It's 9 a.m. at your local coffee shop. The charade begins. Penn students sprint to the counter, bark orders at the baristas, scan their mobile apps and demand their coffees after 30 seconds. Pause. What kind of degeneracy is this? Does Penn no longer have time for politeness? Are we too busy to act like anything other than spawns of Satan?
We're not too busy. We just think we're too busy. Let's be real, the chances you stayed up until 2 a.m. watching Grey's Anatomy after fucking around in your GSR for three hours are pretty high. Penn takes busyness and makes it competitive. Which isn't surprising, because Penn takes eating in front of Frontera and makes it competitive. You say you're on two publications; I say I'm on four. You say you're taking five credits; I say I'm taking five and a half, plus doing an independent study, so I haven't slept in months. You say you're screwed for that test; I say I'm more screwed—never mind that Mark's Cafe is my diet and VP is my home. The response to "How are you" is never just "Good"; It's "Ugh, so tired", or something even more needlessly dramatic.
Do you know who is busy and tired? People who don't have time to complain they're busy and tired. During the Space Race, did NASA scientists tell everyone how overburdened and overworked they were? NO. They were too focused on getting shit done. If you think you're busy now, wait until you have a full–time job, have to pay all your own bills and not be 400 pounds in the meantime. Or wait until you have a build a bona fide rocket. Have you tried hurtling something into space? Try complaining then.
Penn loves the aesthetic of busyness. Being over–stressed and underslept seems like the only acceptable way to be. When did it become unfashionable to sprawl out on College Green with a papaya drink and meditate on abundance? Highbrow wants the return of leisure: Cards Against Humanity, movie marathons and long, aimless walks through West Philly. Idleness is in, competitive busyness is out. Remember: you have the same number of hours in the day as Beyonce. Who is now pregnant with twins. You're not that busy.