The first day of college comes around soon with the ever familiar smell of possibility. Pencils and notebook paper, highlighers dried up at the bottom of my bag. Old assignments I’d never thrown away and tests with pink numbers in the margins counting right and wrong. But even more powerful than the memory of smell, even more powerful than the physical remnants, the bodies in which I will find mere inches from me. Sitting in seats like herding cattle, pressed against one another, you move and I move, you yawn and I yawn, we’re all in this together. If you make one friend on the first day of school you’re doing good.
I think about the people I have in my life now. They’re awesome. But why aren’t any of them interested in the things that I’m interested in? Why don’t I have peers or partners, groups of psychology students sucking back faux pipes and huffing and puffing about blue books and scantrons? Why don’t I have anyone to talk to about the teachers malicious and near scrooge-like assignment of papers before the holidays?
One hypothesis is that it scares me to talk to people about the things that I know if they know them too. It goes back to elementary school when I proclaimed how can I do anything ever if everyones already done that exact same thing? I started spewing letters in random orders and doing weird dances hoping that I would be the first person to say those random letters while doing that little dance. Yikes, preadolescent existentialism. It was scary to think that I couldn’t ever been unique, or special. And sometimes, you know, other students can be a little… quick-witted. The one who raises his hand before the question could be asked. The one who finishes his paper before it was due. The one who walks past you in the hall and brings up the study about the moneys and the zebras and the drugs and the ground breaking conclusions and you nod. You try to dig back as far as you possibly can into your memory to recall disease x as though your brain were actually the DSM. And when you can’t, you’re back. Is it about not being good enough? Is it about being bested?
I think I’m smart. But sometimes it doesn’t matter what you think when you find someone smarter. I suppose if I had to pick a lesson for the term it would be to learn something from everyone. Because in situations like this, well, isn’t that the point? Why be scared of what other people know? Why feel challenged or provoked by someone who is on your side, after all? And if we all know the exact same thing and we’re all on the same page, isn’t that a good thing? I mean, looking back on all this it seems pretty silly.
Maybe that’s the entire point, anyways.
Did you know severing the corpus collosum can treat severe epilepsy?
Yeah I did.
Isn’t that cool?