The herd of cows ambushed me from the parking lot and pushed my car through the parking lot and. Eventually, I was left alone on what at first seemed to be the uncharted plains of the Vernal Pools Reserve, considering there was not a single trail to be seen for miles. As I paced the tall grasses, I heard several soft popping sounds and a gust of warm wind.
Turning back, I saw a peculiar specimen, a horrendous breed both in physical appearance and etiquette. He was not an upright individual but instead his body bent backwards. So far did it go back that his head was stuck in his anus. Because of this position their vision was compromised and their eyes evolved to sit atop their waist. Similarly, their speech was also impeded and had to communicate through their rears. Every word they uttered was followed by the release of a flatulence, which was not just a release of breath but a genuine fart that smelled of fecal matter and Pavilion burritos.
“I… am… Butkus,” said the Creature. “Who… are… you?” I responded with my name and, the name of my school; I was certain he would recognize the innovation and prestige of “University of California, UC Merced.” The school is after all the youngest university and beacon that will lead the future to success— what with students like me.
The Creature stood still in front of me, his eyes looked up from his groin area where they were located. I asked him if he had heard of the school’s but not even the lightest toot escaped his body. I found it preposterous someone, would be so ignorant as to not know of UC UC Merced and proceeded to educate Butkus on my university.
I began by explaining the diversity of courses we students are required to take and the abundance of knowledge we take in. I couldn’t finish my lecture without mentioning the student body and the campus’ expansion; I gave detail on the new housing buildings, parking area, dining center, and downtown administrative building where the chancellor makes decisions.
Butkus didn’t express the same enthusiasm and apologized for not seeing the greatness of the institution. He admitted he was confused on the practices I described. In regards to the course requirements, Butkus said he did not see the point of students exhausting their intellect on classes that did not align with the future they hoped to pursue. If the students were to lead the future to success, as I had said, and have already selected their path, then he would imagine attention would be given to developing the specialized skills necessary in their desired field, rather than worrying about performing well in a course whose teachings won’t be utilized by them. Butkus argued the yearly influxes of students, and that the overall manner the university was developing, was a disservice to the existing student body already had enough trouble enrolling in necessary courses. The sights of the university’s highest leaders seem to be set on the completion of infrastructure and accumulation of paying students, instead of investing knowledgeable personnel that can resolve student’s educational and mental concerns— and not look out for their own professional interests. I would never dare repeat in either speech or print the insulting words Butkus evacuated from his rear, especially to a university-educated on my level of intellect.
I would not stand for the slander he uttered against my school and myself. I proclaimed that he has not experienced the and, therefore, has no authority to reason that it is a poor system. He turned his bent back to me replied with his usual flatulence, “Neither do your representatives if they experience the university from the comfort of the administrative offices everyday— away from you and your concerns. I may have my head up my arse, but they are the ones who are full of shit.”
For my creative writing post, I decided to do an imitation of Jonathan Swift’s Gulliver’s Travels that satirizes the effects of a poor administration on a university University heads don’t always cater to the needs of their students as they advertise they do. I admired the way Swift wove his criticism of the English into his work in a fairly discrete manner. To achieve the same effect, I tried to use the same irony and outlandishness scenarios. The encounter between Butkus and proud college Gulliver, for example, is a replication of the scene in the novel where the king of Brobdingnag questions the efficacy of the English government. In my rendition, I use the narration like Swift, where Gulliver reports through his voice what was said by the other character and creates a distance between the criticism and himself. He becomes an ultimately unreliable, unaware narrator that doesn’t realize he is bringing to the attention of the reader he vowed not to repeat. Butkus’ physical appearance, along with his reasoning for looking down at the university system, serves as irony to point out the idiocy of administrative staff who try to ignore real issues altogether. Butkus may literally have his head up his rear and lacks experience in higher education, but, despite this, he is still able to see the flaws and negligence done by the university heads. It is the administration who has their heads up their behinds because they do not realize the exist of these issues, or refuse to address because they have another agenda to fulfill. Gulliver’s lack of awareness, although he boasts of his intellect and the knowledge he gained from attending university, is a product of the mismanaged and corrupted system as a result. Despite this creative piece being centered around UC Merced, I think this piece, like Swift’s novel, can be applied to any form of leadership, whether social or political; an interest in advancing a person’s own agenda and ignoring, or being oblivious to, the needs of people they are suppose to look out for is not limited to the scenario I presented.