Professor Desperate to Ignore 800-Pound Gorilla in the Room

“What was the change in velocity of the scooter?”

Professor Carlos Hurzala knew there was a problem in his Introduction to Physics class, but he did not want to address it. Pretending to not see the lone hand raised in the back of the classroom, Hurzala answered his own question.

“Very well then. The bana—I mean answer is 14 meters per second.”

The students in the classroom all knew what was happening. They weren’t sure if their professor was too engrossed in the lecture, or just completely oblivious. No matter what, they all knew this was no ordinary Physics class.

Seated in the back of the classroom was Bobo, an 800-pound silverback Lowland Gorilla, patiently waiting for Professor Hurzala to call on him so he could ask a question.

Bobo was an exchange student from SUNY Primate, on a program to study in the STEM fields. He was at Macalester for the year, and taking physics, biology, and computer science courses. His stylish clothing choices, endless repertoire of jokes, and slick dances moves made him stand out quickly amongst the Macalester student body. Also, he was an 800-pound gorilla.

Hurzala’s frustration with the class was growing evident, but the sweat on his forehead came from fear. Stubborn as a mule, Hurzala ploughed ahead with the rest of the lecture. Every so often, he would glance at the clock above the door, praying for time to hurry up.

“Now let’s see—uhhh…” Hurzala’s voice trailed off as he accidentally made eye contact with Bobo.

Throughout the rest of the class, Bobo raised his hand every so often, hoping that he would be called on. But to no avail; Hurzala refused to acknowledge his presence.

Finally, 10:40 rolled around. As students gathered their things, Hurzala darted for the door like a bat out of hell.

“Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to head to my office right away,” said Hurzala as he turned tail and ran. Bobo sighed and headed out to his next class.

Outside of Hurzala’s office was a white elephant, patiently waiting to meet with him.

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