In college, I majored in communications. I had some legitimate reasons for picking this as my major, but this blog is not about well thought out choices. Plus, if I am being honest with myself I also chose it because it helped me refine my ability to bamboozle people and in communications classes you run the least risk of running into dorkarellas.
Girl communications majors are, for the most part, skinny, blond and like to dress in sassy outfits when they go to class. Boy communications majors are either college athletes or fratty bros who wear tims and dirty baseball hats. Now all of these people have more or less decided to become communications majors for the same reason; because they wanted to watch Rock of Love and count it as homework. As long as you can use whatever you watched instead of doing the reading as an example of a gender or racial stereotype and talk about the media’s perpetuation of said stereotype, you’re set to earn an A. In fact, sometimes watching trashy TV is even part of the lecture. It was not uncommon for professors to show entire episodes of Jenny Jones in class or at the very least show movie clips for half the lecture. Now, don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t all a cake walk. I mean, every once in a while we had to turn in a paper and present it in front of the class, but mostly we ran into each other in bars and talked about all the work we were not sitting at home doing. Mostly, we got away with having our parents think this was a good use of their tuition dollars because we had to read the newspaper for class and a decent knowledge of current events goes a long way in seeming like you are learning stuff.
Now of course, this group of students was not totally homogenous, but when I say there were no nerds in the bunch, I basically mean that there were very few pretentious morons intent on hearing their own voice. Essentially, no one was fooled into thinking that we were taxing our brains as much as say Econ majors. Now since graduating, I have taken a few grad classes just so my brain does not rot out of my head. Now every hour I spend sitting in one of these classes is another hour I’m delighted that I majored in communications.
For example, tonight I started a political science class. Overall, it was great; I learned all sorts of things I should have learned long ago. Did you know that John Adams and John Quincy Adams are not the same person? And the French and Indian war was actually between the French and the British? Well, my mind was blown by all this knowledge, but apparently I was the only one becoming enlightened because the rest of the nerd alerts in the class had input on all of these issues. What? Where I come from you try to get the professor as off topic as possible to disguise the fact that your text book is still wrapped in the plastic it came in.
There was one girl in particular who wanted to make sure we all knew she had done her homework before there was any assigned. Now, I should have known she was trouble from the moment I walked in the classroom. First, she was significantly older than everyone else in the class. Old students are notoriously troublesome. They have a complex about being behind the curve on account of the gap in their education so they try twice as hard and comment twice as often as even the biggest dork in the class. Secondly she was wearing a chunky blue cardigan printed with black and white sheep. Now, the sheep were actually abstract rendering of farm animals and they took me the whole class of staring at them to figure out what I was looking at. The third and final straw came when she started talking about the musical “1776” and the way the Puritans were dressed. So, straight off the bat we have the most tragic conversation of all time, but then she goes on to explain how people in the northeast still wear black all the time as a direct remnant of the Puritan garb. Fine, great, I appreciate an anthropological tidbit as much as the next person. Also, I was wearing all black myself and nearly 80% of my wardrobe is either black or navy and I did enjoy The Crucible so maybe she wasn’t that far off base. BUT THEN she goes on to say that people from New England take pride in dressing slovenly. No, girl, no; no one here is excited by your ill fitting sheep sweater. Least of all myself; I thought having the cutest outfit in the class was at least as important as learning something.