Wednesday, October 20, 2010
When Nerds Get Married
Tonight I was sitting on the floor grading a stack of labs at the coffee table while Ryan rubbed the last twelve hours of carrying around a twelve pound fetus out of my shoulders. I had just graded two or three flagrantly awful assignments in a row (No names on papers! Half completed reports! Totally half-assed I know you know better short answer questions!) and was feeling punchy.
I mused aloud "I wonder if our ME [mechanical engineering, both of our undergrads] professors graded papers in their living room, in their pajamas, periodically yelling out "WTH?!" or "'Short answer' does NOT mean THREE WORDS WITH NO PUNCTUATION!"
We both immediately thought of my absolute favorite professor who once went through a stack of assignments shouting "YOU FIRED!" in his Iranian accent as he slammed each one onto the table. Every once in a while he would stop and hold one up gently with thumb and forefinger and say "This! This is engineer!" and pause a minute to bask in its glory before returning to the stack.
"YOU FIRED, YOU FIRED, YOU FIRED, I don't drive on the bridge you build, YOU FIRED."
Ryan and I still say "YOU FIRED" to each other once in a while.
Then we talked about the "Purple Shaft Award" which was given by the student honor society to the professor they deemed the worst one in the department every semester. During the nominations one semester a guy Ryan knew, who had very recently severed his index finger in an accident, raised his hand and said he had asked one professor if he could type a problem set because of his injury (instead of writing it out longhand, probably at least ten pages) and the professor responded "We all have our challenges." That professor won handily that semester. It really makes me wonder what my unfailingly polite in class students are saying about me once they leave the building!
We laughed about the time Ryan went somewhere for a minute while we were studying together and I filled his textbook with amusing post-it notes for him to find during the rest of the semester. He found the first one over Thanksgiving Break and called me, hysterical. I had written "I'll show YOU a free-body diagram!" Oh my gosh we were such NERDS. It's no wonder Charlie is so apprehensive about team sports.
I wouldn't have had it any other way and I'm so glad Ryan was there with me the whole time. And not just because he took all the same classes a year ahead and then shared his textbooks and superior intelligence with me!