Monday, March 19, 2007

First day "back"

Spring break is officially over, and the jetlag is unbearable. Spring break was sort of like the rest of the semester, but with more work, and with the chance to keep the hours I'm most happy with, i.e. getting up after noon. Well after noon.

Class this morning was at 9:45. Not once but twice, I skidded smoothly into the very same computer lab, whose slippery floors my not-so-well-heeled boots didn't quite know what to do with. Slid, but didn't fall. Might have waved my arms around a bit to keep my balance. I'd say I embarrassed myself immensely, but NYU is huge, and I didn't recognize anyone who was there either time, so not so much, now that I think of it.

Remarkably enough, I didn't crash until evening, when the normally loud and well-lit Think coffee bar became progressively dimmer. At night, Think becomes a wine and cheese bar, and thus requires a romantic atmosphere for the two couples on dates amidst maybe 40 other people there doing homework. My reading was going quite well until things got a bit more "romantic" and I had trouble keeping my eyes open, even with coffee and a brownie at the ready.

At that point I met up with Jo for our very own romantic date. Leaving both of our departments behind for a moment, we went to a talk hosted by the philosophy types, by Harry Frankfurt, Princeton philosopher and author of the book Bullshit. Intriguing! [Actually, it's On Bullshit--Thanks, Jo!]

His talk may not have been for real. He argued that the meaning of life is that we all want to live, and that no one seeks out death or harm for its own sake, that even the suicidal would rather live, but cannot because their will to avoid misery has taken over. Or something. Of course, the value of preserving human life above all else is one specific to certain times and places (cultures such as ours that value health and trans-fat-avoidance over honor won in many a duel; religions that put a premium on preservation of life and ones that are a bit more lax), but there was no question and answer session, despite the microphones, so who can say. There was, however, a good amount of wine and cheese, although I must say, the French department outdoes the Philosophy Department when it comes to fromage, as well it should.

After falling into a wine-and-cheese-based stupor (and on that little sleep, this was a very modest amount of wine and cheese) it was time to call it a night.

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