A Minute Diary of a Scattered Humanities Seminar

11:35 – It’s five minutes in and we’ve gone from indigenous peoples to Russian artifacts, what!?

11:36 – Never mind, we’re back to North America and discussing a book that we didn’t even read for class.  This is ambitious, not sure anyone actually did the assigned reading.

11:37 – Did you just say the “history of Connecticut?” Sir, I get that that’s logically a thing that exists, but a think you’re making it sound a bit too grand.  Connecticut history = idk, it’s a suburb of New York and then there are a lot of trees and strong public school programs.

11:41 – Good, we’re discussing more books we haven’t read, part of the subtitle of one of them being “Techniques of Ecstasy” which I’m pretty sure is either a Barry White album or the title of a Tantric workshop older suburban couples attend when they become empty nesters and need to feel alive again.

11:43 – 90% of the class isn’t even looking at the professor at this point.  13 minutes in might be a new record.

11:45 – Update, Prof. is more of a fan of the idea of yoga than yoga itself. I agree, the positions can be tough to hold.

11:49 – Now we’re talking about ballpeen hammers, because why not? Apparently hammers have aesthetic dimensions.  The question has been raised whether or not a hammer is still the same hammer if both the handle and the top part (that’s a technical term) are replaced.  We didn’t land on a firm answer.

11:53 – Zoned out for a few and we’ve been transported back to rural Russia.

11:59 – Crap, he’s gotten interactive, he’s asking questions.  He’s stepped beyond the boundary of the podium. Code red!

12:00 – False alarm, he is answering his own questions. #Rhetorical or #NoOneVolunteered, unclear.

12:07 – Someone is legitimately running Windows updates in the corner while on his phone.

12:14 – I’ve just noticed there’s a shark sticker on the monitor in the front of the room. Trying to decipher whether or not it’s a Finding Nemo character.  I’m hitting my limits here.

12:15 – The first of us has fallen to sleep.  I stand in solidarity with you.

12:17 – We’ve now made our way to Icelandic religious practices, folks.

12:24 – The yawns are now starting to hit.

12:26 – That awkward moment when you yawn while making eye contact with Prof.…

12:28 – We’re now somehow talking about both ghosts and horses and my only frame of reference for that intersection is the Headless Horseman, but that feels a bit on the nose.

12:30 – The eyelids are failing on me now.  They’re going down.  I’ll fight it, but I’m just going to end up looking like I’m permanently trapped in a perfume ad where I can’t open my eyes completely or make direct eye contact, only able to stare off into the distance, flutter my eyelashes, and whisper abstract nouns.  Alternatively, I’ll just look sleepy.  That’s probably it.

12:33 – Maybe if I keep nodding my head it’ll just look like I’m in a constant state of enlightenment, like everything he’s saying is just a real deep revelation for me.  Actually, wait. Why do we do that thing where we close our eyes and go “mmmm” when we really agree with something?  I feel like, I don’t know, only the live-action version of Mr. Monopoly should respond to anything like that.   It’s feels like it would be a tax-bracketed behavior, like using “summer” as a verb.

12:38 – WAIT. WHAT DID I MISS? I AM NOW VIOLENTLY AWAKE.  Only been ~resting~ a few minutes…we good.

12:39 – I’ve woken up to another discussion of Connecticut? I grew up there; I promise it’s really not that deep.

12:44 – We’re in the home stretch…and now comes the PowerPoint slides out of nowhere for the win.

12:45 – So, like, these pictures of artifacts are actually pretty cool…but, idk, like, why?

12:50 – You’re contractually obligated to let me leave right now, maybe not, whatever, I need to use the bathroom, though.

12:51 – Nah, should have known the slides would impede my biological impulses.

12:54 – One of these masks looks like a cross between a panda and my uncle.

12:55 – I missed something and grizzly bear attacks were brought up, let’s run with this, I’m intrigued.

12:56 – Prof. is not bothered by the next class trying to enter the room.

12:57 – He’s promised to stop teaching “after this,” but he’s violated my trust in this way before.  Like, there’s no way I could do a ropes course with him at this point.

12:58 – We’ve ended on the note of a group of Native Americans reclaiming a Catholic Church to resemble a traditional religious space.  While I have no concept of how we ended up here, I’m glad that that’s a thing that occurred at some unspecified point in time.

12:59 – Prof: “You must think I’m all nuts and I very well may be.”  Lovable self-awareness will take you far, remember that everyone.

1:00 – *Aretha Franklin belting the word freedom plays internally as I leave the classroom*



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