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If Only the Professor Were Mark Harmon…

Yesterday was the beginning of a new era in my college experience, one of trying frantically to get into as many summer school courses as I could so I can graduate some time before 2018. Of course, it’s me here, so obviously the two classes I desperately needed were either full or canceled, thus ensuring that everybody on the planet will soon be able to use the following exchange from Tommy Boy:

Chris Farley (for the purposes of this analogy, me): “A lot of people go to college for seven years.”

David Spade (any human being who will ever speak to me): “Yeah, they’re called doctors.”

I have about as much luck as that guy you see in casinos sitting in a dark corner weeping, but I did get into one course that I don’t specifically need to take now, but I may as well get it out of the way so I can take 285,000 credit hours next semester. That course, as I may or may not have mentioned, is Production II.

I did well in Production I because both the professor and TA liked me. I am surprisingly pleasant, even affable, when I find ways to mask my general contempt for humanity. However, two-and-a-half of the three-and-a-half films I made in that class sucked ass. And I’m not talking about a small, flat, anorexic ass. I am talking about a terrifying, enormous ass of doom.

Few films suck that amount of ass, but I will gladly take my place beside Death to Smoochy and Battlefield Earth as having created some truly and consistently terrible work. People might be wondering, but are more likely not wondering, why my films were so bad. There are several reasons for this:

  • Poor planning
  • Incompetence
  • Lazy editing
  • My inability to light anything properly*

This time around, I’ve decided I want to make some films that I’m really proud of, for two fundamental reasons:

  • I have to have something to show to people when I graduate
  • The infamous Crush is in my class, so I have to at least impress her with my auteurism and tremendous ego

This brings us to day one of class, which is, as every student knows, “getting to know you/building a rapport” day. Or, more accurately, “blow this off/the syllabus is in my box” day. This summer class follows the trend of the math class I took one summer in high school: every single student is some monstrous sitcom cliché, which leads me to the conclusion that this semester is going to fucking rock. The various cliché are as follows (and pay attention, since these nicknames are likely to stick when I blog about them):

  • The Loudmouth
  • two guys that we, as a class, decided were cloned from Beavis and Butt-Head
  • Super-Hot Pot-Head Girl
  • The Unpleasant Catholic Girl
  • The Jock
  • Token Hispanic Guy
  • Goth Girl
  • Inferiority Complex Girl
  • John Q. Average American
  • The Crush (who I guess could be more loosely defined as “Chip-on-the-Shoulder Lashing-out-at-Society Girl,” but she’s still The Crush to me)
  • The Token Articulate African-American Fellow

And then there’s me. I guess my stereotype is Enormous Geek Guy, but mostly they just call me Stan.

The professor is a pretty cool guy. He’s very into nurturing our creativity, and he’s very pro-College because he was an NYU dropout who has nothing good to say about their program. He loves the idea that we all are able to write and direct our own shorts. He was not thrilled with being a boom operator on somebody else’s film (hence the “dropout” thing).

We didn’t do much in class other than introduce ourselves to the class as a whole, go over the syllabus and semester projects, and then pair off and get into the nitty-gritty of ourselves with somebody else. I was paired up with The Loudmouth, who is far more well-rounded than I give him credit for with my broad stereotyping.

All told, I think the semester is going to be a lot of fun, and based on the class make-up, I should have at least one interesting story blogged by the end of the semester.

*I missed the lighting lecture and got some pro-tips by the failures I am friends with. Since then, I’ve mastered the fine art of three-point lighting. [Back]

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