A sense of nostalgia washes over you as you flip through your course syllabus. Seeing each old entry for past classes is like a punch to the gut. You flashback to artificial laughs at your professor’s corny puns. They weren’t quite comedy gold but more of a bland maize color. Your mind is called back to the material you wished you would be tested on again but never will be. You shed a single tear. The salty drop of sadness blots and distorts the ink, warping the rules you had been so intimidated by at the beginning of the semester.
You pause and wipe away a second tear. You start to remember the bad things about the class too. Now the rose-colored glasses crack: You had to carry a boulder of a textbook around for the course. You basically did your entire group project by yourself. The classroom was slightly too cold. In your rush to get to class, you once stepped in dog poop.
You wonder if any of your courses next semester will be as fulfilling, even if they’re frustrating. Rest assured, you can always supplement with weekly installments of…
Darts & Laurels
Neon rainbow-colored hair. Face tattoos. Rapping. Bluster. Bravado. Massive amounts of brilliant bling that shone with the intensity of a mid-sized star. Rapper 6ix9ine, whose legal name is Daniel Hernandez, seemed to be making great strides in the rap game with 15 million followers on SoundCloud and Instagram. His success was almost guaranteed as a talented rapper with a digital presence. His debut single, “Gummo,” quickly went platinum, reaching No. 12 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart.
He was arrested on federal racketeering charges. The gang police say he is involved with brought him into a world of trouble, including narcotics trafficking, shootings and robberies. He was also put on probation after pleading guilty to using a child in a sexual performance. A dart to Hernandez for some unwholesome rap behavior. Doesn’t he know you can make “gangsta rap” without being a real gangster? Laurels to all celebrity rappers who do not get arrested on racketeering charges, like Pitbull, Will Smith and MC Hammer. You can go ahead and give yourself a dart if you didn’t know MC Hammer was once part of a Christian rap group named Holy Ghost Boys, a name that brings a whole new meaning to “U Can’t Touch This.”
In national news, President Donald Trump’s former personal lawyer, Michael Cohen, made a plea deal and is now cooperating with special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigative team. The investigation is starting to inch ever closer to the president, with his financial dealings in Russia in the rapidly closing storm’s eye. Trump claimed he had no business dealings with Russia during his candidacy, but Cohen’s account now starkly contradicts that.
Cohen’s cooperation personally implicates the president. We award a laurel to Cohen for taking a plea deal instead of going down with a sinking ship. A dart to lawmakers in Washington who, again, blocked legislative efforts to protect the special counsel investigation. It’s producing results and getting indictments, and it needs to be protected now more than ever.
In uplifting news, we have a brilliant lineup of laurels to cap off the semester.
A laurel to Sustainable UF for handing out free coffee, pastries and fruit to students and faculty who participated in “Bike to Campus Day.” One struggles to find a downside to using bicycles to get around. Thighs and glutes of titanium coupled with a low carbon footprint sound like a good deal to us.
A laurel to St. Francis House and Grace Marketplace, two shelters opening up their doors to those without a warm place to sleep as temperatures begin to plummet approaching December.
A final laurel to Austin Decker and the Gainesville community, which banded together to raise money for Wyatt Fulghum, a 23-year-old UF international relations masters student, who was recently diagnosed with stage four glioblastoma brain cancer. Decker had the brilliant idea to use a bar crawl to raise the funds, using a good night out for a good cause.