Sunday, August 26, 2012

BYU Flashback: Bocelli and the JFSB

My brother begins his college career and freshman year tomorrow at
 BYU (Brigham Young University), my alma mater!

I'm ecstatic. I'm sad I'm not there to help him get settled in but I'll pass on that role to our mom and our brother (who will be a senior this year!!!) and his wife. I have, however, gotten to take part in it from afar answering frantic phone calls about where the WILK is, where he gets his ID, where the ASB is, where the best grocery story is, etc. I've given my bro a list of places he has to eat, things to look forward to, and a few tips of things not to do, you know, trying to pass on some sage wisdom from an alum. 

I know he'll love it. 


I was listening to some classical music today. Yes, I like--nay, love--classical music. Right now it's Tchaikovsky's The Nutcracker soundtrack. Love it. Anyway. Occasionally a Bocelli track or a Josh Groban will play and since I've been doing a lot of reminiscing this weekend about my days at BYU, I thought I'd share one with you all. Don't act surprised when you get to the end.

I did not like studying in the library. I went there often, but I was not my favorite place to study. The building LOOKS pretty...and it is. But don't let that fool you.
First of all it was always cold. Second of all, I was always hungry when I was studying but unless I was in the snack zone (aka the talk zone), I had to stealthily sneak food and that was just annoying. I know, I know, I could have left and ate somewhere but hello!, I didn't have time for that. Third of all I had to find a new study spot/floor every semester. Weird, I know, but it had to be done. Until...I found a great spot my junior year on the 5th floor (the top floor). It had the most windows and therefore the most light, which makes for a very happy Gabe. Plus I felt like it was the most removed from constant traffic and so it was (theoretically) quieter and more pleasant than the other floors. Well. It was until all of the sudden all the "cool" accounting kids and their friends turned my beloved floor  into flirting central/social hour every hour. 
Yeah. Not happy about that. AT ALL.

So I moved. I tried the Eyring Science Center (my major building), but it was too noisy and busy in there. It just didn't feel right. I tried my apartment but that's a baaaaaaaaaaad idea. Too distracting and plus, when I came home I wanted to be done (mostly, let's face it, in college you are never done) with the day. 

And then.

I don't know how I discovered this but one day I was in the JFSB (Joseph F. Smith Building) on the 4th floor and I found my spot. Let's back up for a sec. This building is probably one of, if not my absolute, favorite. It's beautiful. 

It has a courtyard. WITH a fountain.
AND a spiral staircase!!!

Now. Get this.

In the above picture, see where it looks like there is a light colored rectangle in the middle? Those are sitting areas. With comfy couches, plush chairs, and table and chairs. THIS is where I delighted in studying. 

It was so quiet, cozy, and bright. There was artwork on the walls, lamps on side tables, a thick, ornate rug on the floor, and my favorite thing, a HUGE floor to ceiling window facing the courtyard for me to constantly look out of. Peaceful. Blissful. I loved it. When I was in 6th grade my mom told me that students who listened to classical music study better and retain more...or something like that. So ever since, I have always listened to classical music when I study. So. I would sit on the 4th floor of the JFSB at a table with my books and notes spread out (truthfully, so no one else would sit with me. Rude I know but a)I needed a lot of space and b) I was protective of my study area!) facing the huge window listening to Bocelli, Josoh Groban, Bach, etc. and study. I loved it. Especially when the sun was setting.


I also had my humanities classes in this building and it was here that I discovered my love for art and fed my fascination for the humanities. I remember curling up on the couches in this building during my classes and reading "The Odyssey" or studying famous artists and memorizing their works. I distinctly remember several (dozen) times when I would be listening to Bocelli tracks, pausing to allow myself to daydream of watching the sun set in Italy.
I told you that was coming. Don't act surprised!
But it's true. It didn't matter what subject I was studying (chemistry, humanities, nutrient biochem); Bocelli would come on and after a few songs, I'd set my pen down and daydream of Italy, especially if the sun was setting. Now, fun fact. Get this. I just learned this today as I was Googling pictures of the JFSB. This information is taken from here.

"In 1536, the famous Renaissance painter and sculptor, Michelangelo Buonarroti, was given a commission to renovate the Piazza del Campidoglio on the famous Capitoline Hill in Rome. This hill is adjacent to the ancient Roman Forum, the seat of government for one of the most influential western empires. The piazza renovation went through a few different designs, and lasted ten years. In the end, the piazza included an overlapping petal pattern surrounding a twelve pointed star at its center."
So now you ask. Who cares? What's the point? Read on.

"Although seen from two different vantage points, the similarity between the two locations emerges. In fact, the two are almost identical." Yup now go look at the picture of the JFSB above again. Identical.

Unbeknownst to us all, I was merely channeling the Italian connect between the JSFB and Rome. This is also means that I am meant to go to Italy. Clearly. So, now I will go indulge in Bocelli, dream of Italy, and start planning a trip. 

On a side note. Remember my post about the pen thief? Well yesterday when I was in Fresh Market, I passed by a gentleman who looked familiar. I figured he might have been a patient of mine in which case I usually try to avoid eye contact because sometimes it's really awkward running into a patient at the store. I don't think they realize sometimes how much I know about them (stooling patterns, how often and what color they pee, I mean really, I know a lot about them). Today as I was sitting in church I almost exclaimed, "AHA!!!!" The gentleman was none other than the attempted pen thief!!!! What are the chances?

Now I'm off to make my asparagus wrapped in prosciutto and stuffed with goat cheese. And dream of Italy. Again. And of the JFSB. Good times. 


Jean said...

Ah, the JFSB. Most my classes were there and it was also my favorite study spot. Best-kept secret at BYU! Thanks for reminding me. :)

Ashley Jensen said...

Where is your brother living? Mine just started too and he's in the new Heritage buildings.