i am fully aware, as are you, of how many pictures i take of mountains and sky. but i can't help it. my heart bursts every time i see them. i am most definitely a mountains girl. and what's more, i am a sunrise person. (mountains as opposed to ocean. sunrise as opposed to sunsets).
wrapping things up as finals start. i have been having the best + worst days lately. best in the sense that it sounds like. best: crazy-wonderful things happening that shouldn't happen. and they are happening to me.
a short account of the last day of my first 'year' of college:
today could quite possibly be one of the best days of my life. i don't really know why. i woke up to my eldest sisters voice on the telephone. sharing words of comfort and hope to each other. i had a great morning, just getting ready. walking to school, a very favored friend of mine, ashley, asked me if i would like a ride. i politely declined. last day to walk to class from wyview. i'm the sentimental type. i got out my camera and took pictures. thought about my last day of my first 'year' of college. wow. how can this be? it astounds me. i hardly want to spend the day studying.
i went to my least favorite class, taught by a professor whom i have always thought was an okay guy, but have been really bothered by his ego. dr. kearl, my econ professor, is a genius. he worked on the reagan administration for crying out loud. a wonderful economist and a very good teacher, but i tend to have primal issues with anyone who thinks the word 'smooth' is an onomatopoeia. but he gave an incredible lecture today, on my last day of my first 'year' of college. he is infamous on campus for a fearsome reputation, killer tests (that which he lives up to), and his very last lecture. normal days the auditorium isn't full; but the last lecture--people from all walks of college come in.
in all my days of falling at his feet for the fear mongering professor he is, he chose me, on the last day, to volunteer. the exercise was silly. one person divides $1 in coins and the other person either accepts or declines. $.50 -$.50 mine was divided. and i accepted. but i did get 3 dimes, 3 nickels, and 5 pennies out of it. 50 cents i will hold for a long time. a strange experiment: one that proves that people are not self-interested. the only rational division would be $.99 - $.01. and the other person would never accept.
his lecture is a conclusion, or a retraction rather. all semester long he talks about self-interest, that mighty thing which is at the heart of the universe--and indeed all things economics. he told us that even though he taught us that the world (the economy) is based on self-interested behavior, he was not teaching us that it ought to be the foundation for all the manners and ways. he spoke of so much economic injustice. the lottery tickets we all drew when we slid down to this earth are not dealt equally. in a scenario where the total amount of money on all lottery tickets is $400,000. with 400 people on the earth...i thought the ratio of distributed money should be 1:1. wake up, he told us. the reality is 9:1. and if you think it is anything less than that, you shouldn't be sitting here. you should be giving your 9 to someone with 1. i don't claim or even pretend to understand most of it. but it was moving. he was touching.
he spoke of other things. that education should not be easy. he 'puzzles' at the fact that students want easy classes. students should expect professors to expect the very best of them. i full-heartedly agree, although i was a little sheepish. dumbfounded. i haven't worked that hard at this class; most definitely i will not bypass any price or punishment--but how much have i wasted? how much have i taken for granted? education, he told us, is a marathon. you don't train for it in a day. he 'puzzles' at the annual commencement celebration, where byu honors the youngest graduate each year. this is a sign, he said, that this person made poor choices. they did not in any way get the best education they could. an education shouldn't be raced through.
in addition, a university education is not job training. why, he asked us, were we all so eager to get out of college? it's no secret that you work your whole life. college are the best years. and it doesn't get easier, nor less busy. dr. kearl urged us to fall in love with ideas. he read keynes to us: "ideas shape the course of history." it was brilliant.
i sat in the front every tuesday and thursday. during his lectures, he would often look me in the eye. me knowing all along that he could see right into my brain and see pure emptiness. maybe a song, or just happiness in general. (on some days--misery from being in econ for an hour and half.) we never spoke, though i often wished it. i had in the past declared my dislike for him. but i guess i stand somewhat corrected. he is a cool guy. and i feel like he knows me. we've never shared words, but i feel like he knows me.
i wish you could have been there. and felt as small as i did. but more than small, felt prompted and pushed to be something.
i had a 4-page article due for my news writing class today. i had surely procrastinated the day of my assignment, and was scrounging everything i could to get it done. the worst part was we were required to interview students, teachers, professors, etc. i e-mailed my prospects with hope, but still much doubt. i stopped by my future boss's office to check if she received the e-mail. she had already replied and sent it back to me. what a sweetheart. i was able to attend the unforum, the tuesday devotional where the byu 2007-2008 school year was celebrated by honoring ordinary individuals who 'redefined service.' it too was touching. afterward, i wandered around the political science halls to find some interviewees. out to lunch. my lucky day: 2 out of 3 e-mailed me back. it is still hard for me to believe that men with phds, in their prime, with research and papers and classes and departments and theories of their own, would take the time to help me. help. but they would. i was about to e-mail my old ta (whom i've written about before). to ask him so questions for the interview. i opened up my macbook and who walks by but Will himself.
that was only about half my day. the other half--i was writing my article. and also awe-ing at the warm and sunny day turned snowstorm. but it was a good day.
it was not a worst day in the most obvious sense. it just had potential to be a worst. information that held potential treasure or possible poison beyond description. i called my mom. wise words of course:
best days always come when things are wrapping up.
ugh. i don't want things to wrap up. i am though. i am doing the wrapping. but if they weren't would i want them to? my roommates are very...different than me. in more ways than one, but the one i am speaking of is that they just push ahead. i never see them reflect on the past, or be reluctant to give up the present. they are oriented with the future. i am so not like that. i am nearly eternally obsessed + preoccupied + held captive by + tormented by + completely taken over by tearing myself between what i have now and what i used to have. worrying about not having either of those in the future.