Oh me and oh my. And oh my my. And so on. And so forth. As it were. Etcetera.
Sorry, little bit joyful in the brain and soul as I got to a seminar today as a follow up to having attended last week’s amazing lecture by that amazing new professor whose initials I revealed in a previous post.
The last time I was in a seminar room was at the tail end of 2005 when I was teaching third year undergraduates. I should also have taught a couple of classes at the beginning of 2006 but my health was already getting in the way of that stuff and somebody had to cover for me. Which means it’s over thirteen years since I found myself listening to others expound and expand upon their ideas; thirteen years since I’ve spouted some of my own ideas or asked (hopefully relevant) questions. I’ve missed it a great deal.
I shed a little tear on my way out which was nothing to do with today’s joy at being part of a little learning and everything to do with the fact that the seminar took place in the same room I used to have my undergrad seminars with Chris Brooks. There have been aesthetic and some slight layout alterations inside the room but it was the scuffed patched of brickwork to the right of the main door that got me tearful. Midway through a Chris Brooks seminar we would pause for some to head to the lavatory or refectory and for Chris himself (and me back then) to smoke a hasty cigarette as he leaned on those very bricks. More than any other moment outside of conversations in his office, I treasured these extra-curricular chats as we filled ourselves with noxious fumes.
It’s almost fifteen years since I quit smoking, seventeen years since those Chris Brooks seminars but every corner of the Queen’s Building has little Chris ghosts for me. I’m very happy about this yet also quite sad and if you don’t think it’s possible to be both things at once you can’t ever have been a humanities student. He says, dismissively.
Anyway, my body hates me now so I’ve put it to bed but I win because I forced it to convey me to the seminar. I also win because I was two hours late back to my car but did not have a parking ticket or a nasty boot clamped to one of my wheels. Campus God loves Steve.