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Response to trof (Reply #62)

Wed Apr 30, 2014, 08:19 PM

71. I flunked two classes in college.

Once for fighting with a teaching assistant.

The TA and I were having an, um, heated debate when he started throwing stuff at me. I don't know why. I told him his data was bullshit, not that his work was bullshit. He had nothing to do with the data, he was not the one who had fabricated it. Well fabricated it was. $$$

Unfortunately the campus police already knew me by name, not him. I always had a friendly relationship with the campus police. I was mostly harmless, occasionally homeless, an interesting break from their usual dreary duties of drunks, date rapes, overdoses, etc.. They'd pick me up for things like jogging with bloody bare feet at two o'clock in the morning, dumpster diving, or sleeping in my car, the library, classrooms... I'd also show up in places where I wasn't expected to be, and people might eventually say, "Hey, wait a minute, who are you?" sometimes after I'd been there a few days and was getting a bit ripe. Anyways, I wasn't allowed to take the final in that class. The university let me repeat the course, different TA, different professor, both more cynical sorts, and I aced it.

Another time I flunked a hard science class. I could pick up day work moving furniture for eight or ten dollars an hour sometimes (gasoline was less than a dollar a gallon then...) and I'd missed too many lectures to keep up. I did pass my paleontology class however, even though I couldn't tell you a damned thing about Foraminifera today. But the professor of that class helped me get back into school for my third try and I didn't get into any more trouble after that. Well, except for when the people I was living with moved away without telling me, without paying our rent, so I just lived in the empty apartment for two months with the door to my room locked, sleeping on the floor, ready to jump out the window with all my stuff if I heard anything. One day I returned "home" and strangers were moving in. Sigh. I had left everything in the apartment clean and spotless, it was part of my ritual. And that was a better experience than I'd had living in my car in the church parking lot...

I have much more recent Groucho Marx "I refuse to join any club that would have me as a member" experiences; the parking valets leave my old car in the same lot the dishwashers park in so as not to offend the BMW, Mercedes, and Lexus cars, but if I ever die crazy in a cardboard box with newspaper insulation that's okay with me. I've always done what seems to be the right thing to do at the time.

Even when it turns out to be wrong.



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