Rush Hour 9: Lunch rush on a college campus

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Eating on campus is always an adventure. Trying to order food and consume said food during the 12 – 2 lunch rush is a headache.

Sometimes the wait is just too much.

Despite the addition of several new eating establishments to the University of Louisville the lines are long and impatience reigns. Having been at the University for several years now, I have learned to avoid certain places simply because they are so crowded.

Waiting for lunch sometimes feels like waiting in a never-ending line.

The problem is very simple: there are too many students who all, strangely, need to consume food. With the addition of the mandatory meal plan, almost all students are eating more on campus.

One would think that anyone who is not a freshman would be aware that getting lunch on campus takes some time. I was at McAllister’s the other day and walking up I could see that the line was long. Thinking of all the students who would try to find table space in the area, I decided to grab my food and go.

So, I got in line and waited. Then waited some more. And more. Finally, I ordered only to find out that the cooks had run out of part of my order. Apparently students value their mac and cheese. Instead of asking me to swap out, the workers said nothing. Half and hour later I was still waiting.

The interesting thing about waiting is that I tend to become bored very quickly. When this happens, I can’t help  but overhear what everyone else around me is saying. It surprised me that there were students who came to order their food at 12:30 and had a class at 1:00.

When the students complained about being kept waiting, I thought to myself, “Yes, you should have at least an hour if you plan to order lunch here.” It’s a good thing I had a lot of time.

Although I felt sorry for the girls who were late to class after waiting on their lunches, I can’t help a small bit of humor. There are so many places on campus where the food is already prepared and the lines are much shorter. Anyone who has ever tried to eat on campus should know better than to go to one of the most popular dining spots if they are hurried.

Despite it all, I continue to be impressed by the patience of the staff. I always think that if I ever need training in how to be cool under fire, I’ll just apply to work in the campus dining halls. Until then, I’ll just wait, laughing silently at those who think to escape the inevitable.


Hoops 101

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“Um…there’s no coin toss in basketball.” This came from my younger sister as we were driving to the UofL vs. St. John’s basketball game at the KFC Yum! Center earlier this evening. My thought: I know next to nothing about basketball, but if I’m going to learn, going to a game is a great start.

After a day of work and meetings that lasted until 6:00, the stop-and-go traffic leading up the arena was not welcome.

luckily, my sister and I are smarter than your average bear. Rather than sitting on the highway for half-an-hour not going anywhere, we found took the first exit we came to. Back roads rock.

Parking wasn’t bad. Louisville has parking garages everywhere. We found one about a block away from the arena and walked. It was great.

Our tickets, which I won in a drawing, were for seats in the Terrace. The view was great and it wasn’t very crowded. Overall very nice.

As for the game itself – it only took me a few minutes to catch on. I told my sister I would be writing about the game, and I’d be laughing at myself the whole time.

I started out by cheering for the wrong team. St. John’s wore red, we wore white. Can’t imagine why I would ever mix that up.

I thought our fans were so kind to clap for the other team.Was this some super-secret etiquette thing I should know?? Talk about confusion. Once I got it all figured out my world made sense again.

The “shot clock” took me longer, but the concept is easily grasped. Plus, there’s something of an adrenaline rush when you know your team only has 30 seconds to make a shot. I still haven’t figured out what happens if they don’t make it, but that never came up.

Of course I had just gotten used to watching them shoot into the basket closest to us when along came half-time and the teams switched sides. Oh my. Here we go again.

The second half is when the game really picked up. Slam dunks and free throws left and right. Time flew by and before I knew it, the game was almost over. We were up 83 to 58 with three minutes on the clock.

My sister and I decided to get a head start to beat the mad rush and even then there was quite a crowd. But nothing could get us down. Not the icy-cold wind or having only a vague idea of how to get home.

There’s something energizing about being in an arena with so many unknown people cheering for the same thing. Something special about having to walk a block or more to get to your car, even if you feel like your ears are going to fall off by the time you get there.

A learning experience. My first basketball game, but definitely not my last.

What’s your sign?

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Let me start out by saying I don’t normally pay much attention to astrology. Sure, once in a blue moon I’ll read a horoscope and chuckle over it, but I never really took it seriously. So, it surprised me when there was a huge outcry over the news that the astrological signs may be changing. It intrigued me, and I decided to look into it and see what it was all about. Even though I may not plan my life around my zodiac sign, I’m glad I did.

The name Ophiuchus is one I first heard soon after I started digging. “So, this is what the fuss is all about,” I thought. Well, maybe. Some articles explain that the earth has “wobbled” on its orbit, which shifts things around – including how we view the constellations from earth. But, that’s not new either, right? Surely the earth didn’t just decide to move out of its comfy orbit only in the last few years. So why is this news now?

Turns out that this “news” isn’t really new. Several sources say astrologers have known about the shifting signs for thousands of years. Despite this, every so often it becomes bright and shiny-new again and creates a stir. I can imagine why. Depending on where you look, the information you get can say just about anything.

According to an interview by Stephen Hunt with Calgary Herald astrology columnist Georgia Nicols, there are two ways of looking at astrology. In both Vedic and Sidereal astrology the constellations are used to determine the signs. Another way of looking at it is called tropical astrology. This way uses mathematics to determine the signs, which, according to Nicols, tend to stay the same for thousands of years. This is how most astrologers view the zodiac.

Some articles claim that the signs will change and that those with zodiac tattoos of the wrong sign are seriously SOL. According to The Stir, astrology is insignificant so even if they do change, it really doesn’t matter. Seems a bit cynical to me, but OK. Although I freely admit that I don’t plan my life around my horoscope, there are people out there who do. From what I understand the sign change would mean a personality makeover – at least for them. One astrologer compared zodiac signs to clothes. Just because you change your outfit, doesn’t mean you change who you are. I thought that was an interesting point.

My favorite interview was a video from a Tampa news station. Astrologer Janet Scialis agrees with the side that says the signs are not changing. She mentions being born under a sign, and although she doesn’t elaborate, it caught my attention. When I look at a horoscope, I look for the day I was born – so doesn’t it make sense that your sign would be whichever sign you were born under anyway?

Like I said, I’m glad I did some digging. Even if I don’t understand all the ins and outs of astrology, I at least understand what the big deal is. This is an issue that while not life-threatening can still be pretty confusing. Sure, we may have better things to worry about, but let’s face it, this is much more fun. The thought of going from an Aries to a Pisces is much more entertaining than thinking about how I’m going to organize that basket of old class notes sitting by my desk. But now that I’ve solved one mystery, it’s onto another. Until next time…