Monday, January 07, 2008

Scene it before?

The scene was a culmination of every cliche associated with profs, grad students and undergrad students from times immemorial.
Time and Date: Second week of December, 6.00 pm.
Place: Our research building atrium. The stairs are in the center. All floors have study tables that look down to the atrium.
Atrium all lit up, nice live jazz music, fancy gourmet food (chocolate covered strawberries, sit down dinner and the works). This is the faculty holiday party. Light laughter and pleasant chatter can be heard.
4 ragged people walk in from outside, red-faced and cold, clutching paper bags. Aha, graduate students! They have walked for 20 minutes and stood in line for an hour to get a $6 burrito for FREE at the newly opened Chipotle. They walk through the party, look at all the fancy food, sigh and go up the stairs.
Suddenly they smile when they look up.

All the study tables are crammed with undergrad students, with Red-Bull by their sides, cramming hard for next day's final.

Life is better again.