June 20, 2009

Exam stress

Does anyone else who has been out of school for years still suffer from nightmares related to The Exam For Which You Haven't Prepared? I would far rather dream about being chased by evil, fire-breathing, infectious-disease-carrying, smelly zombies every night than have the exam nightmare ever again. It's just too real. Real, that is, in my head. The exam is always for a course I've never taken, on a campus I've never seen, with instructors I've never met. And yet it scares the bejeezus out of me and I wake up in a cold sweat, feeling like I've just failed the most crucial test of my life.

I have certainly experienced exam jitters in my day, and I have shown up for more than one test feeling inadequately prepared, but the outcome has never been so grim as to justify these continuing nightmares. In fact, I usually excelled at school, nerd that I was. The one vivid memory I have of giving up on a test halfway through makes me laugh rather than cringe. It was for a third-year East Asian Studies course at university. I had been too busy cramming for other mid-terms to devote sufficient time to this one. I came across a question regarding the I Ching, also known as the Book of Changes. I was asked to name the other Chinese classics. I remember sitting there, in the second row of desks, thinking, "Book of.... what? I have no idea. Book of... matches. Hee hee. Yeah, Book of Matches." I wrote that down. Next I wrote The Book of Love, the Book of Cookies (the special feature at a local bakery which was being widely advertised on radio in those days), Guinness Book of Records, Book of the Month Club... any goofy thing I could come up with.

Short on knowledge and even shorter on sleep, I began to regard my silly answer as terribly amusing. I tried to suppress my snickering. Naturally, it grew from snickering to chuckling to guffawing, all internal, and then it burst out of me in the form of a very loud snort. Typical. Still shaking with laughter, I packed up my things, handed in my test, and left the room.

Thanks to that experience, I'm a firm believer that sleep deprivation and exam stress can lead to hilarity. Just have a look at these prime examples of the toll taken by exam stress.

June 08, 2009


Won't you follow me? It would behoove me if you would. I updated my Blogger template just for you, after all. Don't you like it, all shiny and new and improved? So boost my self-esteem, won't you? Just click on that little "Follow" button on the right. The one that looks like this:

Make me feel like I have friends. Make me feel worthy. Give me something to live for! Please! Why are you making me grovel? You've left me with no dignity. How cruel! The least you could do is follow my blog. Just click the damn button!

This brief display of desperation, pathos, guilt-tripping and aggression has been brought to you by Eli Lilly, creators of the fine medication that keeps me sane.

June 03, 2009

He made me flowers!

Early in our relationship, Scott used to bring me flowers all the time. It made me feel so special. One spring day, however, he came over and discovered that I had thrown a bouquet of roses out onto the back deck. I had done so in the winter, as the flowers had died and I wanted to scatter them in the backyard to allow them to decompose come spring. I throw like a very weak girl, however, so the flowers only made it a few feet from the back door. It didn't matter how many times I explained my innocent intentions; that was the last bunch of roses Scott would ever buy for me.

You can imagine how touched I was with the birthday gift that Scott gave to me today: he made me flowers.

I sure married a talented guy.