I don’t want to bore my audience, so this entry will be relatively short. These courses weren’t your basic summer biology and chemistry course. These were incredibly accelerated since we basically had half the summer term to learn whatever the teacher wanted to teach. This caused considerable stress on the learners part — especially in biology. All we ever did in biology were labs, and I never really grasped the concept behind the labs. It was neat and nice to do lab activities, but it’s nicer and neater when you can learn while “labbing”.
Chemistry was tight though. I was very thankful for the three years of chemistry I took at Brookfield East. ((Technically it is just two years of actual chemistry and just one year of organic chemistry. I didn’t learn much in organic either, but that’s a different story.)) I didn’t want to let that get to my head though. This was a very basic course, and I didn’t want to make myself think I am higher than it or better than it. Any help I receive, I will take. I never view myself above others in any respect. There is this nice quote from Eugene Debs that I read in the Marquette Freshman Summer Reading Project, Run:
Years ago I recognized my kinship with all living things, and I made up my mind that I was not one bit better than the meanest on the earth. I said then and I say now, that while there is a lower class, I am in it; while there is a criminal element, I am of it; while there is a soul in prison, I am not free.
That speaks volumes on my view of humanity.
The chemistry course was basic stuff. I tried to stay enthusiastic and not let anything throw me off track. In the end, pride took the better of me. I didn’t do as hot on the final as I should have or wanted. Pride is a dangerous thing. It’s nice to have learned that first hand.