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The One Where There’s Click, Click, Flash in French Class

November 1, 2012   

Bonjour Journal Buddies

So if there’s one thing we take pride in up the hill, it’s the sheer diversity of the people you meet in a day’s course, and I mean that not just in the plainest sense of the hipster with his huge glasses high-fiving the preppy kid adjusting his tie. We’ve got people from all over, from Asia to the Americas, from 47 states and 38 countries. And with that mélange that forms on campus when we all come together, life on 198 College Hill Road always has something interesting and new to experience.

Take my French class for example… We have maybe 15 students in the class, and somehow we still manage to encompass 10 different nationalities from Turkey, China and the US to Canada, Egypt, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia and Ethiopia, which is surreally unheard of. Now when this whacky fun-fact was passed on to the officials that be by our French professor, not a second was spared before they planned to celebrate this uncanny potpourri of backgrounds. A photographer was called to take pictures of our French classroom in session.

Now I have a bazillion bizarre quirks to my personality. But the worst one, as the ones who know me will be able to narrate to you is that I tend to get beyond weird when it comes to being infront of a camera. Imagine that “How I Met Your Mother” episode where Marshal just perpetually looks under the influence no matter how flattering his poses and smiles are. Now multiply that by as high as you can count, and that’s what my photographic outcomes tend to be, at least in my head. So when the camera’s on me, more often than not, uncomfortable is the word.

So when Hamilton brings a photographer to class, even if she is as charming and generous as Nancy (credited with taking that cover shot of me up there for the journal), my ability to think, much less comprehend and respond in a foreign language, starts to match that of a hill card. And it did...

True to tradition, one of my classmates presented his pre-prepared views on a topic, the drinking age in France for this class. Once he was done vocalizing his opinions in eloquent French, I, the sacrificial lamb sitting on the extreme was thrown the first question at. And as I asked the kind professor to Repetez the question at least 50 times sil vous plait, trying to make some sense of what was being asked, Nancy dutifully click-click flashed the camera two feet away from my face, to record the French I wasn’t speaking. And as the 50 minutes of lesson went on, and I somewhat tried to focus on negations worked in French, Nancy’s camera and its consistent clicks dutifully reminded that I was sitting through my worst nightmare, looking dumb on camera, in French.

I certainly hope the pictures were worth millions and would win awards, because in the state of mental limbo, for the first time in three semesters, not a word of French was uttered by yours truly in class that day.