Thursday, October 05, 2006

Shame on me

A couple years ago, I posted about the grad-undergrad battle playing out on the streets of Hyde Park. Today, I myself am a grad student, at NYU, and will be up all night explicating texts. In other words, much the same as UChicago undergrad. But as I get comments emailed to me, I was able to see that someone named Anonymous has just left the following comment on my post about grads and undergrads:

I am a U of C grad student. The reason I don't like U of C undergrads is not because of the typical undergrad aspects you might share with undergrads at other institutions, but the fact that you are undergrads at the U of C. You are a bunch of masochists who take 4 classes while we take 3, often the same classes, so you have no opportunity to learn something about real life. And you are a masochist for irrelevant "great books" and a core curriculum that stifles your choice of courses. And you all are burying your noses in books either in your dorms or across the street in the Reg but you never get out and see real life north of 55th Street so you are stuck in your immature and often bigoted and racist ways that you have had since high school. Really, the incidents that occurred last year among undergrads were an embarrassment for the entire university. Shame on you. You never have to learn how to shop for yourself, feed yourself or judging from the smell of some of you, clean yourselves, because the university provides it all for you for four years and you think that Medici has good food because you have never eaten in a decent restaurant. Your development is stifled and your ability to socially interact with the greater society is never developed as an undergrad at the U of C. These are the reasons I chose not to even apply here as an undergrad and seeing what undergrad life is like now that I am a grad student here I am assured that I was quite wise in that decision. I did my undergrad at Berkeley and I encountered all sorts of people there and learned how to take care of myself because there was no room in the dorms after first year so we had to live on our own and unlike the U of C, we undergrads were interesting and tolerant enough of different people that surprise surprise, the graduate students actually enjoyed treating us as equals there. We had interactions with the non-university community of all races on a daily basis too. You U of C undergrads just mock those who are different from you.

And please, we don't care about seven jeans. I have no clue what seven jeans are and I don't really care. I stopped wearing jeans when I was 14 and got stuck walking 3 miles in a rainstorm in jeans and decided they were heavy shackles and never put another pair on again.

I love it. It's a joke, right? As for the "Shame on you" in reference to events which took place at the University of Chicago last year, I will take a moment to assure Anonymous that, as a member of the class of 2005, I played no part in whatever is being referred to, nor am I quite sure what exactly went down. I rather enjoy being chastized for being a dumb undergrad now that I am in fact a dumb grad student; it makes me feel young! I will also say that I knew quite well, even as an undergrad, how to shop for myself, and made semi-frequent trips to H&M to do just that. Feeding myself, that was a bit more difficult, as the food in Chicago is atrocious. As for hygiene, it's cold in Chicago, for chrissakes, do you expect us undergrads to walk all the way from Broadview to campus with wet hair?

But in all (well, somewhat more) seriousness, what I don't quite understand about the grad-undergrad divide is that there's not so much of a difference, really. I knew what Seven jeans were as an undergrad, and know enough to know that the new "skinny" jeans have replaced any and all back-pocket-specific designer brands in trendiness. This is a good development for us grad students, as it means that the age of the $200 pair of jeans is over, we can now be ultrachic for a mere $40.


Rita said...

If "real" education is to be had out on the streets, why the heck is this guy in grad school at all? He's just regressing back into his immature, bigoted high school self with every passing day.

Matticus said...

Why on earth is this angry, impolite graduate commenting on a years old blog post anyway? Isn't that kind, like, immature? On a related note, my sister is now a UC undergrad--and nobody should be messing with my sister. Even at a generalized level. Yo.

Ben Wolfson said...

The food in chicago is not atrocious; there are scads of good and interesting restaurants, and even farmer's markets until it gets too cold. It's not even true that the food in hyde park is atrocious (though the food at the med is no great shakes, only someone who hates life can dislike Rajun Cajun and Harold's, and Hyde Park Produce is great).

Rita's comment is based on an astoundingly uncharitable reading.

Also, "chastised", and I think it's hilarious that the evidence you adduce for the lack of a grad/undergrad divide is that you knew what sort of jeans to wear all along.