Sleeping Through Class

I like to think of life as a series of short stories. Some are funny, some are dramatic, or inspirational, or sad. I love stories, and I think that’s what makes me love people.

Today I’m going to share a story that takes place in my college years. Warning— there’s no real point to this story. But hopefully it will make you smile.

Various friends had told me about a really interesting class I should take for an elective. It was a forestry class and I’d get to learn a lot about trees. That sounded great to me as I totally love trees, so I signed up for the class. But, as it turned out, I signed up for the wrong forestry class and didn’t realize it until it was too late. The class I had actually signed up for was “Wood Products”. Somewhere out there in this wide world there are bunches of people who would have found the subject matter fascinating, but I didn’t love it. I learned more about making cork board than I ever wanted to know. But I certainly would have learned more if I’d been awake for more than the first few minutes of each class.

I just couldn’t stay awake. Sometimes I’d be taking notes about feller-bunchers or chip board or (I honestly can’t remember much more than those two examples), and then I’d start dreaming. And for a short time—that time between awake and asleep—I’d write the craziest things in my notebook and then the writing would veer off the page as I dropped off to sleep. I started sitting in the very front of the class to try to stay awake, but it didn’t help.

You might enjoy envisioning my class. It was all guys—most of them wearing plaid flannel and work boots. And then there was me. I looked like I’d fallen out of some strange, colorful, fluffy dimension and landed in this class on accident. And that’s not too far from the truth. 

One day my teacher, who had a great personality and was truly making wood products every inch as interesting as it could possibly be made, had finally had enough of me zonking out on the front row of his lecture. He picked up my book and slammed it down on my desk. He wasn’t angry, he just wanted to wake me up, and it worked. He said, “You have fallen asleep every single day in my class. Am I really that boring?” And I said, “I’m so sorry! It’s not your class. It’s me. There’s something wrong with me.” Great explanation right? But I was telling the truth. It’s not normal to fall asleep uncontrollably in every class, even if it’s about wood products. And as if to prove my point, I fell asleep again just a few minutes later. So rude! I really am sorry.

My grandmother used to love it when I told her that story. She thought it was so funny and it makes me smile recounting it as I think of her laughing.

Inexplicably, I made a pretty good grade in my wood products class. But I’m sure the professor was relieved to see me go.  

~ Amy