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College is Weird

September 5, 2010

College is weird. I feel like I’m in a space vacuum that somehow transported me out of the real world and into an alternate reality in which people keep the doors to their homes constantly open for random people to wander in and there is no such thing as privacy anymore thanks to communal bathrooms/showers. I’m weirdly OK with it too. Going into this whole college thing I was pretty sure that there were certain aspects of this that I would hate, for example leaving my door open. Now I’ve just accepted it as something that I constantly do. Not a big deal. I’m used to privacy, time to myself, hours and hours of Call of Duty and podcasts. I barely have that quiet personal time that I used to have so much of anymore. My personal time has become between about 2:30 AM and whenever I decide to go to bed, and even then, my roommate is generally across from me. I don’t know if certain aspects of my personality are changing or if they were just that way all along and they just didn’t have a chance to be let out, but I’m certainly doing things in ways that I didn’t think I could a couple days ago.

Here’s an example – my interactions with people. I introduce myself to people now. Random people. And it turns out that that’s OK to do. And if I screw up in a conversation or something I hate myself a lot less than I used to. Sure, I’m unhappier than most in a similar situation, but I get through it. And I’m learning a lot about people different from me. I could count the people radically different from me on two, maybe three hands (not just race, just different in general). Generally we were all rich white kids. Here it’s not like that. I’m friends, or at least acquaintances, with some people I would have never even spoken to a couple of weeks ago. I’m not saying different is better, because clearly I’m pretty normal and I’m the best and everyone should strive to be like me, but it’s not the end of the world if I associate with someone not like me. Here’s an example – my teachers. My economics professor is a black South African. I can barely understand him. But he’s one of the most brilliant people I’ve met and I can’t wait to go to his class because he’s one of those professors that makes you see the world in a whole new way. My calculus professor is a black man with long dreadlocks, but he wears and jacket and tie to class each day and is more well spoken and smart than 95% of the people I know (the remaining 5% in the well spoken department are all British). My Computer Science professor is a very Asian woman, and her accent is worse than the South African’s. She had to repeat the word “negative” three times for the class to understand what word she was trying to say (she pronounced in NAYYY-ti). But she knows what she’s talking about, she keeps the class under control by being very strict, and I’m learning a lot. And my humanities professor is extremely British. My first impression was that she was a pretentious British college professor, but she’s so nice to us it hurts. I don’t know what the point of all of this is, I guess just a lot of things are changing and it’s kind of cool to watch it all happen. In terms of politics and stuff I’m still the same and everything, but this new environment is making me question a lot of things about myself and the world. And I guess that’s good.

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