Show me fractions and my brain runs away. Pfft. The scaredy cat.
So today was the day of my first-ever college semester. I got up at 6am, showered and dressed for the day. I took my son to daycare, came home and woke my husband. I assembled 50 sheets of college ruled paper and a three-ring folder into my brand spankin' new, hot aqua binder. I made sure the husband was up and moving around, got the car ready, and got my husband to class on time. I came home, nervously paced the house for 45 minutes before getting back in the car and driving back to campus.
My first class was basic arithmetic development skills. I was in the wrong room. Thankfully the instructor handed out the sylabus 15 minutes early or I would have fully believed that a young redheaded woman with spring green eyes was named Donald Young. I eventually find the classroom with the right instructor, who admitted to switching classrooms three times in the previous 20 minutes because of attendence issues with the other classes.
Everything was fine until D. Hastings walked in and took the seat next to mine. Now don't get me wrong, I'm not opposed to meeting new people, or even having a fellow student sit next to me. I am, however, very opposed to the type of person who nags and mumbles and has sidebar comments about everything. I am opposed to the type of person who, when instructed (in very slow, very precise and dumbed-down vocabulary) to do something, they ask everyone and anyone around them the same "I'm not an idiot but clearly trying to get out of doing this on my own" questions until someone finally caves and does their work for them.
Hate is a strong word. So strong, that I rarely use it. Today being the exception, obviously. Because the two attributes in a person I could not dislike more, was embodied in D. Hastings, who I now, and with a grimness I rarely show, hate him. He makes me feel bad for him, makes me want to hit him, makes me feel I should help someone obviously struggling, and makes me want to hit him over the head with the computer keyboard.
"Shut up already!" I want to shout at him. Because of him, I got three answers wrong in my homework assignment, because he was either bitching about how difficult it was to log-in to the assignment program, bitching about how the program kept kicking him out, or bitching because he doesn't know why the computer hates him.
"Why do you think we have an instructor for a computer-based course?" I want to ask him. And I would wish he'd respond "So that if one of us has a question, we can raise our hand and ask." But no. I don't ask him why, and he doesn't respond with the answer, because I've already got D. Hastings figured out. And I'm already not looking forward to Thursdays class.
My next class was English Comp 1, where my instructor cheerfully (not really) told us we would be learning grammar, spelling, and will be writing long-hand, with everything. My first thought was "Awesome! I'm good at writing, I've got this in the bag!" But then she asked us to write a 100-150 word paragraph about ourselves, to write legibly, and to use every other line to space our words apart for easier readability. Alright. So I take out a sheet of paper and want to begin madly writing whatever comes to mind, thinking I'll rewrite it nice and neat underneath the quickly scribbled paragraph. But do I? No. I do not. Instead of following through with this awesome plan, I... go blank....
I take that back. I actually panic, with thoughts like "Is she grading this? Do I need proper structure for everything I write? What DO I write? Will she get mad if I just ramble about everything besides myself and not give any kind of introduction about myself? Do I HAVE to write about myself? UGH!"
And so I start my paragraph with "The last English class I took was in 2003."
And that's it. I got that far, and then my brain went blank. I'd like to think I could attribute that uncharacteristic blankness to fear of the instructor. Fear from failing on my first written piece, even though it's only 150 words long. 150. When I'm typing on my story, I blink and I've already surpassed 500 words. (not bragging, just stating a some-times fact)
But the 150 word requirement daunts me. Waves it's finger at me and says "You can't beat me." and proceeds to emmulate Bart Simpson and moon me. What's this? I can't come up with 150 measly little words? About myself? WTF is wrong with me??
So my next sentence is "Since then, I've joined the US Navy, been on two deployments, gotten married, and had a son." Awesome, right? Not. There's no flow. Two sentences and I'm ready to crumple the paper, and start over, write about how the ceiling tiles need to be replaced or something of the like. Or write about how my feet are dirty from walking around in 105 degree heat through grass and dirt and everything's clung to them to try to escape the heat. All I can do is shake my head at myself, and finish the 150 words, babbling about how I'm unaccustomed to the dexterity requirements of a pen or pencil, and "isn't that weird? Because I write in my journal at home all the time!"
Thursday. I hope to goodness, fate, and the seven seas this Thursday will be better. And as for D. Hastings, well... I don't plan on sitting next to him again if I can help it...
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