A Bet

I like to consider myself a realist. While most optimists probably think I have a cynical, pessimistic perspective, I would say I disagree. I feel like William Arthur Ward’s quote on the matter explains it nicely:  “The pessimist complains about the wind; the optimist expects it to change; the realist adjusts the sails.”

Because I can’t really take only 12 hours in a semester, I decided the best time to take J4804 would be during the summer. I’ve heard god-awful things about this class. But then again, I’ve heard god-awful things about every class the J school has to offer. “Multimedia (2150)? That group project (lol more like a single project, right?!) will kill your brains. News (2100)? Learn AP style and grammar better than you know <insert something you know really really well here> or hurl yourself off a cliff. Cross Cultural (2000)? Prepare to give your soul to a group project that makes the 2150 group project look like eating a popsicle. And these aren’t even the sequence classes. These are the baby classes! The Missourian class? Gift wrap your life and turn it in at the beginning of the semester. B1? Throw everything you know into your kitchen disposal and turn it on. B2? Hahahaha. And Convergence? Prepare for the worst Hell of all Hells.” – or so say the people who have come before me.


At this point, I’ve grown bitter towards those who complain about these classes. Nobody forced anybody to sign up. I’m pretty sure we all chose to do these classes of our own free will. But still, everyone wants to be the martyr and so we all have to suffer through the classes – and even worse – hearing about the classes. Unfortunately, I fear I’ve been just as bad. I have become so irritated with all the complaints, I’ve been complaining about the complaining – an act of hypocrisy almost worse than the initial complaints.

So I swore to myself I wouldn’t complain about 4804 this summer. When I told one of my friends who was nearing the end of the class this April – he laughed at me and told me it was impossible. And so I glared at him and sharply told him he was wrong. He bet me $5 I would stay silent. I agreed, how could I not? So he upped it to 10, then 20, and before I knew it we were shaking hands on a $40 bet. If I make it through these 7 weeks without complaining to my friends, I get $40. And I’m not about to give up 40 dollars that rest entirely on me, so I have no intention of complaining.

This leads me to the theme of this blog for this class. I’m going to take all of the “terrible” things that happen (hey, “shift happens,” right?) and write about what I learned from the experience and how I grew as a person (and a journalist – this is a journalism class after all). I’ll try to add a humorous spin to all the shift that happens (I really do love that pun) so those who aren’t in 4804, haven’t experienced 4804, or never will experience 4804 may also enjoy this.

As I tweeted before the day before 4804 began:

JOIN ME ON MY QUEST FOR FINDING POSITIVITY IN THE DOOM* KNOWN AS J4804.

*4804 is not actually “doom.”

4 thoughts on “A Bet

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