Institutions of higher learning fall into five categories. Some people say it is six, but these are people who, when counting, forget "four." Regardless, it is imperative to bear in mind, as you peruse the following study in contrasts and disparities, that all colleges, at the end of the day, are the same, in that they allow all manner of students to come together and - casting off their socioeconomic, religious, racial and political differences - throw up on each other.
Not that I am suggesting for a moment that this is all there is to college: no, there are also "shower caddies." A shower caddy is an item nonexistent outside the college sphere. It may not carry much, but by owning one you can be sure you will make a statement to your peers (namely, "Hi. I am a dork with a stupid bucket").
Which is to say, there exist myriad* types of colleges, breaking down as follows:
BIG-ASS SPORTS COLLEGES
These are by far the most celebrated among institutions of higher learning, featuring student bodies consisting of hulking, spitting, wind-breaking hominids for whom a typical academic day consists of asserting that five and eight equals seven, and being told, "Close enough." Such institutions are so high-profile that sometimes they are even made into major motion pictures, starring actress Scarlett Johansson as a shower caddy.
Not to toot our own horn or anything**, but our own alma mater, Aarkvard University (motto: "Quantum forum in est dum-dum") (literally, "Whadda you lookin' at?"), in addition to being a shining beacon of intellectualishness, happens to be a Big-Ass Sports College. Our bendy-straw-bending team took the state title three years in a row, and our scratching team is as yet unparalleled. And we're not just saying this for purposes of self-aggrandizement.*** We're saying it so as to inform you, in a deft parenthetical manner, of our team name (the Aarkvard Gerunds).
"GERUND" IS FUNNY.
These are the schools where the student bodies consist of people with names like E. Forsythe Browridge Whackington-Tuffett Lexus of Greenwich VII Jr. Morgan M.D., for whom a typical academic day consists of asserting that five and eight equals seven, and being told, "Close enough." Not that I am suggesting these guys are anything like the aforementioned student-athletes. On the contrary: these guys can't throw a ball to save their lives.
Application to a Prestige School should be approached with caution, inasmuch as yearly tuition totals approximately - in the words of the financial aid department at one such institution - "your eyeballs."**** The students at these institutions also spend most of their time throwing up on each other, but theirs is high-quality barf, the kind you can buy in little boxes at Williams-Sonoma for $14.99.
Just kidding, of course. Har! It is $34.99. Also, Williams-Sonoma is way too white-trash for them.
DISCUSSION QUESTION: WHY IS DEAN MARTIN SINGING "VOLARE" THE ONLYTHING THEY EVER PLAY AT WILLIAMS-SONOMA? DO THEY KNOW OTHER SONGS EVEN EXIST? EXPLAIN.
Alternatively known as the "unsung wonders" or the "bad" schools, these are the institutions no one knows about for a reason.***** Located in Montana, these dynamic institutions have names like Speculum College and are situated in towns with names like Rat Spit Falls ("The Rat Spit Production Capital of the World"), where bottled rat spit ("The Thinking Man's Perrier") is a supermarket fixture, located adjacent the Cherry Coke.
These are located in other countries.
LIBERAL ARTS COLLEGES
These are the institutions that house the cream of the intellectual crop. Here, the most tortured, heartfelt, misunderstood vomit is produced, the most gravid academic sentences composed, the minutest analyses conducted:
It must be noted that the unnamed speaker commands the little star to twinkle not once but twice, [line I, see also VI, cf. ILIAD book 3,459], thereby suggesting an overarching sexual deviancy further compounded, in the sense of being compounded, by the fact that the speaker wonders, yet never proactively undertakes to discover, the star's identity (II.iv.viii). His subsequent and, concomitantly, consequent likening of the star to a "diamond in the sky" (IV.xi.iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii) therefore and thereby serves as blatant evidence of his tenuously tenuous grip on reality, inasmuch as diamonds are typically found on the Earth's surface (Limpknacker, 1905; Globgulper and Feeb, 1926; Jiffy Lube commercial, 1997).
We are told these are the institutions where the great thinkers of our age go, though we are wondering how this can be true if they do not drink bottled rat spit. Nevertheless, you can tell liberal arts students are deeply serious about their academic work, because they go to the library to throw up. Then, afterwards, they analyze their output:
Student A (darkly): That is a fine act of throw-up.
Student B (darkly): Yes. Capital. All at once tortured, heartfelt, and misunderstood.
Student A (darkly): Yes. Let us celebrate our socially fashionable angst by cutting ourselves.
Student B (darkly): Capital. Oh, but not too hard.
Student A (shocked) (but still darkly): Oh, no. That might hurt.
(They scratch themselves lightly with fork tines)
This would probably be a good time to note that we personally have never, technically speaking, attended a liberal arts college, and our knowledge of these institutions is therefore, technically speaking, squat. However, we have conducted extensive researchon the topic, thanks to which we now know liberal arts colleges to consist of the following:
1. A place called "Bowdoin," which is pronounced funny.
2. Other ones.
Seeing as after approximately .05 seconds of research, we returned to watching videos of guys figure skating on YouTube, that last bit of data above is a rough estimate. But we will have you know, on the authority of no less than the American Federation of Big-Ass Sports Colleges, that it is "close enough."
*This is a literary term, meaning "myriad."
**Disclaimer: no horns were tooted in the making of this platitude.
***Disclaimer: yes we are.
****Student Recreation Fee may also apply.
*****Also, student vomit sells for pennies.
©2008, Nicola McEldowney
The Snark Ascending