I forget my headphones literally every time I have to go to class. The last 3 times I’ve been on campus, I have bought new headphones just so I can leave them at home again because past Jen, is an inconsiderate ass hole. I have 4 pairs or working headphones and one would assume I’d have the gumption to keep a back up in my purse, and my car, or maybe in my coat pocket but apparently my past self doesn’t consider the needs of my future self.
I graduated college in 2011 at the ripe age of 21. My degree is in film and literature studies and I think it sounds cool but I never really did anything with it. I more or less picked it because I thought it was interesting and it came easily to me for the most part. I didn’t really challenge myself in going to college and in large part, approached it like high school and essentially bullshitted my way through school by taking art and English classes. I don’t want to suggest there isn’t value to the liberal arts nor do I want to say they’re easy. I think certain disciplines come to people easier than others. I still can barely add. Creative bullshit comes easily to me and sometimes I think it’s actually pretty good.
I’ve always been a person of many curiosities and passions and I have never really known what I wanted to be when I grew up. So I picked an arbitrary degree that sounds interesting but was also a big waste of $50,000. I’m a huge supporter of further education because the most important things I learned in college, were not necessarily in class. I had the same problem then, as I do now and past Jen wasn’t considering the needs of future Jen.
Seven years later, I elect to go back to school, this time in something a bit more practical and probably not as fun as film – computer science. It’s strange going back to school because the vast majority of persons in my class are fresh out of high school. I feel like the old person in class (in spite of there being a few older pupils – isn’t that an awful word, btw?). Yesterday in my Java class, a student went up to the professor and told him he already learned in Java in high school and knew everything. The professor laughed and said he was glad he knew everything and could teach the class. Then he said, “Just kidding, I’ve had people say that before and they end up failing my class….”
I don’t know what that kid was hoping to gain by his omission of knowing everything. I like how teenagers and young adults speculate how important high school is.
I suppose I’m taking my education more seriously this time around. I don’t know if it’s because I’m paying for these classes and understand the investment I’m making in myself to build a better future. I certainly didn’t think this way when I was 18 – 21. My mindset then was this is the next step and also there are no parents so I can do whatever I want. Now, I value that I’m learning a new skill set that’s going to open up new doors for me and I care about understanding those skills and how to perfect them.
In retrospect, I wish I would’ve waited in going to college, but maybe I never would’ve gone at all, if I didn’t just do it right after high school (maybe past Jen isn’t a total jerk). I certainly would’ve been smarter in what I chose to study, even though I don’t regret knowing about film and literature on a deeper level. There’s certainly something to be said about cross-discipline knowledge that allows a person to breathe new life into something or see from different perspectives.
I kind of feel like I’m in the twilight zone at school though. I’ve been talking about going back for years and I’m finally doing it. It’s sort of the same as round 1, but it’s also a bit different. Today my professor told us he wanted us to text him if we’re going to be late or miss class. Maybe it’s just me, but I feel like that’s weird. I can certainly understand sending an email to say you had some sort of an emergency come up, but why a text?
I’m at the student center and I had a crepe from “Freshens” which is a smoothie place that was in my university 7 years ago. There’s a grand piano and some man is playing it. I don’t think he’s hired to do it, because he’s just wearing regular clothes but the music is a nice touch. He makes mistakes and restarts the phrase but when he gets in his groove, it’s wonderful. I don’t know if anyone else is listening to him play. Everyone is talking on the phone, in a group or has headphones on.
I suppose if I had remembered my headphones today, I probably wouldn’t notice the piano man and his beautiful songs. I like when life gives you these sorts of treats when you’re in exactly the right place at precisely the right time. You get the opportunity to hear a piano man fiddle around on a piano. In a way, past Jen was thinking about future Jen because this is nicer than my nonsense music (JK, I have excellent taste in music).
That’s it for today, friends!
Update: Someone else is playing now and they’re incredible. This is a perfect hall to listen in.