Karl the English Major

This is a parody of myself as a freshman struggling to figure out life as an English Major.

                September 13, 2011

                Don’t think I’m giving into peer pressure or anything. I’m not. This has nothing to do with giving into peer pressure. It’s just that my friends keep telling me to get a blog, and I’m finally doing it now. No peer pressure at all.

                I’ll start from as close to the beginning as possible.

                I’m an English Major at Northern Arizona University, and it’s weird. Originally, I’m from Pocatello, Idaho, but I got this cool scholarship that sounds like WOOY or something, so I went to NAU. This is my first year. I’m not doing terribly at college, but I still don’t fit in. I have mostly English Major friends who all use these blogs on wordpush or sentencepress or something like that. They told me to follow their blogs, so I did. Then they told me to start a blog, because apparently I need to spend more time communicating my thoughts at them or something. I’m already on facebook. Isn’t that enough? I guess not.

                Anyway, the other day, I found this book in the library –which is huge! It’s like Hogwarts or something –called The Book Thief, and I saw a name and class in the corner of the first page, kinda scribbled in with really thick pen strokes. Unless the first page is lying to me, the book belongs to somebody named Autumn Bartlett, who needs it for ENG 254. I don’t know what it is, but I’m an English Major, and just about all of the English Majors I know have these blog things, and if this Autumn person (who apparently uses some kind of cinnamon perfume or something, or else maybe sprays the pages with it, cause I can smell it and it’s in my backpack, which is closed, and on the other side of the room) is an English Major, then hopefully the fact that I have her lost book will reach her through some kind of electronic grapevine, or however that phrase goes.

                So I’m an English Major, and I don’t understand any of this. I’m in a rhetoric class, which is dull, and I’m in a psychology class, which is weird cause the teacher regularly shows her contempt for us. She said to us that at least half of us are going to fail, and she doesn’t care. I’m also taking German, which is confusing, and this literature class. I thought it would be about like novels and stuff, but it’s all about post-colonialism and Shakespeare and slavery, and the instructor, Dr. Corddry, is always late to class. He lectures really boringly, like he wishes he were doing something else.

                I’m also in this Honors class, cause I got into the Honors program, and I’m in the Honors dorm, which is also where the class is. It’s weird. I guess on the first floor, people have to pass these classrooms to get to the shower, so they always wear like five towels or just go to the shower dressed. But anyway, I’m in this Honors class, and the instructor is different, I’ll say. She’s nice, but she’s obviously a hippie. She wants us to call her Lindsey instead of Dr. Borgenspong or whatever her last name is. She meditates, eats vegan food, and drinks these weird hippie teas. She tells us to learn the way love guides us to learn. But she’s also a really strict grader, I think.

                I’d never thought I was a bad writer, but according to Lindsey, my writing needs like a lot of work. She keeps telling me to not write in passive voice. I had no idea my papers were being written in a passive voice. I guess I need to use commas better, like not put them where they like, shouldn’t be. I don’t get it. My first paper, on this goofy environmental book by a guy who thinks he’s some kinda superhero, was pretty bad. I got like a C on it, I think. That hurt. But hopefully my writing will improve. This whole college thing is weird. The Honors dorm is filled with freaky, driven people. I’m not joking. These people do Rubik’s Cubes while practicing the violin and curing cancer while brushing their teeth. I don’t get these people. I certainly don’t fit in with them, the bunch of hard-working freaks. My roommate Jed, or maybe it’s Ted (he doesn’t talk. Ever) spends his time playing Call of Duty and doing homework and watching Breaking Bad, and then he kicks me out to have one of many girlfriends over. I think he has, at this point, like four different girlfriends. I’ve seen four different chicks come in and out of his room. One time, I saw one woman go in and a different one come out, I think. I was kinda sleep-deprived, so I mighta just been hallucinating. Maybe.

                In my Psychology class, there’s this guy named Maxwell who smokes and wears T-shirts with grumpy wizards on them playing death metal, and he hangs out with these cynics, like a herd of cynics. Maxwell says things like, “The human race is doomed when the masses blindly listen to leaders without question,” and the cynics all nod their heads and agree with him completely, then go out and join him for a smoke break. I guess, on this campus, you can only smoke like ten feet away from a building, and otherwise you get arrested and are never heard from again.

                My English Major friends are cool, though, like Abigail and Samantha and Eddie and this quiet guy named Vince who never wears shoes. They’re cool. They’re the first people following my blog, and hopefully you guys (cause you’re probably the only people who will end up reading this, ever) can help me find Autumn Bartlett so I can give her her book back. Hopefully somebody out there can help me be a better writer, help me not give into cynicism, and find a way to get a girlfriend or at least somewhere to sleep when Jed or possibly Ted has one or more of his over. Lastly, I’m really hoping that SOMEBODY will help me figure out what to do with a BA in English, cause I have no clue. That’s my story. Good luck with your own life.

                -Karl

 

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