It’s been 2 days since classes resumed. As expected, my first day was not spectacular in any way. I have to admit, however: seeing my classmates’ (friends’?) faces again seemed to pull me back from the abyss I’ve been staring into this past summer. It was refreshing to get to talk to actual people and laugh at stupid in-jokes again, even though I’m aware that friendly banter uses up too much of my limited social energy. Between senseless chatter and gut-wrenching loneliness, I’d take mundane socialization anytime. Some friends aren’t as jolly as the others, but even they helped with my mood. I caught up with some of my friends from the other bloc, and grabbed lunch with a good friend (who also gave me a kiwi bird badge and introduced me to a friend of hers). My “posse”, the people with whom I usually hang around, will be dealt with later in the sem. They understand how much of a social cripple I am, and we all know we’re gonna end up hanging out eventually.
One piece of good news for me: my classes this semester are all related to my degree, one way or another. My major subjects deal with both Linguistics and Literature, but I have a bias towards my Literary Criticism class. Yesterday was the first day for that class, so we only had a short briefing, but I just felt like it was the class I’ve been wanting to take for a while without knowing it. The professor made it clear that it would not be a Theories class (only to mean that we won’t be discussing it at length) and more of a Practical Criticism class. Focusing on the theories of literary criticism is all well and good, and I had a good mouthful of theories burned into the roof of my mouth last year, but I’ve always wanted to learn how to properly critique a literary piece: what criteria should I have, what elements of the piece do I single out, how do I judge them, things like that. I just hope I didn’t jinx the subject by looking forward to it. All the other classes are okay, I guess. I’ll have to put in a little more effort to functionally focus on them, though.
Like always, after class I would walk along Session Road or Harrison to get to the station. Like always, I would look up and around, just to see if I could still find it in me to appreciate anything. And like always, the simple beauty of everything, from the skies to the park trees, would send a pleasant surprise to my jaded soul. It makes me forget about the pedestrians hustling and bustling to get me out of their way, of the heartless honking of car horns that rattle even the calmest soul. Beauty drowns out the real world even for a little while.
These photos were taken yesterday, as I walked aimlessly around town for a few hours with a good friend. It was a relatively new activity for us–we’ve only started the previous semester, I think–since we rarely talked outside of the campus (due mainly to our nearly nonexistent social skills). We’ve been friends since freshman year, though, so we figured it wouldn’t do our social ineptitude any harm to hang out. We talk a lot, mostly about our mental disorders and the stupidity of the human race in general. It’s a good friendship, I should say. I often find myself hoping more of my friends would hang out with me like that. Then again, I don’t really consider anyone to be my friend in the “through thick and thin” sense of it, so I don’t know what I’m going on about.
I believe that’s about it for the first few days of my junior year: I reestablished some shaky friendships and laughed around with some old ones, went to my classes and sat through each (some for 15 minutes, some for an hour and a half), met some new people, and overall felt less like a useless pile of shit. I’ll count that as a win any day, so I guess in a way it was a pretty spectacular day. Not spectacular in a fireworks sort of way, but it’s the kind of spectacular that goes with overcoming little hurdles that have you holding your breath. Firsts always come with It Was Okays, I always say, but this one came with something else: I Feel Better.