Category Archives: be prepared
A couple of weeks ago one of my Honours students remarked how impressive it was that I read books; he then gasped when I said that I often read the same book more than once. His comment was only topped when another Honours darling told me that she hated reading. My honest reaction was, then why are you doing a postgraduate degree if you don’t want to read? But unfortunately, it seems as if less and less students think reading is important and most seem to try avoid it as much as possible. Instead, they seem to prefer taking the easy route when it comes to research and are content at having a quick skim on Wikipedia. The more concise the better. Unfortunately, I’m no cartoonist, but if I were, I’d so draw what I’m about to write next to prove how dangerous such behaviour is.
The world is on the brink of destruction; the nuclear blast that the Americans fired at North Korea killed most and left many more a walking abomination of death and glowing radiation. A few survived, but in this world I’m convinced it’ll only be those of us who know how to live without technology that’ll be able to rescue the human race, kill the zombies and start a new Eden (I’m banking on being supreme ruler and will name the new world Lepus Sylvaticus).
Anyway, picture this: The zombies are attacking, there is no power and the internet has crashed permanently. The only way to defend yourself and acquire the information on how to survive is located in a quaint and archaic building previously known as a library. In order to survive, you are required to search through volumes of text and read the fine detail because not every zombie is the same. Knowing the difference between the bucketheads and coneheads is vital because only one can be defeated by butter, while the other is only susceptible to chainsaws. But here’s the problem, nobody has the ability to find anything in any of the books because they’re too used to having Google find information for them. And worse, after two sentences of reading they are bored, because nobody is used to reading anything in detail, and so they give up, succumbing to a bloody zombie mauling.
In another scenario, you may have survived on pure idiotic luck, but the zombies are fast approaching and not only do you not know how to kill them, because you won’t read more than two sentences, but you also have no clue how many you are going to have to kill because along with no internet, you have no calculators to add up how many are after you. It’s that story sum that you thought was of no use during Math class: You are surrounded by 68 zombies. Tommy has 28 chainsaws while Susie has 11. How many chainsaws do you need to pick up to get out alive? Too slow! And you actually needed butter because they were bucketheads. Your tiny brain is now being devoured. Bye bye!
Now, after this amazingly brilliant insight, I hope you see how important it is not to rely so heavily on technology? You don’t want to survive a nuclear holocaust just to be devoured by zombies, do you? Come on! Read a book! Learn to add, and most importantly, stop asking Google for everything!
For once in my life I was organised for everything. I’d made the hand-outs, copied the hand-outs, organised the computer lab, and access, for all the journ students. The universe however, was having none of it and decided that today was the day to test my speed, patience and self-control. I woke up with waves of nausea, and now know that it takes approximately 6 seconds for last night’s chicken to make its way from my small intestine back up my dietary tract; about the same time it takes to get out my office, down the stairs, and to the bathroom. After that wonderful test of endurance, I then had to go and teach the little darlings, who are the journalism students for 2013. And guess what?! The lab wasn’t ready. In fact, we only had two computers that worked, and the Uni’s internet was down (AGAIN!). So no venue, no equipment, and an unpredictable intestinal storm. And to make matters worse, once we’d found a venue to use, one of the little darlings decided that the chairs were so super awesome that he had to spend the whole hour spinning around and around in my peripheral vision. Obviously, this was exactly what my nauseous stomach needed, and I had to control the impulse to run back downstairs again. Luckily, my amazing stamina and self-control prevailed until the end of Nikolai’s spin cycle, and the end of class. Pity that nothing else seemed to go my way. Conclusion: the universe disapproves of anal preparedness and will try to kill you with your own stomach acid if you think otherwise.