Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Labor Day

There are times when life does not make sense. Like when you wake up to find a nearly nude Russian exchange student frantically searching for his boxers, explaining, while still thoroughly obliterated, that he has all his cash hidden in said boxers.

"Well, but how much cash?"
"Two thousand dollars."

And then everyone's faces flatten and sag.

"But...why? Why would you have that much on you...?"

I mean really. There is nothing logical about that scenario. Especially not in the morning, when waves of stale vodka are crashing against your temples and you don't know where your glasses are. And you're standing in a hallway while the Russian stumbles drunkenly around, and his 40-year-old host mom looks flatly on.

Then you notice that the Russian appears to be wearing your boyfriend's shorts, as they're far too big for him and are exposing the majority of his skinny ass. You're wondering how exactly they stay on, since you walked past the bathroom at a very inopportune moment the night before and know conclusively that there is distressingly little to hold them up in front...

So your boyfriend and his roommate are searching for the boxers in the bathroom, and the kid has passed out on the bed you woke up in. You're still standing there in the hallway, alone save for the host mom; you look into the kitchen, at the empty bottles of Jameson's and Jack, the one-third left in a bottle of vodka, various crushed beer cans and empty glasses scattered over the counter, and you suddenly feel like the Worst Person in the World.

Then you notice your shirt for the first time. It says "Do Something With Your Life. Get me a beer." Your humiliation is compounded.

"So. So yeah." You try to cover your shirt with your hair, crossing your arms high up over your chest to keep it in place. The host mom blinks at you; stupidly, you bluster on. "I mean, so those boxers. I know I saw them somewhere. They just...yeah. They've gotta be around."

Your brain and your vocal cords mercifully detach. You continue talking, but your brain's submersion in last night's booze renders you unable to recall any of the idiot things you say. Your boyfriend finds the boxers in the cabinet under the bathroom sink ("he must've hidden them last night"), and you all take a moment to observe the wad of cash sewn into the crotch. The Russian wanders into the kitchen and vomits gracelessly into a wastebasket, as you gaze pensively out the window and consider your life.

But all you come up with is, god damn I need an aspirin.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Maybe I'm Just Bitter 'Cause I'm Klutzy

There was some kind of hippie concert thing on campus today. I was walking to class and there was a band playing, a woman singer with a thin wail and a random cluster of instruments behind her. (Actually, they might not have been that bad, I don't know. I wasn't really listening. I heard it as buzzing occasionally broken by the singer's wails.)

But mostly I was disturbed by my fellow students' ebullience. They were leaping across the green like athletic-shorted gazelles, snatching frisbees from the air, their charming attempts at facial hair lit by the joyful late afternoon sun. I looked to my left and saw a physics professor demonstrating gravity by playfully lobbing freshly picked apples at his students' heads.

Well, no. I just expected to see this. Because I was pretty sure I had walked into a college brochure. And so I stood there thinking, "oh, come on. I do not really go to school here." And then I walked into the building for my next class, leaned against the cold wall in the shadowy hallway and felt much better.

Best of all, by the time my class ended, both the music and the ebullience had died.