Saturday, April 5, 2008

First things first.

Ever since the beginning of this month, I have been forced to endure one hapless catastrophe after another. I have an important test coming up and my otherwise valiant immune system, which normally wipes out even the memory of every bacterium and virus that presents itself before it, decided to chicken out this time. Just for a change. But, determined as I am, I had decided to open my book and load the contents onto my brain by 11 am. I don’t know why it should be, but I woke up this morning, looked at my watch and screamed “NINE O’ WHAT?!!!” and cursed everything I knew. Then I fell asleep again and got up at eleven.

As I hastily squeezed some paste onto my toothbrush, I fanned my burning determination by allowing myself to extend the deadline to 2 pm. But first things first. A good breakfast was what I needed to prepare myself for all the concentrated effort. Studying for an important test is not something to be taken lightly. I sat down to eat with an easy mind and ate until I went uneasy in my stomach. “ I say, I don’t think much of this breakfast, do you?” I asked my mom. I thought it very unkind of her, but the look she gave me made me ill. Half-hoping, half-afraid, I asked her if she could give me a glass of milk. When she agreed to do so, upon my face there shone a great radiance of deep joy.

Holding the glass of milk, I wormed my way along to the study. The overstrain upon my brain induced by all the planning, had produced a general depression throughout the system. I felt that the absence of the necessity for thought, would restore the mental equilibrium. So I sat for a couple of hours and thought about nothing. That came rather easily to me. Nothing can damp my ardour when I set my heart onto something. When I finally looked up and cast a curious glance at my watch, to my intense surprise, it was 1:30 already! 2 o’ clock was the extended deadline and I was beginning to feel strongly on the subject; but I soon realized that one makes these extraordinary plans in moments of excitement, but of course, when one comes to think of it, one sees how absurdly out of proportion they are with reality. So, at 2 o’ clock, I tried to look as if I didn’t know it. That came rather easily to me.

At 2:30, I opened my book and read the name of the chapter aloud “The 6 essentials of software testing”. How simple! I could read all about it in half an hour! I felt like a jungle creature advancing upon its prey. If half an hour was all that it would take, what was the need to hurry? Truth compelled me to support this train of thought. I’d get back to it in half a jiffy! And now we come to something that is quite beyond me… I absolutely and positively have no recollection of falling asleep – a refreshing sleep which lasted till the coming of the evening cup of coffee.

The recent lapse of time had rendered all of my schemes null and void. It was 6 o’ clock, but I still believed that the great brain would find a formula. At the risk of sounding immodest, I admit that I am a girl who succumbs not, to her own avoidance tactics. The final plan – I’d quietly sip my coffee and then get back to the books with vengeance. And I did it without a murmur. I mean, I sipped my coffee without a murmur. Only after brooding for what seemed like eternity, I decided to set the little grey cells in operation without further delay.

It’s a curious fact, but what seemed easy a couple of hours ago, now seemed rather cryptic. I was annoyed at my slowness of comprehension. For some reason, which I am unable to explain, I turned the pages to the end of the chapter – to the References. Just to get a laugh out of the names. All the violent laughing forced me to admit that this book was certainly value for money. Thanks to parents who name their kids ‘Collins and Lazier’, ‘Pringle and Longnecker’ and ‘Weihrich and Koontz’. The laughter had taken its toll and at 11, I was finally able to switch off the lights and fall into a refreshing slumber which lasted till the coming of the morning cup of tea.
It’s extraordinary, but was it true that a girl like me, with a razor-keen intelligence, had allowed herself to while away time like that?! Yes. I thought it probable. I still had four hours left. But too many thoughts had me all fuzzy in the brain. So I got down to writing all of them down. A great weight has been lifted off my mind! So if you’ll excuse me now, I have to go make the final effort of a dying rooster. First things first.