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ISSUE 121 VOL 16 PUBLISHED 4/11/2008

Pause encourages socialization despite delays

By Lindsey Giaquinto
Staff Writer

Friday, April 11, 2008

They say that patience is a virtue; it builds character and moral fiber. Patience is a great remedy for any trouble; patience lifts us up where we belong; all you need is patience! Well, all this may be true, but it seems to me that lately, the Lion's Pause has been just a little too invested in this belief.

The Pause, as we all know, is the student-run venue on campus which puts on concerts, dances, SAC events and features the ever-popular Pause Kitchen. While it's awesome that students make and deliver -- God bless the delivery staff -- tasty, cheap pizza and compose lots of yummy snacks to fight hunger, day and night, I have just one question I need to ask.

Why is the Pause so heartbreakingly slow? We are poor, famished college students and we just want pizza! Can the reason for the (at times) crawling pace of the Pause be an underlying desire to impart to St. Olaf students the virtue of patience even when they are weak at the knees with hunger, lusting after that Oreo shake? Or is it, as I suspect, a severely flawed organizational system? Hmm & I've never been a big fan of patience anyway.

I don't like to wait. I've never had much fun watching minutes slowly tick away for what seems like hours only to find that, alas, someone else has walked away with my delicious treat. Here is an idea: try giving people a copy of their receipts and calling out numbers -- no confusion there, no tears and no disappointment.

To tell you the truth, as I am writing this, I am polishing off a most scrumptious half chocolate shake which, because they ran out of the smaller cups tonight, was put in a bigger cup so that I walked away with an unexpectedly large amount of ice cream. It's clinging along the sides all the way up to the top of the cup. Yum. So why am I complaining? I do love the Pause -- especially the food they sometimes give away when they find they have extra at closing time. And perhaps the students who run the Pause have a philosophical reason for making us wait. Maybe we all just need to slow down and let life rain upon us. Or is it as W.H. Davies says, "What is this life, if, full of care / We have no time to stand and stare?" After all, hanging out in the Pause for inordinate amounts of time is a pretty good excuse to spend time with friends, a social expedient, if you will.

As a friend of mine says, "I'm normally there with nice people." So consider all those you consider to be a friend, round up a few of the nicer ones -- preferably people who attach no particular significance to doing homework -- and head out to the Pause for an extraordinarily long social engagement. I hope all involved are prepared for the hefty time commitment. In fact, I, like Margaret Thatcher, can be quite patient as long as I get what I want in the end. And in that regard, the Pause always delivers. Although, at times languishing away as I fondly look ahead to delayed gratification for my empty stomach, I always walk out of the Pause feeling less hungry and more happy. I have survived another encounter with the Pause, a venue fatally laced with inefficiency.

Lindsey Giaquinto '10 is from Albuquerque, New Mexico. She majors in English and Russian and Central European area studies.

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