Today after walking out of a discussion section in MS, I spotted my stats professor from Spring quarter last year. I didn’t really know him that well, but he would often talk to me because I would go to class in gym clothes and he would toss out encouraging comments to me about how it was good that I worked out. I never really thought it would be any more than an exchange of pleasantries, but I guess I was proved wrong today.
As I neared him in the hall, I made eye contact and just smiled a small smile because I doubted that he would recognize me. He saw me as I passed him and said, “Hey!” I turned around, surprised, and replied, “You remember me?” He gave me a fatherly kind of look and said, “Of course!” Even though I don’t go to the gym that much anymore, I happened to be going today of all days and was dressed for it so I suppose it was pretty reminiscent of Spring quarter. I then proceeded to talk with him about how each of us were doing, what I do when I work out, what he is teaching this quarter, and what I’m majoring in. He wished me luck on my finals after I told him “Well, take care, professor!”, trying to sound like I meant it to be much more than the usual conversational phrase.
I never thought I’d get to talk to one of my professors like I used to with my high school teachers. I guess I found it easy to blend in with the huge number of other students in my class, constantly telling myself that to my professors, I was no different than anyone else so why bother trying to stand out.
I think I give some of my professors and T.A.’s too little credit for how much they care. That conversation really made my day though.