Thoughts On Kris Yeager’s Wednesday Map

Wednesday, March 13, 2013 was a very boring and sadly typical school day. The sadly typical aspect of my day may be useful to scholars down the line and will be parsed out by me later in this paper, but the very boring aspectneeds to be addressed immediately. To the future scholar: March 13th was in the middle of the first week back from spring break; I had tons of homework to catch up with; I am normally not that boring; please, do not judge me negatively for this uneventful day. With that said, perhaps the very purpose of this activity is to archive typical boring days such as this past Wednesday. Wouldn’t a Saturday have been a much different choice if excitement and out of the ordinary activity were desirable for this archive? By choosing a Wednesday in the middle of the semester, normal daily life is almost guaranteed. Right now, I am assuming that most William and Mary students had similar days as myself. (This is a big assumption.) If this past Wednesday, and all other Wednesdays in the study were typical middle of the semester school days, a mass study of these maps could be compiled and would certainly be powerful in documenting various William and Mary/21st century college student activities such as study habits, eating schedules (I skipped breakfast, oops), workout schedules, sleeping arrangements, modes of transportation, etc.  However, because the distinct possibility that these Wednesdays were atypical for an individual, an explanation such as the one in this essay is necessary so that valid information can be inferred and outlying information can be noted. Scholars should understand that a map viewing has the potential for extreme misinterpretation and also that the choice of a Wednesday in the middle of the semester has its own, potentially boring, connotations as well. A week in the life of a college student map would clearly be more all encompassing, but still, as a mainly visual object, very subjective and limited.

Certain aspects of my map may be generalized and others should not. I pretty much always skip breakfast, eat lunch and dinner on campus, take two or three classes a day, do gymnastics at the William and Mary Hall in the afternoons, walk to classes, and go to bed well after midnight. There are also aspects of the map that should not be generalized. I do not usually spend three hours a night at Swem, though I am sure many students do, and I do not always spend the night at my girlfriend’s apartment. I spend most nights at my house.  Though I did not want to tamper with the results of the study, I found myself wishing I were recording more exciting activities throughout the day. I would have enjoyed hinting to future scholars about true examples of William and Mary debauchery. My day included no late night romantic trips to Jamestown Beach, no wondering around the college delis, and not even a mad naked dash from the Sunken Gardens to the Governors Palace. I pray these unique student activities be captured in the archives some day. Maybe I’m just being nostalgic.

Looking more broadly at my interaction with Williamsburg, I believe it is safe to infer from this map that I spend most of my days within the bubble of William and Mary’s campus. Though I live off campus, my house is only a ten-minute walk from William and Mary Hall in one direction and the Sunken Gardens in the other.  My girlfriend’s apartment is less than two miles from campus. During the school year, I rarely travel too far from school. Furthermore, most of the errands I have to run such as going to the grocery store, bank, outlets, or McDonalds are easily situated on Richmond Road. I never have to veer too far off the beaten path. Though I have had many interactions with the various non-college related aspects of Williamsburg while working at Water Country USA and Colonial Williamsburg, these have been during the summers. Interactions with locals during the an average school week are rare. Even brushes with locals as simple as seeing them at the local grocery store are limited because of my cafeteria meal plan. The short conversations I have with the Caf workers at each meal are some of the only interactions I have with non-academic Williamsburg locals. However, on weekends I coach gymnastics to young Williamsburg residents. From this, I have gained a little insight about the schooling system and local activities but not a great deal. Still, for this aspect of my life the Williamsburg residents come to the William and Mary campus. I do not travel out and about. One aspect of Williamsburg that I do see by living off campus that I would guess many students to not see is the homeless population. My house is located right next to the path that vagrant people follow from the motel to the train tracks. I have had very little verbal interaction with these folks but am reminded of this side of Williamsburg daily. The map of a typical college student such as myself does not shed light onto these other Williamsburg issues that would also be very interesting to map out and detail in the archives for the Williamsburg Documentary Project.


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The Williamsburg Documentary Project (WDP) strives to collect and preserve the rich past of Williamsburg, Virginia. By conducting oral history interviews, building physical and digital archives, and creating online exhibits, the WDP interprets Williamsburg’s recent past. The WDP works towards developing a better understanding of Williamsburg by bringing together individuals, local groups, Colonial Williamsburg, and the College of William & Mary.

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