Napper Valley

UC Davis Quad
A lovely sunny Monday lunchtime. This is the UC Davis Quad. You will notice on the right there are blue hammocks set up with people taking naps inside. This is very much encouraged in Davis (also in nearby Napper Valley). Taking a nap is good for you. What do you call it when someone is pretending to be asleep? Fake Snooze. I haven’t tried the hammocks myself, they are usually all occupied. Ironically they didn’t have these when people were camping on the Quad years ago in the ‘Occupy’ protests. Back then, UC Davis was put on the map of infamy by the ‘Pepper Spray Incident’. Did you hear about the peanut who was pepper-sprayed? He was a salted. Peanut. Ha ha, ha ha. It’s very peaceful here now, though we still have protests and a number of marches, as you would expect. This for example was March 18. Sorry I appear to have been possessed by the spirit of Tommy Cooper.

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boards don’t hit back

boards at the quad oct2014 sm

(Click on the image to see a close-up). This time of year sees a noticeable increase in the number of these wooden sandwich boards that you find all over the UC Davis campus. Most of them advertise fraternities, sororities, clubs, groups, chapters, paragraphs, commas, and other things I do not understand. There’s a sign that simply says ‘Join Alpha Sig’, so I thought, ok board, you told me to so I will. It is probably some kind of Canadian mutant super hero team. And then I thought, actually I had better not, Alpha Sig might be the name of some alien robot (it certainly sounds like it) whose mission is to enslave the earth, and I can’t be getting involved in that sort of nonsense. And then I thought, why would Alpha Sig, with his (I am just assuming he’s a he, thought it’s probably not a question I would ask an alien robot, “oh by the way oh evil one, oh actually nothing it’s none of my business, get back to destroying that city”) advanced alien technology, why use such an antiquarian painted-wooden form of communication, in this age of social media and facebooks and hashtags. By the way, young people of Davis, please don’t say the word “hashtag” in front of other actual words at the end of your sentences, seriously, just don’t. Not out loud. Speaking of which, all the while I sketched this I was forced to listen to a group of young people talking in that way they talk, those ‘conversations’ they insist on having, where one person says something and then another person and so on. I had no headphones to listen to football podcasts because they were broken (where was Alpha Sig and his/her advanced alien technology when I needed it? Painting wooden boards probably). There they were talking about young people things like going to class, partying, and how absolutely awful their one other room-mate who-isn’t-there-right-now is. Almost an hour of whiny nonsense. I know people have this idea that overheard conversations are great catalysts for all sorts of creativity but they’re wrong, because they aren’t, they’re just boring and you should avoid them always. And so there’s all these boards, colourful and inviting, wanting you to JOIN IN and be PART of them, and evidently they work because those frat houses dotted around the outskirts of campus don’t just trash themselves you know.

These boards are up on the north side of the Quad, next to the Memorial Union (and the CoHo, where I get my lovely Thai curry pho). I couldn’t be bothered to draw the rest of it.