It’s official, I can count myself among the many who have taken the “GRE.” Studying for this test was a minute thrill, actually. I was supposed to be studying for other subjects, but life is about sacrifice, right? Executive Decisions? Luckily, I breezed through one midterm, and the others just seemed to fall in a way that allowed matters to get only mildly convoluted. That’s the way my life has been lately, a juggling act to which I continually have to keep one deadline from cross-interfering with another.
As I studied, of course, I came to learn of all things I don’t know about literature. What a list that made. I mean, who could not have known that Lacanian symbolism/psychoanalyses, Barthes’ hermeneutic code, and Foucault’s discourse on sexual orientation do not constitute interpretations that differ from that of traditional humanist criticism? That’s just common knowledge. At any rate, the generalities were more than the rarities, and I found myself answering many of the questions without having had to study, stuff I knew off the top of my head, and for that I was grateful. The primary note of interest was how I knew much about certain areas, yet the other areas covered, consisted of subjects that are difficult for me to find interest in. Scold me for not being a Hemmingway groupie, but I’ve just never had the desire to read him…yet…and this may fall in line with my aversion to the thought of reading Moby Dick.
I had been designated to play a significant role in a play to be performed for one of my classes (18th Century Dramatic Art), and so we decided that the college gymnasium would be a good place to convene for our first meeting. I was early (as I always seem to be with groups I get involved with here), and I found these kids volunteering for a mass condom push onto the student body in front of the gym. I didn’t see any parents or evangelicals participating in this function, but I found it interesting, even heartwarming, to observe the students taking charge on such an important topic so burning vibrantly throughout the religious, political and social arenas of the country.
Our cafeteria has been closed for remodeling since I enrolled, and with the recent reopening, I’ve become more addicted to pizza than I’ve ever been. Love with pizza is what I believe to be what true love is like, and I’m starting to believe that many people’s relationship with pizza actually outlast many of America’s marriages. I literally have to not bring money with me if I want to avoid the pizza line.
So it was off to Sacramento State to take the GRE, and this picture shows what my world looked like speeding past downtown Sac with a headache at 7am trying to get to the testing center on time. Was it really necessary to hold the test at that hour? There were even students there with barely managed hair and wearing pajamas! Me, I haven’t been up that early in a long time either, so yes, I had to pump the sugar, the Tylenol, the caffeine, all that school junkie stuff I can’t seem to fully shake. By the time I arrived, after the last injection of milky, candy bar chocolate, I was cruising on a good, stimulating buzz to which, I ended up feeling pretty damn good all throughout the 2hr and 50min test. That’s right. Nearly three straight hours, intellectually chewing on English Literature, my eyeballs fixated on words and letters until they seemed to move around and get up, walking off the page like ants. I surprised myself. My years of Biblical study paid off, and all those classes I took learning to dissect poetry line for line really, really paid off. Let’s hope, and for all the money it costs to take a GRE, that grad school awaits me and my such distraught and unforeseeable future.
Well, I would love to share some of the ongoing drama unfolding in my life, as I’m sure I will in the future, of more woes and difficulties about the old school bum that I am, with barely any hope or reason to live, the helpless shy guy with no love life and a mountain of debt, the wandering, worldly transient bent on a path of destitution and despair unto the dying moments of his days, but actually, there’s a more pressing issue: I’ve never read Wuthering Heights!!!!!! (The rustling sound of shock murmurs throughout the room.) I’m something of a literary pariah, an English major outcast, for engaging in conversations at the college without being able to comment on this classic text, and so let the task begin. I will soon have this rumored work of art molded to and embedded permanently within my psyche, and then and only then, will I be able to consider myself a learned, literary scholar.