Column: Cry me a river…

By Zachary Schuster

It’s a rough life a lot of students here at the U of I have. All that homework and those professors out to screw over your shot at medical school. Makes you want to cry bloody murder, doesn’t it? I only wish I was full of myself enough to spend my time whining about how hard it is to be a college student.

Listening to the students of this school talk on the bus or in class is an absolute thrill. I’m too cheap to buy one of those iPod things, so I can’t strap on my headphones and spend my life completely oblivious to the rest of the world. Instead, I get my kicks from listening to people whine about just how much work they have to do.

“Oh man, I have 18 papers, 6 tests and 4 quizzes this week. Boo-hoo. Woe is me,” is one of the statements I’ll generally hear. Heaven forbid someone would ask someone else how their day is or something. Here at the U of I though, it’s all about telling anyone who will listen how much work you have to do. One time, some guy I don’t even know came up to me at the bus stop and started telling me how much horrible work he has to do. Unreal. That’s really gotta suck, coming to college and *gasp* getting assigned homework.

I’ll let you in on a little secret though. Everyone has a lot of homework to do. I’m an engineering major and a history minor, so I probably have way more schoolwork to do than you do. I just get it done and get on with my life. If writing a five-page paper is really too much, drop out of school and get a real job. Until then, get over yourself – no one feels sorry for you.

If there’s no one around to whine or brag to, then the next best thing is to pull out the ole cell phone. I’m sure there are thousands of things urgent enough to warrant a cell phone call approximately five seconds after getting out of class. There must really be some great things accomplished by all the people I see yapping on the phone as they walk down the Quad at 10 a.m. “Like, oh my gosh, I have soooooooooo much homework to do. I have 18 papers, 6 tests…”

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Of course, this is a slight improvement over people who feel the need to be on the cell phone when they’re in the presence of other people. I really pity anyone who is so insecure that they need to have completely meaningless phone conversations while in the presence of someone else just to prove that they have other friends. For crying out loud, get a hold of your ego and be a normal person.

Maybe I’m a bit jaded and maybe I’ve been at this school a little too long, but is it really that hard to be a normal member of society? If you’re out and about, it would make my life far more interesting if you’d tell drunken stories or something instead of whining about how hard your life is.

While we’re all talking about ourselves, I’m sure everyone wants to know that I’m giving up this well-paying position of minor campus celebrity for a volunteer gig making copies in the sports information office. I’d like to say “thank you” to everyone who’s taken the time to read my misguided rants. It’s been a heck of a ride. Of course, now I have to attend to that geotechnical engineering homework that Professor Stark assigned. Woe is me!