Friday, February 15, 2013

Mark quit

One weekend when I went to do my office work, I noticed that Mark’s desk and shelf were all cleaned and empty. There was only one small box of books and papers with his professor’s name written on it. I thought that he had moved to a new office. The next day, I realized that he quit his graduate studies without telling anyone. I felt very sorry for him because I had the same thought a lot of times. He was a very nice guy with very close Florida ties; every time he said something, he would say “Back to Florida.” He was younger than Porter and me. He was a very smart guy with good grades. He was a little slow in the field because he was big and heavy plus wore glasses. Porter was the opposite; he did not have excellent grades but was good with his hands. Because he had the lowest GRE scores, our department chairman did not want to accept him at first.  My professor insisted on accepting him since they were from the same college and they were like real brothers.
     I felt that we were so close to finishing. It was the third year of our studies; it was too close to quit. But Mark did; he got a job in town. A few months later, he came to our office for a visit. I told him that I was surprised that he quit. I was the one who was supposed to quit. His professor was good. He always had an assistant in the lab to help him and after all, he found time to sit in the office to read a novel or newspaper. I never even heard any disagreements between them and I was shocked that he just got up and left.  Oh well, I was not in the position to judge him.
     Not long after, he came to visit our office again; he and his friend were talking about how to get back at their professors, that is, in their imaginations or dreams. It was quiet fun to listen to how many bad tricks they could think of. They had to hate their professor really bad or maybe it was their own way to get out their frustrations. He returned to a different department a year later, took another year to finish his Masters degree with a different professor and later found a job in New England.