While Architecture is commonly recognized as the field with the unending workload and constant submissions, it is amidst this chaos that you gather your best memories, deepest friendships, unexpected revelations and above all the funniest, craziest moments to cherish for a lifetime. After all, you only remember the times that make you cry the hardest and laugh the loudest.
1. Have you ever been pranked?
We entered the college campus on the first day with high spirits and soaring aspirations. On entering, were made to sit in the college auditorium waiting to be greeted by the principal and introduced to the team.
However, to our dismay, we went through a bizarre chain of events. A boisterous group of people stormed into the auditorium as faculty in disguise. They walked up the stage and ordered the boys to sit on the left and girls on the right side of the auditorium. Having silently obeyed the instructions, the next thing we were told to do was tie our hair and switch off our cell phones.
Not just that, as our first assignment, we were then asked to design a diaper that could be worn for an entire week to avoid any waste of time during work. This sequence of climactic events ended with one of my classmates bursting into tears. The group finally revealed themselves to be just the seniors of our college. Although it may sound nasty, it was the infamous ritual of our college’s first interaction with the incoming batch and today when I look back at it, there’s no better welcome we could’ve asked for.
2. First assignment conundrum – What am I doing?
Struggling to grasp and make sense out of the first few weeks of being an architecture student, one of the most flustered experiences of it is trying to get yourself to work for the first assignment. While your first assignment could range from writing stories, creating models to demystifying concepts and breaking stereotypes, you are sure to not talk buildings.
What am I doing? Is this even architecture? are often the most common apprehensions very strategically planted into us by the facilitators. In my first assignment, I had to make 100 sketches of my understanding and abstraction of the word ‘pink’ and ‘moon’ to a point where I started detesting the colour pink and the beautiful sight of the moon.
3. Sleep talking – it’s not a disease!
You are repeatedly reminded of the ‘all-nighter’ culture and jargons of ‘sleep is for the weak’ by the seniors and the faculty to enable you to push your limits of productivity. You find yourself perpetually working at night, either in your own room, a peer’s house or inside the college studio which becomes a haven of intense production.
In such scenarios, there are always some who manage to pull an entire night and sleep the next entire day or some kings and queens of naps, like me. In such cases, you are sure to be entertained by monologues of sleep talking where your friend would probably be giving a mock jury to you without even being aware of it or having any memories of it the next morning. This scenario undoubtedly is your best time to gather the funniest videos, craziest confessions and a bunch of memories.
4. Competition zombies
They say that you can know an architect’s age by counting the rings under his eyes. While most people prosper with waking up early in the morning, students of architecture get wiser as every hour of the day passes. Competitions are the biggest platforms that enable you to put on your creative socks and break away from the mundanity of routine submissions. But, along with that, it is also reportedly the largest manufacturer of nocturnal owls. We have all pushed ourselves to manage daytime lectures and stay back in college to work for competitions.
With this kind of a grind, you are sure to be entertained by an entourage of sleepless zombies, barely managing to maintain sanity. One of my classmates would walk to the restroom and halfway through the walk, he would fall asleep standing. Another one was nowhere to be found the next day during the lecture and after turning the entire college helter-skelter, she was found having her beauty sleep inside the college’s model making room.
Believe it or not, a classmate of mine almost fell asleep in the class during an ongoing lecture and removed his T-shirt while he was allegedly dreaming!
5. Glass Tracing – catch me if you can
Once you are comfortable with the course, the campus and the tools of producing submissions, I am sure each one of us and the ones who read this, will walk on the razor’s edge of submitting assignments under pressure completely glass traced. Glass tracing is the scandalous technique of reproducing an entire sheet or part of it by keeping an identical one underneath it.
We all had to complete a set of 5 sheets in one week which was almost twice the amount of usual workload. Having realized the intensity of the situation, we were introduced to this infamous technique of ‘GT’ and who wouldn’t want to eliminate a week full of drafting and years full of backache? My friends and I happily used this method of mass production of sheets from one reference sheet and appeared like bosses on the day of the submission.
Upon my turn, my roll number was called out and the professor started signing all my sheets. Surprised with the quality and neatness of the sheet, he congratulated me for doing such a good job. The same story repeated for my friends.
However, suspicion took over the panel and suddenly, the team of professors called out for all our sheets. They held it against the source of light and started analyzing the sheets. They realized the secret behind all our spick and span work and alas, a very anti-climactic end to this was all our sheets were caught, the master sheet was identified and we were all left with our work quadrupled!
Moral of the story- If you’re committing a crime, be sure to erase the crime scene of the evidence and don’t underestimate the power of human errors.
In all, my five years of student life have made me realize that in architecture, it’s either all black or complete hipster. So, don’t forget to find your laughter and sanity amidst this extreme madness.