That controversial time I read a book…


So the other day I’m sitting with a bunch of students outside the Studentenwohnheim, chilling atop a blanket and enjoying some nice weather. Thinking I’d have a chance to read and do some writing – the others were planning on sunbathing so I figured it’d be quiet enough for me to work uninterrupted – I’d hauled out several notepads: two for brainstorming, one for outlining essays, two books: An Introduction to Psycholinguistics and A Short History of Time and a shit ton of pens, highlighters and notecards.

Now the presence of the books was in no way obnoxious. In actuality: I barely got a chance to get started before we all got to talking and I would go on to sit with a pile of stationary, non-boisterous work at my side for a good few hours before tiring of brushing away spiders and ants and taking everything back inside.

People who know me know of my obsessions with certain disciplines – scientific, academic or otherwise – most of which are lifelong obsessions. One could argue that the most visible manifestation of my neurotic obsessions, apart from a clear biased tendency to speak more than is commonly acceptable on the same non-standard topics in general non-academic conversation on that topic, is that I hoard a number of books, films and other mediums of information on said discipline.

My interest in theories of the universe, time and space first developed when I was twelve and visited NASA for the first time, where I witnessed a space shuttle launch and met an astronaut. It is perhaps important to note that it was at this time that I was heavily involved in the sciences and was seriously considering studying the natural sciences and pursuing a career in either marine biology or physical cosmology, which I ended up opting against for the humanities as my career interests altered. Although I would not claim to be an expert, I still follow NASAs online networking sites and avidly read up on space news, but would, as it were, only consider cosmology to be a casual obsession of mine.

That I was reading — well, I wasn’t physically reading at that time, as I mentioned I didn’t end up getting the opportunity to — better said: that I was assumedly in the process of reading Stephen Hawking’s A Short History of Time in German was met with heavy skepticism by one of our ten person group — who I will not describe here for sake of politeness — who then, after flipping through the book a bit — apparently skimming past my notes and failing to notice the hand-written, self-reflective essay titled Das Universum dehnt sich aus lying atop my pile of work, proceeded to announce to the group that they didn’t think I was actually reading it.


Now that’s a statement.


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