I was a mathlete, my teachers always called me the Bell Curve Breaker. I hadn’t gotten a math problem wrong since fifth grade. Now here I sat miles away from home, at college with a full scholarship to MIT Cambridge. My brain thinks of number theory like a simple two plus two equation. Yet there is one class I have failed to pass, I attempted it freshman year. I need to pass to graduate.
I, Lavander Gainsboro, sit on the curb outside of the Arts building failing color theory 101. Everyone who had ever taken it had called it “Art for the unartistic.” Terrified to return, there is one thing I have never admitted. I am color blind. I have never needed to worry about this before, not once, I had taken other types of “creative minded” classes in order to escape my torture.
I ponder in my jeans and jacket, the start of spring air blowing trash around a closed off parking lot filled with art majors works that are too large to be created inside. Two statues, a bronze monolith, a jungle gym made of mannequins, and this painted garbage can.
There is nothing I have ever detested more in my entire life. Art could be the end of my entire college career, but we have this one teacher with tenure, he has been here forever. He will not pass me no matter what I try.
What in the world is wrong with me, a person who could easily make it into MENSA, I could have settled years ago and become a math teacher. Imagine with me for just a moment your life, near perfect. Valedictorian, supremely high marks on your S.A.T.S, your parents smiling brightly from the front row of graduation supporting you every step of the road. One day, its all gone, you are panic stricken sneaking out of the back of a college classroom sweat head to toe, your hair a mess of knots, and now grays as well. Those are new, you never had them till now. Slumped, shoulders slouched, legs splayed out, feet pointing out pointless. Staring at the messiest work of art you believe you have ever seen.
How in the world does the whole world change like that, what did I ever do to become this woman who can’t bare to even listen to one person present on the color blue, never the less five people. All of which have different ideas of what “blue” really is.
Finals are right around the corner if I can pull off the final then I can at least get a D. No I don’t want a D I have never had a D. I dropped out of this class the first time around. It didn’t make sense to me then and it doesn’t now.
I do have that one hope, and I have a bit of an advantage, the final is an essay that is read in front of class. One page, so simple, on what is quite possibly the hardest question of all time... what is art? Here I go, standing up now. I am breathing steadily. In, out, one step, two steps, three steps. The comfort of math soothes me. Math is set, constant, calculated. Art, is hell.