Epic fail

I’m not gonna sugar coat it for you. I suck at taking tests. I mean, who knows, maybe I’m just really, really dumb but I’d like to give myself a little more credit than that, considering I’ve made it this far in life and I’m still intact. Also, I’ve witnessed some mad problem-solving skills in real life come out of this brain of mine and trust me, there’s a thing or two going on up there. Thus, all I can conclude is that I’m just a terrible test taker. Or I’m having a stupid week.

I’m sure I’m not alone.

I had a record-breaking two bombs explode in less than five minutes this past Tuesday: 1) a quiz on four chapters we had to read and my subsequent reaction to it, and 2) our Module II final exam grades were announced.

Which of the two proved I had a momentarily lapse in intelligence?

In reference to #1, I knew the quiz was coming and my group decided to divide the reading assignments – four of us, four chapters. I had the chapter on competition among business/industries and competitive strategies and I think I did a pretty good job of summing up 30+ pages on how businesses compete. Talk about sugar coating! There was certainly little I could to to make that chapter any more fun to swallow. I received the summaries from my group and of course they were all good … I studied as much as I could considering life, work, my (sometimes dumb) dog and other school projects tend to get in the way. In fact, the Friday before this dumb quiz, we had a 9+ hour brand management simulation where our main objective was to achieve the highest net sales and highest stock price compared to the other groups. And of course, all this decision making, strategy and planning resulted in a final grade that accounts for XX% of our final grade in the course. Hello – other things to think about besides the stupid 4 chapters we had to read for Tuesday’s quiz!!

When Tuesday morning arrived and as I walked into class, I knew I wasn’t going to prove anything that morning when taking the quiz. I certainly wasn’t going to prove I was the new “matea” (star student) of the class. However, I wasn’t prepared to not be able to answer either of the two questions in the most minimal of senses. When the paper landed in front of me, I stared at it for the 30-minute time limit the professor gave us. Just stared and stared and stared. I couldn’t believe that even though one of the questions was based on competition between business/industries, the topic I had to cover for my team, I still couldn’t – for the life of me – remember one single possible answer. Not even to B.S. my way through it!! I resigned myself to the fact that I had reached an all-time new low in my test-taking experience.

When I was in grade school I remember going through the same thing. Preparing (or so I thought) for a test and realizing, upon receiving the actual document, that I may as well have studied the steps required to perform a lobotomy because none of the questions looked familiar to me. And I would squeeze the pencil in my hand and proceed to cry. Not because I was sad, but because I was frustrated and wanted to scream. Crying was the only proper solution to that considering I was in a class full of kids who all seemed to know the required steps in performing a lobotomy (so to speak.) And as dumb luck would have it, I seemed to always be seated next to the proper “mateo” in class and that only pissed me off even more! What the hell was he writing so much about??!!

Anyway, this past Tuesday, I went through a similar thing. Except I didn’t cry. I decided I couldn’t very well hand in a blank piece of a paper. It was one thing to not know the answer, it was quite another to not even try. I decided to land somewhere in between both and wrote the following, in English, on the very first page:

“There is no way I could memorize all of this and I’d much rather focus my time on my marketing project. :o) I did read though.”

It’s not funny, nor is it clever … and it wasn’t even written in SPANISH! I’m not sure what possessed me to write something so lame and pretty much inexcusable … I’m in grad school, not 8th grade! All I can conjure up is that I was feeling lame and stupid, coupled with defiant and rebellious because I didn’t want another Chilean institution making me feel like a complete incompetent. And this was my attempt at delivering the “I’ll show you” message, which of course, isn’t the right message at all. Geez, if anything, I may have gotten half a point for writing a marketing message that was a little more convincing – of anything!!

Ugh.

To make matters worse (because sometimes that’s the only way matters seem to work), I received my final exam grade for the 2nd Module of the course and my grade on the Finance section was so low, I need to take that part again! The silver lining is that pretty much the entire class has to retake it because everyone’s grades were ultra low. Those who managed to pass did so just barely … At least in that case I’m not the dumb a** who stands alone, like the cheese in Farmer in the Dell.

The moral of this blog entry is this: I’m having a stupid week. At least I hope it’s just a week. It’s one thing to study, take the test and ultimately not do well; it’s quite another to write 8th grade messages on my grad school quizzes like a whiny teenager. In any case, it seems my stupidity roll is coming to an end because I did learn my lesson about doing such lame things in an academic setting.

Geez, why can’t I do smarter rebellious things on campus? Next time, I’ll engage in proper defiance suitable for the likes of a prestigious academic setting and invite everyone to go streaking across campus like Frank the Tank.

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One thought on “Epic fail

  1. In the first year of law school, there`s a course that has nothing to do with law, and it`s called "Aprender a aprender" (Learn to learn), and helps different people to find out different ways to study and to realize which one is better for each one. Also the course prepares you to organize your time when you have simultaneous tasks. It´s based on several tests and activities, and helped me a lot; I used to have those staring moments during some tests.
    You´ll do a lot better next time, some people study alone, other in groups, some study with schematics, other repeating out loud what they read.
    Find your own style, it´s the only way to survive Chilean tests. Good luck.

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