As you may be able to tell from reading this blog, the commercials on the radio or television, or just looking out the window at the bright yellow school bus starting to roam around neighborhoods, looking for children’s summer dreams to crush, we are firmly within the grip of back to school days.
This is true of everyone, including your good buddy here at Bad Shakespeare. That’s right… as of Monday, I will be returning to the classroom to take two very special classes. I call them very special because I don’t have to take them. I’m just learning for the sake of learning at this point. But this year I will be taking an introduction to teaching Theatre class, and a class in Folklore. As you can tell that I am expecting to be given ALL OF THE MONEY once I finish these two classes and emerge into the world.
I joke but this goes back to a point I’ve made time and time again: classes for the sake of learning. The Theatre class might be useful in my future as a teacher (Whereupon I can throw my arms up Jon Lovitz-style and scream “ACTING!” at the top of my lungs. If they don’t teach us how to do this properly in the class, then my tuition is wasted.) However outside an episode of Supernatural or Buffy the Vampire Slayer, there’s not much need for a folklorist in modern society. (But if any werewolves want to attack around this area so I can come to the police’s aid, I’d appreciate it.)
So why am I taking it? Because I like Folklore. I’d like to know more about Folklore. I’d like to enjoy my time in class, read some cool folklore stories, and I’d like to explore what makes folklore folklore. (I’m also going to try to stop using the world “Folklore”. It’s starting to look strange.) I want to enjoy my time. I’ve had several years of education courses, not all of which were my first choice to take but required by “the man.” So now I have a rare opportunity. I’m a Grad Student who’s done with most of his classes, can’t take one of them just yet, someone else is paying and I have the time. So why not?
But that’s just me. I know a lot of students are going to get their heads filled with (and I’m paraphrasing) “omygodyouhavetotakeacoursenowthatwillsecureyourwholefuture!” Yes, I understand that when it comes time for the job market, “folklore” isn’t going to be as enticing than “economics” or “just about anything else.”
At the end of the day, beyond the perfect future that you think you’re planning for yourself (and will inevitably change based on the whims of whoever is pulling the strings) you have to take a few minutes to enjoy yourself. Relax. Take a stupid class that won’t count for something. Why? Because learning should be enjoyable. Remind yourself what learning is supposed to be about: discovering more about something that fascinates you.
But you know, if a werewolf were to hang around here for a bit, I'd be pretty useful.