Sex Ed in Higher Ed

College instructor teaching human sexuality rants about the dumbing down of America, the lost art of manners, grammar and (the perfect combination of both) the thank you note. Also includes random rants about life, pet peeves, and sometimes raves about favorite things.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Back to School or: Public Underwear Sighting

In the past 48 hours, I have attended 3 of my classes, taught one class and saw some sad pair of underpants sitting in a parking lot.

Yes, the college students are back in town and things are as they should be.

Here's how my classes went:


Have I mentioned that I think this is quite possibly the semester that will kill me? If I don't blog for more than a month, you'll know that I was crushed by a stack of peer-reviewed journals.

Here's how the class I teach went:
Most notably, as I anticipated, we had the return of Stinky Girl. She no longer stinks so badly that your eyes water - the BO is gone, which was actually a refreshing surprise. She did, however, still stink of cigarette smoke. Question: How is it that some people are smokers and you'd NEVER know it by smelling them (unless they admitted it in a drunken confession) and some people smell like their name should be "Wendy the Dancing Ashtray?" But I digress.

She did, of course, make some random comment about South Park that had NOTHING to do with what we were discussing. I think I'm going to get LOTS of TV references from that girl and that's not good. However, a colleague gave me a solution (we shall see if I actually have the chutzpah to use it): When a student comes up with a random, off-the-mark comment to a question that I have posed, I should say, professionally and politely, "I'm sorry. I'm confused. How does that relate to my comment about teen pregnancy, exactly?"

And then - of course - and I mean OF COURSE!!!! - her phone rang. Again. Like it did (twice) the first day of class this summer. This is what I mean by "Designated Mess." I had 40 students smashed in that pathetically small classroom and did anyone ELSE'S phone ring over the course of an hour and a half? No. No one's. Just hers. And since it happened to her this summer, wouldn't you think she'd be that much more likely to TURN OFF HER DAMN PHONE? And again, we had some wacky, ring-tone song playing (the theme from Rocky, I think) and then she was all, "Oh my gosh - so sorry" - and we all waited for a minute and a half while she rummaged through her bag (which was actually a fairly small purse) and Rocky got louder with each chorus.

There's more that happened in that classroom, but I'm too mentally exhausted to detail it at the moment.

I noticed a sign outside of my office yesterday that read, "Blood Drive Friday. Get a pulpy smoothie!" I don't even know what a "pulpy smoothie" is - although I can certainly hazard a guess - but I really don't think you should write about one in the same paragraph as blood. It's just not a good visual. Those folks who organize the university blood drives need to take a marketing class.

As I drove home at approximately 6:30 p.m. today, I passed the Chipotle that is right on the edge of campus. There was (LITERALLY! I swear on a stack of Inappropriate Sister-approved Bibles!) a line out the door and halfway into the parking lot. People. I suppose some people might say that food is "good" - but it ain't THAT good. Is cafeteria food THAT bad? People are willing to wait outside in the RAIN?! It's just burritos and shit - it's not like you'll be getting front row seats to the U2 show.

This morning, as I walked through the puddle-filled parking lot, a flash of purple caught my eye. I looked again (maybe it was purple money?) and there, in the middle of what was probably the only empty parking space on campus, was a small pair of women's underwear. Boy shorts, to be exact, trimmed with about an inch of peach lace. Sort of sporty-kitschy, if you will. They had been rained on, and I'm guessing they had been taking up that parking space for at least a few hours. I don't know, and I don't want to know.

Oh, yes. School is back in session. Officially.


Anonymous moobs said...

My sympathies. Nothing lifts you like an engaged classroom of students but nothing is more crushing than 40 miserable wasters mentally absent planning where to get replacement underpants

August 30, 2006 7:07 AM  
Blogger Erika said...

I agree. Chipotle is definitely not worth all that.

August 30, 2006 7:07 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Do "boy shorts" underwear come in anything but small? gob, I hope not.

August 30, 2006 9:08 AM  
Blogger Sue said...

Never been to a Chipotle, but if it is anything like CrApplebee's there is absolutely NO reason to wait out in the rain for a table. Although, maybe it is gourmet to know, a higher class than Taco Bell?

Purple money! Ha! Don't you hate it when you can't help but look?

August 30, 2006 10:49 AM  
Blogger Mrs. Ca said...

I really hope that underwear was lost out of a suitcase during moving in or something, because if not how do you just lose a pair of underwear? It's like when you're driving down the road and see one shoe off to the side. How do you lose one shoe? I don't get it.

August 30, 2006 11:35 AM  
Blogger Oh, The Joys said...

I'll take the platelette smoothie with extra iron!

August 30, 2006 3:17 PM  
Blogger Mrs. T said...

I know what'll get their collective attention! Next time you see a stray pair of underwear on the side of the road, scoop them up (using your personal protection device- preferably of the latex variety, of course)and bring them to your next class. At the start of the session, hold them up above your head- just like Anthony Michael Hall in Sixteen Candles, and ask "Do these belong to any of you?"

August 30, 2006 5:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Speaking as someone who didn't graduate from college all THAT long ago -- yes, the cafeteria is that bad. (Not sure which school you're referring to, but I'm just assuming college cafeterias are just as bad all over the place.)

I got a weeklong bout of food poisoning from one, and after I finally worked up my courage to go to a different cafeteria on campus, got food poisoning from that one, too. Almost had to be hospitalized for the second one.

So yes, I do think cafeterias are evil, and no, I will not eat in them. Ever.

August 31, 2006 9:30 AM  
Blogger Crankmama said...

Thank heaven the panties had the good taste not to be a thong!

August 31, 2006 10:31 AM  
Blogger princessfairytoes said...

your college must be posh my little dog likes to bring me mice he has caught on his walk this morning he did't get it quite right, it was a blue tailled "white " type (the mousus tampaxaus) GROSS

September 01, 2006 3:05 AM  
Blogger ProfessorDog said...

I think we're missing the big picture here. The central question isn't how did the underwear get there, it's what sadistic salesperson sold the poor blind girl purple underwear with peach trim? Obvy, they were a factory reject, and the sadistic saleslady decided she could bilk the blind girl out of the full price, since she would be unaware of the hidesous color combination. Then the blind girl wore them on a date (they gave blood together, and then shared a puply smoothie). Her date is a nice guy, so when he saw the underpants, he had to tell her about the color. And she immediately threw them out the car window so she wouldn't accidentally wear them again. All questions answered, except the identity of the sadistic salesperson.

September 01, 2006 4:25 PM  
Blogger football freak said...

I would wait in line for Chipotle. There must be crack inside their steak burritos with pinto beans and hot sauce.

September 01, 2006 8:30 PM  
Blogger liberalbanana said...

Reading "pulpy smoothie" makes me want to gag.

September 04, 2006 9:59 AM  
Anonymous edj said...

I'm working my way up your blog and I'm hoping to read that you followed Mrs. T's advice to ask your class if the underwear belonged to any of them! Please do it!
My students here in Mauritania have no manners, except when it comes to writing flowery and unnecessary sentences at the beginning of their essays which doesn't count, and their cell phones ALWAYS go off in class and they TALK on them! I just stand there patiently staring at them until they finish. Sometimes they apologize.

September 18, 2006 10:16 AM  

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