Exams are always the worst. But they are especially rough when you end up staring at the same question for what seems like an eternity. Through the eyepiece of a lab microscope, I was focused on a group of green objects [figure 1], of which I was supposed to identify. I had studied hard and I thought I knew them, but I couldn’t quite put my finger on the answer. When something is on the edge of your mind, but you just can’t remember it, it sucks big time! Because of this, one half of me felt lost in a cold and barren world with no end in sight [figure 2], and the other half just wanted to give up, turn in the test, and spend the night in the city [figure 3] floating [figure 4] from bar to bar looking for good reception [figure 5].
Everything else on the test had gone fairly smoothly. My mind had danced through answers and blank areas filled quickly with my chicken scratch [figure 6]. But when I arrived at the question mentioned above, I could only sit there stunned – somewhere my brain’s circuitry [figure 7] had frozen like a Mac SE loading Brickle (the original ball and paddle game—and pretty much the coolest game ever invented if you’re wondering).
Worse, all others in the class had finished their tests and had turned their backs to its misery [figure 8]. And now the only persons left in the room were myself and the professor who was happily doodling something on the board [figure 9]. I felt like such a loser. How was I supposed to impress my teacher if they only recognized me as the kid who took forever to finish his tests? But alas, I couldn’t think about that, I had to concentrate.
Starring off in thought, I continued to watch the teacher doodle on the side board. His drawing was a messy scribble resembling a bleeding egg. An egg! [figure 10] It dawned on me that my answer sounded similar to the word egg. Quickly I did some rhyming. I was on track! My mind was moving quickly now, and soon I became submerged in the problem. It was cold, but I knew that if I could blanket my mind with relevant thoughts in the same way a fur coat protects a polar bear [figure 11], then I might repel stray thoughts and find my answer.
The question was a mere percentage of the overall grade [figure 12], but the pressure was on and my mind was going to uncover a reflection [figure 13] of it sooner or later. Then, of a sudden the answer was burning like a flame inside of me [figure 14]. My body shuddered so hard when the idea hit me that I swear it could have registered on Richter scales across the continent [figure 15]. I looked at the microscope slide again from a different perspective to confirm my answer [figure 16]. That’s so easy! Why couldn’t I think of that sooner? I filled in my answer finishing the test just seconds before time was up. I was afloat [figure 17] with cheerfulness and nothing could hurt me now.
“See you later.” I said as I handed the professor my test. “How’d you do?” he asked. I told him I had gone back to number 20 and had sat there till I thought of the answer. He asked me what I put for the answer, and I told him. “Oh” he said looking confused, then chuckling, “for that one I wrote the answer on the front board because the question was written incorrectly.” I put my pen in my mouth and tried to hide behind it. “I’m sorry” he said “…looks like you got it wrong.”