This week I found a computer lab on campus that is filled completely with Macs. Macs…as in, Apple computers. Not a PC in sight. There are forty of them, arranged in four neat rows, all with pristine 27″ screens and streamlined keyboards.
I heard a chorus of heavenly angels in my head when I discovered it. When I first found it, I was desperate to print off an assignment due in ten minutes, and it appeared like the Room of Requirement. I was worried that it would vanish the next time I came looking for it. Now, though, after camping out here for hours every week, I’m pretty sure it’s here to stay. In fact, it is my belief that the Dean commissioned its construction solely for my use.
As a bonus, this lab is almost always completely deserted.
Do you know what that kind of solitude can do for a reclusive upper-level university student such as me? I would say that it gives me a boost, but I try to avoid discussing myself in automotive terms if I can help it.
Let’s just say it makes me happy.
Happy to be alone. Happy to be immersed in silence. Happy to dodge the bullets of inane hallway conversations about who posted what on Facebook or how bad the professor’s personal life must suck.
I can’t wait to get out of this place. Not the computer lab—the computer lab is nice. But the university.
Luckily, fall semesters always go fast. It’s only a few weeks from the start of classes until my birthday, and a few weeks after that is Thanksgiving (Canadian-style), and a few weeks after that is Halloween, and the next day is November, and of course everybody knows that November is the quickest month of the year, it always races by, so that once you’ve made it past November the rest is history.
I love when that happens.
I’m in survival mode again (this happens to me a lot it seems). I am living my life one deadline at a time—it’s midterms this and papers that, piano students one minute and research the next. I’ve also taken a paper marking job for a professor on campus, which is cool because I get paid to ruin other students’ lives, but also cool because it’s a good thing to fatten up my sickly looking resume. Also, it means that my four semesters of sucking up to the entire English Department is finally paying off. However, it’s just another thing competing for my attention this semester, and I feel myself stretching out like a blob of silly putty, you know how when you pull it slowly it eventually breaks apart in frail little wisps of synthetic goo? That’s me right now.
But it’s better than tearing it apart in one fast motion, which just breaks the putty with one clean fissure right down the middle—that’s what I say.
Don’t worry about me, I’ll be okay. Before I know it I will be pressing my face to the daily newspaper and reading the comics off the reflection of my forehead in the bathroom mirror.
I’ve got forty Macs to keep me sane. Forty Macs to prove it.