What you’re actually thinking about when attending a late-night Zoom class

It simply isn’t possible. We can never escape those iClickers

PHOTO: Chris Montgomery / Unsplash

By: Tiffany Chang, Peak Associate 


“What should I have for a snack?” 

It’s 9:00 p.m. on a Tuesday night. Dinner seems like it happened a lifetime ago. The professor is talking, but it’s all going in one ear and out the other because all you want to do is rummage through the pantry for some munchies. Maybe that bag of Cheetos you were eyeing yesterday hasn’t been completely consumed by your family or the rogue band of mice that live in the cupboard. Let’s hope no one hears your stomach growling. “What if I quickly sneak away and come back? Will shutting my camera off be too conspicuous? They’ll just assume I’ve gone to the bathroom, right?”


“Geez, I almost forgot about my iClicker.” 

While quickly rummaging in your drawer for concealer to cover up your Sims-induced eyebags, your fingers brush against a small box. Curious as to what’s inside, you tentatively pull out the box only to see an iClicker looking brand-new in its packaging. “Wow,” you think. “I haven’t used this ghastly remote control since I took that one humanties class that went into way too much detail about Poseidon’s bestiality a million semesters ago. I should probably sell the thing,” you muse. In reality, you’ll soon pretend it isn’t there. You’ll act like you didn’t spend a fortune on this iClicker like everything else you’ve bought for school.


“Is it humanly possible to sleep with my eyes open?” 

You’re super tired, but there’s still 30 minutes of class left. You say to yourself: “Should I try and stay awake for this? Or figure out how to get away with taking a power nap while my camera is on? Or I could totally try to sleep with my eyes open — if guinea pigs and the villain from The Adventures of Sharkboy and Lavagirl can do it, why can’t I? On second thought, maybe I should lean to the side and let my head droop a little bit so they can’t see my eyes close.” (Fair warning: your TA totally saw you conk out.)


“I should introduce the idea of a weekly group therapy session during our breakout rooms!” 

We whine about courses and workloads whenever we’re put into breakout rooms, anyway. You might as well make the therapy official. Everyone knows the best way to effectively complain is with people who can relate. And besides, there’s nothing like baring your soul to a group of total strangers that you won’t even wave to when you pass them in the hallways in the fall. Sometimes you just need to tell people about the time an Abraham Lincoln roleplay Twitter account revealed your deepest secrets to their 16 followers. It’s easier for them to live with that knowledge than for you to live with the shame that you disappointed one of the funkiest American presidents, style-wise. 


“This T-shirt needs to be washed.” 

COVID-19 hasn’t just been a time of masks and constant hand sanitizing, but also an era of staying home all day in comfortable attire. With the days blending together, who knows when you last washed the T-shirt you’re currently wearing? It might have a design of a frog riding a skateboard with the words “Vibe now, cry later” on it, but its evident coolness doesn’t mean it’s invincible to your onion-tinged sweat. Now that you think about it, the shirt doesn’t smell too nice, but you don’t want to take a whiff and then wrinkle your nose when your hot classmate might be watching. Just wait until they show their pet on screen instead. Bartholemew A. Bittlebun Jr. won’t judge you — probably.