The Compostmodernist

Dieter Huneryager

The virus that’s been spreading across campus like some kind of virus finally caught up with me last weekend. For a few days, my life consisted of nothing but short-lived naps and feeling like doodie. Imagine my joyous surprise, then, when, upon dragging my red-nosed, bleary-eyed self to the hallway, I encountered a few pieces of paper taped to a mirror informing me that I was beautiful. I had no idea. This put me in a profound state of euphoria until I looked directly into the aforementioned mirror and realized the damn thing had lied to me. My face was still ravaged by the ickiness of my ailment and it occurred to me that the notes were being disingenuous.
To the left of the mirror was a poster of a football player looking deeply somber. Below him, a caption proclaimed that not every bulimic is trying to fit into a size-two dress. As anyone who has ever lived in a campus environment for any significant period of time knows, posters such as these which at first sight appear to be some sort of ironic satire are, more often than not, the portend of yet another awareness-themed week that no one pays attention to but probably cost hundreds of dollars and dozens of hours to put together. I’m pretty sure this week’s was Body Image Awareness Week, but I’m far too full of apathy to look it up.
Awareness Weeks are a bewildering-but-harmless part of every Lawrentian’s life. One Monday every year, for example, students walk out of their doors and are confronted with signs informing them that it’s Brain Injury Awareness Week. Upon realizing this doesn’t affect them in any way, the student will remain vaguely aware of the fact that it’s Brain Injury Awareness Week and then completely forget about it after the seven days are over. And that’s generally how the cycle of Awareness Weeks continue at Lawrence, except for Sexual Assault Awareness Week, the most depressing Awareness Week of them all.
Interestingly, the only truly irritating Awareness Weeks are those during which LU busts out some sort of Main Hall-centric gimmick in order to raise awareness that we should give them more money. The two such weeks that come to mind this year were the “Light! More Light!” (“Money! More Money!”) Week, during which Main Hall’s teet of knowledge was adorned with numerous spotlights giving a kitschy literal meaning to Goethe’s last words, as well as London Week, during which the Union Jack flew proudly below the American flag above Main Hall in order to publicize Lawrence’s London Centre. Though I am by no means a filthy pinko, I take issue with our sacred Main Hall being used as a cheesy advertisement for LU’s British extension, especially on President’s Day.
Going back to this week’s Body Image Awareness Week theme, I have a fun idea. If there are people whose emotions are fragile enough to be cheered up by a piece of paper taped onto a residence hallway mirror telling them they look beautiful exactly as they are, then it might be fun to put up another note on every hallway mirror on campus next week saying “Just kidding, you’re actually pretty ugly,” just to toy with their emotions. How about it, science?

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