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Sunday, June 26, 2005

University Life 101

Well, I finally got to update my blog's theme. As some of you may know, I change my blog's design every season. The first one had a red & purple theme. The second one had a mod '60s look. The third one had a Rasta summertime feel to it. This one? It's kind of like another funky '60s design. I guess the second one was early '60s. This one's more of the late '60s.

I always get so revved up when I redesign my blog. In the course of the season though, I slow down and barely post.

It's been more than 2 weeks since my university life started. It's been great. Even emotional. I've been dreaming of this moment ever since I pushed my Oxford dreams aside and dreamt more realistically. It's very moving to see your dreams come true before your very eyes.

I've enjoyed all the commuting and walking, but I must admit I get really tired. It's hard to relate everything that I've been through for the past few weeks, but here's a peek of what it's been like for me.

I wake up Monday morning at 7:15. I take a bath and get dressed. I watch Friends on ETC while I eat breakfast. If the van arrives at 8 am from Assumption, I ask the driver to drop me off at AS. My first class, Kas 1 under Prof. Jaime Veneracion, at 8:30 is at the topmost floor of AS. By the time I reach my classroom, I've probably already lost a pound. I was first annoyed that I had to take Philippine History in Filipino, but apparently, our professor speaks English more often. In fact, I don't think he's ever taught in Filipino yet.

After the class, I have an hour and 30-minute break starting at 10am. I usually walk around to mask the fact that I'm a loner most of the time. I have a block, and that's where I met my posse, but except for Jazmine in Math 2 and that girl in CW10, I don't really have classes with my blockmates. Suffice it to say, blocks in UP really don't mean anything aside from the fact that it provides the freshman with a group to get to know. Other than that, you're really on your own. You have classes with total strangers from upperclasses.

After wandering around aimlessly, pretending that I have somewhere to go to so I wouldn't look like a loner (my posse and I rarely meet because we have different classes and breaks), I attend Math 2 under Prof. Natividad in one of my 2 air conditioned classrooms. I'm so happy I took Math 2. Math 2 is Practical Mathematics, and it involves the different mathematical concepts that take place in nature (i.e., the lives of bees, the number of seeds in a sunflower, etc.). They say it's much more fun than Math 1. Well, I'm just happy I'm not taking the dreaded Math 17.

That's pretty much Mondays for me. That's also my Thursday schedule.

Tuesdays and Fridays are another story. Those are my "hell" days. I have four subjects, which include P.E. I'm glad I have no classes the following day.

My first class also starts at 8:30, so I have a daily regimen. On these days though, I eat breakfast with Hey Arnold! on Nickelodeon. The driver drops me off this time at the College of Arts and Letters. I have English 12 under Prof. Rivera there. I took this class, World Literatures, because I thought it would be fun. It's great and all, but it's boring sometimes. Plus, it doesn't help that I had to go all the way to Powerbooks Greenbelt to purchase the Robert Fitzgerald translation of Homer's Iliad and finish the book (2 inches thick) in two weeks which would have been useless anyway because it wasn't discussed in detail. What's cool though is that the next class in the same classroom is Mikey Atienza's Medieval Literature class.

I have an hour break before another gruelling session of archery. Yes, archery. The sport that many of my friends don't even consider a sport. My old bow was much lighter than the bows we use now, so my previous experiences with this sport pretty much don't matter at all. He's gotten us doing push-ups and handstands with our bow arms. As of this moment, I am still nursing my sore muscles. Next sem, I might just decide to take chess, Scrabble, or scuba diving instead...then again...

After sweating my way through an hour of archery, I get an hour-long respite before my next class. An unfortunate and interesting thing happened to me last Friday. After PE, I rode a jeep to the library to meet up with a CW10 classmate because we had to write a poem for our groupwork. Before the meeting, I changed into a new red shirt. While discussing the poem, he points out that I'm wearing red. He then informs me of the Red Shirt Day thingy of the anti-Arroyo rallyists. They had posted the previous days that those who were going to join the rally should wear red. I slapped my head. Dagnab it!! Now everyone's going to think I joined the rally. In one of my grossest moments, I decided that I had no choice and changed back into my sweaty white shirt. I want to remain apolitical and neutral here! You must understand! Of all colors to decide on, why red? Because it's a Communist thing? Of all days to decide on this "Red Shirt day," why Friday? Of all shirts to pick, why did I pick this?

Afterwards, I went off to my next class. After waiting for an eternity for a Toki jeep, I decided to walk. Luckily, I encountered a Toki on my way. My next class is Physics 10 or Physics for Pedestrians. The course title make Jess Qua Hiansen laugh. Here's a funny (but annoying for me) story: They informed us that Phys 10 would be in Palma Hall Rm 4234. Expecting it to be at the topmost floor (4th floor), I went up and maybe lost a pound again. A few minutes before our first meeting, I couldn't find the room. I immediately switched into panic mode. After asking the guard and the people at the Freshman Assistance Booth, I found out that it's in a whole different building that's somehow still considered part of the AS Building. After running to the room (I thought I was late), I took my seat in a, luckily, air conditioned room. After waiting for 30 minutes, we realized that the professor isn't coming. In UP, you're given a 15-minute grace period. The professor is given a 30-minute grace period. If after 30 minutes, he or she is not there, you all can leave. This went on for 3 meetings. No prof. No classes. It was only 15 minutes before our 4th meeting that I saw this announcement saying that our class was transferred to the new NIP building. This was bad because I didn't know where the new NIP was, and when I found out where it was, it happened to be in the middle of nowhere.

Anyway, I made it in time. I, and most of my classmates, then realized that they've been having meetings there already for the past 3 meetings. Aargh! Well, it's been a fun class. It's all about astronomy which I've always loved. I had my first quiz in UP in this subject. What makes this class horrible however is that, right after, I have CW10 in CAL which is all the way in the middle of UP. Remember, the new NIP is even farther than the Math Building (which is, as I have said, in the outskirts of Diliman). Worse, my CW10 class is on the 5th floor!!! For the love of--! And somehow, Carlo Alonzo, my Physics 10 instructor who looks like Jimmy Fallon, gets carried away with his subject and dismisses us on time. Some profs arrive 15 minutes late and dismiss you 15 minutes ahead of time, but noooo! Not Jimmy Fallon! Well, it's not his fault really. It's just my bad luck.

CW10 or Creative Writing for Beginners was one subject that I thought would be tremendous fun; however, I've been hating it lately. Francis Martinez, our instructor, chose Poetry as our first topic. This is bad because I don't like poetry. I don't enjoy reading it, and the more I hate writing it. I'm more of a prose person. Anyway, we're having narratives in the next half of the sem, so there's still hope.

CW10 ends at 4. By the time I reach home (by commuting), I could barely move...but you know what? It was all fun.

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