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I Am A Bonafide Student

Usually the evidence that one is a student can be found on their desk; piles and piles of textbooks and reference books and note books and this-that-other books. It’s true I have those, but what makes me a student right now is that I am poor. And for the most part it is perhaps a lack of money that people recognise with being a student in general.

Students have little money, a well-known fact. They tend to be studying more than working and my god do those books cost the earth. So it confused me then when the salesman clocked me as I walked in the door, and upon leaving, accosted me with his products.

He asked if I were a student and I said yes. There, that one word should have been enough, but he goes into this quick-as-lightening speech about the product he’s selling, that costs £30 no less. Oh but it’s good, he says, because if you buy it you get £100 worth extra free. These were cosmetics, expensive cosmetics, so while £100 free sounds brilliant, in reality it doesn’t stretch far. And for something you’ve never used, £30 is a lot to spend at once, no matter the free extras. If it turns out to be rubbish, £30 has been wasted.

After his speech he was clearly expecting me to buy it, so I had to paraphrase the “I’m a student” phrase a few times. “I have no money to spend on something I’ve never heard of that is so ridiculously expensive”.

When I first signed up to my course, I felt like I was pretending, that I wasn’t really studying. But three weeks in and I can truly say that I am one of thousands upon thousands. And even though I’m still working out how to pace myself and making myself ill through too much study at once, I love it, I really do.

But cosmetic counters are out. I’ll walk the long way round the store to avoid them if necessary.



October 23, 2010, 7:59 pm

My student status keeps fluctuating, as do my city of residence, job, and several other factors. I keep getting myself hooked on some fancy face wash or expensive snack, then having to cut it back out again when my finances take a dive! I know just what you’re talking about.

What are you studying?

Charlie: I’m studying History, though I might add something else as a “with”. I’m glad that for now I have a few more books to read because that was unfortunately the first thing that was out! Have you been studying one subject or quite a few (as you say fluctuating)?


October 25, 2010, 9:28 pm

I’m back to being a full-time student (post.grad) after working for a year and a half, and I can so relate to this course. I’m having to wave all sorts of small luxuries goodbye (and I’m talking luxuries of the daily cup of cappuccino sort here, so nothing extravagant). I don’t get where people get the notion that students have lots of money to burn.

Charlie: I’m looking forward to any posts you may write about your current studies! My only guess is that people think grants etc are a lot, but then those need to be spent on books. Coffee’s out here too, or at least I’ll be limiting it to meet-ups that simply include coffee stops.


October 25, 2010, 9:29 pm

…and by “course” I mean “post”. I bet you can see where my brain went there :P

Charlie: No worries, I got your meaning :)


October 28, 2010, 12:04 am

I graduated officially in 2005 with a degree in American Sign Language. A year later I was taking classes here and there in statistics and biology…then I moved and took a couple of English classes. I’m now considering going back for a degree in something computer/web-related. Sooo…definitely fluctuating :-)

Charlie: Wow, I didn’t know it was possible to get a degree in sign language. A great mix of subjects, I’m impressed! I know people who’ve done Computer Science, and it sounds good if you want a break from essay writing, though the assignments can be long. I only just got your email from a month ago, sorry about that (I forgot to check that email account) but I’ll get back to you on the Hindi within the week :)



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