The Nature of Students

(Open on panning shots of trees, squirrel’s-eye view, sliding from the ground up. Fade into golden leaves being blown from their branches, drifting in and out of focus. Peaceful orchestral music mixed with ambient bird song plays.)

 

Wizened British Narrator:  As the last leaves of autumn fall to the ground, Winter begins its descent upon the lush grasslands of the northern college campus.  A pleasant environment for three months, it is transformed into a harsh tundra the other nine.  For the inhabitants, this heralds in the beginning of their hibernation and they have all but retreated indoors.

 

(Zooming shots of a red brick building’s stacked windows, sleet crackling against the glass.)

 

    The students are keeping warm, huddled in their nests.  In the summer months, some of these species would be incompatible with one another, but, when forced to make the choice, they can coexist in colonies of over 200. These complex burrow systems are known as “Dorms.”

 

(The door swings open)

 

    A female emerges.

 

(Close up on subject, music takes on a casual tone)

 

    The Common Sophomore, or procrastinatius neurotica, is characterized by the dark circles beneath her eyes as well as her lightweight money pouch. This particular species is part of the English Major family, known for their unique ability to form a shield from a laptop or book to hide behind when threatened.

 

    It is rare to see one venturing out past their regular territories of the library and English building, even rarer to see in these weather conditions.

 

    This can only mean one thing… She is on the hunt.

 

(Dramatic note.)

 

    Due to an unfortunate evolutionary tradeoff, this Sophomore’s social skills have been stunted in exchange for a greater tolerance for homework. As such, she has failed to form a bond with a student who owns a car before the winter months.  A costly turn of fate indeed.

 

    Her stick-like frame is encased in a coat of feathers, which gives her speed and endurance.  She will need both to succeed as she sets out in search of her quarry.

 

    In order to secure her place in the campus hierarchy, she must provide gifts to the Professors of her herd in the form of papers and projects.  This is how the majority of an average Student’s time is spent, but sometimes the demands can prove overwhelming.  As such, she is in search of a boost in energy that her regular hunting grounds cannot satisfy. She is in search of a latte.

 

A simple creature, she believes this is needed for her success, instinctively finding a more manageable solution to cover her struggles.

 

    This is the instinct that drives her to trek over two entire blocks, a massive feat of stamina for her species. The road thus far has been arduous, but her challenge has only begun.

 

    A vibrant deceiver, the Coffee Shop attracts students with its bright colors, alluring scent, and promise of shelter.  Students will offer it money, and some will even stay inside to guard it, in exchange for the nectar it produces. The relationship is symbiotic, but quickly turns one-sided, as the nectar is strongly addictive if taken too often.  Its strange effects can also increase a student’s apprehension of threats and leave them exhausted.

 

    Nonetheless, our Sophomore is prepared to make the risk.

 

    She enters the line and approaches the counter.  But how will she negotiate with the nectar-keeper?  With her poor social skills, she has proven incapable of handling similar situations…

 

(Flash back to clips from previous episodes, subject stumbling through a phone call, avoiding passerby on the street, accidentally calling a Professor “mom”)

 

   She steps up to the front and faces her last challenge. Is this the end of the line for our Sophomore?

 

(The music grows tense with a rising drum beat as the subjects interact. Close up on the nectar-keepers eyes.  The Sophomore opens her money pouch, exposing her credit card.  The two chatter with each other.  Sweat is beginning to show through her layers. She reaches out to the chip reader. Her hand slips! Dramatic beat. She recovers quickly and inserts her card. Silence. The chime of a transaction confirmed. The nectar-keeper dips head in approval.)

 

    Incredible! By watching the students ahead of her, this Sophomore has adopted their mannerisms and tone and is able to fool the guard into thinking she is one of them, securing her hunting success. This fantastic display of mimicry has never before been caught on footage.

 

    It is a frigid trek back to the safety of the Dorm, but the journey is lessened by the warmth of her prize.

 

(Allow the subject to walk off-camera into the sunset. Fade out as the music swells to a moving conclusion.)

 

    In the wild game of survival that is the northern college campus, the ability to adapt is crucial.  Today that adaptability has allowed this Sophomore to carry on in her schoolwork… but will one latte be enough?  She believes it will cure her fatigue, but are there to be even more sleepless nights in her future? Will the hunter’s prey have the last laugh?  Tune in next week to find out.

 

(Begin commercial break)

 

By Rachel Nelson

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