Studying in the library. There’s really something quite… exotic about it all. I mean, yeah, if you really aren’t paying attention then I’m sure it probably seems like the same thing to you, day-in and day-out. Books, tables, and an endless supply of wandering people who are looking for a very limited supply of seating. But there’s so much more to this quaint little study-sphere that houses the most interesting of creatures!
As I sit here right now in my UofG sweat-pants with my UofG water-bottle, I feel like the ultimate poster child for today’s comfy student-on-the-go! Quick, somebody snap my picture while I’m in an intense moment of studying so that way we can stamp it to the front of some university brochure and ship it out to prospective Guelph students all over the world! But my exhibition as Guelph’s poster child is hardly the most interesting thing you’ll see at this academic-zoo.
For instance, perhaps you should take a gander over the table to the guy across from me. With his bright-yellow sweater and his backwards baseball cap, he surely is a by-product of the 90’s. Not that there’s anything wrong with the 90’s, but you know, some people do have a tough time letting go. Such an interesting creature he is. In fact, he is breathing so heavy that I am starting to worry about him… either that essay he’s typing away at is at a really intense and pivotal point of its creation or his heart rate just hasn’t settled down from that short little jaunt to the bathroom-and-back.
Or why don’t you head on over to the aviary! That’s what I’ve decided to label the hair of the girl sitting diagonally to my left (North-West, if we are considering me the compass and my eyes pointing North). Why have I chosen to give her this lovely little pet name? Well, her mass of blonde hair is settled on her head in such a precarious manner that little strands of it are flying out like little birds hovering about the nest. In fact, I was almost starting to believe that her hair was making chirping noises at one point… turns out she just forgot to put her blackberry on silent.
Whoops, the guy across from me just burped. Twice. At least he had the good graces to excuse himself. Perhaps it is some attempt at a mating call to the North-West bird-girl who is writing away rather furiously? Somehow I get the impression that these two species just won’t mix. Whoops, third time. What a gentleman.
And then there is the lady to my right. Isn’t she such a graceful creature with her slouched-back and her hands typing away at her computer (did I mention that her wrists are bent much like Mr. Burns from The Simpsons?). Now I may not be a chiropractor, but I know that that cannot be a comfy, nor healthy position. A part of me has to wonder whether she started out with a straight back and unbroken wrists, only to succumb to the pressures of her academic lifestyle, intermingled with her blurring vision (starting at a computer screen is only good for you for so long). Maybe I should introduce her to the guy across from her? He’s stretching out like a giraffe doing hot yoga! His long legs are practically reaching to the other side of his oversized table and his head is leaning so far away from his computer screen that it’s a wondering he hasn’t started to get some type of neck-cramp.
And the noises! They’re really all around you. When you get the chance to take a study break, skip the inevitable Facebook or WordPress pit-stop for 2 seconds (well, avoid them after you read this blog) and listen to the wondrous animal kingdom surrounding you! The doors to the stairs open, signalling a new group of arrivals ready to learn, while mere seconds later the elevator dings with even more (you know, those few who were too lazy to take the stairs). An endless commotion of chit-chat and shuffling feet continues on into the depths of each floor until all noise eventually tapers off into the hunt for a cubicle or a table. Even more important is the hunt for a plug… Coughing, sneezing and the unscrewing of water-bottle tops joins a tumultuous plethora of over-loud headphones, pen scratches and keyboard tappings. If you listen closely enough, you can even hear the over-exaggerated whispers of friends sitting beside each other and sometimes, if you’re lucky, an unexpected burst of laughter followed by some sh–sh–sh-ing.
In all honesty, a part of me is hoping that the library doors will suddenly lock themselves and we will all be forced into a library-wide game of Jumanji whereupon we must defeat the encroaching mythical-forest and its inhabitants before we are all swallowed into the game like a young Robin Williams. But that’s just wishful thinking. Although I may equate the library to a zoo and the human-inhabitants its… well, it’s animal-inhabitants, I know that we must all accept the reality of our academic situations and, as my mother says, “Study, study, study!”.
Now, I’m afraid, it’s time for my study-break to end as I must delve back into the literary worlds of Jackie Kay and Shyam Selvadurai. As always friends, its been lovely.