October 25, 2002

What Would Phoebe Do?

In French class, we are currently discussing how, in 16th-century literature, pure love, involving only the heart (coeur) is contrasted with sinful, impure love involving the body (corps). So, you've got coeur and corps, but here at the U of C we have something else, a different kind of devotion—the Core. The love involving the Core must be examined in depth, and perhaps should be the subject of its very own Core class. Unlike the pure love of the coeur, love of the Core has never led anyone to write poetry in Middle French. Unlike love of the corps, love of the Core has never, as far as I know, caused anyone to feel immoral. Love of the Core is a special love, one that dares speak its name in University promotional materials and among students at the Reynolds Club and at Bartlett, but dare not speak its name on days before Soc. papers are due. Let us examine, then, what is this love of Core, if it is neither love of coeur nor of corps?

It is a platonic love, no doubt, since Plato finds his way into the beloved Core classes. It could not possibly be a physical love, anyway, since an X-rated Hum class is no Hum class I'd want anything to do with.

Enough of that, now it's time for some fun. What do the following words have in common?

1. sleep

2. chocolate

3. cheese

4. sushi

5. Rufus

6. Wainwright

7. Burmese

8. Mountain

9. Dog

Here are the options:

a) nouns

b) adjectives

c) foods

d) appealing

Here is what your answer says about you:

If you answered a, you and I have nothing in common, and you failed to note word #7 (and, in a way, #8, since mountain here is descriptive).

If you answered b, you use adjectives creatively and should pursue a career in creative writing.

If you answered c, you are a cannibal and a bad, bad person, but I congratulate you insofar as you are correct on numbers 2, 3, and 4. With the appropriate grade inflation, you'll do OK.

If you answered d), you win. You win what? A free copy of the Maroon, my friend. A free Maroon, just for you.

Enough of that. Now for some seriousness. Finals week is upon us, or is it midterms? Who knows? Oh! Oh! I know! See, my hand is raised as high as it could be! It's midterms! The answer's midterms! With midterms comes the difficulty in how to approach midterms. It's all in the approach. But which approach? Literal or figurative? How about an interpretive dance? My approach, time tested and mother approved like a cleaning solution, is to:

1. know which days my midterms are

2. know the route from dorm to class

3. know everything there is to know

OK, enough of that. I'm making tea, it's almost ready, and I will go drink it and further contemplate the Core-coeur-corps triumvirate and other important topics. Between sips, I will investigate whether or not I have anything left for you this week. Chances are, I will conclude, after much thought and some research, that I do not, and will say goodbye until next week.

(Insert contemplative tea drinking here.)

Goodbye, then, or as it is said in Flemish, or maybe just in my own interpretation of the language, Gut bygk.