Part of my responsibility as assistant news editor is to gather 10 quotes a day for the “Word on the Street” (WOTS) sections. Being new to the news team and a WOTS virgin, it really didn’t seem that hard at first, considering Cal Poly has almost 19,000 students. It should be easy to get 10 of them to talk to me. But it’s not.
I had to ask 43 people on Wednesday to be in our WOTS section before I met our 10-quote quota. People see me walking down a sidewalk with my notepad and a camera, and they purposely avoid me. I understand some people are shy, but it’s not like I have a gun.
“Um, sorry, but … ” she says. “Let me guess, you’re late for class?” I say. “Yeah!” she says, running off … lying.
It’s pretty easy to tell when someone is lying. It seems odd for someone to be walking so slowly that they’re barely moving and concentrating so hard on their iPhone screen that they aren’t aware of their surroundings when they’re late for class. People are usually in a hurry when they’re late, or at least looking like they have somewhere to be.
It’s one thing to be late to class and not have time to talk. That’s completely understandable. But it’s kind of lame when you say you’re really late for class, then walk 100 feet away and stop to talk with that cute boy you met at the Delta Chi party last Thursday. At least be honest: say you’re not interested. That’s fine. I respect that.
“Sorry, I’m late for class.” he says. “Um, sorry. I’m in a really big hurry,” she said.
I see WOTS as students getting their five seconds of fame on the front of the Mustang Daily — not something you should run from. Everyone reads WOTS: it’s fast, easy and sometimes funny to read. Yes, people can make complete fools of themselves with the things they say, but that’s half the fun. People will read the quotes, think about them for a minute, then forget they ever read it and move on with their day. That’s how the human brain works.
I didn’t want this post to be a complete bitchfest. But, oh well. All I’m trying to say is when I come up and ask you to be in our WOTS section, embrace it. Or at least decline nicely and give me your number so I can take you out to dinner next week.