The alarm buzzes. I slip out of bed and study for an hour before taking a test in my senior seminar class. Then I try to take notes for my math class, even though I’m pretty sure my professor is senile and definitely deaf. I spend the next two hours doing homework before going to Bangor for the rest of the night to work. I come home at around 1 a.m., eyes dry, head pounding, throat raw, energy drained and pockets empty because I had to pay for gas on the way home.
And then I turn on the news only to learn that our nitwit president has decided to spend my tax money, earned through a grueling schedule that I definitely can’t handle but do because I have to pay for school somehow, on a mission to Mars. At this point, I want to go down the hall, ask my friend to take me in her truck, drive me to a cliff, and then throw me off. Put me out of my misery because if this is what the great mind that is leading our country has come up with as a plan to inspire the nation, I think we’re all better off dead.
The recent construction project on campus funded by the Class of 1944 – the “renovation” of what used to be the Stillwater Canal Co. Pub and is now, after some paint on the walls, a bigger bar and hardwood floors, the Bear’s Den – drew the same reaction from me when I first learned about it. The Class of 1944 is just this walking dollar sign, handing out money here and there, and instead of giving little hard-working me, student-worker extraordinaire, a scholarship for my dedication to my education, I get a brand new bar? Seriously, we can think of better ways to spend money on the school, can’t we? Oh, wait, I’d much rather be drunk in a bar with hardwood floors than have a full night’s sleep.
On second thought, I came to my senses and figured, how else are kids at the University of Maine supposed to stay sane between work, school and the bitter cold that ravages this state? If we must have a bar, we must have a bar, and I will yield no protest. Let the beer flow.
But no matter how much I think about it or try to rationalize it, there is no good reason to give my money to Captain Stupid and his dumbass rocketship brigade so they can hang out on Mars.
George, honey, our country is screwed up. The kids are all getting fat, the grown-ups are all dying of cancer, the teenagers are pregnant, the poor kids are getting poorer, people are getting shot at every day and everyone else in the world hates us. Even if our country were picture perfect, there would be other things to fix on our planet before jumping ahead of ourselves, right onto Mars. Pollution? Hunger? War? AIDS? Could we perhaps, if I could be so selfish, give a little more money to state colleges for scholarships so I don’t have to work 40 hours a week on top of school to make the ends of this rope meet?
Yes, I know, it’s silliness. I’m talking crazy, and all of the little Homeland Security kids are going to come find me now because I’m a terrorist and I’m not with Georgie Porgie, so I must be against him. Quite frankly, I’m not concerned. Some jail time would be a blessing. It would force me to have nothing else to do than to hang out in my cell and get some sleep. Come and get me, boys.
Tracy Collins is a junior journalism major.