Sunday, December 12, 2010

Princeton Trend of the Week: Work Wars

Contestant A: “Ahhhh I have two tests, a presentation and a paper due tomorrow.”

Contestant B: “Mmhmm that sucks…I’ve got three problem sets due, a lab practical and an orgo test on Monday.”

Who wins? Your vote will probably go to A if you’re a humanities freak, like moi, and with B if you’re more scientifically inclined (but that’s just a guess). In any case, this little trend of subtle/passive aggressive workload one-upmanship is all the rage here at P-ton.

Ok, let’s be real, this is not really a super-“current” trend. Yes, Princetonians, you…okay we…have been playing this game forever. It’s par for the course at a university made up of some of the nation’s most competitive youngsters. Nevertheless, I think it’s high time we openly acknowledged this game we too often play.

The semester is coming to an end, which means more work and the best part of the year—post-break papers and finals!!! And this undoubtedly means that the courseload competition will only get worse.

So a plea to you (okay “us”!) all for the coming month: when your friend is in despair, even if he/she’s just rubbing in your face how epically genius they are that they can take three lab classes and two 500 level seminars, be understanding (also, you should just feel bad for them for being so dumb/masochistic when they signed up for courses). When you say “that sucks,” mean it. Give them a piece of chocolate and a hug. And if you know your measly two finals and one paper can’t match up, don’t try to inflate it just to make yourself look all macho-Princetonian. We know you’re a clever one (or clever enough).

And if your friend is a little pisher who’s just complaining over a “ton” of work that amounts to a fifteenth of what you’ve got in store? I suggest a death glare and blasting music. Actions speak louder than words.

Now back to my third all-nighter this week…

-Nava Friedman '13

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