Friday, 9 September 2011

The Anatomy of a First Year University Student

As promised, here is a new post, with much less melancholy than yesterdays! Also, in case any of you were wondering, my sneaky hate spiral has abated, so I am now back to my opinionated self.

I love school. I love it so much (at least most days) that I would be perfectly happy to spend the rest of my life in school, learning about absolutely everything and anything. I love all the different courses that you can take, and I love that certain classes aren't mandatory (not like high school). I love the atmosphere of university, that one of shared learning and knowledge. But, there is one thing that I don't love, and that I could do without. What is it you ask? Simple. First year university students.

Yes, I know that I was once a first year university student, and if things go as planned, I will hopefully also, in the near future, be a first year law student, but I believe that I wasn't your typical, hapless student. I knew were I was going, I wasn't late to class, I hardly ever skipped class, and I didn't waste both the instructor's, or my classmates time by asking stupid questions. Well, maybe there aren't any stupid questions, just stupid people who ask questions. It's fairly obvious that I don't suffer fools well, and in my opinion, there is no breed more foolish, especially when September roles around, than a first year university student. I am a firm believer that their sole purpose in life is to irritate me. You can always tell a first year from someone who has been in university for quite some time. They always have that wide-eyed hapless look in their eyes mingled with a little bit of fear. They always have the most ginormous backpacks I have ever seen, because they are under the impression that they have to bring every single textbook for every class, everyday. They are usually the ones who end up smoking me in the head with said backpacks because they have no idea where they are going, and startle easily. Unlike university veterans, they have this confused, meandering walk, that signifies that they have no idea where they are going, or what the time is, and they are usually the ones who stop, right in the middle of your path, as you are on your way to your next class. They are the ones who speak extra loudly on the bus about their weekend bar shenanigans at 8 am, and are the ones who can't hold their liquor in the beer gardens. Nothing is worse than getting to a class, and finding out that you have a first year in it, simply because there was no pre-req. No word of a lie, I walked into my History of European Children and Childhood class yesterday, only to discover that there was not one, but two people who were first years, and who had never taken a history class before in their life. Do you have any idea how frustrating that is?! They have no clue about any of the concepts covered in class, and one asked the prof if "taking this class will help me be a better dad when I have kids". No word of a lie. I looked at the classmates that I knew, and came to the conclusion that I am going to be in for what will seem like an almost endless semester filled with idiotic questions. All I can hope for is that they drop the class.

Now, I am the first to admit that I can be pretty whiny when I don't get my way or when I don't like, or don't want to do something. But my level of whining is nothing compared to a first years. The looks on their faces as they fully comrehend the amount of work it takes in university is so amusing. "What do you mean you want an 1500 word paper at the end of the semester?!" is one such lamentation that I hear quite frequently. Are you kidding me? 1500 words is a dream come true. I could write that in about 20 minutes. It makes me a little gleeful when I think that they have no idea that the word and page counts only increase. Another thing I don't understand is the amount of effort they put into their appearance. Don't get me wrong, I like to look nice, but it's not like I take 3 hours to get dressed in the morning. Most days, it's all I can do not to put on Lululemon's to go to class. You can always tell a first year, especially the girls, because they are the ones dressed to the nines, with hair perfect and makeup done, often in heels. Do they know that they aren't there to impress anyone? Do they know that at the end of the day you're not marked based on appearance but on the amount of effort you put into your studies? One of my favorite things is to watch their steady decline by the time midterms roll around.

The thing that really gets me is that they basically want someone to hold their hands. They want to be told what to do, how to do, when to do, and so on. University isn't like that kiddies. It's time to put your grown up pants and critical thinking hat on. It's called life, and yes, sometimes it sucks, but you just have to suck it up, and for your own safety, please try not to be irritating prat's, so as not to incur my wrath.


1 comment:

  1. Ha ha... an excellent rant! Love your word plays Leah... and anyone who can write a 1500 word paper in 20 minutes deserves some blog space! Guess we've all been there at some point... re the first time.. so it takes one to know one:-) I know deep down, through your clenched teeth as the backpack kicks your face (cuz that's the level you walk at ha ha) you're BIG enough to chuckle at how they will grow and see themselves in a year from now! Hugs