I'm about to throw a bunch of numbers at you. Keep track of these, they'll be coming up again sooner than you think:
10, 7, 5, 18, 87, 306.
No, these aren't winning lottery numbers. No, these aren't the coordinates to some far off star system. But these numbers do relate to the first week and a half of my Winter Term experience so far.
10 is the number of lessons I've completed in my workbork for my Introduction to Web Design class. This might not sound like a lot, but it's enough to have gotten me through the first 321 pages of a 438 page textbook. This is all in the span of 7 class sessions, each lasting about 4 hours each. Winter term waits for no student; it's impatient enough to grab you by your freezing feet and throw you to the proverbial wolves (or Yotes, as the case may be). Going into Web Design, I was expecting something a bit less fast paced than what I've experienced so far, but this is likely for the best. Even these few sessions have helped me learn a whole lot more about the inner workings of this thing we call the internet. In fact, I can't look at any website anymore without thinking about the various HTML and CSS coding taking place behind the curtains of flashing menu buttons and embedded images. It's more complex than what I was expecting, but I've got a killer layout planned for a site I plan to build from scratch in the next couple of weeks.
Web Design is pretty much the biggest challenge I'm academically facing at the moment, but my early morning Jogging classes are probably my most immediate personal challenge. I've been quite spoiled by my most recent semesters as far as getting proper amounts of sleep, so needing to wake up at 6:30 a.m. again to jog in freezing temperatures as been quite the wake-up call every Monday, Wednesday and Friday (that's 5 times so far, for those of you keeping track at home). We've only jogged inside the gym once, while each of the other jogging sessions have been undertaken in freezing weather. I've ran outside before, but never in weather so cold, and certainly not in the fog, which was the case for today. The point of the jogging course is to work our way up to 30 minutes of continuous jogging by starting things slow, and going every day no matter what the current climate is like. So I got to jog around our school parking lot for 18 minutes in some seriously dense fog.
On the bright side, I was able to keep up with someone wearing a bright yellow sweatshirt today. Not only did I stay on a steady pace, I didn't run into any stray tree branches along the way. I have to call that a win. The jury is still out on whether or not I actually enjoy waking up so early to exercise...I've always found time to do it in the afternoons after I've had the morning to mentally prepare for it. But "No!" says Winter Term. "Thought is for chumps! Exercise your brain later! You need to exercise your body! Now! At 7 a.m.! MOVE MOVE MOVE!"
In any case, I look forward to my nights more than my days--particularly my Saturday nights, because I get to participate in the best Winter Term tradition ever: Firefly in Voorhees. I talked about this last Winter Term, too, but this bears repeating: Firefly is perhaps the best show ever made. I mean seriously, we're talking about space pirates mixed in with wild west themes and a bunch of Chinese motifs with a heaping helping of witty dialogue on the side.
Seriously, look at the picture accompanying this blog post. LOOK AT IT. It's one of the coolest things I've ever seen.
This show is like candy to my nerdy, Creative Writing mind, and since last year's Winter Term, a group of my friends has pledged to watch the entire 14 episode series over the course of 4 weeks. We started again last Saturday night, gathering together in the lobby of Voorhees Hall and collectively geeking out every time Nathan Fillion did something epic (which is about five times every episode). We only watched the first 87 minutes of the series (the pilot episode) before calling it a night, but we're going to power through it hardcore over the next few weekends. If you're anywhere on campus on Saturday nights, you should join us!
And bring Peanut Butter Sandwich crackers while you're at it, too. They're my snack of choice that I tend to gnaw on any time I'm busting for something quick to eat. Since moving into the Delt Haus, I've consumed 306 individual cracker sandwiches (they come in packs of 6, and I've gone through nearly two full cases of 27 packages...the math does itself). I could always use a restock.
Clayton is a junior creative writing major from Meridian, Idaho.