fashion

Expavesco said...

... I do it for you...
oh dang it.

Brad said...

I just read this and decided it was too relevant not to share: http://www.qwantz.com/archive/000637.html

Kristina said...

I remember having that exact epiphany a few months into college (it takes me a minute to get things, too) but mine involved the realization that I could leave class for diet coke whenever I wanted.

Anica said...

This was hilarious! So witty!

 
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