Two bads and two goods yesterday.
(1) I was just a minute or two too slow in finishing my cleaning job before the lady arrived for the monthly apartment evaluations, and I failed with the rest of my flatmates. I’m not surprised they failed, since they like to spend the entire month in uncleanness anyway; but I didn’t expect to myself. We’ll be re-checked tomorrow. I finished my job right after she left, of course; I’ll have to see if anybody messed it up again over the weekend. (I’m at home now.)
(2) On my way to the library for some work, I spied the family statue all wrapped up in clear plastic wrapping. My heart sank, as I remembered the previous vandalisms I had seen: the Karl Maeser statue mockingly chalked up; other chalked statements on some of the stairways and walks; some balloon shamefully adorning the Squanto statue; and the same family statue dishonoured with duct-taped garments (secular). I approached the wrapped statues yesterday and found a computer-printed sign attached: "Sealed for Time and Eternity", I think. I took a picture (I’ll hopefully insert it later), then went to work removing the plastic.
Before I’d finished, two parties had interrupted and tried to dissuade me. The first, three young men, I dismissed, and the second, a single young man who was a little more persistent, I confronted with my complaint of this school being full of vulgar people who had defiled what I considered sacred. Both groups had mentioned that the wrapping was intentional. I, of course, thought that they, as good little school-spirited blue sheep, were accomplice to the vulgarity, in on the big running joke of immaturity, and that they wanted to preserve the work of their cohorts, so I had deflected their protests.
Still, after I finished, I found myself half believing that "the school" or somebody had knowingly gone along with the vandalism, and I was filled with an urge to go tell them what an idiotic, crass bunch of monkey children they were, lacking any notion of respect for anybody. I noticed the three young men standing away off; I overheard one describing my direction into his hand phone. He was reporting me, or something. I went right over to him and asked his friends if they knew (since they were calling somebody) where I could go to find the office of those they had implied had authorized the wrapping. They told me they were calling the university police. I figured they were as good as anybody, and set out to the police office. The three sort of tailed along behind me, feeling involved or threatened or something. They, in fact, thought I was the vandal. The one with the phone mentioned that he thought I had been "rude" to them. I made no response. As I outwalked them, I noticed that the statue in front of the administration building was also wrapped tightly in plastic.
The police office in the Jesse Knight Building was closed. Fortunately the three young men soon arrived, and the phone guy called again and got somebody to remotely open the door. During that call, I listened patiently as the second young man did his best, despite a very severe stutter that I assumed was aggravated by the tension he must have felt, to explain to me that the school wrapped the statues for the week of the football games against the University of Utah because somebody in the past had marred them with paint. It began to dawn on me that, the mockery of that printed sign notwithstanding, the wrapping had been in my own interest of protecting those artworks that had so touched me (in reference to certain recollections) as to once elicit my tears, and ever after, my protective respect.
We entered the office, and after a few minutes, a bald, late-middle-aged officer reluctantly appeared behind the counter from down a hallway. My question was pointed: Did he know whether it was a university entity that was responsible for wrapping up the statues? He asked why it mattered. Because if it wasn’t, I told him, then the wrapping was an act of vandalism of university property. "It was the university," he bluffed. All I needed by then was his approval; I had begun to see my error of assuming from the ridiculing sign and the previous insulting decoration that it was hooligans who’d done it. I then asked if he would do me the favour of informing the responsible entity that the wrapping would need to be replaced, since I had mistakenly removed it. He agreed, and I left. I heard him asking the three young men if there had been any problem; they had already been relieved of their suspicion.
Anyway, it was a blunder of mine, but one I’m glad to have made, since probably nobody else in that preschool would dare to do the same, for good or ill. It’s true that there’s an "honour code" here, but I’m not sure just how much honour there is — how much respect.
(1) I got in some work at the library, then went home with enough time to pack some laundry and get to the bus stop. The Salt Lake buses come by the hour or something on Saturday. At home I found that my USB drive was missing; I’d left it at the library. I gathered my things quickly and hurried back to the library, which was not on my way to the bus stop. I recovered the drive, and was hard pressed to keep running as I went down to the bus stop road. I was still quite a ways off when I saw the bus come, but I kept at it, and something delayed the driver. I was about thirty feet away, approaching from the front, when he pulled away from the curb, but he saw my wave and stopped. It felt good (after I recovered) to have raced the bus again. It was a brutal run.
Back in Salt Lake, I ended up walking home from the train stop rather than waiting 47 minutes for the last bus. It was maybe five miles… I don’t know. It took an hour. That was also good.
(2) I was able to voice chat with Fan from Shenyang about her English paper…
She’s nice and smart. All things considered… she’s the only friend I talk to these days… and if I could count on anybody, it would probably be her…
..But the feeling’s only there while I’m talking to her… and then, like a spark… it’s gone. That’s one of the reasons I’m always sad for the conversation to end. After that, I go back to myself…
And to my ghost…
This would be a "neutral", I guess.
(1) ……………I missed her again, last night.
I think it’s from seeing her on MSN Messenger so much.
I tried moving her down the list so I wouldn’t see her name… but my computer here was infected, and I had to use a web version (I just reset the computer today). Even at BYU this month, the administrators were slow to update MSN-M, leaving it unusable, and I had to use the same web messenger. And her name’s at the top, there.
Well, I don’t think I have the heart to ever delete her again.
I don’t know.
I think we’re still as radically different as ever. I’ll just keep trying to forget.