Thursday, November 4, 2010
The Village Idiot
It was my first year in college and I was scared. I had signed up late and registered for classes late. So if you haven’t every done this, it isn’t fun. First you get classes that no one else wants and you won’t need for two years, if you need them at all. You do your best to find the needed math credit, the right seminar, and hopefully they are not at the same time.
That first quarter, I ended up with a class at 8 and two in the afternoon. So this gave me all kinds of time to do nothing, but homework and play chess. However, that 8 o’clock class was something else. The instructor’s name was Dave White, he taught critical thinking.
I showed up that first day and he watched us move to the high school style seating.
“This just will not work. Please grab your things and come with me,” he said, leading us from the room.
We stood and followed him to this lounge not far from the original location of the classroom. It had the feel of a library with a round table and windows over looking the wooded grounds of Shoreline CC.
I remember thinking “Now, this feels like college.” Funny, I never had that thought about another class.
I met my first college friend in that class, Dan “something“… Funny, I used to call him the suburban cowboy… He wore plaid like my dad and was older than me, maybe ten years. He had a family of his own.
The class was memorable we talked about how things we do effect what we are, and what we are effects what we do.
The first time I heard something like that his guy in the class spoke up, in a loud voice. “That’s deep Dave.” (Think how ‘HAL’ would say it off ‘2001, Space Odyssey‘)
He said it the first time, and then the second and this continued until the last day of class. If the young man would have told Mr. White that he was going to come back to repeat the class. I am sure the man would have taken early retirement.
Day after day, after every comment, he said at the top of his lungs, “That deep Dave.”
I even find myself from time to time repeating that phrase just to be a pain in the ass. Someone will be trying to tell me something important and I will find myself going back to the class, Mr. White, Dan Whatisface and that “Deep” guy.
The three people in that class defined for me the three types of people that you will run into, the intelligent person who helps you grow, the person who you want to become, and the village idiot. Who just because he thinks he understands a point will still say, “That’s deep; Dave.”