Nick’s Campus Journal
“Tis the week before summer. That’s to say: life = craziness. All the freshmen are working on their end-of-the-semester E&D research papers. I, however, am one of the fortunate ones to have been placed in Norah Beck’s “Mostly Mozart” class. We had to make a video project accompanied by a 5 page paper instead of one 12 page paper. We just finished filming today. HOORAH. Group projects are truly a drag. They’re nice because one is given the chance to meet and spend time with people they may not spend time with otherwise. Besides that, however, there aren’t too many other redeemable qualities. But in the event that there are, they are shadowed by the logistical bummer which is scheduling. It is almost literally impossible to get 5 college students to be in the same place at the same time. Besides the burden of the project which included writing music, a libretto, choosing costumes, writing essays and filming, scheduling proved to be the largest obstacle. I’m not complaining, by any means, well, actually I am, but heck. Such is life. All of this is part of what it takes to be a successful human being who will prosper with 2.5 children and a white picket fence.
It feels kinda groovy to have one year of college under my belt. That’s really all I have to say about that: it just feels groovy. You too will understand this sentiment in slightly over a year from now when you are completing your first two semesters. At that point, I expect an email commending my insightfulness.
Currently listening to the newest Shins album, not really even the shins, just James Mercer with the same band name. Regardless, it is out of control. It was given to me by a friend along with a gang of other music that has been assisting me in neglecting my studies. Music sharing and stealing is so easy in college. I seldom have to even break the law anymore on torrent sites, not that all my old favorite hubs are even still around (RIP btjunkie). Oh SOPA. That reminds me, in the event that any of my loyal followers of this blog care even the slightest about my personal life, I am pleased to inform y’all that I intend to head to law school after my time here. Not something I ever thought I would pursue, but here I am. Lewis and Clark opens up a world of possibilities…
Speaking of stress, the housing lottery process was quite the grueling experience. Of course, I’m being hyperbolic, but still, it wasn’t fun. My three roommates and I all pulled TERRIBLE lottery numbers so we had a poor selection when our time came. First and second choices were out of the question at that point but we ended up with one of the largest quads offered in Forest. I’m pretty pumped on it. We’re going to throw some CRAZY par…. study sessions. Yep, lots of work to be done. Except actually there will be quite a lot of work to do next semester. I just figured out my schedule. 18 credits doesn’t sound like a lot but the time commitment can be out of this world. True, one of those credits is sailing which I am absolutely STOKED for, but, heck that’s four hours out of my week. I have other things to do. At least I’ll be getting a lab requirement out of the way (not by means of sailing, that’s different). Labs are a hefty undertaking. We meet four days a week in addition to a lab once a week. Gr. Again, such is life.
Alrighty, so spring break just went down. Got back from my trip last night. Three buddies and I drove 18 hours starting at Midnight last Saturday to make it to Death Valley before sunset the following evening. It was a magnificent trip. Camped in Death Valley for a while, hung out on some large Dunes, explored some mines, ran down craters. Good fun.
Now I’m back at L&C and still have not had a moment’s rest. Good grief. I woke up this morning to a knock on the door by a friend inviting me to go get a haircut in Southeast Portland. We ended up at this swanky joint called Rudy’s. It was a fine haircut and a very hip barbershop, but I can’t help but question how much of the pleasant atmosphere was part of the bill. Anyways, then we headed over to some food carts and picked up some prime sandwiches from the nicest gentleman. As he prepared our meal, he talked to me all about his aspiration to open up a full restaurant and all the logistics surrounding the menu and location etc. Good conversation, I’d say. As soon as I got back on campus from that little excursion, I ran into some other friends who had just gotten back from their College Outdoors Trip to Redwood National Forest. They were on their way to a walk downtown to catch Hunger Games. They invited me and I accepted. Of course. Even though I still have a philosophy paper to write and this blog entry to complete. Poor, pitiful me. (In case you’re interested, Hunger Games did not impress me. Everyone else thought it was JUST BRILLIANT though).
I can’t wait for classes to start, though. I’m eager to learn some new stuff. As insincere as that last sentence sounded, I was actually being genuine and I legitimately want classes to start back up. I know, crazy huh? Too much desert sand has sent me over the edge, or perhaps it’s just the top notch education I’m receiving here at this place of higher learning (See what I did there?).
It’s interesting coming back after a week. I went to check out the progress on Holmes Hall, the new dorm being built which I hope to live in next semester. It’s practically done! Woohoo.
Anyways, not much else to report on for now. I’ll be back very soon, I promise, to let you know how first week of classes and whatnot go. I know all of my avid readers are anxious to hear more.
Great weekend. Let me tell you about it.
I get out of class on friday eager to forgo thoughts of the brutal week still lingering in my peripherals. I had seven meetings with professors in four days. For God-knows-what-reason, sometime either last sunday or monday I had a minor panic attack about plans for the rest of my life and concerns as to what I am going to do RIGHT NOW to make all my hopes and dreams possible. Callous stuff, man. Anyways, I frantically emailed everyone I could find contact information for to speak with them concerning majors, study abroad trips, internships, resume help, general education requirements, etc. Long story short, I have the next eight years of my life planned perfectly. I am going to be SO successful and live SUCH a charmed life.
Now, it’s the weekend. Friday night, after I give a tour to a particularly friendly bunch, I head back to my dorm to sit idly and fraternize mildly until dinner time. Enter Dinner. Food was below average but, fret not, conversation compensated. Dang, that was some sweet alliteration. Be proud of me. Post dinner, me and some homies decide to head to Bodine 300 which is a lecture all in the biology building. We watched Midnight in Paris on the large projector screen. Solid film, Owen Wilson is the man. It ruined my opinion of Rachel McAdams, though, I now want to marry her slightly less. After the movie, we head back to the hall and discover that some other homies had acted on the terrific idea of wrapping oreos in choco chip cookie dough and baking it. They were warm and delicious. I ate many.
Then we found a group willing to construct a fort in the main lounge. As we sat in the darkness, we read poems to each other and talked about life ‘n such. It was nice. Everyone decides they want to go to sleep around midnight or one. I wasn’t fellin the sleep vibes, however, I go hard. real hard. I stumble across the sister of a girl on my hall who was visiting for the week. She was by her lonesome and looking a tad despondent. We strike conversation and end up end up getting involved in quite a bit of shenanigans (good, clean shenanigans of course. No sarcasm, either. But, like, seriously, no sarcasm). At some ungodly hour, four I think, two other buddies come into the common room looking for something to do. What happened from there, I can’t say. It wasn’t bad or wrong in any way, just, in the interest of not incriminating myself to a particular party, I won’t say. Know this, however, it was delightful and joy making and grand.
Then I fall asleep.
Then I wake up.
Then I go to Saturday Market. with friends.
We follow a parade of people following a man in a carriage yelling things and playing music.
We get food.
Pretty tired, I finally get back on campus. As soon as I step off the bus, I run into my buddy who is on his way to Tryon Creek (State Park across the street from campus). He invites me for a hike. I accept. We stroll until dinner time. Beautiful day, truly. Dinner was tasty. We then head to the house of a keyboardist for this band we shared a bill with at the Ash Street Pub last thursday. Super nice guy. He was putting on a house show which was meant to show off some of his other bands. Great music. It was kind of a funky party in the sense that there were adults there in addition to their kids (ages: 23-25). We’re all 18, so it was a bit of a trip, but we totally dug it. Good fun.
Now it’s Sunday and I needed an excuse to not do my homework but still feel productive. So, here I am, writing to you all about my charmed life. Hope you enjoyed the mismatched anecdotes and irrelevant stories. I’ll be back at ya soon with more tales from Palatine Hill.
I’ve had this box of Annie’s Mac ‘n Cheese sitting in my room since last semester. Somehow, in spite of my many desperate late night food quests, I have never cooked it up. I guess that says something about my motivation. If I can’t even bring myself to make mac n’ cheese, something I adore, how do I intend to graduate from college and apparently be successful. Oh goodness.
My roommate has a filipino flag taped to the wall, except, he must have some sub-par brand of tape because, I swear to Gosh, every single time I come home it has fallen down. The same goes for the scarf he tapes daily to ceiling. The aesthetic sense of college boys is not supreme, I’ll tell you that. Except me, of course, I have quite the sophisticated eye.
My band was playing a show earlier this week and, as we were practicing before the show, I managed to break the G string on both of my guitars. Just my luck, right? Good thing my buddy stepped in and lent me his guitars which are significantly nicer than mine. Ultra win. Anyways, that anecdote is a way to lead into the method by which I acquired new strings to replace the broken ones. Once, while I was browsing Apple Music (SW 1st and Oak), I struck up a conversation with the guy behind the counter. Long story short, I find out he lives right next to Lewis & Clark’s campus and so he gives me his cell phone number. The other day, when I was in desperate need for strings, I called him up and he delivered a 3-pack to me right outside of Templeton (main student center). It rocked. All I had to do was pay in cash. Super convenient stuff. It felt like a drug deal. Except, it wasn’t, so don’t be mad at me for that comparison.
I’ve been drinking lots of tea lately because I’ve been sick. I really hate tea. Everyone here thinks it’s SO great and calming and delightful. I don’t buy it. It’s just pretentious and unpleasant. First, the water is always too warm and it burns your tongue and consequently ruins the two or three meals following it. Second, it doesn’t really taste that great. If I wanted pomegranate flavor, I would eat a pomegranate. If I wanted, peppermint, I would eat a candy cane. If I wanted chamomile, well, I just would never want chamomile because, quite frankly, I don’t really know what it is and I’ve heard it’s been known to cause uterine contractions. I don’t want that. You get my point, though. Tea is a drag. But it helps with a cold, so, heck.
The Animal Club is showing a movie tonight. Homeward Bound. I am SO pumped. Dog movies are the greatest. Speaking of pumped, next weekend I will finally be able to eat the fruit of my and KLC Radio’s many hours of labor. That’s right, Sunburn! Festival is going down on Saturday. We’re having Gogol Bordello, The Thermals, and GZA performing in Pamplin (Sport’s Center). It’s going to be wack of the wiggity variety. Can’t wait. Before Sunburn, there’s a show going on at the Co-op called Suntan, which my band is going to play at. Pumped for that too. Overall, it’s gonna be a terrific day.
All in all, life here up on Palatine Hill is pretty flawless. If you’re a prospective student reading this, you should come here and stuff because it’s like, cool. Please ignore my inarticulateness, but pay attention to the sentiment. This is a great school.
I’ve been meaning to buy a new toothbrush for several weeks now. I’ve even found myself inside of Rite Aid and Fred Meyer with extremely convenient access to toothbrushes but I just can’t seem to get my act together enough to go to the aisle and pick one up. One of these days…
In other news, I have two pretty substantial essays due on monday. God forbid should I get started on them sooner then this weekend. One of the essays is an assessment on a particular reading for my philosophy class. Each student in the class is assigned to one reading and they have to write out an assessment and print out copies for the entire class. The professor will seat me in the front with him and I will have to read my assessment to the entire class. After which, he will give me his opinion on the format of my essay as well as my arguments and the credibility of my sources. Fun stuff.
On to positive thoughts: Tonight my band will be recording FOR FREE in the BRAND NEW recording studio that KLC Radio, the campus radio station, just set up. I am waiting anxiously for two text messages. The first from the drummer who is the only one with access to the drum kit we need to borrow located in Evans (the music hall). The second is from the guy whose car I wish to borrow to transport the drum kit and amps ALL THE WAY ACROSS campus. Hopefully they get back to me soon. sheesh.
Went into Portland yesterday to kick it with some buddies and waste time. Got a burger at Little Big Burger on 10th, off Burnside. My life = changed. The tastiness of that burger and those fries. wow. check it out. And while you’re at it, check out Sushiland right next door which will fill your stomach for $5. yeee.
Jeez, I also have to find a musician to interview about how Mozart changed their life for my E&D class. Hopefully I can find some homeless guy busking on the street who has coincidentally been extremely influenced by Mozart’s music. No time to think about that now. Fortunately, the professor is lightening the homework load this week to give us time to work on that. And by “lightening,” I mean she is pretty much giving us no homework. score.
Off to the Bon right now to get myself some dinner before we have to be in the studio at 6:30. Of course, once I enter and swipe my card and pass the point of no return, I will get a call that requires my urgent and immediate attention. Such is life. I hope the Bon has tacos. That would be fantastic.
With neither the time nor the motivation to indulge in a witty introduction, I’ll jump right in.
Several weeks ago I signed up for a killer College Outdoors trip, “hiking the dunes” (or as many people have so affectionately retitled it “Hike then go nude”). The trip was scheduled for this weekend and it is leaving friday evening and returning sunday. The trip consists of several beautiful hikes along the coast and lodging in yurts. I was particularly stoked on this adventure because I applied for financial aid and got the price down to $15 from its original price tag of $75. Such a bargain hunter, I am. UNFORTUNATELY, I later found out that the Battle of the Bands competition was on the same weekend. I am in a band (http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Goddamn-Band/187088058042893) on campus and we were all pumped to participate BECAUSE the top three acts get to play a show at the Crystal Ballroom which is one of the premier venues in Portland. This entire week has been characterized by overwhelming contemplation over which to participate in. I felt like Mitt Romney. Anyways, after struggling to put together an archaic recording to submit to the board in charge of Battle of the Bands, I finally got an email last night letting me know that our band got in. Exciting stuff. All is resolved. I cancelled the trip and found a replacement and am now free to melt some faces in Stamm this Saturday.
Such is the charmed life of student a Lewis and Clark College. The thing that has brought me the most stress this entire year was deciding between a weekend hiking trip and a chance to play music with my friends in front of an audience.
On another note, I went to the Wilco concert last night at the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall. It was absolutely incredible. Hands down one of the best shows I have ever seen and I’m not even a diehard Wilco fan. It was second only to when I saw Ben Harper and The Innocent Criminals touring on the record “Lifeline” at Paramount Theatre in Oakland, CA. But I digress, Wilco straight rocked it. Afterwards, I was fortunate enough to catch a ride with some other Lewis and Clark students who I had loose affiliation with. Definitely much better than paying for a cab up the hill since the bus doesn’t run that late. Stopped by the Trail Room on my way back to my dorm to grab some food and had yet another fortunate experience. I got there around 11:50, right before they were about to close, so the guys working gave me free french fries and cookies. No complaints. The slumber was graceful. That last sentence sounded pretentious, I apologize for that.
Thus concludes my very first blog post. Hope it was interesting enough. I’ll be back shortly with even more anecdotes about my days here up on the hill. Hopefully I’ll have a bit more sleep behind my eyes. Take care for now.