Category Archives: Calvin Events to Attend

One of the reasons why I don’t have a job

Every time, every single damn time I start actively job hunting my alma mater does something utterly retarded and gets on the news. Last year it was Memogate and a few months ago there was a fiasco over the name of a band.

When I first heard that Calvin had invited and then cancelled on a band called The New Pornographers my first thought was, “Oh good, somebody is doing the music scene there a solid and taking a stand against all that indie shit.” Because that’s what the band is, an indie scum band with a faux-clever name.

Because it was a slow news day, the story spread like wildfire and hit all the major news’ networks websites.

A day or two later the administration declared that they had canceled it because they take porn addiction seriously.

Let me break that down for you: “Shit, we just realized that what we do has consequences and people are looking at us so what are we gonna do? Oh yeah, let’s blame a fictional addiction!”

This blaming of a make-believe addiction, of course, made everyone laugh harder and me wish even harder that I had gone to a normal school that I wouldn’t be ashamed of putting on my resume.

And let me break it down further for you: I have been in a relationship where porn was an issue and maybe even the other person involved was “addicted”. It was terrible for the relationship and left me with a lot of shit I had to work through. But you know what? None of that background makes the band name a trigger for me. It doesn’t do anything for me on an emotional level. It’s bollocks and it cost me, and probably many others, opportunities.

So, moral of the story. Stupid, ridiculous moral panics cost more than they are worth. Hopefully this third round of resume sending and interviewing doesn’t get marred by my alma mater being retarded.

And now I really enjoy The New Pornographers, thanks Gay Byker. I may have to turn in my hardcore badge in now.

This guy is not in The New Pornographers, thank the gods

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DCM

Alright, so I mentioned DCM a few times already this month so I guess I should talk about it some.

All students suffer through experience several things during their first year, the academic ones being Prelude and DCM. DCM stands for Developing a Christian Mind but students know it by names like “Destroying a Christian Mentality” (in fact, I had to look up what DCM actually stood for, as I’ve always known it by the latter name). It is typically taken by first year students during Interim, the January term, although a few classes are offered second semester.

What sort of classes are offered?

Many classes are “Christian responses” to stuff, like ” A Christian response to Refugees”. Also their are many directly about God, such as classes about his will, multisensory worship, infinity, etc. And then there are literary classes, math, etc, etc. There are even classes all about overdone phrases like discernment and vocation! The most hilarious interim class I ever saw was when they were offering a class about aliens my freshman year, I petitioned so hard to get into the class but the registar hates me.

What will happen?

Plenaries are required. Kinda like Prelude. And, oh yeah, it will cover all the “introduction to a Christian mind” stuff that was crammed down your throat everyday of Prelude. But the level of what you are required to read will decrease exponentially (in terms of quality, not quantity). Think that they Prelude packet, with endless articles where the writers waxes long and inanely about vocation, quiet time with God, parking garages and the church and short term missions trips (which I considered the least inane of the articles, for it dealt with fact instead of long-winded feelings) made the “mission statement” of the college look kinda bad since Prelude and DCM are, in the words of the powers that be, “a first-year core course that introduces students to the central intellectual project of Calvin College”?

Then get ready for Cornelius Plantinga, he is proof positive that the seminary really has no standards when it comes to the ability to reason or a command of the English language! This man used to be president of the seminary, for real. I burned his text at the end of Prelude. I hate book burning but I could not bear to bring myself to call Plantinga’s work a “book”.

How to cope:

Candy during the planaries. The sugar will keep you awake, especially during the really dull documentary on suburban sprawl.And never state that you don’t foresee having kids in the near future or that any and all censorship is bad, you will get bitched out by the conservative douchebag in your class.

But there is light at the end of the tunnel. I took a class on banned books and grew to love Mark Twain (and learned that Margaret Atwood books give me nightmares, but I also wake up at night and think that zombies are in the kitchen so it doesn’t say as much about Atwood’s novels as it does about me) and led to many questions like, “they turned “The Color Purple” into a musical? WTF?” Oh, and there are broomball tournaments in the dorms during Interim.

If I were to teach a DCM class it would be called, A Christian response to alien dysfunctional families in trailer parks

If I were to teach a DCM class it would be called, "A Christian response to alien dysfunctional families in trailer parks"

Janu-Hairy

Janu-hairy (or No shave November, Febu-hairy, etc) is an opportunity for the hairy guys on dorm floors to show off how much hair they can grow on their faces by not shaving for an entire semester and to feel more superior and mature compared to those on their floors who cannot grow hair or can only grow a creepy moleststache (I’m looking at you, Jose).

Usually it starts the first of the month with all the males participating (be it floor or dorm wide) being clean shaven. The one with the most hair “wins”, and by winning I mean winning only the admiration and envy of all the other 18 or 19 year olds.

The upside is that I do enjoy beards on dudes when it looks good on them. The downside is that some guys end up looking positively disgustng, either sporting a Grizzly Adams face with full cheek hair or a crusty month old moleststache.

All the itching, at laest in the initial few days/weeks, also keeps them from playing Halo all of interim as well, which I am sure their DCM prof appreciates.

Behold the Moleststache

Behold the Moleststache

My brains are goo

Exams are this week, so don’t expect much in the way of quality material from me for awhile (also, last week was the most stressful week of my life). But I promise come Christmas break and Interim I will return with a vengeance!

How to Survive a Norovirus Plague

We all know that God hates those at Hope College because the aren’t really Reformed like us at Calvin. Need proof? They shut down their campus due to an outbreak of Norovirus, which is some sort of stomach flu. What more proof does one need?

But since there are those in the Calvin community that associate with the college that God hates, we might have this thing coming to our beloved by the Lord campus.

Forget the 15 e-mails you recieve each day from John Witte and the like, here’s how to really survive the Plague ’08:

  • If anyone in any of your classes so much as coughs quickly reach into your bag and tear into one of the 15  bag of vitamin C drops your have purchased that day
  • Let your Facebook status reflect your concern about the Plague with up-to-the-minute information. This will let you look informed (even if half of it is rumor) and it will let everyone else know that it is safe to hang out with you as you would never hang out with a sick person.
  • Report your roommate…even if they just have something as minor as a cold or sprained ankle
  • Refuse to go to the dining halls, linger after classes in the academic buildings, use the phone or drink anything other than gatorade. In fact, don’t even bother to come out of your room or open your mouth to talk to a roommate
  • Freak out because you can’t afford to get sick. Stress always helps these sort of situations.

You can thank me later

Election Day at Calvin, part 1

Thankfully, the annoying campaign ads end tomorrow. I have just returned from my first class of the day (a lab where we mostly do fun things like play with termites and grow fern spores) and saw and heard a few interesting things having to do with election day:

1) Within the first few minutes of class I overheard a conspiracy theory that ends with the speaker of the house being sworn in by election day (something about a slew of assasinations, an old man croakinga and Palin being offed by people angry at her stupidity

2) A discussion of what stores are giving away free things (including vibrators at a few adult stores). This was followed by myself and a friend mourning that we voted absentee and cannot get free donuts.

3) A “Jesus for President” campaign button. I don’t really think that Jesus would want to be president, personally, it would make all that “render unto Caesar…” stuff needlessly complicated.

The Calvin Walk

The Calvin walk is nothing more than a nighttime walk around campus with your significant other, I’m quite sure it has equivelants at most other colleges. But at Calvin it is also deadly serious and oftentimes take as an opportinity to do somethings that you would commonly not do.

It also makes for a great DTR moment as well. The boy-who-makes-me-food related recently that he had seen a couple having a DTR on the benches by the bridge. It’s a good spot for a DTR or any serious discussion; well lighted and not too secluded, just too bad that one half of the couple used that well-lighted very public spot as the location to break the other one’s heart. Its just not cool to see anyone openly weeping when you are coming home from a long shift at your on-campus job. [this is also an example of a Calvin walk gone wrong]

A Calvin walk also functions as a cheap, informal date. But one should remember that at Calvin any and all personal, one-on-one contact with the opposite sex is a date and therefore deadly serious (as you might remember, there is no such thing as informal dating at Calvin).

Good Dutch Reformed boys and girls will also take a Calvin date as an opportunity to participate in activities that they would feel uncomfortable doing in their well-lit dorm rooms and might not want to admit doing to their Barnabus. At one point during most Calvin walks there will be a bit of making out. Many Calvin walks consitst entirely of walking to a dark and secluded place and then making out for an hour or two. Also, word on the street is that the nature preserve is a great place for feeling up your significant other or getting back to nature entirely and going all the way (that is why it is a bad idea to frequent the preserve after dark).

Popular Places to visit/popular desinations for a Calvin walk:

Johnny’s: If your walk ends early enough, why not cap it off with some coffee and a serious discussion about predestination?

The Sem. Pond: Duh, water, waterfalls, cute ducks, a bridge you can lay upon and gaze up at the stars(or have a serious discussion concerning predestination) …

Nature Preserve: See above (not so good for discussions about predestination)

The Pond by the baseball fields: very secluded and dark. I have it on good authority that it is an ideal make-out spot (and thus probably not idea; for discussions revolving around predestination).

Important reminder: Don’t invite someone on a Calvin walk if you are merely interested in getting to know them better or if you are only interested in casual dating. This will incur much heartache and that might be you on that bench by the bridge in the future sobbing because some seemingly mild-mannered Dutch girl ripped you a new-one.

Fun Factoid: You can tell how much the couple has dated before by the amount of eye contact they maintain throughout the walk and how close they walk next to each other.

First/second/third date: will walk on opposite sides of the sidewalk and stare at the ground

going out three months to a year: hips are side-by-side and they stare deeply into each others eyes (they will run you over and hardly notice it if you don’t get out of their way)

one year and up: hold hands and prefer to glance around to see what everybody else out at that time is doing

Kaydon_the_dinosaur (at any stage in the relationship): “Boy? What boy? I have cider!”

Useless factoid: Kaydon_the_dinosaur has only been on one Calvin walk in her life. This occured a few hours ago for the purpose of further research/cider.

This bridge is just dying to have a happy couple upon it

This bridge is just dying to have a happy couple upon it