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Who Doesn’t Want An Elevator Buddy?

, , , , , | Learning | March 20, 2023

My alma mater was and still is designed to enable disabled people to get around campus and into buildings and classrooms with ease. They have elevators, ramped entrances, ramped street corners, and every method imaginable to make the college experience easier. In fact, the entire town was set up, mostly, for the disabled, especially wheelchairs.

We students became part of their lives in a way by being available to help as best we could, such as the time a girl was rolling too fast to make the turn on the sidewalk and flipped out on the pavement. She was fine. Three of us nearby put her back in business and went on our way.

But there were some people who were… obnoxious. On my way to class on the second floor, I headed into an elevator just before a guy rolled up in his wheelchair. He just sat there right outside the door while I held it open for him.

Guy: “Why are you on the elevator? You can walk. Why don’t you use the stairs?”

I stepped out, holding the door open, and looked all around the entrance to the elevator.

Me: *Glaring at him* “I don’t see any sign that says it’s for disabled people only. So, are you getting in or not?”

Guy: “You can use the stairs. I’m not riding up with you.”

I pushed the button to close the door and went up to the second floor, leaving him fuming downstairs.

I Suppose He’s Some Kind Of War Doctor?

, , , , , , | Learning | March 18, 2023

I am in a history class at college. Our professor has a doctorate in history and is usually a very serious and solemn man. One of our classmates trips and falls on a step in the lecture hall, but she’s fine.

Classmate’s Friend: *Jokingly* “Help! Is there a doctor in the building?”

Everyone looks at the professor with a smirk.

Professor: *Without skipping a beat* “I’m a doctor who can’t fix your broken bones, but I can amuse you with stories about the Civil War until the ambulance comes.”

Finally, Someone Who Is Open Minded

, , | Right | March 15, 2023

On campus, there is a very small Asian fusion “cafe” that is an alternative to the usual dining halls. It’s very popular, due to the fact that the other dining halls tend to have the same things every day, and it gets kind of boring. Either that, or the food is questionable.

However, the Asian fusion cafe doesn’t open until 11 AM. The hours of the cafe are actually printed on the glass of the door, right at eye level.

I had one quarter where one of my classes ended at 10:30 AM in the building right next to the cafe, so I would just sit on the ground outside. (If you’re wondering why I didn’t wait inside the building, I have some anxiety about timing. I have a whole story where I once went to the airport 8 hours early on purpose.

I never really minded, it was kind of nice to sit outside after being stuffed in a room for two and a half hours.

The first time I sat outside, one of the workers (a nice older Korean man) saw me waiting outside, he opened the locked door.

Employee: “We don’t open until 11.”

Me: “Oh! I know. I’m just waiting out here until you guys open.”

He seemed vaguely surprised but nodded and closed the door again. I (very naively) wondered why he felt the need to mention this when the hours were printed right there on the door. 

Every day I had that class and sat outside, I had the pleasure of watching at least one person walk up to the doors, rattle the handle, peer inside, then look at the time on the door, make a frustrated or disappointed sound, and leave. 

Every day.

For ten weeks.

I no longer wondered why he felt the need to inform me of the hours that I had seen on the door.

Do customers ever read signs? Get your fix of more sign-ignoring-themed stories with our roundup: 12 True Stories That Prove Customers Never Ever Read Signs

A Crucial Clarification

, , , | Learning | March 12, 2023

The college history professor is starting up his first lecture of the year.

Professor: “First, I just want to make one thing clear. When you hand in your texts this semester, I will make little comments in the margins, either telling you that you’ve done something wrong and need to correct it, or complimenting you on having made your point. Now, if you write something like, say… ‘The National Socialist movement outlawed Jewish business ownership and started a systematic purging of Jews from German economic and social life,’ and the comment in the margin says, ‘Excellent,’ that means I think you have done well, not that what the Nazis did was a good thing. Okay? Now, this year, we will be…”

The whole class snickered.

Her Grading Strategy Is A Little Too Abstract

, , , , | Learning | March 8, 2023

In college, I get the assignment to “create something personal, meaningful, and/or symbolic, using one abstract word”. There are no other requirements, though we are advised to show our plan to our teacher.

The teacher also shows some examples: a paper bridge on a blue sheet of paper with a paper flower to represent someone’s love for the art of Monet (representing tranquility), a self-made plush to represent youth, and a box with the face of a white (literal white) woman behind golden strings: treasure (because the woman is supposed to be Cleopatra and she was Julius Caesar’s treasure). They are fine crafts, by the way. Very skilled.

I decide on the word “friendship” because I have a friend overseas and together we have been working on a story for over four years. So, I design a funnel where ideas from both of us go in, and what comes out are scenes of our story. The teacher approves of this plan, saying she looks forward to it.

Now… I do admit my plan does not go smoothly. Craft-wise, I have a LOT to learn. The funnel looks wonky and doesn’t want to stay upright without some extra support. We get twenty hours for this project and I need every moment of it. The teacher checks by every time, giving no advice. She barely acknowledges me unless I ask her a question.

And then… the grading happens. 

Teacher: “I’m afraid I can only give a five out of ten for this.”

This means I fail the class and have to retake it; I need a six to pass.

Me: “What? But why?”

Teacher: “Well, I understand what you wanted to create, but it’s too unclear and abstract. No one else but you will understand this work.”

Me: “But… it was supposed to be a personal project — symbolizing something personal.”

Teacher: “Yes, but others have to understand it, as well.”

Me: “What is there not to understand? Two different ideas go in, one idea comes out.”

Teacher: “I’m sorry, but I just don’t see it.”

Me: “Why didn’t you tell me anything sooner? You approved of my plan!”

Teacher: “Plans often change. I was hoping it would become clear eventually. I’ve shown you enough examples.”

Me: “The teddy bear I understand, but the bridge and the treasure were very abstract, as well. How would anyone understand that that lady was supposed to be Cleopatra, or that this was connected to Julius Caesar? It was a white face in a box, nothing else.”

The teacher is silent, with an annoyed face.

Teacher: “Fine, you’ll get a six. But you still should’ve done better.”

And you should’ve taught, teacher. The most ironic thing? This was a college to become an elementary school teacher. This teacher taught me how NOT to teach.