Something I’m Too Old To Do Well

Posted: April 16, 2008 in creative nonfiction, Morgantown, Sarah Einstein
Tags: , , ,

Comic about GRE

I’m about to go and take the GRE in the hope of a Hail Mary entrance into WVU’s MFA program.  (I’ve also, I just noticed, casually used up a month’s supply of three-letter acronyms in writing that last sentence.)

Putt has told me to get a good night’s sleep, have a healthy breakfast, and take two sharpened number-two pencils along with me.  I think she is, perhaps, the only person less prepared to take the exam than I am.  Do they even make pencils any longer?  Surely we’ve moved beyond the graphite-on-paper thing.  Haven’t we?  (Oh, God, I’m so neurotic that now I have to go find two pencils, sharpen them, and put them in my purse.  A moment please…)

I used to test better-than-well and, as a result, have been thought better-than-bright by the people who see and take seriously these sorts of things.  So here, now, I will at last come clean with the real reason I appear smarter than I really am on standardized tests.  When I was a child, my mother was a counseling student.  The only one with a kid the right age to take the tests they had to learn to administer.  By the time she graduated, I could put the damned blocks together in the right pattern even before being shown the little card. 

I’m afraid I’m not smart as a chimpanzee, just well-practiced.  But not for the GRE.  Today, I suspect, one of my most treasured personal myths will crumble.  Because what really sucks is they tell you your score right away. 

Now, that’s just wrong.  Give me a day or two to come to terms with how badly I’ve done before you spring the news on me that, really, it’s much worse than I thought.

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Comments
  1. kathyrhodes says:

    You’ll shine! I’m betting on you! You go, girl!

  2. Sherry says:

    You’ll do great. I took the LEED AP exam by computer, too. After I finished the test, the computer took a long, long time to crunch my answers, and I was sure it was trying to think of a nice way to tell me, SORRY LOSER. But the screen finally said “congratulations” and it took me a bit to understand I’d actually passed. During those long moments waiting for the scores, remember: just breathe! Or, chew those #2 pencils.

  3. John says:

    Best of luck Sarah. I’m sure you’ll do well. We’re all pulling for you.

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