Last month I made two goals for my Shakespeare class. The first one is obvious: pass the class. The second was to lay low, be inconspicuous, and try not to be too memorable.
There are several reasons for this. The first is it makes the whole community college experience much more interesting. I can entertain myself by pretending that I am part of a witness protection program or live in a graveyard like Nobody Owens from The Graveyard Book.
Another reason is that, lately, I have been trying to lay low in general. That way I don’t have to have long conversations about how I have been doing, which might blow my cover. That could lead to people figuring out that I’m not normal, and that would be disastrous.
I started out pretty well at the beginning of this term. I have a corner seat that I like very much. From there I can count how many students show up (there are fewer with every class) and fall asleep if absolutely necessary. I just lean my head on the wall or drop it on the desk and (I think) no one can see me.
After I got my perfect seat, I refrained from correcting the teacher when she made historically inaccurate statements, and I didn’t point out that the actor playing King Richard II was David Tennant. Also, I didn’t tell anyone that I thought our teacher looked like a modern-day Queen Elizabeth.
She wears a little less jewelry
All of my hard work was shattered on the day I totally lost track of time.
My watch, apparently, had stopped the day before at about 30 minutes after my class was supposed to start. I ran up the many flight of stairs from the Student Center to the hall my class was in. I got there red, out of breath, and completely early. Once of my classmates happened to be outside of the classroom sitting on the floor.
Hey! Has our class started yet?
I said pointing to the incorrect classroom.
Um, no. And our class is in this room.
Oh, good! I have time to fix my hair!
Once I got into the bathroom I realized what a mess I looked and what an odd impression I probably had just made. I decided to play it cool and go make sure that my fellow student thought I was normal.
Sooo, it’s two syllables right?
Yeah, your name. Two syllables. It’s M- Meghan. Your name is Meghan! I’m Shahrazad in case you didn’t remember because of what an inconspicuous person I am.
After Meghan backed away slowly into the classroom, it was all downhill from there. Queen Elizabeth started out the class by asking about Greek mythology, which is something I know quite a bit about.
My teacher has the habit of asking the class questions like, “What was the date of King James’ coronation” and “Who knows how many sea captains were in the Spanish Armada?” I think everyone was assuming that, once again, no one would answer her question when she asked, “Does anyone remember how Saturn got rid of his children so they wouldn’t usurp his throne?” Since I was still flustered from thinking I was late and I had sort of given up on the “normal” thing, I raised my hand.
He ate them!
Everyone turned around to look at the strange person they hadn’t noticed before who seemed to relish cannibalism. I then told the history of the gods and how Zeus chopped up Saturn (or as I like to call him, Kronos) and because of that Aphrodite was born in the ocean (gross). A lot of people were very confused and I didn’t blame them. But I was having too much fun giving the gory details.
Now I have embraced my abnormality and decided that, even if everyone thinks I am a freak, at least they think I am on their side. My most proud moment was when I single-handedly directed the discussion to Batman supervillains. Queen Elizabeth made the statement that many of Shakespeare’s villains are evil to the core and are only evil because they want to be. She then said that people don’t make characters like that anymore. I calmly disagreed that the Joker had no reason to be evil and he was for the pure fun of it. Elizabeth was about to disagree but about five Batman geeks jumped on the statement and compared just about every lunatic Arkham Asylum before they officially announced that the Joker has no sad back story that made him evil. I sat back and admired my handiwork.
Tomorrow is the midterm. I may have absolutely failed on my second goal, but hopefully not on the first. I was probably able to soak up the literature I was supposed to read. But I have a feeling that I was too busy writing jokes in the margins. At least I am having way more fun than I thought I would.
I wonder what my goals for the next term should be.