“Surviving” and “Finals Week”

Originally posted 5.3.2007

This is the time of year when every student newspaper in the United States runs a series of stories and columns and news-you-can-use bits advising on “surviving” the end of the semester.

These bits invariably include profound piececs of advice like, “sleep,” and “do not commit suicide.” Usually, there will be an accompanying column, written by someone who maybe works 12 hours a week in the bookstore, complaining breathlessly about how draining the end of the semester is and how keeping “some level of sanity” is of utmost importance. These reports are always outrageously sensationalized, not to mention shameless indicents of self-plagiarism.

I’m adjusting for the knowledge that, by nature, I am not a highly stress-feeling individual. But I’ve never actually seen anybody freaking out about the end of the semester. For most of the people I know, the end of the semester means about a week or two of extra reading, writing and ‘rithmatic, which can usually be basically complete by 10 p.m. if necessary. And most of the people I know have jobs.

If you don’t even have a job, I don’t want to hear one peep about “end of the semester stress,” or finals week or “pulling an all-nighter.” Nobody needs to pull an all-nighter. Nobody. Get up at 8, work until 5 and proceed to ace all your exams. That’s not stress. That’s having something to do besides check Facebook.

Over the last two weeks of the semester, I have, and will continue to have, a lot to do. It’s annoying. But it’s not “wearing me down.” It just means I can’t watch Conan.

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