The Italian Junkyard

Thoughts, ideas, criticism about cars. Interesting news and facts from the world of the automobile. Events in Italy and Modena. What you can find elsewhere, filtered through the eyes of a discerning enthusiast. Design, style, everything on the chopping block. Nobody is safe anymore.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Getting older, still rocking



If you really are an enthusiast, if you do care about cars, how they works, how they are made, what they are, what they mean, then there is a good chance we could be friends, and you can make the jump to read my latest rant.
If you're into nitpicking, knowing everything just for the sake of it, pretending to know more than others and even more, you're into let it know to other folks around you, THEN JUST STOP READING THIS BLOG.

Why this? what does it have to do with the picture above?

It may be unrelated to the image, sure, but it's very tied to its subject.
Ins't that aluminum body sexy? Looking at pictures like this makes me want to own a certain car even more. Actually, more and more often, I want to own the factory.
Even better, my own factory

I love cars, deeply. When I look at the stupidest and most diffused compact car, I start thinking if it's fulfilling its purposes, why it has that sharp line on the bonnet line, why the engine is that large, why that girl bought it. When I meet a supercar, I wonder how could it be to pass 30 minutes in the garage, late in the night, looking at it, lonely, appreciating every detail, and waiting to let that mighty engine roar the next morning, and how many times I'd visit the factory during its building.
In the ideal world, everything has a function and a style. It isn't actually so, most objects are just designed, produced and advertised, with the latter unfortunately being the most important part. Cars are no exceptions, but they are by far the object which excite me the most. Hence, I know a lot cars, brands, iconic personalities from the automotive world. I also know quite some technical things behind them. I'm no expert probably, but that still gives me a better hint of the automotive environment than what I know about say radios.

This sort of knowledge would be better referred to as passion. If you are still reading you perfectly know what that I'm talking about, as you suffer from the same disease.
So like me, you know there are a lot of examples where the car isn't an object anymore, it's a form of art, it's a jewel, a dream come true for someone, and a dream to fulfill for many others. It's a form of expression. There will be persons proud of what they created, others willing to own it, and others willing to make something of their own, to show the same subject but filtered trough their own ideas, feeling, emotions.

I suppose I fill into the last category, or I'd like to.

For this reason I entered this university in Modena, aiming at the specialization in automotive engineering.
At first I was disappointed by the lack of organization, by uninspiring teachers and subjects studied only in the theoretical aspects without a bit of practicing.
It took me a while to understand the main issue was a different one, the lack of passion. More than interest, knowledge, practice and study, the most important thing about what you're doing is loving it.
There is no way you will really succeed in something tough and complicated if you don't love it. That's good even if we are talking about relationships between two persons, obviously.

While I questioned many times if what I call passion isn't actually just a hobby, a mere pastime, or if simply I wasn't good enough for this sort of university, I think none except just a handful of my teachers ever questioned themselves.
I don't know if they really like their specific field, I think some of them like it, but do they really like, or rather love, to teach, to share, to instill some interest and passion in students?
If I had to look at the average student, I honestly think I wouldn't be so prone to help him getting more out of that brain. The average is pretty low on quality, and I'm not talking about smart and intelligent guys versus dumb ones.
On the other hand, too many times I saw teachers looking at students, talking to them as if they were the worst aspect of their job, you know, the part that sucks but that you still had to do. I can see a professor being more into labs and research, but teaching is an intrinsic part of working into university, I thought that was pretty obvious.

Why am I writing this?
Because I fell like this university, even if I believe it isn't a matter of where you're studying in Italy, isn't made to teach students, or to create new creative minds. I talking about creating, not being stylish and fanciful.
What I see is just a bunch of old and young men, imposing the fact they got a degree before of us, and therefore we must learn what they say and how they say it.
There is no room for actually understand the subject, let alone their useful and practical sides.

It's disappointing, no, actually, it sucks.
I came here specifically to follow my passion and give it a technical background. It turned out I had to feed my passion everyday to keep it alive, and that this place all about standardization, bureaucratic technicalities and selfish persons is just trying to kill it.
When I hear of people enthusiastic about theor degrees, I just don't get it, I don't know if they are either childish or their degree is a joke. It isn't about them, it's an eventuality I'd love to face, but that I can't foresee right now.

My 2 Italian cents?
If you are considering studying in Modena, and more specifically the automotive engineering degree, just don't. Keep out, it's for the better.
If you're considering to follow your own attitude and passion, DO IT, for real, and be ready to face an hostile world.


Getting older, still rocking
Happy Birthday To Me


The Italian Junkyard


Image copyright: Spyker C8 Double 12, Spyker Cars N.V.

1 comment:

Jonathan Bradshaw Lavin said...

Happy birthday D'Scwhamianno.

May you always keep the fire alive and burning.

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