I’m sitting, my back to the wall, the lecturer to my right has been talking for 45 mins, only 45 mins and I’m (here writing this) bored already. Her voice makes my skull ache. It is as if her tone is able to chew at the skin between face-flesh and skull-bone, it is really quite magically disturbing.
Directly in front of me is The Big Silver Clock. This clock, I swear it has been designed in such a way, that it moves more slowly than any other clock in the world. It stares at me and slowly tells me the truth about my life. “Thola……. you’re……. wasting………time!!!!!!!!!”
Along the wall sit + – 30 people, young, wealthy, just-dropped-out-of-the-loose-vagina-that-is-the-education-system type of people – all bored and somehow connected to some kind of distraction, all in his and her own way, trying to escape from the skull scrapping noise that is the voice of our lecturer.
The door is about 5 very big steps, 8 normal steps away from me (to the right of the lecturer). In front and slightly to my left, in the corner, almost hidden by a round, white pillar is a guy, he has his headphones in, his screen up and appears completely disconnected from what is happening in this space. 2 weeks ago he was openly dancing to music. He actually woke up, got dressed, gelled his, newly-cut hair, packed his bag, made (what I assume is ) a protein shake and came to class, just to put in earphones and not be present. What is this place?
I come to this lecture because I have to, NOT because I enjoy it. I love education and I love all of my other lectures, but this 3-hour session is possibly the worst type of torture that I will ever have to willingly put myself through. There is a girl with a sticker-covered laptop, she has just left the room again, she sits next to the guy with the headphones. She leaves often and definitely is not going for multiple poos. She is escaping.
There is a guy, he isn’t here today, who normally sits on my left. Sometimes we even have to partner up. I don’t know his name, he has never asked me mine. He is the unhappiest person in the room even on a good day. He looks as if he never sleeps. When class starts he drags himself through the door, drags the bag off his back and drags his ass onto the chair and then drags his eyelids down and his hands land on his chin. This position is maintained for the entire duration of the 3-hour lecture. He then leaves, having not participated, having not taken any notes, having slept, but he was present and he will be marked for attendance as good.
There are two young girls who sit to the left of the girl with the sticker-covered laptop, they giggle and communicate in high-pitched whispers throughout the lecture. They swipe, swipe, swipe, on their phones. Sometimes I spend time trying to guess if it’s Whatsapp, Facebook, Instagram or Tinder. Sometimes they show each other things, giggle and then swipe. I would guess that this is either a tinder or an insta-situation. These girls make me concerned about the youth. Also, why do they dress like they are going out dancing?
Today our lecturer is asking us many questions, this is a first. It’s awkward, when I raise my head I look around and see Bambi faces blinking and making the SpongeBob sound as they do. I refuse to take part. I am here and I have done my work and when I ask questions the lecturer looks stressed and attacked. So I have stopped speaking.
The last time I spoke, I pointed out that she had shown us a video in which racist misrepresentation was used to illustrate existential therapy theories. I was irate. She fumbled an apology by explaining that she didn’t even notice it, or hadn’t seen it or something along those lines. I was boiling and then I was done. I bunked the last class. I just couldn’t.
We just had a break, sometimes I wonder if the lecturer goes to the toilet and cries in the breaks. She often comes back looking a little shaken. I learned a while back that this is her first time lecturing. Shame, she got me. Actually, it’s a shame that she got them. Maybe it’s a shame that we got her. I don’t know.
I am one of 2 people who are probably the same age, if not older than the lecturer. I am at a push, 10 years older than most of the students in this class. The other woman is 34. We have a secret eyebrow language that we share in silence – raise an eyebrow and sigh, sigh, sigh. Furrowed brow – she is bored, disappointed and pissed off with these kids and the lecturer. I don’t know her name but I like her. We get it.
I crowdfunded and worked my ass off to attend these lectures last year. this year I was offered a bursary by this place. My bursary has just been taken away, apparently, they have run our of funding to allow me to finish the year. I love education so much that often I find myself educating this boring lecturer. But now I have to leave because business is business and these bored-ass children are keeping the business machine grinding. I, poor, enthusiastic and totally present, am not.
Image from: ForHarriet.com.