I believe I’ve made it clear that I am, in fact, a maniacal overachiever who settles for nothing less than an A on everything. So it should be no surprise to you that I decided to wake up at 6:00 AM, on a Saturday, over the summer, in hopes of improving the thirty-two I received on the ACT I took in April. I suppose I’m content with my thirty-two, but I know I could score better. I got a thirty-four on a full practice test while I was deathly ill and hopped up on drugs last year. So not coral.
A small part of me quite likes standardized testing. While I may be a psychotic perfectionist when it comes to projects and papers, I’m really not much of a studier. Honestly, I don’t even know how to study. Whenever I feel like I need to look over any material, I stare at my open text book for awhile, get distracted by whatever cartoon is playing in the background, and inevitably fall asleep over my book with my mouth wide open, allowing an impressive stream of spit to spill out across my notes. Standardized tests, not counting AP exams, don’t require much studying. They mainly test a student’s natural intelligence, which has been my crutch throughout all of high school. If that studying I planned didn’t really work out, I’d just enter the test with a hope and a prayer to Morgan Freeman that I retained some information somehow. Or I’d seduce the teacher. The latter never really worked, for some reason.
For the most part, though, I consider standardized testing to be nothing more than part of a grand plan orchestrated by “the man” to breed a race of super humans with all the necessary skills for achieving world domination. In other words, standardized tests suck ass. I hate sitting in a humid room full of smelly teenagers with improper chewing etiquette for five hours. I hate the idea that I’ll always score in the thirties for the ACT, but my exact score depends wholly on the passages and how I feel that day. I hate that my bladder is the size of a pea, which always leads to at least a half hour of discomfort during the exam. Standardized tests are total buzzkills.
Much to my delight, I realized that this will be my last standardized test in a very long time…possibly an eternity. I suppose if I have some sort of cosmic experience that tells me I should be a lawyer, I’ll have to take the bar exam some day.
But my mid-twenties are, like, eighty-five years away.
That’s me after the AP U.S. History exam. It was a doozy, lemme tell ya. According to the exam proctors, I’m not supposed to discuss any of the questions with you. Some sort of AP mafia will come to my house and chop off my left pinky if I do…At least, that’s the vibe I got. But I will, because I’m a bit of a rebel on the weekends.
The document-based question was on Nixon, and one of the free response questions was on the civil rights movement. It’s like they knew I was taking this test and wanted me to get a five (the highest score). The multiple choice questions were a little tougher, but I’m now convinced that my teacher is actually some sort of automaton from the future that knew exactly what was on the test. I would have had no idea what A Century of Dishonor by Helen Hunt Jackson was if he hadn’t made the point to tell us . I don’t even think it was in the textbook or review book. But even though the test itself wasn’t too scary, I’ve never studied so much in my life. I was so ecstatic when it was over. I had this whole weekend of relaxation planned…
…But I contracted some sort of illness from one of those snotty brats at school. It’s been 373 days since the last time I was sick. I counted. I’ve been fearing getting horribly ill during my big tests since the beginning of the school year, and my long streak had to come to an end sometime soon. The fear was even evident in my dreams. I’ve had way more pregnant dreams than I probably should. Being pregnant isn’t exactly an illness, but my due date was always at the beginning of May. I can’t take exams while there’s a slimy ex-fetus sitting on my hospital gown-covered lap. It just wouldn’t work.
As miserable as I am, I’m glad I got it now. It came as soon as the exam was over, and it will be gone by my next test on Wednesday. I should be able to make it through the entire summer in perfect health. Let’s just hope I don’t fall out of a tree or anything.
Since I’ve been talking about U.S. History so much, I thought this video would be appropriate. Ye be warned: It’s a little naughty, so don’t watch it if your virgin ears burn at curse words.
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