First of all, I should inform you that my new sleep schedule is that of a perpetual state of jet lag, but I'm quite fond of it. I fall asleep after all of my classes are over (either 2 or 4) and wake up sometime after midnight. I then wake up, read until my roommate goes to sleep, then I just listen to or read things on the interweb, and (starting this morning and hopefully but not likely continuing regularly) going out for a jog in the city. Now, the major problem of this is that my wardrobe is pretty much solely comprised of jeans, and when you're running in jeans at a time of night/morning when the safety of persons is questionable, you don't want to run at people - it'll generally arouse suspicion - something to the effect of he's running at me, or, possibly worse, he's running from someone...or something! I don't want to freak anybody out. When I return to the dorm, I'll shower, then go to breakfast, then read until class, go through the rigmarole of school, then sleep. This is the latest I've stayed up all week.
Awkward situations of the day (beginning after the jog, because there are just too many weird things to think about there):
I feel bad about this one, but I couldn't tell if the person who held the door open for me, from quite a distance so I was legitimately thankful, was a male or a female -luscious hair to be sure, but gender unknown. I was fairly certain it was an individual of the female variety (and I later verified this truth), but as she half-turned as I took hold of the door, I began to say Thank you ma'am, but came to a halt before the final word awkwardly. My head bobbed down in a thankful attitude just as i prepared her title, but as I halted the sentence abruptly, I kept my head down.
After my first class I went to our nearby market to get lunch, and just so happened to walk just behind and a little to the side of the same girl from the time I got out to the street near the building that contains my first class for about ten minutes until I reached the market, which she of course was headed to as well. I walked in just behind her, and she went in one door and I the one beside it so that she might not be completely fearing a stalker. However, I noticed with great dismay that she took from her side the same meal I was desiring, so I switched over to her side and grabbed the same meal item, then went to get a drink, and she took my drink as well. We checked out at the same time and then both set off in the direction of my building...Luckily she didn't go in and passed it by, or that could have made an awkward elevator ride, if I rode the elevator that is.
After my second class I went into our library for the first time with the intention of checking out a book. I had to go into the building briefly for a class once, so that they could give us a brief lecture about how to use the web-based materials, but I had never seen anything of the library beyond the entrance hallway and the computer basement. I wanted to get a book on the French Revolution, since I've learned about it in two classes this semester already, and neither course has taught me anything beyond what I was taught in sophomore year of high school (I haven't mentioned it, but I'm quite annoyed at both my sociology and history classes - they're pretty much useless as of yet). And then I want to reread The Screwtape Letters because my church is having a small group where they discuss it starting next week. Anyway, the building of our main library is massive. I had checked the book numbers and locations earlier to the books I wanted, but had pretty much forgotten them by now. I remembered "B" and "D" when I should have remembered "DC 148 S43" and "BR 125 L67," but unfortunately my memory is not that wonderfully talented. After my initial walk up a floor, turning around and walking down two floors, before deciding to actually go through the door to the floor two floors up, for which I'm sure I looked a fool, I found myself in a labyrinth of bookcases. And there was the "BD" section right in front of me! I was excited, but there were so so many shelves around me. I walked through one aisle absentmindedly and stopped in the middle. The first book I saw said something to the effect of The Coming of Thanatos. I shuddered, became intrigued, but then walked on. That place is amazing and I could spend hours in there if I had a mind to - there is practically no one in the mile long expanses of shelves, and there is absolute silence. However, after 10 minutes or so of perusing books and subjects, I was defeated and resolved to come back after my last class. I could have looked up the ID's of the books in a computer lab that was in the library, but there seemed a very mildly difficult way of signing in and I feared somehow screwing up and instead made a few calls to people in hopes that they'd look up my information for me. I'm an awful and lazy person I know. I didn't get any results.
On the way out of the library I ran into a number of breakings of the social code, as I know it. First, I found myself blocked in an aisle on Hinduism by an older student, who either did not notice my desire to pass or didn't notice the confined space between shelves that necessitate one-way, or no, traffic. I ended up giving up and walking back the way I had come and circling around in the adjacent aisleway. Just because of that, I'm never converting to Hinduism. Next, (and not really that bothersome) I found myself leaving the floor at the same time as a middle-aged oriental man. The stairwell was abuzz with people flowing upwards, but it seemed to be only myself and my comrade between Floors 3 and 2. Still, he took each step as if savoring it, and several times took out his cell phone and practically stopped to read whatever was on the screen. It was an ordeal traveling down that one floor's distance.
Lastly, on my way out, I planned first to go out the automated door, but reconsidered on seeing the sign reminding all to conserve energy and use the revolving doors. There were two people in the doors ahead of me when I entered, and both put a great deal of effort into the pushing of the doors so I decided I'd casually wait out the end to the rotation as there didn't seem to be anyone in any of the other doors. There seemed just enough energy in the door's motion to propel me out to open air, but it stopped just short. It was then that I noticed that a rather large Asian boy was behind me in MY part of the door. I panicked. The door had all but stopped moving and in order to provide sufficient force to make the door complete its half-rotation, I would need to lean heavily on the door, stepping back into the kid. I paused momentarily to contemplate the absurdity of this kid's decision to dissolve all social order and enter my already filled compartment, and then leaned awkwardly against the glass and pushed as hard as I could, giving the minimum force required to provide escape from the hellish situation. Ahh, fresh air and space. I'm using the automatic door forevermore.
After my last class, ran into another awkward problem I couldn't remedy in my head. I typically walk with a girl (whose name I can't remember...) for a few minutes before we part ways to go to our own dorms. This time however, I was going her direction to the library so I planned on walking with her. The problem was, that I was late to class and had a very different hairstyle from my recent haircut, and she I don't think knew I was there. After class I ended up right next to her for a good while without either of us saying anything, but I got off easy because she ran into someone she recognized and I fled quickly. In my defense, I don't think she knows my name either.
Walking to get an early dinner/snack I passed through our campus's area of greatest advertisement/awareness-mongering and passed in between curiously differing groups. On my right, awareness of third-world prostitutes and general call for charity-people standing together in "NOT FOR SALE" T-shirts. On my left, the U.T. water-ski team, complete with sunglassesed jocks, rockin' music, and a large motorboat.
When I left with my food, there was a group that just a little ways in front of me that provided for some awkwardness-driven comedy. The last to exit the building was one of the girls and she looked back at me as she held the door, then to the door, then back at me, and then walked out. I made it to the door shortly after and she apologized for not holding the door open (when by my analysis the distance was much too great between us), proclaiming that she was awful with awkwardness, but this sparked a brief debate between the three of them of the distance, and whether it is even necessary to hold a door open for a guy. The guy in their group concluded that there is an unwritten "Bro Code" that we can safely abide by, to which I responded with a simple thumbs up.
And the last awkward thing that has happened thusfar in the day occurred actually while I was contemplating this irregularly long list of happenings. I was within a hundred feet or so of my dorm building with another tenant a few steps behind me, and a bush with bees flying wildly just beside and in front of me. Now, I'm fairly clumsy (who isn't) and don't always take my steps too intentionally, so I tripped over nothing and ended up within a few centimeters of the hedge bush and my head knocked against one of the bees. Attempting to salvage some dignity in the eyes of the walker behind me, I kept at a straight line (bee-line haha) right next to the hedge, but after I had passed by the hedge completely, quite a number of the bees had remained with me. There were several flying beside me and two directly in front of my face. After a few steps, my old fear of bees cropped up too powerfully and I did a swift both-palms-up-to-block-my-face maneuver, accompanied by a 360 spin on my heel and then tried to walk into the building as if nothing had happened. It felt like one of those walk-through-a-spiderweb-moments, except that a swarm of bees is quite noticeable to the outside eye. I'm an accomplished bee-killer, so I may take out a can of raid one of these days and exact my revenge.
THE END (of another too long and time-wasting post)
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