Monday, 18 April 2016

The Midnight Library

4 hours.

It's been 4 hours since I planted my arse down on my seat with a coffee, a can of energy drink, and a bag of Maoams to keep me company.

However, my company has diminished into nothing and I sit here with a sugar-high close to supersonic, a laptop screen glaring at me like a disapproving mother, and a swarm of others around me either eating sweets, drinking drinks never meant to be good for mind or body, and different forms of procrastination happening as if it were a trendy pastime that definitely wasn't bad for late night studies.

I've seen one guy read the ingredients of his sweets like it was the bible and required the same amount of attention and time. I've seen guy walk around the library floor so much that he's completed a marathon, twice. And I've seen a girl watch about 10 videos of people getting their backs cracked on YouTube.

Me? Well I'm typing this, telling myself that it's still writing and that writing is good. Not the right kind, granted. But writing nonetheless, meaning it's OK to do and better than dropping my head onto the table, which someone sat next to me has done right now, quite hard too. It was more of a headbut to the table than a pitiful fall.

We're all 3rd years, all doing dissertations, and all sat here looking bleakly at our work knowing that it's single handedly the most time consuming thing we've done since waiting to be born.You can tell we're all third years by the lack of joy in our eyes, like energy saving lightbulbs that haven't quite warmed up and just give off a light about as powerful as a fart is to wind. Second years are at home, in bed, with the slight pressure of non-important coursework drifting into thought then pissing off. First years are out, getting drunk whilst thinking how unlucky it must be to be a third year, not realising that this torment will haunt them one day.

It's almost midnight and still the library is pretty full of burners of the midnight oil who lack a match to get the sodding fire going. There is a silence so empty that a blind person would have thought he'd died and gone to hell. The occasional keyboard being typed can be heard and the odd crack of bone on table as, like my friend here has just done for a second time, realised that his motivation has officially left his body and that a bruised forehead will offer more joy than trying to do work.

Books are open but only read by the yellowy, piss-coloured shade given off by the lights above. The only signs of life are from the occasional staff member who walks around telling students to be more silent than silence and to not type too hard on their touchscreen smartphones for risk of waking up the realisation that their job is to tell people to be quiet.

It feels to me like a room filled with intelligence but lacks any sort of application.

We are all educated and specialists in some form of thought or action.

We are all capable of finishing the work within a few hours.

We should all be in bed.

But we're not, we're here trying to get blood from a stone. A stone that goes by the name of disso.

Oh, table-butter's just delivered his latest abuse to the table. This time he landed on his nose and not his forehead.

Here comes the man to tell him to shut up.

What a time to be alive.

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