Undercover at Long Night Against Procrastination

Our sleuth of a news reporter sees what exactly students are doing instead of studying

As March rapidly approaches its end, and therefore the end of the semester TRU hosts the ninth annual Long Night Against Procrastination in the main library. The premise is self-explanatory, the library is open from 8 p.m. welcoming students in for an all-nighter with a variety of events throughout the night. Snacks and coffee are provided free of charge, there’s a midnight pizza party and a victory breakfast for those who make it to 6 a.m. A nice economic accoutrement for a quickly depleting personal coffer. 

It’s quarter to eight at the time of writing this and I plan on tracking how many people I see periodically throughout the night. I’m donning my sociology hat and assessing how lively people remain on an hourly basis. I’m guessing that people will start shuffling out post-pizza. 

8 p.m.: I’ve raided the snacks. They had vegan options (broccoli), gluten-free snacks (SunRype Fruit to Go) and unhealthy junk (candy and cookies). As is customary while in university, I look very much forward to talking about how little sleep I got tonight to my compadres tomorrow. A precursory walk was promising, it looks as if most people were indeed here to study. Like a modern-day Donal MacIntyre I infiltrated the event and took notes under the guise of looking for the schedule. I realized that this method was stupid and likely no one cares if I’m doing laps every hour. This is the riveting undercover work they don’t teach you at journalism school.

An abundance of these were needed to keep our news editor, Christian Varty, in the game and ready to survive the long night. (Wade Tomko/The Omega)

9 p.m.: There’s still a buzz around as students indulge in energy drinks and partake in chair yoga (not at the same time) and by and large people seem to be doing work. No signs of slowing down yet. 

10 p.m.: This marks the point where I will allow myself to have another cup of coffee. A quick lap around the library reveals that few people have left. Students are still diligently looking at word processors, power points and spreadsheets. However, I noticed a modest increase in YouTube videos and empty chip bags. 

11:11 p.m.: My wish was to not be so basic that I wish on 11:11. It’s not working so far. The majority of people are still studying, the library is still full, we’re at a good pace.

12:24 a.m.: The pizza is here – rather than choosing the superior Panago or at least Dominoes, the school opted for Papa John’s. My disappointment is immeasurable and my night is ruined. The choices were satisfactory though.

2:00 a.m. rolled around and that meant that it was time for another cup of coffee, as I suspected a large contingency of people left after the pizza had been delivered. But most of the people that remained were diligently working away. By this point, most of the chatter has disappeared.

By 4:00 a.m. it was apparent that people weren’t as motivated as before. Walking past a full bank of computers, literally every person sitting at the computers was doing something that didn’t look directly related to studying. Around half of the remaining people seemed to not be working, only two more hours until breakfast. 

It’s 5:00 a.m. now and my stomach is beginning to curdle due to the mixture of cheap pizza and black coffee so I am humbly packing my proverbial bags and heading home.