Wednesday, 18 February 2015

The Sour Grapes

My class 12th boards. The biggest lie ever advertised. 3 years, 3 BLOODY years I was told lies.
"10th and 11th are building blocks for 12th."
"Everybody does good in boards."
"Boards decide your future!" *insert random smirk because girls find it sexy*
I have a love for books that share their knowledge with me. It's strange, but I'd prefer an Encyclopedia over a novel any given day. Facts interest me. Science *used* to interest me before I was taught REAL science in school, real being the keyword.
"Light is made of particles." Can't really eat 'em up. Don't care. I'm hungry.
"SOCl2 converts Alcohol to Alkyl Halide." Can't eat 'em up either. Don't care. Still hungry.
The science I was taught in my school really isn’t worthy of being called science.  Science is practice. Science is method. Science is thought. All I was taught was how to memorize textbooks.
Without further ado, let's talk about my Practical Exams, shall we.

I got the task of calculating focal length of a convex lens. Tough task for someone who hasn't ever entered the laboratory eh. My lab assistant came up and removed the parallax for me. HE DID MY PRACTICAL FOR ME. If anyone wants a concise proof of a person's laziness, contact me. I got my practical file checked 2 minutes before the viva. THE VIVA. 2 MINUTES. My partner and I went up for the viva in a rush, intimidated by the examiner’s daunting expression. The external examiner calmly smiled at us and asked us about our projects. I had rattofied near about everything so it was easy. The calm before the storm, eh? It took her a moment to realise my knowledge of semiconductors was weak and bam, barrage of questions related to semiconductors. I wish I could say that my viva went pathetic, but I'd just be understating it greatly.
Scored 30/30 in the physics practical. Surprise surprise.

“Calculate the percentage purity of a sample of 3.5 g/L KMnO4.” I gladly set to work knowing that I'd at least be able to do this much.
"Beta value 26 se 26.5 ke beech me aani chahie. Sahi likhna.", I hear the lab assistant whispering in my ear. Dumbfounded, I turn around to look at the examiner. TEA AND BISCUITS. The guy's gorging on food, and here we're being told all the answers. BRIBERY?
"Salt No. C-14 is Ammonium Acetate and Magnesium Sulphate." Well thank you for that vital piece of information sir. Now I officially have nothing to do in my practical. What about the viva, you ask? I'm not ashamed to admit chemistry's not my cup of tea. I stumble with my answers and well IT DOES NOT MAKE SENSE TO ME. The war commences. I have the same partner as before, but he has more knowledge of chemistry than me. After a series of questions, the examiner can easily tell I'm not a chemical fanatic, as my mates like to put it. (rhymes with kinetics yeah lame sue them I don't care.)

He asks me which chapter I’d like him to quiz me on. Me being the reproachable jerk I am, calmly answer that Chemistry is my weak subject. The guy smirks and asks me to name my favourite subject. I say Computer Science.
"Write a program to calculate the square of a number."
SERIOUSLY? Asking me CS questions in a chemistry practical? Upar se itna “TOUGH” question?
I write down the code, and he asks both of us to leave. We solemnly get up and rush out, sad that our chemistry viva got ruined too.
Scored 30/30. Surprise surprise.

"Choose any 1 question out of the 3 you've been given and code it out."
....We have a choice?
Fine, if that's how it works out. I pick the toughest of the lot, just because bored and I had already been assured I would be given 100/100. Being in the school’s counter-strike has it’s own perks. It takes me an hour of the 3 hour long practical to complete my questions and I go to the computer lab to play Hearts and Picture Puzzle (Sadly someone deleted Counter-Strike). An hour later, I'm called in with my friends Aditya and Rohan for the viva.

Examiner : Hello.
The three of us in unison : Good morning ma'am.
Examiner : I've heard a lot about the 3 of you. Would you like to share something?
Rohan : Well ma'am we would like the practical first. Please ask questions related to the program.  We'll tell you of our achievements later.
Examiner : Well I'd like to hear them now.
Me : Well ma'am we have.. *skips 10 minutes of show off* and yeah, we're rank 1.
Examiner : That's really amazing! Show me your project?
*guide her over to the PC*
Examiner : Well that's just.. Amazing. Well done. Do any one of you have an interest in robotics?
Aditya : Yes ma'am, I'm the robotics' club VP and I went to a national level competition last month held in BITM.
Examiner : That's nice to hear. What's your name and Index number?
Me, Aditya & Rohan : Well here it is. ....
Examiner : Your parents must be proud of you. Well I wish you luck for your future. You may leave now.
15 MINUTES of viva, and not 1 question related to CS was asked. Heck, I even coded in my chemistry practical. How is this even logical.
Scored 100/100. Wonders of the world.

 I was given free marks. Why am I complaining? I’m not. It’s just that the system makes me sad. Just because I had a good impression with the teachers, I was given marks. Students more deserving than me went on to score 25/30 just because they’re not on good terms with the teachers or are incapable of collecting answers from neighbors. The grapes taste sour. I’m not happy.


[Thanks to Sanjam & Aditya for a part of the content.]