>>> Points in Case
By staff writer Court Sullivan
Issue #20 – March 2003

-Dorm showering is a very strange phenomenon. Never again will you have to shower naked wearing cheap sandals while talking to six of your friends doing the same thing a half-wall away. There aren’t many shining qualities about the showers themselves either. Especially not the walls, the floor, or the curtains. Every time I take a shower I feel like I’m confined to one square foot of sanitary mobility in any direction. It’s like a life-size version of Operation, except the consequences are much, much nastier than that annoying buzz.

-There is one redeeming quality about dorm showers though: the hot water is unlimited. The entire dorm could have showered 10 minutes before me and 30 people could be flushing the toilet at the same time in the middle of my shower, and my nozzle will still pump out a consistent stream of blazing hot water. Not that my entire dorm has ever showered together and collectively decided to take a crap afterwards, but still.

-Freshman year I lived in a dorm that was coed by hall. That means guys and girls all walked to the bathroom on the same floor in towels every morning to shower. Well, okay, there were separate men’s and women’s restrooms. But hey, everyone’s already seen as much of the other sex out in the hall as we do of our own sex in our own bathroom. Even if the showers were integrated, the half-walls themselves are nasty enough to keep me from peeking, and I certainly wouldn’t risk over-capacitating the sanitation bubble.

-I’ve found that there’s a very thin line between love, hate, and waiting for my homepage to load. It’s actually a range of about 1.7 seconds. Loads in 0.4 seconds: love my speedy T3 connection at school. Loads in 2.1 seconds: loathe everything about my school’s inability to provide consistently adequate connection speed to the backbone of the US network infrastructure. May also lead to audible concerns like, “What the hell is going on with the internet today?!”

-Speaking of the internet, the web is entirely too flooded with clutter these days. I basically confine myself to the same few websites every day. Certainly “surfing the Internet” is near-obsolete. The mere thought of “surfing the Internet” conjures up images of an extreme sport where a bunch of adrenaline junkies sit around on the beach with their surfboards daring each other to ride the 60-footer. Then someone finally does, gets washed away, and everyone goes back to their favorite places.

-You know what else is near-obsolete? The Natuna banded leaf monkey. I found that on the internet just now. The sheer wealth of information is so astonishing and useless!

-Have you ever “accidentally” ended up at a major porn site and gotten bombarded with endless popup windows? I feel like these websites are literally having unprotected sex with each other as I try to escape from them. Before you know it, they’ve spawned like five new windows and have tastelessly depleted all the natural resources available to my computer.

-For most of my college career I didn’t go and talk to my professors. People would always tell me, “But your professors are there to help you!” Oh yeah, I never doubted that. However, I always heard you had to help yourself first, and I wasn’t prepared to make that kind of commitment.

-Later though, I found out you don’t have to help yourself first. Professors are there as a sort of secret weapon at your disposal. All you have to do is activate their powers. Except instead of the classic “up up down down ab ab select start” code, just make an appointment early in the semester and pretend like you took their class out of interest, not because it fulfilled two core requirements simultaneously. Then, using your keyboard as a controller, just email them from time to time to get a turbo boost on a deadline or a grade. Or, just sit in your room and play video games all day and pretend like these types of analogies make sense.

-I think it’s curious how adults are always quick to assure us that professors are “only human.” If I have a grade-threatening situation in a class my dad says, “Oh, just go talk to your professor, he’s only human you know.” Has anyone ever investigated this claim? I think professors may actually be androids. Think about it: they have little to no capacity for social interaction, they carry out the same mission to ruin your life year after year, and they are always striving to be more human. There is definitely some sort of conspiracy going on here.

-Have you ever noticed how girls always seem to have umbrellas at the right time? 90% of the people getting soaked by a spot-cloud on a sunny day on the way to class are male students who don’t seem to notice it’s raining. Of the remaining 10%, half are female students who didn’t anticipate the spot-cloud but are desperately digging in their backpacks for their umbrellas, and half are female students who anticipated the spot-cloud but couldn’t get off the phone in time to dig in their backpacks before they made it to class.

-There’s also a surprising dichotomy in the way guys and girls are treated for over consumption of alcohol. Ever notice how when guys drink too much, you might just check for breathing and then leave them to pass out wherever they are, but when girls drink too much, they get completely taken care of? I’ve heard of guys waking up in the morning on the quad, outside the administration building, and on pretty much every dorm floor imaginable. Personally, I know a guy who’s woken up in at least three highly unsanitary places in his dorm: the bathtub, the stairwell, and the loveseat in the first floor lobby in a puddle of his own urine. Girls never get left behind though. First you have to move them to a respectable location, then you have to build them a makeshift bed, and finally, someone is appointed the designated caretaker. Sometimes girls even get taken care of AFTER they’ve passed out! How is that practical?!

-Everybody has their own theory on how much time to leave for sleep after studying all night for an exam. Some people say that sleeping in four-hour blocks is the only beneficial type of sleep for your brain. This theory is ultimately moot because of the impossibility of testing block two. Other people say that sleeping for an even number of hours is the only way to allow your body to recover from such short crash periods. This theory is also of little help since no one knows for sure whether zero is an even number or not. So I guess you can just call me an atheist when it comes to my faith in sleep. And then you can call me a big hypocrite immediately following the exam.

-Why is it that when you sleep in class, you always wake up when it gets silent? I think we might have been trained to respond to this as a possible detection by the professor. It’s always the same response: first the class goes quiet, then the sleepers awake simultaneously, first going into whole-body “freeze-and-orient” posture, then immediately exuding an “I’ve-been-listening-the-whole-time” confidence. Trust me, that little puddle of drool on the corner of your notebook isn’t fooling anyone.

-True sleep in class is possibly one of the greatest achievements by a college student. For the most part, there exists only an annoying half-sleep state fueled by the idle humming of fluorescent lights, the delicate lull of hypnotic professors, and the intense jealousy of the student next to you enjoying a truly great college achievement.