Let’s Make Beautiful Puns Together

, , , , , | Friendly | February 21, 2019

(I’m at rehearsal for my college’s jazz band. It’s toward the end of rehearsal and we are about two-thirds of the way through sight-reading our last piece of music for the night. Suddenly the bassist stops playing. Once the director notices, he cuts us off.)

Director: “What’s up, [Bassist]?”

Bassist: “I don’t have the last page.”

Director: “What?”

Bassist: “I don’t have the final page of the music.”

Director: “Hmm…”

Bassist: “I’ll try to get by without it; could you give me some of the chords?”

(I usually stand next to the bassist. There’s an extension cord laying on the ground by my feet, so I pick it up and hand it to him.)

Me: “Here’s a cord.”

(The entire band begins to groan at my terrible pun, but the bassist just stares at me with a confused look on his face.)

Bassist: “Okay?

(We start getting ready to play again, and then, right as the director is about to count us off…)

Bassist: “Ohhh! I did not get that until just now.”

How To Take The Class Seriously: Throw The Book(s) At Them

, , , | Learning | February 17, 2019

(In my junior year of college, I sign up for a history class that fills a requirement for two different majors, as well as a general graduation requirement, so it hits the limit of thirty-five students very quickly. On the first day of class, the room is packed; clearly, someone had to drag in extra desks to fit in the tiny basement space.)

Professor: “Oh, dear, there are quite a lot of you. Anyway, I want you to read this book for next week’s class.” *holds up a 200- to 300-page book*

Student: “Which chapters?”

Professor: “All of it.”

(Things continue in this vein for the first half of the semester: reading a good-sized book a week, writing several essays that meet the professor’s demanding standards, participating in detailed discussions throughout the entire two-hour class period… you get the idea. All this is on top of the work we need to do for four to five other classes. One by one, people drop the course. By the time midterms roll around, there are only eight of us remaining. On the day of our midterm review, the professor sits down and looks around at the much-depleted class with the smuggest cat-that-ate-the-canary grin on his face.)

Professor: “So few… Much better.”

Physically Unable To Calculate

, , , , , , | Friendly | February 12, 2019

(I have a massive migraine, but unfortunately, I have a calculus assignment and a physics assignment… which requires even more calculus.)

Me: “The human brain is not made to do calculus with a migraine!”

Roommate: “You could have stopped with, ‘calculus.’”

Acts Of Kindness Come In Cycles

, , , , , | Hopeless | January 28, 2019

I moved to a small town in Cornwall from London to do my degree, and in my first week or two decided to buy a bike to get around. I found one going cheap in a village that seemed nearby. The seller agreed to let me buy it, then explained the village was actually all but inaccessible by public transport and offered to pick me up from a halfway point which could be reached by bus.

When she fetched me, she realised that her daughter-in-law and I shared a nationality/heritage. As a result, she gave me the bike for half price and then arranged for her daughter-in-law to give me a lift to campus with the bike as it was too dangerous to cycle back per my plan. The daughter-in-law then invited me to lunch with her family, including a cousin who also attended my university. It was a lovely family experience just when I was starting to feel homesick.

Though we fell out of touch, the kindness and generosity of that family toward a lonely newcomer really stuck with me. I had been struggling with the change of pace from London and the challenges of living independently, but their friendliness, and small kindnesses from other strangers during my time in Cornwall, helped me feel better. The bike served me faithfully during my degree and was a lovely reminder of that family’s hospitality.

Educational Studies Is A Wasted Education

, , , , | Learning | January 28, 2019

(I overhear this from some classmates of mine in the college of education in the late 90s.)

Woman #1: “Where are you doing your student teaching?”

Woman #2: “I’m not doing student teaching. I’m majoring in ‘educational studies.’”

Woman #1: “What’s that?”

Woman #2: “It’s like the teachers’ program, but you don’t do student teaching, so you don’t get a teaching certificate. My parents made me go to college, and this way I’ll get out a semester early.”

(In other words, her parents were paying tens of thousands of dollars for her to go to school, but in order to graduate a few months early, she was making her degree completely useless.)

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