The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

The Independent Voice of Southern Methodist University Since 1915

The Daily Campus

SMU students gather around a bucket of markers to write an encouraging note to put in “Welcome to the Shelter” kits at event in mid-April on SMU’s campus.
Dallas homeless recovery center, The Bridge, is a home
Morgan Shiver, Contributor • June 20, 2024
Instagram

At the theater, don’t forget your manners

I don’t enjoy math. I mean I really do not care for it. There’s something about all of the rules and formulas, this sign here and that symbol there—quite frankly it gives me a stomachache.

But, that doesn’t mean I don’t respect mathematics or those who are good at it. On the contrary, I thank God for mathematicians, because if it were up to me to solve the world’s mathematical problems, we’d be living in huts and riding camels. Just because I don’t have a particular taste for the subject or a particular interest in it, doesn’t mean that I completely despise every aspect of it and the people who do it. Yet, often, that’s exactly what I see from my peers—and occasionally from myself. I think this is a philosophy that we all need to take a moment to step back and consider from time to time, because it’s these varied interests and skills that allow us to specialize, and thus be more devoted to the things we truly love.

This Wednesday, I saw the Meadows School production of “The Miser.” I admit, the play was not one hundred percent my cup of tea, but it was still an enjoyable experience. Watching these people work their craft and observing the intricacies of a practice that they are far more advanced in than I am, it is inspiring. It’s the same sort of fascination I have watching construction on a bridge or an artist draw a caricature. There’s a lot to learn from watching someone who knows that they’re doing what they are good at, or at the very least a lot to be respected. Yet, while sitting in the third row waiting for the show to start, I couldn’t help overhear the conversation of the people behind me. One was complaining that they had to be there for a class, the other complaining that she got dragged there and didn’t have to be there for class. Both were entirely negative about the entire event before the show had even started. “

Why do we have to sit through this, it’s so stupid” and “I cannot wait to leave at intermission” was the basic gist of their ranting. The whole situation really hurt me, and I’m not even involved in the show.

I understand if someone isn’t an “arts” person, just the same way I know I’m not a “math” person. But if I walked into statistics every Monday, sat down and said, “This is stupid and pointless,” there’s no way I’d ever be able to even remotely appreciate the subject. As a part of the same community—be it the community of SMU or just our community as a whole—it seems only fair to at the very least pay a little respect to the people who work hard to do the things that we can’t or won’t. Otherwise, how we can expect others to reciprocate that appreciation toward our own work?

Obviously, I don’t expect the entire campus to turn out for every dance recital, or for a headline article when the physics department builds a Rube Goldberg machine, but a little appreciation for the talents and work of others wouldn’t hurt. I show for math every week with the best attitude I can; try to be a respectful when you’re sitting in a play.

Cody Barras is a freshman majoring in English with a minor in education. He can be reached for comment at [email protected] 

More to Discover