Bunking classes does not come naturally to me. I’ve never found the need to wander out of class and play on the field, much to the displeasure of my peers in Physics. College’s attendance requirement of 70% (really relaxed), meant that that wouldn’t change.
Until I did the Math, that is. I figured I could bunk 10 lectures without ruining my attendance, and more if I chose to claim exemptions from the committees I had done work for. Math is a strange thing. It confuses you with it’s conclusions until you understand it. And when you do, it inspires you and fills you with both joy and confidence.
That’s precisely what happened to me. Once it dawned on me, 10 became my number. I set up an elaborate sheet with colour coding and formulae for auto-fill on Excel to track my attendance per class and alert me when I breached my safe bunks, and started to miss class where I felt I had more pressing work.
This is problematic for two reasons. My attitude toward the concept of ‘classes’ changed. They stopped being intense bursts of information reception, and started to become monotonous drones of mind-numbing (in a negative manner) revelations. Which led to a dispassion for the subjects being taught, and a subsequent reduction in my enthusiasm. All of which was unaided by the droning lecturers, save few.
Two, I started attending for attendance. For a brief period in my second semester, I concentrated more on the five minutes of roll-call than the fifty minutes of class. This created a situation of having to learn stuff afresh while studying, rather than relying on recall to aid examination preparation.
I’m glad I realized this early.
This philosophizing (not really), which took place over the course of two weeks, meant that I began appreciating class a lot more. Over the course of second and third semester, I found a balance between attending classes and taking a day off. To catch up with sleep, or something. The enthusiasm returned and I began liking things more.
Some of my seniors have bets running on when college will suck my enthusiasm away. To my naysayers, I say, call off the bet. And to my supporters (of which there should be scores), I say, increase the stakes. Win some more.
Safe to say all of this writing comes on a day I’ve bunked for moot work. But hey. I have the balance, I think.
Here’s to seven more semesters of being on edge when they declare attendance for the semester. It’s an anxiousness I despise, but a thrill I enjoy – everyone is supportive on ‘declaration day’, and everyone will help you evade a ‘back’.