Nothing defined freshman dorm room jams better than Jack Johnson’s “Flake”, which became the soundtrack to one particularly cruel honors philosophy paper I had at the end of first semester.

Dr. P, my philosophy professor–who looked like a cross between Richard Dreyfuss and the dad from the Wild Thornberrys cartoon­–had given us a final paper that would determine a large chunk of our grade: Choose 3-5 philosophers for a dinner party and narrate what their dinner conversation would be.


I had a solid B in the class, but I was shooting for the stars. Maybe, somehow, if I nailed this paper, I’d get an A overall. It would have to be perfect. I chose Confucius, Sartre and a few others I can’t remember as dinner guests.

The paper was 20 pages long and agonizing to create. After bleary-eyed hours of tweaking each paragraph, I just said, “F*ck it” and turned it in.

When I received my report card over winter break, I couldn’t believe what I saw in the grade column for philosophy: A.

Thank you, Dr. P, for finally giving me that hard-earned A.

Thank you, hottie dorm room poster, for the eye candy while I toiled away.

Thank you Cup O Noodle, for fueling me ‘til the morning light.

And thank you Jack Johnson, for a paper-writing jam that was just right.

Aforementioned eye candy poster, circa 2002

Aforementioned eye candy poster, circa 2002