The TA I Had Who Loved Snails

College is a wild time. I definitely learned quickly to introduce yourself to your professors/TAs so that you are not just another student and another grade. This actually helped me when I had to take this weird science pre-requisite about Earth Science and I was bumped up to an A because I made sure to speak to the Professor at the end of every class. Pro-tip you guys!

As an English major, I had to take lots of science and math classes — way more than I predicted. This is due to the American college system insisting everyone have a “well-rounded” education, which is paralleled by the Israeli education system which, well, let’s just say it’s different. Feel free to argue about the Israeli educational system in the comments below.

Anyway, I had to take Biology, which I definitely remember nothing about except for our amazing TA named Sarah Gray. She was in her early 20’s (ancient for us 18-year-olds) and was absolutely obsessed with snails. She was doing freaken research on snails. Snails are pretty cute, sure, but I don’t think I’ve met someone this obsessed with weird slimy creatures. Although now that I’ve taught in multiple middle schools, I’d take snails any day. Because damn, nothing is stinkier than a 13-year-old post gym. But I digress.

So Sarah Gray had to also lecture our class, because for some reason the TAs of college classes not only do the grading but also have to try teaching Bio 101 classes once a semester. You’ll never guess what our 90-minute lecture was about. Guys. It was snails.

How do snails eat! How they have sex! Closeup of their weird faces! I’m so glad humans don’t have antennae. Why do we need eyes on sticks.

Anyway, I definitely left some very positive remarks on Sarah Gray’s weird obsession. Were snails ever on any test? No. Do I remember anything about snails? Definitely not. But I saw that intense passion and used it to fuel my own weird nerdy things that I love. And you should too. Let your snail loving flag fly.

English teacher by trade, story writer for fun