Friday, February 18, 2011

Knocking Down the Pins

Textbook and Bowling Scores
As another long week draws to a close, I find myself reflecting more on positives than negatives. Grade-wise, I was able to get a 94 on my Biology test (with a 9-point curve), a 94 on my Ergonomics test (with a 5-point curve), an 87 on my second French test (no curve), and a 78 on my Psych Research Methods test (for which I REALLY think there should have been a curve). I am almost caught up on my French homework, and I am fully on top of all the reading in the rest of my classes.

The overarching theme, if one can be found, for this week has been about trying to put out feelers and make connections with people around me. First, I'll touch on the frustrations. Professors in the Psychology Department at NCSU are apparently not the most communicative bunch of people in the world. This comes as a shock only because it has always been my contention that people who are drawn to psychology tend to be over-sharers. Psychologists are supposed to be the touchy-feely people. We're supposed to want to tell everyone everything and be willing to listen as everyone else comes to cry on our shoulders. Why then can't a single professor email me back within a WEEK when I try to set up appointments to talk about doing independent research work for PSY 499? You'd think they would love to sign up suckers like me who are willing to devote hours of our lives to reading research studies and doing data entry for little more than course credit and the vague hope that maybe, just MAYBE, we will look 2% better than some other dumbass when we apply to Grad School. My advisor informed me that I shouldn't get too discouraged by not getting an email back from the professors I contacted and recommended that I continue to be persistent. Anyone who knows me should be aware that persistence isn't my problem. Finding that fine line between persistent and stalker is where I'm a little less comfortable. I'll send out follow up emails next week and see if I can make any progress in getting my PSY 499 done.

Now onto the less frustrating connections. I mentioned my previous effort at creating a study group for Psych Research Methods. This week, one of my friends from the group invited us all out to go bowling at The Alley on Hillsborough Street. The place has remained virtually untouched since it was built in the 1950s. The only indicator of a more modern age is the placement of LCD monitors where the old overhead screens used to hang for displaying the scores of bowlers from a bygone era. Fortunately, for me, none of our group were ringers by any means. I bowled my highest score ever, a 151, only to be beaten by one of the girls by a single point, which was apparently one of her best scores ever, as well. The others scored closer to 100, though we tried to offer some pointers for how to improve their game.

The most striking thing (no pun intended), about my bowling experience with the group is how reminiscent it was of my experiences bowling with the group I bowled with from Wake Tech. It just seemed so normal. While engaged in a game it is so much easier to set aside my 16 year age difference with the others. Even though I'm the "creepy old guy" of the group, it is nice to have a few moments every now and then where I can forget the gray hairs, the pains in my knees from running to classes, and the futility of hoping that when I look at a cute girl in class she won't look back at me with the same reverence she offers to her father. At least for now, I have a small collective of friends who provide me with a sense of belonging. They even willingly requested that I type my phone number into their phones as everyone passed around their respective devices.

If I had known how easily being in college would have provided me with a real sense of human connection I would have gone back to school a decade ago. I just hope it lasts.

Have fun and keep living life... or some approximation thereof.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...