Wednesday, September 2, 2009

"It's a marathon, not a sprint!"

Class starts in an hour. Here are some things that have happened in the past couple days:
  • Yesterday was orientation. It was, for lack of a better word, interesting.
  • There are around 25 people in the Public Relations program. Three are guys. All three are straight. SOMETHING IS WRONG WITH THIS PICTURE. (On a side note, I still haven't found a new gay best friend up here.)
  • I'm pretty sure my four years at LSU were simply training for grad school. If I thought LSU was a hardcore drinking school, I think I may have found it's northern match. Where undergrads are enticed to events by free food, the faculty here know the secret to getting grad students involved: FREE ALCOHOL. It's like they're mind readers!
  • On that note, every time I told a professor what my schedule was they all got that wide-eyed "better you than me look" (or as I fondly refer to it, the look I give people when they say they're majoring in physics or chemistry). I wanted to ask, "I'm going to be drinking a lot this semester, aren't I?"
  • I still don't have an assistantship. I NEED THIS TO CHANGE.
  • In lieu of this, I've started carrying my resume with me wherever I go, and I am thrusting it in the face of anyone who mentions the word "assistantship".
  • Tangent: Boston high-schoolers are obnoxious, and I can see that sharing a subway with them is going to try my patience.
  • I woke up at 4:30 this morning to catch a 6:20 train. I'm exhausted, but extremely ready for class to start. Not so ready, however, for all the reading that's going to come with it.
  • I miss: CCs and PJs. There is no equivalent (besides Dunkin Donuts, which is OK, but not really a place I want to kill time/study in) up here.
  • I drove to the train station with my heater on this morning. Heater. On. In September. THIS IS CRAZY TALK.
  • Apparently, marathons are very popular among BU's faculty. I spoke to a handful of professors who run them. All I could think of was the old adage, "It's a marathon, not a sprint" that my friends and I used to tell each other during tailgates or other periods of extended drinking. It was all I could do to bite my tongue and NOT say anything during these conversations except for the occasion smile-and-nod and the well placed "Oh wow!" I think my filter is getting better.
Well, that killed 30 minutes.

Monday, August 31, 2009

And I thought I was done spending money

Seriously, this is the email I got from the company who makes one of my reading packets. Any day that I spend over $130 on a course reading packet is decidedly NOT a great day. Sorry. That's just the way it is.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Freshman Year: Smells like hopes, dreams and cheap beer.

Well, I spent yesterday on campus. I was greeted with two of my least favorite types of people: Stupid, self-righteous law students* and pretentious overbearing undergrads.

*Note: I do not hate all law students. I have several friends that are in law school, and I am quite fond of them. Some of the funniest people and best drinking buddies I know are law students. So, when I say stupid, self-righteous law students, I really do mean people who are dumb as posts and probably paid their way into law school and now think they are better than anyone else because of it.

It was orientation week for everybody that was not me on campus, which means I picked The Absolute Worst Day to go because there were a shit ton of orientation guides, holding up their little signs, being followed by freshman. My issue with this is obvious. Orientation groups do not move with precision, or with any implication that there is a goal in mind. In fact, they saunter. It takes them 12 million years to get from point A to point B, because God forbid they lose someone, and some unfortunate 18 year old has to find his/her way around because they were lost from a group they probably didn't want to be a part of anyway. My main problem is that, unlike LSU, BU is located on one single street, so instead of being a sprawling campus, it's organized length wise, leaving few safe ways to get around a group of freshman who are taking up the side walk. Also: Their parents were there. Kill me now.

Anyhoo, I had several clear missions yesterday: Get my TerrierCard, drop of my medical forms and get textbooks. That is all. These three things, collectively, should have taken me an hour, tops. It ended up taking me three, almost four hours. Here is a rundown of my day.

10:30 a.m. Arrive on campus, momentary mental hissy fit over shear amount of people on campus.
10:40 a.m. Fight throngs of freshman in front of the George Sherman Union.
10:45 a.m. Ask Law School welcomer how to get to the TerrierCard office. This was my first mistake. Here is our conversation:
Me: Hi, you look like you know what you're doing.
Welcomer: Yep.
Me: Can you tel me how to get to the TerrierCard office?
Welcomer: It's downstairs. You were heading in the right direction, but I'm lazy and the elevator is here. I'll show you.
Me: Thank you.
Welcomer: What program are you in?
Me: Grad student, College of Communication.
Welcomer: Oh. (this was a very loaded oh, like the oh someone says when they are unimpressed with something and therefore think they are better than you) How long is that program?
Me: Year and a half.
Welcomer D-Bag: Oh. (see above.)
10:48 a.m. Find TerrierCard office. There is a line. I have arrived right after and before many first year law students. All of whom are too busy flirting with the original Welcomer D-Bag and his tool friends to listen to the lady at the front of the line, who was instructing everyone to have a form of picture ID out, as well as to know their BU ID number. None of them did, and they acted like this was someone else's fault. Also, everyone ignored me because I did not have a law student name tag on, and it was obvious that I was not part of their clique. It was ridiculous. Hence: Stupid and self-righteous.
10:55 a.m. Leave Union with an awful ID picture. Probably because I was so disgusted by my company.
11:05 a.m. Arrive at Student Health services, only to be informed that they are closed on Thursdays from 11-1 for staff meetings.FML.
11:15 a.m. Buy text books. Spend $377.
11:25 a.m. Eat lunch by myself.
11:30 a.m. Wander around campus bookstore.
11:40 a.m. Take a nap in comfy armchairs on sixth floor of campus bookstore.
12:15 p.m. Walk around outside.
12:30 p.m. Sit on a bench. Outside.
1:00 p.m. FINALLY drop off medical forms.

Obviously, it was a long day. It made me re-evaluate this decision, but in the end, I am still looking forward to classes beginning, because I desperately need some friends my own age up here. MY orientation is Tuesday, probably planned that way so there won't be as many people in the way. At least I hope so.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Without further delay....

Things I Learned On My 30 Hour Road Trip To Massachusetts

  1. Use the bathroom every opportunity you get.--I found this one to be of importance when I saw the sign that said "180 Miles to next rest area." That's a lonnnnng ways away. Like, two and a half hours away. Think about it: If you have to pee when you see that sign, you're basically have to have an extraordinarily strong bladder, or you're going to be peeing in the woods.
  2. Eat when you see places to eat, whether you are hungry or not.--On a slightly related note, when you drive through many states, you tend to take the not-so-scenic route. This means that places to eat could be few and far between. From my personal experience: On day one, we were driving through Meridian, MS, and we were stopping for gas. It was about 7 amish, and I, personally, was hungry. There was a McDonalds at this particular exit, but it was up the road in the opposite direction on top of a hill or something, so my dad didn't want to eat at it. He said we would stop at the next one. Well, there was no next one, not for about 70-80 miles, and then it was a Burger King, who has inferior breakfasts to McDonalds. Anyway, moral of the story is: eat when you see places to eat, whether you are hungry or not.
  3. Bring earplugs.--This one only applies if you are stopping to sleep at a hotel and sharing the room with someone. People snore. My father (and let's be honest, my mother, too) snore. We stopped in Virginia for the night, and I shared a hotel room with my parents. Well, I hardly slept at all because of the chorus my parents were putting on in the other bed. It was awful. (Again, to be honest, my father was MUCH worse, MUCH louder, MUCH longer, than my mother.) Basically: If you want to sleep, bring ear plugs. You may not need them, but then again, you may. Edit: They would also come in handy if you're trying to nap in the car. They would definitely block out the noise from the interstate and whatever music the driver is listening to.
  4. Avoid greasy food whenever possible.--I know I was just whining about having to eat Burger King, but this point is of special importance. If you are eating breakfast, lunch and dinner on the road for two days, at some point in there, pass up the Whoppers and Big Macs for Subway, Quiznos or something of the like. Trust me, your stomach will seriously thank you. All that greasy food definitely makes the trip an unpleasant one.
  5. Even if you have a GPS, a back up map is essential.--We found this out in New Jersey. Since my parents have made this trek many times before, they wanted to go a speficic way once we hit New Jersey. Thus, we took a different route than what the GPS wanted. Naturally, the GPS had a shit fit, and while it was "Recalculating" it froze. We couldn't get it to turn off, restart, anything. So, for a few miles, we were sans GPS until my mom found the reset button. If she hadn't found that, or perhaps it hadn't worked, we would have been up shit creek without a paddle if we hadn't brought a map with us. Luckily, we only had to fully rely on it for a little while, but it pays to be prepared.
  6. I learned how to read that map.--Anyone who knows me knows I am a self-proclaimed awful navigator. Put a map in front of me and the best I can do is find you all the silliest street names. However, on this trip, I was taught, and successfully learned, how to read a map. I even know how to use those mile marker thingys now. I know, I'm smart.
  7. You can drive with you fingers!--Only if you have cruise control. My mom taught me this one. Apparently, if you have cruise control on, you can hit Accelerate or Decelerate and control the speed of your car from the steering wheel. Of course, this doesn't really work in heavy traffic, but it was good when we were following my dad (whose rental truck had no cruise control, so he couldn't keep the speed really steady).
  8. New Jersey SUCKS.--I think most people (except for people from NJ, and to those of you who are, I am truly sorry) know that NJ is America's armpit. It is an awful state to drive in, first of all, and when I was driving in it, it was raining. It pretty much rained from the time we hit the border till we crossed state lines. Four plus lanes of traffic, with a visibility of about a car length in front of me, it's not a drive I wish to re-experience.
  9. New Haven, CT, sucks too.--New Haven is basically a suburb of NY. It is also a college town (Yale and Rory Gilmore are there). This plus that equal TREMENDOUS TRAFFIC. The drive through CT should only take 45 minutes or so, but it took us close to two hours because we were stuck in traffic from hell. This is what prompted me to exclaim, "I don't care if it's good enough for Rory Gilmore, New Haven is the pits."
  10. There's a bridge in New York called the Tappan Zee Bridge.--And it is truly frightening.
  11. People are shitty drivers. EVERYWHERE.--I think this one speaks for itself.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

My first days as a Southern transplant in the North

Well, I made it alive.

I have a nice outline of an entry to be entitled "Things I Learned on my 30 Hour Road Trip to Massachusetts," but unfortunately I don't have regular access to the internet right now (and I left my notes at my Noni's. Oops.) so it'll have to wait. Also in the works: "Things I Learned my First Week in Massachusetts," to follow.

So, this is to let everyone know that I am alive, I made it and yes, it's weird being up here. I keep thinking I'm going to be leaving soon, so I have to keep reminding myself that I'm here for a while. WEIRD, I'm telling you. I'm so thrown off, even though I knew this was coming.

Also: For the first time since freshmen year at LSU, I'm looking forward to starting school. Simply for the fact that it will give me something to do. No friends = constant boredom. I did however, start knitting, so there's that.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

The BIG Day Arrives

Tomorrow is day one of moving day. Already, we have experienced a problem.

My dad went to pick up the rental truck this morning. With the help of John, we were able to get everything loaded fairly quickly earlier today. Upon further investigation later this evening, my dad discovered a blister in one of the tires. Apparently, this translates to, "The truck will definitely not make it to Boston and may even blow up. Who knows." in truck speak. I was unaware of this.

So, my dad called the 24 hour road side assistance, who said someone was going to come fix the tire. I'll believe it when I see it.

I'm a little nervous to hit the road now, though.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Getting Down to the Wire

Well, as of Thursday, July 3oth, I am no longer a resident of Baton Rouge. It's pretty sad, actually. Some of the best memories I've ever made were in good old BR. For what it's worth, I'm going to miss it.

For the next nine days I'm back at my parents' house. I don't mind it because my parents aren't so bad now that I've been out of high school for half a decade; in fact I might go as far as to say that I appreciate and enjoy their company. Getting older is weird. But, it's only temporary because pretty soon I'll no longer be a resident of Louisiana, which is even weirder. Even though I was born in Massachusetts, I really feel like Louisiana is my home. Probably because I hardly remember Massachusetts.

Anyhoo, I only have a little over a week here. In the mean time, my stuff has taken over my parents dining room:

Another excellent view:

And still:

It's a little hard to tell, but the perimeter of my parents dining room is my stuff. And the sad part? This isn't even all of it, because John had yet to deliver the last of it which was being stored in his car, as The Little Civic That Could was filled to capacity on move out day. Also, the little bit of furniture I have to my name is in my room, which is currently a disaster area and not conducive to photo sessions.

So, I ask of you: How does one person accumulate so much crap? (And I promise you, a lot of it is crap, at least in the eyes of the general population. I own nothing of worth.) In four years at LSU, I have lived (officially) in four places (if we're factoring places I lived between leases or during hurricanes the number goes up). When I started at LSU, I had around two boxes of belongings, plus a mini-fridge. That's reasonable for a college freshman. When I left the dorm, I had around four or five boxes. Ok, not so bad, my stuff doubled. But, figuring that each time I moved (and the summer in between my sophomore and junior years I moved four times, which explains my loathing for the packing/moving process) my stuff doubled...well, I guess that explains how I got so much stuff. I'm beginning to worry that it won't all fit in the U-Haul. Oh well, if it doesn't fit, it isn't going to Boston.

Keep in mind that when I was packing up my apartment, I threw out at least twenty bags of stuff that really was worthless that I had held on to (when I cleaned out my dresser at home, I found the schedule I filled out in eighth grade for what I wanted to take in ninth grade, as well as notes from sixth grade and up, which was, oh, about ten years ago; I am a pack rat to the extreme) as well as gave away something like 15 bags (it may have been more, I'm estimating; I stopped counting at nine or ten) of clothes/shoes/accessories that I have not worn in four years, that I basically hauled around to different residences for four years. Most of my packing process was like this, "OH MY GOD WHY DID I KEEP THIS?!" Yet I still brought home 20 boxes/bins of stuff, plus three duffel bags, one suit case and three garment bags of clothes, two lamps, two TVS and an end table.

It's like a really retarded version of "12 Days of Christmas." And looking at it with numbers makes me want to go purge something.