Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A Little Ditty About Jack and Diane*

*not their real names

"I like doing things at the last minute. I like the challenge of having deadlines. That way it forces me to work harder." Diane said to me one day.

"It doesn't matter if I study 2 hours or 10 hours. I get the same result," says Jack "so I don't waste my time studying too long. I just do a couple of hours the night before the test."

Last year Jack and Diane were amongst my favorite classmates. We got along well and shared quite a few laughs. This year they're getting on my nerves.

Last year I was in on a group project with Jack. Diane was in a different group. Jack has great confidence, which is both his strength and his weakness. Jack decided he was the leader of the group and he was going to control everything. We had to choose a patient, research everything about the patient, create a care plan and do a presentation to the class. As we got down to analyzing the information about the patient and compared it to Jack's presentation, the other group members and I noticed a big, gaping omission on the project. I pointed it out to Jack. "Yeah, yeah, yeah, I got it, I got it." He said. Still the information didn't appear on the project. Another student tried. "I know, I know. I saw that but I don't think it's that important." he protests. I even went so far as finding a brochure that pointed out the very thing we were trying to make him understand. Still no luck. Finally when we got our grade for the project - we got the lowest grade in the class. You guessed it. We lost major points for not addressing the very thing we told Jack was missing from the project.

Meanwhile Diane's group was grumbling to us about her penchant for last-minute work. She didn't turn in her portion of the project until 11 p.m. the night before the project was due. This meant that the other group members had to stay up all night incorporating her information into the project.

Oh, in case I didn't mention it, I hate group projects with a purple passion.

Meanwhile we took our midcurricular HESI exam. Jack and Diane both failed. I knocked it over the fence. Jack said "well I think the reason you did so well was because you happened to get questions in areas you're good at." Huh? Wouldn't be because I spent more than 2 hours studying each subject, would it? Naw, that couldn't be it.

Three weeks ago we were assigned our first group project of the year. I wasn't in class that morning (I have a really good excuse; honest!)and I guess there was a little tiff between Jack and some other folks who wanted me in their group. Jack cornered me later and told me he drafted me into his group and just knew I'd be thrilled, and oh by the way, Diane is in the group too. My heart sank. I went to the other group and said "I don't want to be in his group. Help me out!" Their eyes lit up. "Please be in our group with us. We were so mad at him for saying you would be in his group without even asking you." Somehow I managed to convince Jack that the other group asked me first and I thought I told him. He was furious but I stayed calm, keeping in mind that I really do like him as a friend, but don't want to work with him on anything of any importance. I kept it friendly and acted as if nothing changed, and pretty soon he got over it.

Every week we have lab homework. We are given a certain number of questions we have to answer before class, and if we show up without them we get a zero for the day. I always start on homework the minute it's in my hand because I'm old and it takes me longer to do stuff. Besides, it always ends up being more difficult than I thought, and I like having extra time to look stuff up if I can't find the answer in my book, or online, or in the notes, or some other god forsaken place that they have cleverly hidden the answer. Week before last, I overheard Diane telling someone that she didn't do her questions and got a zero. "I guess I learned my lesson, huh? Gigglegigglegiggle."

We have lab after class once a week with an hour break for lunch in between. Last week fter class I was heading to my car to get my lab stuff when I bumped into Jack walking back from his car. He was waving his homework paper around in the air and said "Hey, did you get all the answers to the homework? I can't find them all. Oh well, I guess we'll sit down in the cafeteria before lab and swap answers."

Uh, I think not.

I hid out in the library during lunch, then snuck up the back stairs to the lab. As I rounded the corner I see Diane furiously copying Jack's crap-ass homework answers that he pulled out of his ass at the last minute.

Wait until the last minute? Only spend 2 hours studying? My ass! I'm going to have to hide from these two the rest of the year

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