Apr 7, 2008

On Navigating the Doldrums of School

Could I, should I write a new version of The Language of Peace: Second Language Struggles of a Korean Missionary? For those of you not in the know (everyone), this is the latest in a string of school assignments that I’m not really interested in. The analysis of language has as much interest for me as discussing Egyptian hieroglyphics. It’s theoretically interesting and occasionally colorful but it offers no real potential for dramatic flair. After all I’m talking about the bones of language. Unless I construct a fancy and meaty analogy to sustain me through the whole ordeal I’m stuck with a dry, abstract subject with very little at stake, in terms of both GPA and ideological importance.

Such is the case with so much of my schooling: I must master the basic forms before I can move on to the dynamic stage of creation - drool with the dogs before I rule with the gods, if you will. I must prostrate myself before the supposedly foundational pillars of knowledge. Yet I have a rebellious disposition. For all I lack in discipline and in spite of the glaring absence of a few organs in my body of knowledge, I think I have a critically thinking mind. That should be enough to begin a creative endeavor and forsake all these academic fitness exercises.

‘Patience, eager heart,’ comes the warning of my melodramatic inner voice. I remember that my mother told me to make each professorially mandated postulation (I don’t want to say school assignment) a creative project of its own. She believes each superficially dull assignment can be mined for glittering bits of dramatic inspiration and that the useless rubble surrounding it should be ground into mortar to build a showcase for such gems. In Psycho, trusty old Norman Bates assures us that ‘a boy’s best friend is his mother’ and despite that man’s deficiencies, he did have a point. Mothers are the best people to turn to when in need of coping mechanism, and what do schoolboys need more than coping mechanisms?

With maternally-bestowed moral compass as my guide, I shall return to those ventures previously curtailed by extended stays on the sickbed of severe boredom and more appealing prospects in the great land of Procrasti-Nation. I urge you to do the same. Who knows what treasures we shall forge from the dross of academia?