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After time off, busy classes are a relief

Classes are back in full swing, and it's about time.

After a full six-plus weeks of little beyond scattered Dairy Queen shifts, weekend road trips to Moorhead and the disconcerting discovery of a fondness for daytime TV, I am especially thrilled by my new weekly class schedule, a growing to-do list, a daily routine and even the need to set an alarm for the morning.

The transition from trying to fill the hours in a day with some semblance of a structure, to trying to fit what needs to be done into a day's allotment of hours, is a bewildering one which gives the attempter an increasingly shaky grasp of what time even means.

Naturally, it's times like these when I fall back on the timeless wisdom of time-honored band Hootie & the Blowfish, who, given time, gathered evidence that "time is wastin'," before, in time, deciding that they were "out of (their minds), thinkin' about time," coming to the timely conclusion that they'd best not "believe in time," a timely cadence which they set to a time signature, entitled "Time," and shared with the rest of us all in their own good time.

So far this semester, I've found that my classes are over too soon; not uncommonly during the past couple weeks, I've heard the rustling of people shoving notebooks in backpacks and putting on coats and nearly shouted, "Where are you guys going -- we're just getting started!" until looking at the clock and realizing that class is over.

Why do they breeze by so quickly? Might I be -- gasp -- interested in the subject matter?

Nah. There must be another explanation.

And so I continued my time-induced research, coming upon this quote: "Put your hand on a hot stove for a minute, and it seems like an hour. Sit with a pretty girl for an hour, and it seems like a minute. THAT'S relativity."

Who said it? None other than Mister Albert Einstein (and from what I understand, the guy knew a thing or two about relativity).

My mom sent me a book as a belated birthday present last week. She read it beforehand, and noted that it succeeded in distracting her from all the arguably more important things she should have been doing at the time (i.e. taxes). The book had the same victorious affect on me and what I probably should have been doing (aka homework).

In the accompanying letter, she wrote, "Have you ever noticed how quickly time goes by when you have a zillion things to get done, but when you have nothing to do it drags on forever?"

Actually, Momma, I have, indeed.

Right now, though, it's a phenomenon that I'm particularly appreciative of; my absence of activity gave way to a flurry of it, and, at this early stage of obligation and undertaking, it's more than welcome.

So, how long will it be until I realize that, however glorious the feeling of having something to do may be, it still involves me doing insane amounts of homework?

I won't even venture a guess -- after all, if there's one thing I've learned from college (and lack-thereof) thus far, it's that time, although consisting of numbers and fractions and all other mathematical givens, one of the few things Mister Rene Descartes claims we can be sure of, can't be counted on.

Oh, well, I have learned one other thing: an extremely expensive philosophy class can confuse me on a subject I could've understood by listening to a simple rock song.

Ah, college, how I adore thee, let me (attempt to) count thy ways...

T hressa Johnson graduated from Detroit Lakes High School and attends Hamline University in St. Paul.