One of my student assistants asked me yesterday what people “my age” did before Google. I explained the concept of encyclopedias and she was shocked. She looked at me and said with skepticism, “You mean that you had an entire set of books that you had to keep just to look stuff up? Weren’t they out of date the minute you bought them? Didn’t that take FOREVER??”
I cannot get over that there are college kids who never lived a day of their lives without access to the internet. I probably spent most of my childhood trying to look shit up in the Encyclopedia. How DOES a starfish even get around?? Did we really get to the moon because of a Nazi? Were the Pollock sisters really reincarnated!?!? So many questions. So many volumes.
Our campus is a member of a national organization called the American Association for State Colleges and Universities (AASCU – pronounced ask-cue). We have a new person working in our office and she came in to my office recently and said, “Can I ask you about ‘ass-chu’?” I looked up and said, “bless you,” and she just stared back in confusion. It took us a couple of minutes to figure out she was referencing AASCU and not sneezing mid-sentence.
On Monday, I woke up with a massive headache and felt lightheaded. As I was getting ready, I started to feel overly warm and like I might puke. I laid on the floor for a bit, then felt somewhat better and went in to work. I was talking to a man not long after I arrived and he asked me if I felt okay because I was looking a pale. I responded that I was feeling a bit queasy and had felt nauseated earlier. He chuckled and asked if I was sure I wasn’t pregnant.
A few months ago I decided to go to war on this stupid joke from men. I AM OVER IT. It is rude, inappropriate, and you never know what someone is going through regarding pregnancy or fertility. It is not funny. So, I looked him in the and told him I had just started my period.
He physically moved away from me like I had the plague. I kept staring at him and he awkwardly laughed and said “that was an overshare.” I responded that I thought we were discussing the status of my uterus, so it seemed like a relevant update. I am hopeful he will not make that joke to me again, but the look of utter horror on his face will give me joy for years to come.