Monday, April 26, 2010

DWC- Development of Who Cares?

I like Providence College. I really do. I love the majority of people I've met here, I love the amazing stories that I'll be able to tell my children about when they are over 18, and I love the fact that I live 10 minutes away from here so I still don't have to do my own laundry. One thing that I do not love about Providence College however, is the Development of Western Civilization class that all freshmen and sophomores are required to take. It's basically four semesters of trying not to shoot yourself out of pure boredom learning about stuff that will never be of use ever. Right about now you're probably asking yourself why I would blog about such a horribly boring thing, but you need to understand this: this is my last week of civ for the rest of my life. I'm taking civ head on through this blog just to piss off these shitheads like Karl Marx, the dude who wrote Gilgamesh, Victor Frankenstein, all members of the Third Reich, Dante and his lame Inferno, and that retard Beowulf. Screw that. I don't care about any of you.

I have spent 5 days a week for 4 semesters learning about stuff that will have zero impact in my life. I'm a psych major working on a business studies certificate, so when the hell am I ever going to need to remember if the French Revolution started on a Tuesday or a Thursday? Sure it might come in handy if I'm on Jeopardy! but that show sort of sucks. I mean there is still a very good chance that I won't do anything with Psychology nor business, but even then, I don't care about European Socialism. To quote Ferris Bueller "I'm not European. I don't plan on being European. So who gives a crap if they're socialists? They could be fascist anarchists, it still doesn't change the fact that I don't own a car." Instead of taking interesting courses that might come in handy, like Ballroom Dancing or Ebonics 101, I've wasted weeks of my life learning about the Theology of St. Thomas Aquinas. You know what's awesome about Aquinas? Nothing. I like Aquinas only because his name just so happens to be the name of the building I live in, and trust me, when I'm here in Aquinas hall, ol' Tommy Boy is never on my mind. I can honestly say that I haven't been excited about one thing in civ. Each time I walk into Moore Hall a bit of my soul is drained out of me and I start to feel weak and sometimes I even start to sweat. Remember in Harry Potter when the Death Eaters come and just like suck your soul and ruin your day? That's what civ does to me Monday through Friday at 1:30. Anyways, I'm going to make a rundown on civ and analyze each of the four components that we PC Friars learn through this great program.

Theology- Now I can understand learning about Christianity at a Catholic school, and I don't have a problem with that. It might be a little awkward if I were not Catholic but even still, I could put up with taking one theology class if it was mandatory. Learning about theology in civ however is painful, and then having to take two more theology classes is just a wee bit miserable and makes me contemplate suicide. I've had to learn about such wonderful things like how Leo XIII thinks, what Karl Barth thinks about God, who Simone Wiel is and why Hannah Arendt is an idiot. Never heard of these people? I wish I didn't either. Theology in civ is worse than watching paint dry or watching soap operas on Telemundo. In fact, I could probably understand soap operas on Telemundo more than listening to a lecture on Kiekergaard and how he hated Satan or whatever it was he had to say about anything. The point is, I don't care. Just watch, I'll be going to hell now for trashing Theology as a whole.

Philosophy- Here we go. Philosophy. Can't wait to impress girls at local establishments by reciting the thoughts of Immanuel Kant. That'll show 'em. Thanks civ. Seriously, all my life I've been told to think for yourself, be your own person, blah blah blah, so why the hell should I worry about what Marx thought about society or if John Locke agreed with Hobbes on anything. I prefer to have my own thoughts on the world, like pondering the fact if we are all going to die in 2012 like the Mayans say, or pondering what I'm going to have for dinner and who I should go with. My life philosophy is just more fun then these boring dead guys we're learning about. I actually do like my civ philosophy professor this semester, but unless I become a philosopher, I'm never going to need this stuff. It's not like I'll be tested on Friedrich Nietzche when I want to buy a Miller Lite 10 years from now or will have to discuss Levinas when I go to renew my license. The point is, I don't care.

Literature- What a waste of time. The books we read in civ are horrible. I appreciate Night by Elie Wiesel as a moving story, but it's just too depressing. Civ is depressing enough as it is, but having civ lectures on a depressing book about the holocaust just is asking for students to turn emo and contemplate the value of life. Reading Gilgamesh (supposedly like the first real story ever written down) was pathetic. That book was the first thing ever assigned to me in civ freshmen year, and I thought it was a joke. I don't care if it was written by a caveman, the plot sucked, the ending sucked and there were multiple uses of poor grammar. Instead of reading The Life and Times of Michael K, how about we just read The Life and Times of Ke$ha instead? It would make class so much better if we learned when she first brushed her teeth with a bottle of jack instead of learning about when Michael K first planted a goddamn pumpkin. If it were up to me, Tucker Max's I Hope They Serve Beer in Hell would be mandatory, just to show the world how not to act as humans. At least it would spice things up a bit. Even learning about Go, Dog, Go by Dr. Suess would have more of a connection to the devlopment of civilization then All Quiet on the Western Front. I almost feel that civ is just toying with us and it's like the ultimate test of how much we can withstand for boredom. Maybe after handling these boring civ books, we can handle anything in the real world.

History- History is history. No matter what, it will never change. When we learned about WWII a few months ago, I was so tempted to just ask if what happened in Inglourious Basterds was accurate, just to see if my professors had a social life and actually got a smirk out of them and they knew what I was talking about. My guess is they wouldn't. I like history, but of course in civ we learn about key things that lasted for years in the span on 50 minutes and then expected to know every little detail. So basically, civ ruins the only portion of civ I have the slightest interest in. Yep, makes sense to me too. History can be interesting, but once again, how will it benefit me in the future? I'm not going to meet my wife at a historical society convention thing am I? I hope not.

In a nutshell, civ has hampered my college experience. I will forever say how wonderful my time at Providence College was, but a black cloud will always be above that statement. Civ to Providence College is what steroids is to Barry Bonds. It just tarnishes anything. For those of you who do not attend Providence College, I apologize if you do not understand how bad it is, but honestly it just is. This blog has necessary and since it's the final week of civ, it needs to be said. Civ is miserable, it ruins the minds of young strapping youths in Providence, and it needs to be stopped. It's almost as bad as heroin. Maybe not, but you know what I mean.

As for shoutouts, happy belated birthday to the lovely Melissa Maggio, a very nice girl who I have the utmost respect for being a friend of Liz Wroblewski, which I know is not an easy thing to do. Liz, that is your shoutout. Also, a shoutout to Sara Squeglia for coming up with today's topic, it was perfect. Finally, one more shoutout to the loveliest girl I know from Fairfield, Maggie Nolin, who is one of the few girls I've met who is actually interesting and can actually make me laugh.

Forever yours,
Jim Kirwan

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Killing Time and Spittin Rhyme

After being at college for almost 2 years now, one of the best and most valuable skills I've gained is the ability to kill time. I find myself bored in my dorm late at night and need to do something to keep myself occupied, sort of like kids with ADD. Now because I'm bored and in my dorm at night, I've decided to blog about things that I would normally do to keep myself occupied. These things can also be called distractions, so I'll just make it a list of the top Time Killer/Distractions of all time.

10. Twitter- I'll be honest, I thought Twitter was one of the dumbest things invented when it first came out, sort of like when Jersey Shore debuted. After getting one, I realized that, like Jersey Shore, it actually isn't all that bad and can get somewhat addicting. Twitter may be pointless, and I'm sure that most people couldn't careless about what I'm doing at this very moment, but people do care about what Shaq, DJ Pauly D, Chad Ochocinco and Conan O'Brien are doing at this very moment. Twitter is dumb, but it's a good dumb. For instance, just the other day I tweeted about surviving Stoolapalooza and mentioned Sammy Adams in it. He actually took the time to mention me in a tweet and respond saying how ill the concert was. This means I can tell my grandkids that Sammy Adams tweeted me back in 2010. That'll show 'em.

9. Robot Unicorn Attack- Hopefully the majority of you will not know what this is. I am going to provide the link to the funnest game you will ever play. It consists of a game where you are a robot unicorn and you run and jump during a magical level, destroying stars and watching out for cliffs. If you are looking for a distraction or a time killer, click this link after you finish reading this blogpost and start playing. If you need to do something important in the upcoming week, for the love of God, don't click this link. You will never look at robots, unicorns, 80's synthpop bands and rainbows ever again after this game. Enjoy. Robot Unicorn Attack

8. Writing Rap Songs- If I don't have a future in Rap then I've wasted 1/4 of my life for nothing. If I do have a future in Rap then I'm set.

7. Call of Duty- Maybe this is just a guy thing, but many young men these days love to kill people through xbox 360. I have to guess that it's because of all the pent up frustration and anger due to the fact that the Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows movie keeps getting pushed back, and the fact that Destiny's Child hasn't gone on tour in a while. Call of Duty allows people to kill people and just watch them respawn in a matter of seconds to be killed again. It's nice to wake up and start sniping your roommate and getting bonus points for headshots. There's simply nothing like sitting in a dorm with three other bros and watching an absolute display of carnage and death on a TV screen, especially when you know you have to read The Communist Manifesto. I've come to learn that priorities get confused when you're in college.

6. Seasons of 24- I realize that not many of you can relate to this, but for myself, Ryan "Wild Bill's Kid" Urkiel and Steve "The One Lung Wonderboy" Sheridan, 24 has been a staple of our lives the past two months. Jack Bauer has virtually turned my room into a Quad because he's in here on my TV so often. Learning about the theology, philosophy, history and literature related to the Development of Western Civilization will never be more important than Jack Bauer shooting terrorists and saving the world all in the span of 24 hours. Watch one season of 24 and tell me you don't want to see what happens in season 2. I've spent many a night watching hours and hours of Jack Bauer, and I don't regret any of it.

5. The Food Network- Let's be honest. Nobody on this planet hates the Food Network. You might hate a certain show or host, like that goddamn Barefoot Contessa or that witch Paula Deen, but overall, you know that you will watch the Food Network if nothing else is on and you will like it. You want to know where the local Diners, Dives and Drive-Ins just as bad as you want to have a meal prepared for you by an Iron Chef. If I have to write a paper there is a 20% chance that I'll turn on the Food Network instead, and pray that I get to catch a glimpse of that Giada Delaurentis. It's safe to say that Giada Delaurentis is a contender to be the future Mrs. James Kirwan. Thank you Food Network.

4. Hallway Shenanigans- I've witnessed crazy things occur in the hallways here at Providence College, and each and every thing I've witnessed has been distracting. I've seen dominant frisbee games take place in the hallway, kids taken out on stretchers, skulls cracked open, dodgeball, choreographed dances, press conferences for scrabble cheaters, bulletin boards covered in printed out pictures of porn, and chair races have take place in the storied halls of McDermott and Aquinas halls. Hallway shenanigans also can take place when my friends and I shout awful things to people walking through the quad. I love being in my building because we get a full view of the quad. It's so relaxing to tell a freshman you have never met before that his mother has scurvy by screaming at the top of your lungs through your window. It's also nice to compliment on her extremely short skirt by shouting it when they walk by. It's a highlight in my day when I can scream to a group of girls sunbathing in the quad that the kid who just walked up to them looks like McLovin from SuperBad. It's also lovely to scream at tourguides you're friends with while they are giving a tour to people. It's really amazing to see the looks on the tourguide's face and the parents and prospective freshmen when you hear "YEAH [insert name here] GIVE THAT TOUR! YEAH GIRL GIVE THAT TOUR!". Am I sort of an asshole for doing this? Maybe, but when else in my life can I do this and get away with it? That's what I thought.

3. Sporcle- Sporcle is a truly amazing website. It's essentially a bunch of games that asks questions like "Can you name the top 10 grossing movies at the box office in 2003?", or "Name all the Pokemon", or figuring out movies by their antonyms (ex. Yes State for Young Women=No Country for Old Men, Save Phil=Kill Bill, The Satanmother=The Godfather or Relax. at the Library=Panic! at the Disco). These quizzes are mostly simple, but you will always find yourself coming up short each and every time until you get so crazy that you want to jump out of your window or watch The Notebook. Sporcle is also great for learning useless facts. In fact, I've learned more this semester from Sporcle than my 4 current classes combined. I've always had a knack for keeping useless knowledge stored in my mind. If I could put my talent of remembering dumb, useless stuff to remembering useful and important stuff, I would be rich, better looking and a genius. It's sad that I can name every single Stanley Cup Champion since 1927 but couldn't tell you more than 15 elements on the Periodic Table. Sporcle is a wonderful distraction although it may get you stressed thinking about who the last 2 out of the 7 dwarves were.

2. Youtube- Today I learned how to sail a boat, saw a live performance of a concert I was at this past Friday, an old commercial for Ring Pops, a WWF match from Raw back in 1998 between The Undertaker and Stone Cold, some Alexander Ovechkin highlights, the music video to Paul Oakenfold and Adolf Hitler covering Biggie Smalls' "Where Brooklyn At" at a speech back in '39. Youtube is awesome. There is one genre of videos that must receive special attention, as my roommate Matt Rizzini reminded me, and that genre is cartoon dubs or voice overs. Want some good examples? Watch this, this and this. Honestly watch those videos, if you don't laugh then you have no sense of humor at all. If you find them offensive then just get over it and grow up. How else can you see Bert and Ernie reenacting the Desert scene in Casino with Pesci and Deniro without even trying? Did ya think you would be able to see Transformers say awful, horrible things to other Transformers in cartoon form? Hell no you didn't. Cartoon dubs would make guys like Rodney Dangerfield proud. Anyways, the point is that youtube is such a source of randomness that it is amazing. I've heard that people get lost for days in youtube, and you know what? I believe it. Youtube is the second best timekiller/waste of time.

1. Facebook- It almost pains me to put this here because it is just too obvious. Facebook is by far the greatest distraction/timekiller of all time. It's pathetic, I know, but admit it, if you're doing a four page paper on the life of Betsy Ross, you know you will check your facebook for sweet notifications at least ten times. You just can't wait to see the pictures from Tiffany's Toga party to see who it was you danced with and if it was a mistake or not. You know that if you have absolutely nothing to do, you are going to look at the status of that freak back in 6th grade who gave you a rose on Valentine's Day to see if he really did get that moped he was talking about. Everybody needs to catch up with everybody, and facebook gives you that opportunity to be nosy. Facebook let's us be internet Sherlock Holmes', finding out stuff about our friends, catching up the latest gossip, and becoming a fan of "Justin Bieber Suckssss". Who knows, you might be able to meet your new girlfriend on facebook, judging her only by her three profile pictures and the fact that you both don't live in Kentucky. Facebook is a wonderful thing. It is not wonderful however, when you have papers to do, meetings to attend and material to study.

As for shoutouts go, two weeks ago I had a latenight contest on Facebook. I posted a link to the wikipedia page for East Providence High School and asked "If anybody finds out why I posted this, tell me why and you'll get a shoutout". The winner was fellow Friar Jake Pirri, who answered correctly with "you're mentioned in the Famous Alumni section of East Providence High School". It's true, for a full day I was a proud member of the East Providence High school's Famous Alumni club. It's a shame that after I posted the link, 4 other fellow Townies decieded to do the same thing and add themselves to the page, thus all of us getting knocked out of the page by the person who really did create the wikipedia page for good ol' EP High. Oh well, I'll be back in that section someday soon. Another shoutout goes to Sean Mottola for giving me a topic of Sporcle, which turned into the top 10 Timekillers/Distractions of all time. Another shoutout goes to the beautiful Emily McManus, for always being a wonderful friend, amazing pastry chef and overall wonderful person. Finally, a very special shoutout to Marge "Sarah/Meg/Marge/Margret/Peg/Sasha" Haverinen, Andrew "Crazy Legs" Caine, Chelsea "I Went to Prom With Jim Kirwan" Hannaway (sup baby girl) and my main man Kyle "The Dial" Towne for responding to my status "anyone who responds to this in the next 5 minutes gets a free shoutout". Isn't facebook amazing?

Eternally yours,

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Easter? I Don't Even Know Her!

Going to a Catholic college has been an interesting experience thus far. Growing up a public school kid, I learned early on to hate all Catholic school kids, especially from St. Margaret's. They were always the stuckup kids of the neighborhood and having them all together in one school just seemed evil to us public school kids. I always swore when I was younger that I would rather die in a firey inferno then go to a Catholic school. It was about a month after I applied to Providence College that I realized that PC was a Catholic college, which amazes me for a few reasons. First off, I realized how sad it was that I didn't know my number one choice school was Catholic, I guess I just focused on it being close to home so my Mom can still do my laundry. Secondly, I realized how sad it was that our mascot is a Friar and I still didn't realize that it was a Catholic school. It's a little different than going to a public school, it sort of sucks because here we have parietals, which means that we can't have members of the opposite sex in our dorms after a certain time, i.e. this place hates to have fun. Also, during Lent the school serves no meat whatsoever, so even if we are tempted by Satan to have a ham sandwich or chicken cordon bleu, we can't.

There are some good things about growing up as a public school kid and now going to a Catholic college. An example is listening to my Catholic high school friends (I know, I would've hated myself for hanging out with these kids when I was 9, but it seems that 92% of the kids here went to Catholic school) talk about how pathetic their high school experience was because no chicks were in their classes and hallways for them to stare at. Looking back on it, if I didn't have girls to stare at in high school I probably would have dropped out of school and made this blog a lot sooner than this past summer. The other good thing about going to a Catholic college is we get a 5 day Easter break. Now if you remember my Spring Break blog, I was home by myself basically and was bored to tears, so since all my other friends go to URI, I was by myself again until Saturday. It was during this time that I pondered a lot about life, and there was one thing I realized that just doesn't make sense: Easter.

There are many things that I look at that don't make sense, such as how Jake Gyllenhall had an acting career after starring in Bubble Boy, how I will benefit from Trigonometry when I'm older, how Amy Winehouse is still alive, why Disco isn't popular anymore, why Jersey Shore isn't being filmed at the Jersey Shore next season, how Snoopy walks on two feet/paws instead of four, Hot Tub Time Machine, how I made it back to my dorm two Saturday's ago (just kidding Mom!), how the White Stripes are related, and how Fox could ever cancel 24. Among these odd things that don't make sense, Easter surpasses all of them for various reasons. Let's begin:

Rabbits and Eggs: So let me get this straight. In order to celebrate Jesus Christ becoming a Zombie for a couple of days, we are going to symbolize this as a bunny who delivers eggs....eggs from chickens, to children in baskets. The amount of things wrong with this picture is unbelievable. First off, where did the Easter Bunny get the eggs? A local market? Did he/she steal them from vulnerable chickens? Were they provided by the Russians? The possibilities here are endless, but if you think about it, not many people question why I bunny is delivering chicken eggs. We turn a blind eye to the fact that the Easter Bunny is not giving us Bunny eggs. Secondly, what does this have to do with the second coming of Christ? I know: nothing. Thirdly, how does the Easter Bunny carry baskets? This is starting to get out of control the more I think about it. I mean Santa Clause was a stretch but he's looking like the real deal when compared to the Easter Bunny.

Chocolate: The amount of chocolate consumed/given on Easter is sickening. Delivered by this fraud Easter Bunny, chocolate is now a staple of Easter, meaning chocolate is now a staple of Jesus' comeback, which just doesn't make sense. It almost makes me wonder what would be eaten by people if I came back from the dead. I'd have to say Coke and Macaroni & Cheese, but that's just me. Chocolate just seems so sinful because it's not that great for you and is bad for your skin if your in high school.

Egg Hunts: I already went over how dumb it is that eggs are a symbol of Easter, but egg hunts are different. Egg hunts are dumb because you are challenging someone to find the most eggs scattered around a house or yard. Obviously you want to take it seriously, because you can't lose to your kid sister again for the third year in a row, and it is bittersweet when you win, because it's great and all that you found the most eggs, but then again, you actually spent time out of your life to scour your house for eggs and took it seriously, which is sad. That being said, I want to announce that I beat my two cousins Liam and Mikey in the Kirwan Easter Egg Hunt at my grandmother's house on Sunday. Does it matter that Liam is 2 and Mikey is 3 years old? No. All that matters is I won. I just don't get why this has to only be done on Easter. What's wrong with sneaking onto a farm and having an Easter Egg Hunt with your friends there? The eggs may be too easy to find, but it's possible to do.

I'm going to be honest, I can't think of anything else that doesn't make sense of Easter, but probably cause it's just too obvious. Because of this, I'll tell you about the rest of my 5 day break. Wednesday night Ryan Urkiel and Sean Mottola begged to stay at my house for the night because I guess we had too much rain and they were scared to take a train home, so I took them to Thayer Street and just Bro-chilled. Thursday I did nothing. Friday I did nothing and watched a movie with some friends. Saturday I went to an Ivy League lacrosse tournament at Gillette Stadium, which was awesome because of all the Lax Bros I witnessed and all the beautiful looking Lacrosstitues cheering on their favorite Brainiac Lacrosse teams. Sunday I won an Easter Egg Hunt against two toddlers. Yep. I know what you're thinking, it was a productive 5 days. At least I thought of a blog topic.

Forever yours and forever young,