Student Life

Life through the lens of a starving 

(non traditional, slightly autistic, re-entry) student 


"What do you do when you just don't fit in?"


We were all lined up in the hall waiting for the prior teacher to finish up and get the hell out of our classroom. A classmate walks by, smiles. She is tall, and beautiful. She always has something nice to say about my outfits. Deliberately, she walks back and sits down next to me on the floor.

“How do you do it?” she asks, “What do you do when you don't fit in around here?” I look at her hard for a moment to see if she's making some sort of joke that I'm not getting. No joke. She's serious. Well, I guess she did pick the right person to ask.

“Well, are you a philosophy major?” She shakes her head. “Too bad. Okay, well here's what I see as a philosophy major. It seems to me that the vast majority of philosophers start with the basic conclusion that most people are stupid, ignorant and lazy. Then they go from there. Many of them lock themselves away in a room to scribble madly for the rest of their lives. I'll likely be one of those.” She starts smiling.

“What do you want to fit in for?” She is beautiful. She has her own sense of style, classy but fun. “You don't need to be one of the sheeple.” I tell her about face blindness. “Look, I can't recognize faces. These stupid little bimbettes that all dress the same and try and look alike?” She nods, smiling because she knows the type. “They literally are one big faceless mass to me. I can't tell them apart.” I told her the story about the identical twins I mistook for vapid wannabe lookalike roommates. I was in full bore rant about brainless bimbos when the teacher finally rolled in. Everything I said made her laugh more. Poor thing, I think she was slightly hysterical. She thanked me for talking to her and asked if I could be the person she goes to talk to when she needs cheering. Uh, sure.

After class she thanked me again. I ask her what her major actually is. It's marketing. No wonder she feels like she's surrounded by vapid mindless aliens. I told her to just forget about them and be herself and that years later, she wouldn't remember them, and they wouldn't remember her, except maybe to notice her as she goes skating by happily and wonder what it is she has that they missed as, SUV bound, they commute to their spacious one family dwelling from their precious 9 to 5 corporate jobs with their 2.5 kids and their one dog and one cat to eat Big Macs and watch American Idol.

And with that, I think I made a new friend.


Hot for teacher

I enjoy a firm instructor
talk of precision
makes my spine squirm
strict and picky
quick to discipline


Microsoft Word's handy shortcut keys
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Bird on a perch

I'd have to say the highlight of my day today was picking up my rock climbing instructor, throwing him over my shoulders, and balancing him there. Repeatedly. That was pretty cool and shocked the shit out of him the first time I did it. Then he lit up like a kid on Christmas, declared that to be the thing to do, and started jumping up there himself.

We were playing a game. Like all pick-a-partner exercises in PE, I was the last one left standing and got to work with the instructor by default. Again. This game was called bird on a perch. After some musical chair stuff we ran back to our partner and the "bird" had to perch on their partner without touching the floor.

After the first two rounds of standing awkwardly on his toes, I just grabbed him and did half a jujitsu throw, so that he was surfing face down, balanced somewhere along my the ridge of my shoulders. I've never done that to anyone who wasn't prepared before. I wasn't even sure I could do it. And I certainly couldn't tell you the name of what I did. It's been a year since I've done jujitsu throws. But I did 141 throws (and took the same number of falls) in an hour once for a fund raiser so I'm pretty good at the ones I know, whether I remember them or not.

In taekwondo, I was so far behind I ended up leading. That class is like boot camp. I didn't cry today, though. That's an improvement. That's the best thing I can say for that class.

I think I've missed more aikido classes than I've made it to this semester. Luckily, all those semesters of jujitsu are really helping fill in the gaps. I can fake it better than the kids who've been going to class all semester. It's my last class of the day and it should be rougher than it is, but the instructor is so chill that even though I'm going to be bruised as shit from the conditioning exercises we did today, I'm nice and relaxed. Good thing, because just walking into my taekwondo dojo stresses me out now. I'm glad I don't end with that class. I'd be a blithering mess right now.


Come back to my dungeon, said the spider to the fly...

Oh, damn. What a strange mix of feelings. I can't feel relief that the last of finals are done because even though classes are officially over, I only completed the final papers for 1 out of my 4 classes. If I get the big 2-in-1 in by Thursday, though, I can get it graded this semester without getting an incomplete. Hurray! And my other professor hasn't even given me an ultimatum date yet but I'm sure it will work out just as it has so far.

Final exams themselves went pretty well. What I didn't know I probably managed to BS with my usual finesse and skill. Do wish I'd bothered to find some of my notes, though. I took them all out of my binder weeks ago and left them in a pile somewhere, fuck if I know where...

I don't know if I've blogged about it here, but there's this girl in my existentialism class. Awkward and geeky, an angry artist with dark eyes and soft tousled hair, scraggly ripped jeans and a loud snorting laugh the perfect match to mine. After being randomly thrown into groups the class before ours, I flat out insisted that I be allowed to pick my group by topic. That's how I got all the hot geek girls - because I chose sex, but not in a way that anyone else in the class could recognize it, obviously. The theme was Apollo and Dionysus. Yeah, I know, it should be familiar to all y'all by now.

Anyhoo, she was greatly disappointed that we were unable to do our oral presentations because at the last minute I had decided to talk about how I connect Dionysian ecstatic rituals to modern day raves and sadomasochistic activities. Makes perfect sense to me. I'm actually dying to know what Nietzsche would have thought of BDSM. I would have totally stalked and perverted Nietzsche, by the way. He was so my type... and I could have shown him a thing or two about really living. Yeah, I'll show you will to power, bitch! Now bend over...

So, she and I finish our essay exams at the same time, one hour to the dot, just like the one before. Go figure. We linger in the hall then walk down the stairs together, pausing at the bottom.  I compulsively ask I can hug her then awkwardly do when she says yes.  Talking and walking, we had abandoned talk of the class halfway down the stairs and long since moved onto relationships and life and love and sex. A cloud covered night, it's dark and misty; not frosty cold but with just a little bit of rain. It's the perfect night as we stand there jacket less and bare headed, me in my bathrobe and her in that old red and gray kung fu top. She even comments on how wonderful the night is, her favorite kind.

We determine that we're supposed to be heading in opposite directions but we continue walking anyway. We get to a stoplight and start to cross but it quickly turns red. I pull her back on the curb. "Wait a minute. You're going that way, right? And I'm going this way. Let's just hang out here for a bit, then." She laughs and says she hopes no one takes us for streetwalkers standing there on the corner. I snort, for many reasons, not the least of, well, did I mention I was wearing a bathrobe? Over several other layers of very soft, non irritating clothing, I might add. I'm feeling a little bit tender and bruised, on multiple levels.

She talks about her boyfriend, how he's jealous and controlling. I tell her about the one I had like that, then we talked about how neither one of us were allowed to talk about our friends, especially male ones, to him without having him instantly suspect us of having an affair, and so on. The very fact of his controlling has led her to start looking at other men, something I assured her was also natural. She blushingly admits to playfully stalking this super geek at her work and relates the strange, neurotic, semi-courting, semi-competitive games they've been tentatively playing with each other. Again, I understand completely.

I told her that's what early relationships were all about, finding those things that we absolutely Will Not Tolerate and learning how to recognize them. I told her that she should have at least 5 major relationships before even considering getting married, so she could find and identify at least that many Intolerable Things, following it up with a disclaimer that the number 5 is total BS pulled randomly out of my ass but you get the point. I'm 33. I got married when I was 21. I consider that to be too young. I still consider myself to be too young. Told her that too. She blinked and thanked me for the advice and pulled a stray blond lock back from her eyes back into her newly dyed black bobbed hair.

We talked about bisexuality, how we both were physically attracted more to women on the surface but were destined to be with men. I put it like this "Women are much more fun to look at, but men are easier to deal with." Seems to pretty much boil it down. Women are scary, unpredictable. Wild, magical, mean creatures - I've never understood them. Never played with girls on the playground. Ever. Don't remember if I ever tried. I'm sure I did but there's probably a reason I ended up with the boys. Even though I still didn't make any friends, the boys were more accepting. Boys didn't exclude people for breaking unwritten rules. We just got into fist fights instead.

I also saw the lights go on when I shared my other favorite explanation with her, "I'm only a lesbian from the waist up." Big, enthusiastic nod of agreement there, which is a very typical reaction with straight women, I'm finding. I suspect all women would love to love on other women, just kissing and nuzzling those precious spots, the gentle curve of the neck, sweet soft lips, precious downy cheekbones, timid eyelashes but wait, lest we lose ourselves in delicate delights, let us not forget those nubs of nectar and joy, the nipples and the lovely breasts to which they belong, so soft and yielding. Intoxicating. The best part about being a girl is that I get to play with my own tits, which I do absentmindedly sometimes when I'm stoned. I'd probably never take my hand out of my pants if I was a boy. Actually, that controlling ex boyfriend - his little brother was that way. He was a compulsive masturbator, and it didn't matter where he was or who was around. I once saw him do it at a Thanksgiving family get-together.

Surprising even myself, out of nowhere I ask her if she'd like me to take her back to the dungeon for her first flogging. She lights up, her eyes on fire and spirit in her voice, "Really!? I always thought so!" but she misunderstood the question. She thought I was referring to a local head shop by that name and was momentarily, mistakenly thrilled to have her suspicions fulfilled that something kinky was going on behind the back room. I enlightened her and said, that no, I was talking about my dungeon. "You have a dungeon?"

"Yes, for a couple more weeks anyway."

"Damn, but I'm going out of town this weekend. What about Thursday?"

I mumble something about moving and writing papers and travel plans and how she can totally back out if she wants to and I don't want to pressure her and in fact I kind of feel like a drug dealer, pushing my perversions on sweet young girls and why doesn't she just think about it for awhile and then email me, we'll set something up...

Hey, wait a minute! God, I'm fucking slow. Did she just ask ME out? For Thursday? OMG. Cuz yeah, she didn't back out, I did. Come to think of it, I think she might have followed me home if I hadn't run away... Oh well, breathing space is good, for both of us. Thursday, huh? Hmmm.


Exploring the possibility of a war between robots in the future
Most stories of futuristic robot wars are staged as man against machine, with man invariably winning due to his innate humanity. Less often do we conjure up images of robot versus robot. When we do, we tend to assume that money would make the difference, much like how our current mechanized military works. He who has the... More.