Oh, Where Have All the Good People Gone?

Posted: March 19, 2011 in UWO
Tags: , , , ,

It is March 19th.

By the end of today, all USC elections – both internal and external, barring the election of the Speaker of Council – will have been completed.

The council positions for the 2011/12 year will have been filled, a new executive will have been elected, and new councilors will get about the business of learning how to fulfill their roles to the best of their ability.

But after the excitement surrounding AGM parts I and II dies down things will go back to normal and everyone will go back to their respective lives.  And at that point you will realize just how many more people you see on campus during elections season than during the death months of November and December.

See, during first semester people go from moving in, partying during O-week, cramming hard for exams, to taking a well-deserved Holiday break.  Everyone is focussed on their lives and in first semester our lives don’t interact in quite the same ways as they do in elections season.  When I go about my life in first semester, I focus on my life on its own and not the lives of others.

Then when second semester rolls around, I seem to be interacting with nearly twice as many people as I did in first semester.  When we come back in January, everyone is gearing up for their respective campaigns, whether USC Presidential or otherwise.  People are taking meetings left, right, and center while trying to put together platforms that appeal to students while keeping them feasible.  It doesn’t matter that the campaign period doesn’t start until the start of February, people are already getting out there and making themselves more visible.

From that point until the middle to end of March there is a constant deluge of people that you know hanging around the UCC Atrium, the Spoke, the Wave, USC Council Chambers, and your favourite hangout spots around campus.  You simply cannot get away from them.

Apart from it simply being elections period, there is another indirect reason why you see so many people you know during this time of year: facial recognition.  From September to February of each year each university student meets any number of new people and many of those new people become new Facebook friends.  The January-February period is outstanding in this regard in and of itself as friend lists jump in exponential rates as candidates meet new people and try to round up votes.

Therefore, under the facial recognition hypothesis, it isn’t so much that you see all the people you know all of a sudden, but rather that you recognize people’s faces and start seeing them around campus where your eyes would have slipped right past them in the past.  It looks like there are more people that you know, but just that you know more people and by the time elections season rolls around those faces start to register to a more meaningful extent.

Then again, it could just be that more people are appearing more often, because that is certainly the case to some extent.  Either way, it will be irrelevant when everyone goes back into hibernation to study for April exams.

And then campus will be a lonely place once again, where your friends hide out in underground study holes carved into various buildings across campus.  You will wonder where the days went when you couldn’t walk for five steps without running into someone.

And you will count down the days to the next USC elections period…

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