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.

1 comment:

The Stormy Diva said...

I can't believe you're still sober after that experience. I almost starting drinking just reading the entry.