Thursday, December 9, 2010

Needing Cash

Let’s face it. Everyone needs a little extra cash at times. It’s finals week. You need cash for coffee to keep you going. You need cash to go see movies with friends. You need cash for that new date who all of the sudden has all kinds of time for you since classes are done.

So Gonga wanted to share a couple ideas on how to get a little extra cash. His first suggestion is that you learn to play the accordion and go sit on the street corner with a hat or open suitcase. On further consideration, he decided he doesn’t want competition, so he suggests you learn to play the violin, or the oboe. Both take more skill, and both are more affected by cold weather, so he has hopes that you won’t be serious competition.

His next suggestion is that you fork over all those textbooks you’ve been holding on to all semester. After all, finals are here, and if you haven’t read it yet, you aren’t going to. Of course, The Textbook Game offers the best prices, so unless you are too lazy to walk all the way north of campus, you should come sell to The Textbook Game. Or, if you are too lazy, you can convince someone to drive you.

Be careful where you find those textbooks that you plan to turn into cash. Most room-mates really don’t appreciate it if their textbooks disappear. Especially if you have the luck to have a room-mate who is exceptionally studious and is actually studying his textbook this week.

If you simply must have cash, you could set up a booth outside the dorms and offer to collect used textbooks for some charitable cause. You, being poor, are a charity worth contributions. So students should be pleased to shed a few pounds of books for you, right?

Gonga hopes you find plenty of Christmas money, and that you will remember his family back in Congo when you walk past him playing his accordion. If you have an charitable inclinations, he will gladly accept them.

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Christmas Decorating

All over campus, the signs of Christmas were popping up. Starbucks had their annual Mint Mocha’s coming out, McDonald’s extended holiday greetings, students scurried past, thinking about finals, and the long Christmas break coming after them. There was even a Santa Clause on the corner of Maryland Ave. and Rollins, ringing his bell next to the Salvation Army stand and beckoning to all the inhabitants of Greek town to disgorge their parent’s money into it’s happy red coffers.

Gonga trudged happily across campus as well, toting his accordion and sending glorious Christmas melodies dancing across the frigid air. He loved seeing all the Christmas lights showing up on the buildings down town; the brilliant window displays, the greenery and wreaths. He reveled in the joy welling up for the occasion.

One day, venturing a litter further south than normal, Gonga noticed one spot lacking any spark of Christmas. Old dorms next to the hospital were being knocked down to give room for some expansion project. The carefully fenced and screened area was only a pile of rubble, with huge machines crossing and re-crossing, bent on their task of demolition. From the hospital, one could see the tops of the cranes weaving back and forth, and the heavy bucket of the digger rising and falling rhythmically.

Colored flags waved on top of the cranes, and blinking lights flashed, warning the medical helicopter of their position.

Gonga took one look at those blinking lights and knew that he had to bring Christmas to that place. He spent the afternoon scouting out the largest Christmas wreath he could find. Then he bought dozens of strings of icicle lights. As soon as it grew dark, he strolled down to the construction zone.

The gates were locked, but Gonga didn’t even bother. He heaved the monster wreath over the fence and crawled after it, hauling his pack of lights. Using all his ape-like skills, he scaled one crane, attaching a cable to the top and hanging the wreath. Then he climbed the second crane, stringing up the other end of the cable. After that it was only a matter of sliding out to the wreath and stringing icicle lights all the way across the cable.

Gonga worked quickly, stringing the lights down bother sides of the cranes in magnificent festoons. He grunted happily as he worked. There were no lights like these back in Congo!

Finally he reached the ground and scurried around the construction zone with the final end of the extension cord in hand. After scouring the area for roughly fifteen minutes, he found an extension and inserted the plug.

The lights flashed on in a dazzling imitation of ice.

Grinning marvelously, Gonga swung back over the fence and darted across the street the top of Parking Structure #7. From there, he relaxed against the hood of car and observed his Christmas decoration with satisfaction.