Monday, January 4, 2010

welcome to the bookstore

You know how when it's the first day of class and you're excited to go buy your text books and see what you're gonna be forced to read in excruciating detail for the next three and a half months?

And so you think "hey, maybe I should go to the bookstore and pick up my textbooks, since I'm 45 minutes early for my first class and that's obviously plenty of time. I'll probably have to go sit somewhere and wait for like half an hour afterward because there is no way that a line-up can take more than fifteen minutes."

Well guess what? You're wrong.

Dead wrong.*

*not actually dead.

Because hey, everybody else had the same idea. I'm talking three line-ups worth of people. Not being able to get to your books on the shelf because line-ups are in the way and people are running around not looking where they're going and knocking shit out of your hands.

The line went from the cash registers, down the magazine aisle, around the half-price calendars, doubled back on itself past the people by the magazines, and then kept on going to the back of the bookstore.

I got into line waaaay at the back of the store immediately because the lineup went right past the Spanish section, which was kind of convenient for me. I could shop while I waited. And wait I did. I waited and waited for about five minutes. We didn't move that entire time.

And then I realized that one of my classes wasn't technically in the Spanish section. It was way over there in the L's.

"Damnit" I said out loud, making everybody around me give me that half disapproving half I-don't-care blank-stare look. I stormed over to the Latin section, grabbed my weird religious textbook and the book of poetry (barf and double barf) and went back to the line.

A girl barged past me when I made it back to the Spanish section, snatched up a bunch of books and apparently on the verge of tears exclaimed "Well, it looks like I'm going to be reading five novels this semester. In SPANISH!" and she stormed away. We all had our best blank stares on and I thought to myself that I was glad she wasn't me. Then I double checked that I only had to read three novels IN SPANISH. Yes. *whew*

The girl in front of me asked me if I could hold her place in line because she forgot a book. I stared at her for a good five seconds before I mumbled 'sure', not because I was considering the question exactly, but because I was pissed off at myself for not asking the person behind me to save my place the first time I was in line.

I checked the time on my phone.

She went and came back.

"we didn't move" I said, and we did that 'we're in this together now' camaraderie thing where we laugh and then studiously avoid each others' gaze for the rest of the time we have to stand by each other. Friends by proximity.

I looked at the clock on the wall.

20 minutes of slow shuffling and watching the faces of the people coming into the store and realizing that yes, this is the lineup later I was near the calendars. I was considering buying one with dolphins in it and wondering how many types of mustaches I could draw on them, and if I came out with my own Dolphins with Mustaches calendar would every page have to have a fantastic mustache or could I get away with one of those stupid like two triangles type mustaches on one because I'm not sure I could come up with 12 different styles.

Then I checked the time.

20 minutes after that I was passing the Adbusters and Macleans, and my heart was racing. I felt like I was doing something daring. It was almost my turn!

First class of the term** and I was probably going to be late.

The security fence things kept beeping. They must have had the sensitivity set to 'beep for no reason all the time' mode. I watched the security guards ignore it all, instead looking at the hundred and fifty backpacks left at the front door, making sure every person who left only left with one.
I regretted leaving my big orange bag there, even though I took everything worth anything along with me in my jacket pockets. What if somebody wanted my green umbrella or my used spiral notebook?

The girl I had let cut earlier turned around and sang "We're alllmost theeeere!" and I gave a weak "yaaay" as a response.

When it was finally my turn, when I was the chosen one, and the main line director told me which check out I should go to. I celebrated on the inside. I was gonna make it to class on time after all! All hope was not lost!

The girl was the slowest cashier on the face of the planet. I ran up and was like "whew, lucky me, I have a class starting in five minutes" and she was like "oh, looks like you're taking some interesting classes here"
"and hmm... ahh, literature ..."
"and oh, look at this. hm. lots of reading to do, huh? so about our return policy ..."

meanwhile I was grabbing a bag, opening it, doing the whole paying thing, throwing books into a bag and nodding and going "mmhmm" in my most frantic 'hurry up' tone. I gladly paid the extremely redonculous textbook prices including $98 dollars for a bunch of photocopies (stupid coursepacks! GRR) and got the hell out of there.

And yeah, I made it to class.


Ah whatever. All I missed was a bunch of "hi my name is" and "I'm this type of professor"

Of course my shoes were extra squeaky when I barged into the classroom. And my desk was also squeaky. And the floor was kind of slippery so my shoes slid on the floor after I had sat down and made another loud squeak sound.


**"don't use the word semester. here in canada this does not apply. we use terms, which comes from the Latin trimester..."

when asked how strict he's going to be, grammar/spelling/accentuation-wise on our assignments (because it's a literature class from "origin" to 1700, aka old weird dialects and stuff and we're all anglophones first):

Prof: I expect your grammar to be impeccable. That is, without sin. Impeccable comes from the Latin 'peccare'-to sin. People used to believe that souls were like a blank slate and a sin would leave a mark on it."
me: Damnit.

prof:Tell me a verb in English that ends with -ate. They all have cognates in Spanish.
girl in class: hate
me: preambulate
prof: no, not those ones!


So yeah. I'm not ready to do this again guys!

But at least now I have exciting tales of bookstores and etymology to regale you with

So, friends, I will leave you tonight with Ryan's quote of the day:

"what's that reality show called? biggest slut in the house?"

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