Monday, September 29, 2008

Let the group-work induced drinking begin!

Remember the whole fiasco that took place last week with my advertising class? Yeah, I know, I tried to wipe it from my mind too, but no such luck.

(Deep breath)

After the huge success that was our last assignment, there are some events that I haven't shared. Mostly because even thinking about them caused me to shake uncontrollably with rage. I think I've got it under control now, so I'll give it a shot, but you may want to stand away from your computer screen, just in case.

(Another deep breath)

Imagine it: Same time, one week ago...

I finally got everyone's work, way late. For the most part, it wasn't well done, and was either incredibly vague or completely off-topic. In addition to the part I was responsible for, I had drafted the rest of it on my own, and used that as the base, occasionally (very, very occasionally) adding something from the work my group members had given me. I wasn't all that pleased with the job we'd done overall, as I knew we were going to have to redo/add significant amounts to it to make it a proper foundation for the rest of the project.

I was also hella pissed, as I had to go to my parents place at the ungodly hour of 7am in order to print everything off before class because I don't have a printer. I got to class, told the prof I wanted to talk to her, and was hopeful I could get out of the group. When my group members showed up, I tried to be calm as I told them what we were going to have to redo at some point, and I didn't attack any one person. Two of the group members were very good about it, and one of them seemed annoyed at my comments, but as I'd been nice (and was in the right) I felt okay. Then, the last guy came in. The one who had been super late with his stuff.

And then it got bad.

He started in on me, yelling that I was trying to take over everything, and wasn't speaking for the group, and that I was wrong about everything. Now, I don't react well to personal attacks, but I managed to keep my cool, and not yell back. I told him that I just wanted to do well, and that we hadn't done everything we needed to. I told him this in a rational voice (and damn, was I ever proud that I didn't resort to bashing him over the head with a desk.) and looked him in the eye.

And then it got worse.

He retorted that he spoke for the team, and that they wanted to do well too, and he refused to even let me finish a sentence. It was all I could do to keep my hands from shaking, my fury was that intense. After this delightful exchange, we had to meet with the prof to talk about our first assignment, which also was a complete ball of suck that only got done because I pulled something out of my ass in 15 seconds. She told us we would need to make more adjustments to it in order to make it work.

After handing in the part that I had done for the second assignment (the part that vaguely resembled the assignment due), we got to go back and talk about the third assignment. Mr "I speak for the group" took over. He started explaining everything, even though he was wrong on pretty much every point. He made decisions unilaterally that should have been group decisions. I said nothing. Why? Well, I decided that since he was against me, I would let him organize this assignment, and that he'd either surprise me and do a good job, or he'd give me more ammunition on just how much he sucked. Either way, I wasn't up for another yell-fest.

And then it got horrendous.

So, where are we now? Well, the third assignment is due tomorrow morning. I was only supposed to do a small part, and someone else was to compile the different parts and print it. I was not involved in any decisions, and just took the part assigned to me. Consequently, trivial things like deadlines, and making sure the parts read as one whole instead of the independent work of five people were not established. We are 9 hours from class, and I have discovered in the past 90 minutes that they want me to edit and compile. Only problem? I have my part, some weird amalgam of the first two assignments from someone else, and something that seems to be copied directly from some website (and isn't on topic) from a third. Mr "I speak for the group" hasn't sent anything, though apparently he called someone in the past half hour to say "it will be really late" and no one has heard from the other member. And I'm expected to edit, compile and send it back to someone so that she can put the last part in early this morning when she gets it. Oh, and I'm supposed to talk to the guy who hasn't sent anything yet. It is deja vu all over again.

And then it got better?

The only thing that has kept me from drinking myself into oblivion is that when I talked to the prof, she gave me a tiny bit of hope. She told me to just do my part, to not take on more than I should, and to let her know who has done what. She also said that I was right about the work we were going to have to redo, and that everything I understood about the assignments and the project as a whole was what she wanted. Most comfortingly, she said my marks won't suffer. I don't know how she can keep that promise, but I figure after this assignment gets handed in, and I tell her the details of the debacle, she might just have to break down and let me join another group.

Plus, aside from a complete mental breakdown, I just don't see how it could get any worse.

Someone up there hates me.

My birthday rolls around this week, and what movie is opening on the anniversary of my illustrious birth? Something with the gravitas of the soon to open Oscar contenders? Close.

The movie of which I speak? Beverly Hills Chihuahua.

Yeah, the one with the talking dogs. That's right, not just one, but a whole (pardon the pun) kennel of them.

I know, it is a perfect companion to me getting another year older. And it certainly does scream festive. A feel good family romp. I'm glad that instead of working on curing cancer, we've decided as a society instead to focus our energies on striving to make talking pooches look more realistic.

If my eyes rolled any harder as I type this, they'd fall out. The arts, I weep for you.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Forget crush...

...I'm completely head over heels.

Thank you, gods of the classroom.

He is everything I ever wanted in a classroom crush, and just keeps getting better. He makes going to our class worthwhile, which is impressive, considering the prof is a rude man whose writing resembles chicken scratch and who answers every question with "Read the book!" Yeah, he's that good. He is worth every inconvenience thrown my way. Even my douchey advertising group, where no one seems to be able to follow simple instructions, or keep from yelling at me when I suggest we should actually do the assignment as requested. Yup, I'm willing to put up with that much. I know, pathetic...sigh, but you haven't met him...

Saturday, September 20, 2008

More fun with numbers

An update on my group work situation. 24 hours past deadline.

# of people who finally sent me emails with their work: 3

# of emails that actually contained said work: 1

# of replies I sent to ask for them to iclude their assignments: 2

# of emails replying with requested info: 0

# of assignments that are actually done properly: 0

# of hours I'm going to have to spend doing the entire thing myself: 4

And finally,

# of drinks I have to imbibe to keep from losing my mind: (do they have a key for infinity?)

Breaking news

I hate group work with a fiery passion.

That is all.

Friday, September 19, 2008

Fun with numbers

A little numerical fun for you on this Saturday morning. Note that I'm not including myself in this rundown.

Number of group members: 4
Number of members who agreed to do this week's assignment: 4
Number of times we talked about when it was due: 4
Number of reminder emails: 2
Number of replies promising they'd have it done: 2
Deadlines passed: 1
Number of members who sent their stuff: 0



Kick the daughter returned today for a nice little mini-round. While infrequent, this is not unprecedented. These mini-rounds, when they take place, occur not long after a major blowout. They take place because another major session would be uncalled for, but something must be done to break my spirit and keep me in line. Mini-rounds are always out of the blue, and usually serve to upset me more than the big ones. Today was no exception.

I discovered that my ever supportive parents (or, to be fair, maybe only one of them) think I'm lying about my marks and my name being on the Dean's list. I was actually asked for proof. That's right kids, though I am long past the age when taking your report card home to mom and dad was required, apparently my not doing it indicates that I have been mendacious. I think this is thought to be true only because I know my parents (well, again, at least one of them) disapproves of my choice in program and school, and would take some sort of sick pleasure in me not doing well as it would prove this notion right. It sounds awful, but I've come to know how their minds work.

I'll say it again - anyone want to trade lives with me?


Group work... just like herding cats. Pointless, painful, and never ends well.

Do you think it is a bad sign that when I went to talk to my advertising prof, the first words out of her mouth were "I know you have at least one big problem with your group" followed by an apology?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

My prayers have been answered

And it's about damn time.

The gods of the classroom have finally smiled upon me and granted me someone to gaze at while in one of my classes. And he's smart, personable, and age-appropriate. Plus, he wants me to do group work with him to boot.

I think I've finally got me a schoolgirl crush!

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Is this someone's idea of a joke, or did I piss someone off?

Because if it is a joke, it sure ain't funny. And if it is punishment for something, whatever I did, I'm really, really, REALLY sorry.

Today I was assigned to a group for a major project, worth roughly 40% of my advertising class mark. And like most groups fabricated by the prof, it is just super. Amongst my group members? One of the douchiest, least scholastically-apt, Fratty McFrattersons I've run into since I've been back at school. Possibly since ever.

Don't believe me? Here are some of his classics from last year:

"Sir, I think I should be exempted from this test today because I honestly thought it was next week. Based on everything in our notes, and what you've said, the test is next week" (note that in the syllabus it clearly stated the test was to take place the week of October 1st, and that the week before, the prof wrote on the board "Test on Oct 2nd - Next Class.")

"Girls call each other sluts all the time, but when I do it, they get mad."

"I wasn't late, I was here on time sir. My foot fell asleep."

Oh baby, it is going to be one hell of a long, bumpy ride.

*** Update: the email address Fratty gave me bounces back any mail I send. Grrrr.

Monday, September 8, 2008

There's nothing in the world that I love more...

...than a round of "Wow, you are such a sucky, sucky daughter". Man, that never gets old.

Now, to be fair, I did totally deserve part of it, and was both expecting and accepting of that portion of the afternoon's entertainment.

But the majority of the last two hours were highly uncalled for.

The part where my weight issues were mentioned, even though it had nothing to do with the reason I was being called to the carpet? Awesome. And the part where my current success only served to prove just how terrible I had been for lo those many years? Fantastic. Oh, and the part where some event - which, IF true, would be both extremely odd behaviour on my part, and extremely minor in importance - gets highlighted as a textbook case of all that is wrong with me? Delightful. But the best part, bar none, was where the fact that I had no recollection of such an event (nor was I able to picture myself acting in such a manner) only further illustrated how wretched I am, as I didn't even care about how awful I had been. The fact that I would swear on all my shoes and makeup collection that it never happened is not even brought into the discussion. It happened. And to think of questioning it is tantamount to doing it again.

Sadly, this type of thing happens with alarming regularity. Some story is brought up where I behaved in a manner that is completely out of character and ridiculous, and while I have no memory of this ever taking place, I am told it is a perfect illustration of whatever flaw of mine we are picking on today, and it does not surprise them at all that I would block said behaviour from my memory. Now, I'm not perfect by any stretch of the imagination. I've done many things I regret in my life. But I'm pretty damn sure that I have not done these things that even when reminded, I have absolutely no memory of, though I am able to recall all sorts of details of stuff that occurred on the same day as the alleged action.

And now, as I always do after a brisk "Kick the stupid, smartass daughter" session, I'm going to get in the bath with a bottle of gin.

Sunday, September 7, 2008


I can't believe I forgot this gem. It is from someone in the same class as "escort guy" and "I'm the customer girl"

"Sir, please put the notes online. I can't take notes and pay attention to you at the same time."

Oh, it is so good to be back.

Saturday, September 6, 2008

First week back - a review

Alrighty. I've been back for a week, and here are some of the "highlights":

To the chick in the white pants - I really didn't need to know that you weren't wearing any underwear and that you get groomed with a Brazilian. And yes, while the fact that I could almost see your clitoral hood over the top of your pants gave me a clue to some of this, the fact that your pants were so tight and see-through they may as well have been saran wrap was the kicker.

I'm in stats class, and the prof starts explaining stats terms. Here is a direct quote "A set is a collection of people, objects or measurements. And how you know they are a set, is they are in a set." I kid you not. I feel like I'm back in semiotics here, people. Somebody get Roland Barthes on the phone asap!

Spoken in a class discussion on ethical behaviour, "Maybe they don't mean those types of escorts". Yup. That's referring to exactly what you think it is. So young and so naive..

In the same class as "Not those escorts" guy, a girl got extremely uppity with the prof when he said he wasn't going to post his notes online. She pays for this class, you know, so he'd better do what she wants as she is the customer! (and yeah, replace I/I'm for she, and that is a direct quote. Sigh.)

There are many totally adorable boys at school, but they don't seem to be in my classes. Boo-urns. However, a number of them appear to be employed at the bookstore. I think I might need to spend a few months in there, carefully selecting my textbooks. Stop looking at me like that, I'm just a careful shopper.

In intriguing news, some people from my class with the replacement prof helped confirm (in my mind, at least) the theory that he pulled our marks out of thin air. Apparently they both got A's too, but one of them knew that going into the final, she was going to need like an A+ to get a B- on the year. Methinks I smell a rat...

Keep this under your hat, but it looks like I might be getting free coffee for the foreseeable future. Yay me!

Oh, how I missed you school.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

It's back!!!!!

Yup. After months of school being nothing but a distant memory of a place long ago and far away, today is the day to go back. I'm kinda nauseous. It feels like I'm starting all over again. I'm worried I won't remember how to find my way through the maze-like halls. That I won't have good people in my classes. That I've forgotten how to study. In case you haven't figured it out, I'm anxious. Pretty much exactly the way I was last year. Did I mention how much I appreciate that you passed this on to me, mom? Couldn't you just have given me your height genes instead?

Oh, and before we move on to semester three, I just have one thing to say:

To the replacement prof from last semester - I still don't appreciate you giving me that lame ass A. I damn well deserved an A+, and you know it. I plan to make you eat that A this semester. It is on, sir.