I’m going to be brutally honest here; I don’t consider professors real people. No sane person could possibly want to deal with a bunch of college students, so professors must be some type of transient beings who cannot exist beyond the realm of academia. Professors may even live on a different plane of existence than us mere mortals (something like this). With their otherworldliness in mind, I am constantly in fear of having to interact with professors outside of the traditional classroom setting. The following situations could make a grown man cry:
1. The Inquisitive E-Mail- “Alright, time to shoot off an e-mail to my English professor about formatting. Wait, is shooting off too informal? How formal should I be? Oh God, I don’t remember how to write a business letter. How should I close? Is putting ‘Love, Matt’ too much? It is? Crap, I hit “send” instead of “cancel.” I guess I have to transfer.”
2. The Walk Around Campus- Seeing a professor out on Middle Path or in Wiggin Street walking towards me makes my heart race. I never know how much interaction I should have; is it expected that I engage a professor in conversation? I don’t really want to talk about that bombed quiz in Macroeconomics. If they happen to turn left when I need to turn left, it means I’ll be turning right. I can afford to be late to my next class, right?
3. The “See Me After Class”- This is why I can’t be late to my next class. The cold stare of death I imagine a professor gives for daring to enter their class late. I wouldn’t know; I’m busy stumbling over seven chairs. Seeing a professor after class is, in my paranoid mind, the college equivalent of being sent to the principal’s office in fourth grade. I can hear the whispers of my classmates as they take bets on how severely I’ll be beaten with a switch. Professors still do that, right?
4. The Varsity Blues Strip Club- (for the uninitiated) I don’t see myself going to a strip club anytime soon (unless it’s to seek out the legendary one-armed stripper of the Fox Hole), but if I do find myself in one, I don’t want to see David Leibowitz spinning around the pole for a few extra bucks. That kind of image is just too much for me to deal with, and will inevitably ruin any chance I have of focusing on the material in that professor’s class.
5. The Reading of My Posts- I’ve been told by my editors that some professors read posts on the Thrill, in which case I was completely kidding about them not being real people (Professor Leibowitz, I’m sure you’re an excellent pole dancer). You are all wonderful human beings capable of leading ordinary lives outside of Kenyon. If you do see me outside of class, though, please don’t engage me as I will be incredibly awkward and may even forget how to blink or breathe. You don’t want that on your conscience, do you?