Cal State Fullerton’s pageantry lies in the dead of night. Like a pristine rainforest after a rainstorm, the campus breathes a new life.
I know this after many evening jogs through CSUF. There is a warming taste of elegance existing within the heart of the university. It seemingly goes unnoticed under the rays of the Southern California sun.
During the day, the campus feels like a campus. Trees are trees. The Pollak Library is the Pollak Library. CSUF is CSUF.
But at night, the campus walkways illuminate a portal to a different world. I no longer have to pretend being on my cell phone as I walk by organizations tabling on the Titan Walkway. Instead of ninja-stepping through hordes of students while attempting to avoid a collision with a careless skateboarder, I’m as free as a Titan.
Even my perceived flaws are hidden by the darkness. Areas of the body considered “jiggle-wiggle” by day can be mistaken for symmetrical, chiseled muscles by night. In those moments when unwelcome snot decides to rear its ugly head, it’s nice to know that spectators have a lesser chance of associating my face to the ugly head.
With most of my personal worries aside, I can fully enjoy Cal State Fullerton at its best.
The night-lights accentuate the harmonious architecture of the buildings. Pollak Library isn’t just Pollak Library anymore. From certain spots, I feel as if I’m staring at the Starship Enterprise.
Even run-down McCarthy Hall looks like it’s gone through an episode of a fictional Extreme Makeover: University Edition. The statues, lifeless in the day, act as if they have a pulse in the evening.
Without the noise of bustling students, the campus can be heard in its most primitive state. The gentle swaying sound of the Visual Arts Building’s water pools serve as an ideal background to the gentle song of the crickets.
The night crowds are also more welcoming. The fencing team, which practices outside in the evening, sometimes waves their swords at me when I gallantly dart passed them. Even the other night runners exchange friendly salutes with me, a gesture that I rarely experience in the day.
Instead of being a wild student running through the day, I’m a kindred spirit running in the night. I’m one with the university and it’s one with me. It’s as if the campus beneath me better appreciates my existence while rewarding me back with its calm serenity.