My Terry Fox Fantasy

Early Spring 1980

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The Spinners sing "Working My Way Back to You", from March 1980
March-April 1980
Spring Term gets underway as my last undergraduate term.


Thu 20 Mar  M
Zoölogy lab has a great view of the grounds around Müller (Laboratory Building at Penn State).  Snow floated to the grass, but it did not stick.  Somehow this kind of biology seems so different than the too easy ones at the Wilkes-Barre Campus a few years ago.  I could have taken zoölogy in Winter Term 1976-7, but they then scheduled it to conflict with organic chemistry.  Still, I wonder just what I missed by such an overeasy course.  I feel cheated, but this one (course) could be too much!
Sat 22 Mar  R
I received two pleasant surprises with GRE's in the mail.  One was just that the results came in so early -- four weeks later than (when I took) the test -- and the results themselves:  verbal 580 -- quantitative 660 -- analytical 540, 76-83-58- percentiles, respectively.
Tue 1 Apr
April fool!  It's the middle of Holy Week, and I don't feel bad, but I don't feel good, either.  Sunday night came with insomnia which made yesterday awful.  Also yesterday, Dr Murray (my mentor) wasn't in.  I think I'd like to be like Martin Luther, a professor at a university whether this be the Middle Ages or now....
I should mull over my drawings from the engineering liberary last Saturday, especially of Brian Butler.  ...I find art more fun than work; it is pure creation.

Note: this is a live sketch of a student in the
Engineering Library. I didn't become Alopex until 1985!

Sun 6 Apr  M
It was a beautiful Easter.  I took my sketchbook outside and sketched a few scenes around the former motel (where I'm currently living).  I suppose color would have been even better.  Still I feel good, despite the lingering doubts about this summer.  Unemployment is rising, and a recession is on!
Thu 10 Apr  R
I assaulted the job front, and it's fighting back quite hard.  (Unemployment had begun to soar at this time.)  I wish I'd find out about my graduate assistantship soon; I hate hanging in limbo like this.  (That will be over three months later.)
What a weirdo day!  (What a coincidence -- weeks later that kid with lymphoma uses a similar phrase to Terry Fox in the movie "Terry": The worst ... is all my friends {are} so weirded out by me.)  Last night, our figure drawing class joined the 120 class in 315 VAB (drawing class in the Visual Arts Building at Penn State), and from now on Wednesday nights, we will do so.  I think the graduate assistant from 120 would make a great character in my collection.  (Dave DiPietro resembled my math professor at the Wilkes-Barre Campus, Paul Putter.)   Today in 122, I found an orange on the floor of the men's room and a drawing book still lying on the desk in 212 VAB.  I haven't had any weird experiences since last Good Friday night when I had my cadaver dream (involving the passion of Christ).  I'd love to dream that I had my assistantship (not until 21 July) and a job when I get out (hasn't happened yet in 2010).
Tuesday in 122 we started pastels (which I still have in 2010), and, as if I don't have enough expense, I need color pencils for next time (which I still have in 2010!).  Drawing in color was certainly more fun than dissecting fetal pigs (in zoölogy lab).  I shudder to think about next week; it just never lets up. Although I like being busy, I don't want to end up starving in June on the street.  (Actually, I ended up on welfare in the summer, so I definitely want to change that summer of 1980!)
More about last night.  I received encouraging words from Bill Welsh on my old drawings (in my figure drawing class, in which I received the only A of all the drawing classes), and the sunset bathed the western heavens with rainbow light (on my way to that class). 

A cartoon which appeared in the Daily Collegian
and I redrew on Thursday, 10 April 1980 Jerry Brown drops out of the presidential race.

Wed 16 Apr R
Monday depressed me, Tuesday proved to be a pip, and the Anderson coördinator didn't help either.  Last night, I was tired enough to sleep from 6:30 to 9:40, but not enough to go back until 3:30 AM -- yeech!  Jeff Wxxxxxxx gets on my nerves (at the student radio station).
I had to mention to Tony (a neighbor at 13, while I was at 10) that A this is the first term (at Penn State) I didn't change anything (in courses) and B I never locked myself out.  Monday caused me to drop (Art) 222, and Tuesday saw me leave the housekey home.
Thu 17 Apr R
I feel thoroughly frustrated today.  Someone took my sketchbook with my 222 drop slip and card and my zoölogy lab notes.
Fri 18 Apr  F
Today I regained what I lost, and I decided to keep 222, because I need it for graduation.  I would be one credit short, and I don't want to spend the summer in courses.  I want to travel through New England and Canada for a month, then come back to State College for the Arts Festival around my birthday.
I will just have to endure the load at twelve credits.  Dropping things seem to be just too convenient at this time.  I may never get a chance to make this trip again.  (From 2010, this statement foreshadows the upcoming events.  The following actually happened:)
I was explaining how I draw political cartoons in biology lab.  I suppose knowledge of human anatomy helps draw political figures.  I was trying to explain that earlobes can be attached or loose, so it's important to get them correctly drawn.


Tue 22 Apr  M
It was a depressing date for us Anderson supporters.  There was one fellow who had a sandwich sign at the polls.  I just went in and voted.  Originally I had offered a cartoon for a poster which emphasized the choice between Carter and Reagan as a choice between Scylla and Charybdis.  I suppose it was too intellectual for them!
Anyway, on Todd Jeffers' show on WMAJ, Brian Golden impersonated Jimmy Carter for the primaries.  I finally figured it out (in 2010) that primaries in Pennsylvania are the third Tuesday in May on offyears and the fourth Tuesday in April on years of presidential elections, id est, leap years.
With all the turbulence over the past month, I forgot to mention the death of Jean-Paul Sartre last week.  Existential nausea describes much of what I feel right now.  Saturday Night Live had s sketch where Sartre arrives in heaven.
"What did you expect?" he was asked.
"Nothing," he replied.
Bill Murray announced that Sartre had passed from being into nothingness as well!  Obviously, the comedians don't understand just what is being and what is nothingness!
Wed 23 Apr  F
Well, as expected, Ronald Reagan won the Republican primary in Pennsylvania.  John B Anderson should consider an independent run.  The Republicans are so much in love with the former governor of California (in stark contrast to Jerry Brown with the Democrats).
George Bush doesn't impress me as a moderate.  I certainly would now switch registration for him.  I supposed that I had such low expection I was not disappointed.

The squence of sketches I drew on Easter, Sunday, 6 April 1980  These scenes are just outside the former motelroom I occupied from 1978-84.








Many of these drawings I actually made in 1980, along with the diary.  The fantasy drawings and entries will be noted as done in 2010.

If we didn't have dreams, we'd have only reality.  -- Porkypine, from the comic "Pogo"