Bad Hair and Bad Taste in Your Face, Oh the Horrors

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el-vaquero-staff-writer/" class="creditline">Ani Asatryan
El Vaquero Staff Writer

So you’re sitting in class one day trying very hard to either stay awake or pay attention to the one subject you regretted taking this semester, and then you notice it: the one defining characteristic your instructor has that will occupy your mind for the rest of the semester.

No matter what you try to do, every time you stare at the teacher, you’ll notice nothing but that silly little idiosyncrasy that he or she has, the one thing that he/she does all the time, without ever realizing it, and looking so completely stupid the whole time!

It varies from teacher to teacher. In some, it shows physically, perhaps hair that never looks brushed or clothes that always seem either too big or too tight. Sometimes it’s just that slit in the skirt that’s never where it’s supposed to be and the entire time you’re in class you’re just desperately wanting to grab the skirt and just tweak it to the left a little. Nothing more, nothing less, just adjust the slit and then you can return to your sleep … err . studying.

Then there are the ones who are near retirement yet claim to love teaching. These are the best instructors to have classes with because their classes seem very simple. They start the class with the subject at hand and soon digress into any and every topic there could possibly be. By the end of the semester you know more about the instructor and their two hip replacement surgeries, their 15 grandchildren and all their pet birds than you know about Edgar Allan Poe.

Of course, there’s the usual pack of instructors who look very unkempt. I understand that college is a learning institution and that we go to a school and not a beauty pageant, but when you have to see an instructor at 6:45 in the morning, three times a week for 16 weeks, it’s very encouraging if they look a little better than you do. At least when we, as students – well, not me personally – look like a mess, it doesn’t matter because we’re not standing in front of the class, but we have to see the teachers. Sometimes they look so bad you begin to doubt whether they even showered or changed their clothes.

The really interesting ones are the instructors with no age distinction. They have the bodies of 40-year-olds, faces of 60-year-olds, a wardrobe from back in the days when they went to high school (and fashion has not repeated itself in that era yet), and the attitude of 18-year-olds. It’s almost as if they’re trying too hard to fit in this college student persona fresh from high school, and it’s not quite working at all. They’ll stand there lecturing in class and use a “hip” word or two and they’ll get so excited. They’re just completely out of control, and there’s no one stopping them before they get hurt.

Every once in a while, you’ll get screwed over by an instructor, which has his or her own set of really weird rules. They’ll have the absurd restrictions and requirements for their classes based on years and years of experience with “the system.” For instance, some teachers don’t allow students to ask questions. How insane is that? They just give you the right answer, and that’s what it is. They don’t care how you get it, or what else you got for that matter, just the strict one-way class where the teacher is always right.

Now correct me if I’m wrong, but isn’t the point of school or any education for that matter to teach people, which would require questions to be asked when in doubt? What if this teacher was the teacher that puts you to sleep because of their monotonous lecture and you just happened to doze off when they announced what chapter the test was on? So then you’re not allowed to ask and, in turn, end up suffering the consequences? If you look at it from a really twisted point of view, then maybe it works somehow because you have to stay awake and attentive in class the whole time, but this method does have its faults.

Sometimes you get the instructors who can never directly look at the crowd they are speaking to. They’re always staring off into space or up at the ceiling when lecturing but never the audience. It might help to pass the time to figure out what they’re staring at when you think it’s you , but it’s not.

Or better yet, get to class a little early and post interesting messages like “look into my eyes” and “eye see you” on the walls and the ceilings and see if they’ll make eye contact with you then.

There are the smaller things in life that don’t matter much but add up somehow. We have instructors who must blow their nose before each class, or adjust their papers every time they pass the desk at a 45-degree angle (sometimes 50). Or the ones who play with their hair when they get excited or talk to themselves out loud in class to remind themselves of certain things. These ones never really bother you, but they make for a pretty interesting conversation sometimes.

Just when I was thinking of starting a support group and a recovery program, an even bigger despair in the whole scope of “beauty” is that the cosmetology and fashion classes have been shut down at GCC. And here somehow, I was hoping for some sort of miracle that one day our misguided instructors would pass by the classrooms of beauty and taste, and somehow be transformed, or be helped a little at least.