I own a pug and I still don’t know if they are really real.
First of all, let me give a little background on myself. I’m Brad. A college student, and a poor one at that. I rely mostly on financial aid and scholarships to pay for all of my tuition- including books. This leads to my total dependence on the college bookstore for my needs, and therein lies the problem.
If I have learned one thing while attending my university, it is that saving money is a hard business when it comes to my tuition bill. The biggest “money saver” at MSU right now is having unbound books for students. The appeal is that a teacher can take out material that won’t be taught to students, and therefore the book costs less. Pretty sweet, right? I mean, books cost a fortune. My chemistry lab book alone this semester was $360. Any option I can have to pay less for that book is totally taken by me. But these bound books…
I hate them. I loathe them. The very thought grinds my gears. Every semester I end up getting unbound books for most, if not every class. Professors, with good intentions, are trying to save us money. That’s cool, I get that, but damn these unbound books! The problems outweigh the benefits and let me explain why.
Firstly, and most importantly, the price difference is laughable. One of my books, Molecular Cell Biology, costs $130. Unbound, naturally. The cost of a bound book? $150. That’s less than a 20% difference. And that bound book includes more information- including the ever-needed glossary and extra reading materials at the end of the book. I don’t know about most students, but I know I have read that material countless times to help get me through a concept and apply it to a scenario, other than a simple homework calculation. I like that information! And for a measly $20 more, I would pay for it. After all, I’m getting slammed for the 5 other books I have to buy, so what is another $20 on my $600-$700 bill? Barely a dent. And what’s worse? I can’t even order the hardcover version through the bookstore and have it placed on my student account- thus forcing me to accept the loose-leaf version and covertly wipe away my tears as I leave the store.
And when I get home, the only feasible way to store the unbound catastrophe is in a binder. A cheap, $2.50 piece of plastic and metal rings is used to hold my pricey textbook. I don’t know if it is the obsessive-compulsive scientist in me, but I have to mention this nightmare. Imagine turning the bright, glossy, thin pages while they are held by that untrustworthy metal clasp. You know what happens every time? You tear the page. “It’s just one page Brad, don’t worry about it!” I try to tell myself, but it happens again. And again. I’ve trolled the bowls of the internet for a binder suitable for perfect preservation of my text, but I’ve found that the cheap-o Walmart brand compares hand in hand with the Cadillac of binder makers. Each will destroy a bit of your soul with every turned page.
And what’s more- storing the loose-leaf books in the ruddy binders isn’t appealing! I have a whole bookshelf loaded with black binders, barely holding the frail textbook pages within them. I, at one time, found my bookshelf as a source of pride. “Hey DJ, buddy, look here. See all the books on there? See that one? Analytical Geometry and Calculus? Yeah, I took that course. Made an A. I’m pretty awesome.” A bragging right worth having. My once colorful and engaging shelf has turned into a dreary graveyard of mangled pages covered with black binders for tombstones.
If I had to wrap up this entire argument in a single sentence, it would be this: Please don’t force me to buy loose-leaf books, I really don’t enjoy the experience in the slightest. I cannot understand why they are so expensive, I hate the destruction of my material in the infernal binders, and I don’t get to brag about how much of an academic badass I am when people stare at all of my books on the shelf. I have made the point quite clear to the bookstore staff (sorry, but not sorry), and also my teachers. Sadly, without anyone else on my side, I foresee the end of bound books entirely in favor of the loose-leaf demon spawn I’m forced to buy every semester.
Umm, robots? Or dinosaurs… Depends! Did we bring dinos back, like in Jurassic Park? I’m all for science! Let me turn the question back on you, dearest tumblrbot. WALL-E or T-Rex? Who is to say? I mean, I’m sure you have an answer as well, yes? (Totally thinking you’re going with robot by the way). Well, because I like the odds, I’m going with robot. I wish to appease the mighty robotic nation and to let it rise to power.