Thursday, August 16, 2012

my old school

Wandering over the nearly abandoned campus of Bowling Green State University last week in search of inspiration, I came across this huge graphic attached to the side of a building next to the library.

Campus was practically empty since this was a day or so after summer finals had ended and a good week before fall semester "moving in nonsense" would get under way. A young Chinese woman came up to me to ask directions to East Hall. I was of no help. Wo bu zhidao. I hadn't been on campus for decades. Tempus fugit and vita breva and ch-ch-changes.

But I did find inspiration. And that graphic of a soldier rappelling down a cliff reminded me of a Saturday in 1972 when members of campus ROTC rappelled for real from the roof of the library. At the time I recall thinking that was the generally much-despised ROTC's only use for the building which the intellectual in me so venerated. Ch-ch-changes.

In juxtaposition, perhaps some zen-leaning undergrad will choose this campus evergreen for his Bodhi tree and spend hours beneath it in introspection, quiet sitting, or just smiling at the coeds as they cut by.

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