Monday, June 28, 2010

Life After Graduation, Part 2

pen-drawn doodle that says, 'boring boing bong bog'

It occurred to me today that as a postgraduate graduate, I will probably never again have cause to create masterpieces like the above bit of nonsensical ingenuity that I doodled on the bottom border of a page of lecture notes during my last semester at UB.

I bought a window air conditioner today. This may seem apropos of nothing, but it set off the chain of events that caused me to become all nostalgic over my classroom artistry. You see, whenever I acquire something new, I have this overwhelming compulsion to purge my life of something old. It's 'cause I hate clutter. So today, while patently ignoring the existence of my new air conditioner and sweating under the breeze of two ineffectual fans (because I still feel guilty about using an air conditioner at all), I decided it was time to clean my bookshelf (again) of all the things related to my completed degree.

I ruthlessly recycled pages upon pages of photocopied articles that I'd kept, thinking I might use them as reference material someday. I culled two books that I'd been holding onto just in case I needed them as source material for a paper. I got rid of an entire notebook of typeface samples. I tossed away my student handbook and course catalog. I Freecycled two 3-ring binders and a folder, and I page of notes.

I'll miss taking notes like these--notes in which the terse and cursory comments on the lecture (half of which are upside-down) are overrun by a swarm of random phrases and pictures of owls. Don't get me wrong--I won't in the slightest way miss being bored during a lecture, but I will miss rifling through my notes and puzzling over the outrageously digressive works of art that adorn the borders of the pages. Some of my most creative designs came from not paying much attention in design class!

You know what else I'll miss? Writing papers. Yes, it's nerdy of me, but I find something immensely satisfying about pulling together a bunch of scraps of quotes from a pile of books and websites, and turning them into something that makes sense. A few days ago, a friend who is still in school was griping about how her school was forcing her to limit her 11-pages of writing to five pages, and I was jealous! If I found it immensely satisfying to put a paper together, I found it absolutely glorious to tear one apart, remove page after page, change a few words, and find that its meaning was still not lost. Yes, I do like to be long-winded when I write, but as I said, I also hate clutter.

Without term papers to write, dissect, and rewrite, I guess the only way for me to get my tidiness fix is for me to organize my bookshelf. Again.


Geoff said...

"I bought a window air conditioner today."