BY SHAYNA DEMICK
Co-Managing Mosaic Editor
Let’s talk about rocks, specifically “rocks for jocks.” The class that everyone wants to take and even more people want to sleep in: GEOL107: Geology of the Dynamic Earth.
Upon learning that GEOL107 was “rocks for jocks,” I knew the class was going to be a walk in the park revolving around rocks. Being a lover of both park walks and rocks, I had to sign up. While my environmental science degree required me to take this class, I wanted to pretend that I made the independent choice to enroll.
Since childhood, I’ve been a fiend for rocks and minerals. I was the kid who spent every recess going hunting for rocks and had dried mud under my fingernails to prove it. I once pocketed a lump of coal I mistook for obsidian. My second-grade teacher demanded I return the coal but I chose to fake obedience and stuffed the coal under my shirt. The rock was mine! There’s no way I was fooling my teacher with my inflated shirt but one can only care so much about a pathetic nine-year-old stealing some coal.
Over the summer, my therapist inquired how I would balance having an internship, skating, writing and taking four difficult classes. I told her not to worry because my classes were soooo easy. One of them was called “rocks for jocks,” how could that be hard? Impossible! I assured her that I was basically only taking three classes because geology would be my well-earned nap period after my wildlife class. How could she discourage a high-quality nap after the many lectures on getting more sleep? It’s like I pay her to criticize my poor lifestyle choices though I actually pay her for consistently laughing at my jokes. The point is that taking “rocks for jocks” was a great and therapist-endorsed idea.
The first unit of “rocks for jocks” was about rocks and minerals. So far, it was living up to its name. I was ecstatic to be learning about rocks in the lecture and touching them in the lab as well. So ecstatic, in fact, that I bought $100 worth of crystals to celebrate. I was definitely not just justifying my lavish expenditures on exquisite crystals. I was simply seeking an innovative way to practice hands-on learning. We studied mica so I bought mica, obviously. That makes more than perfect sense to me.
I figured that the investment in the rocks was an investment in my future. These rocks would serve as a valuable tool for studying throughout the semester because after all, the whole class was going to be about rocks.
Week three of “rocks for jocks” was a slap in the face. Not actually, though it felt like it. I really was wounded. Not physically, but emotionally. “Who hurt you?!” you might ask. GEOL107. And everyone who characterized the class as “rocks for jocks.” It was all a lie!
Turns out, “rocks for jocks” is a college-level course requiring studying and hard work – what a nightmare. Not only that, after unit one, the class did not mention individual rocks beyond describing the composition of the Earth’s crust (not the same thing!). I consider myself a proponent of shenanigans and the occasional prank, but a semester-long prank that would potentially tank my GPA was not as fun as the extra naps I promised my therapist.
I failed the first “rocks for jocks” quiz. I was officially dumber than a jock. Only jocks are meant to feel academically mediocre. At least that’s what “The Breakfast Club” taught me. I’m a star – or at least I used to think I was. Not only did I struggle academically, but I struggled to endure the content. I was suffering from extreme boredom and discovered that my spam emails were far more interesting than the makeup of the planet.
My passion for geology turned out to actually be a passion for geology (Shayna’s version). Shayna’s version was less about science or Earth and more about watching rocks glisten while thinking about lunch choices.
If you are looking for an easy class that fulfills your university lab requirements and boosts your GPA, I’m here to tell you that GEOL107 is actually not that class. You may be interested in GEOL105: Geological Hazards and their Human Impact, which, in a final prank, is the one people mean by “rocks for jocks!” GEOL107, despite bearing a similar name to GEOL105, is so different it hurts.