Sorry Excuse for a Writer.

My arsenal of choice.

Last night I took the first exam I’ve had in a long time (unless you count my last pap smear, but please let’s not talk about that).

Did you know?  In Canada, students “write exams” instead of “take tests.”

“Even if it’s multiple choice and no actual writing is involved,” you ask?  I asked that too.  Yes.  Even if no writing is involved, Canadian students write their exams.  All you Americans: Wouldn’t it have confused you if I had started this post out with the sentence, “Last night I wrote the first exam…”?  That’s why I didn’t.

Anyway, I took a test—a midterm, actually.

Believe it or not, I used to really enjoy exam days.  I am faster than the average test-taker (not that I’m any smarter, necessarily), so I am usually finished well before the allotted time is up, which means I get a short class.  Which is always a bonus.  Plus, any day that I don’t have to listen to a professor droning on about random nothingness is a good day.

But like I said, it’s been a while.  In my 1.5 year hiatus from college classes, I have gotten a little out of practice.  The exam was announced, and I actually had to go purchase 3×5 cards to make into flashcards—two years ago I would’ve had them on hand.

(By the way, I use flashcards to study for any and every exam I’ve ever taken.  It is a practically fail-proof method for me and my head.  I totally dig flashcards.  [Which, looking back, makes me quite a dork, doesn’t it?])

This time around, I had to buy the note cards, cut them up, make them into flashcards, memorise the information, and I was actually nervous about it. The Old Me would have gone through the motions as naturally as popping open a DDP, but this time I was stressing.  In fact, moments before the class started, I was still frantically flipping through and shuffling my flashcards like a maniac table dealer gone mad on the streets of Vegas, whereas the Old Me would have said, “Aw, screw it—if I don’t know it by now, I’ll never know it.”

Anyway, the point is this:  All my worrying was silly.  I did just fine.  There were a few last-minute questions on which I ridiculously second-guessed myself [Is alliteration the repetition of vowels or consonants, or is it just repeptition of any sound at the beginning of words?  Then what is assonance?  And what is the difference between assonant rhyme and slant rhyme?  Is there such a thing as slant rhyme?  What kind of rhyme is “broom/bruise?”].  Luckily, they weren’t worth very many points, so I’m pretty sure I’ll be okay.  I’m back into the swing of things.

But I still can’t believe I forgot the exact definition of alliteration. What self-respecting English major does that?  “To sit in solemn silence on a dull, dark dock.” I will never forget buxomous Ms. White (not “Miss” or “Mrs.,” but MIZ White), my 8th Grade English teacher, dancing her jiggly self around the classroom to her own voice chanting that Gilbert and Sullivan classic.  What a bad teacher she was—she didn’t even help me remember the exact definition of alliteration in my time of need.  When I am a famous writer, I will thank her for absolutely nothing.

I hate her.

About Camille

I'm Camille. I have a butt-chin. I live in Canada. I was born in Arizona. I like Diet Dr. Pepper. Hello. You can find me on Twitter @archiveslives, Facebook at, instagram at ArchivesLives, and elsewhere.
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23 Responses to Sorry Excuse for a Writer.

  1. NobodyNose says:

    Oh first again.
    Life is good.
    You’re amazing.

  2. anna says:

    I am a lousy test-taker. When I was in school, I had a similar test taking brain glitch. I couldn’t remember my debits and credits… that’s about as basic as you can get in an accounting class.

  3. I’ve always loved/used flash cards too. Except I would spend too much time making the cards look really nice… and then there wasn’t much time left to study.

  4. anonymous says:

    I found schooling, and exams, a treat in divination. Crossword like. We do seem to like essay questions here in the liberal arts.
    In my last scholastic episode, everything was multiple choice. And always 50 questions. Early in the process i learned classmates took bets on how long it would take me to leave the room, that is, finish the test. Estimates ranged from 9 to 12 minutes. A tight race.
    There is no greater test than that which with we challenge ourselves.

  5. Anonymous says:


    ARE YOU FREAKING KIDDING ME??? YOU FORGOT ALLITERATION? SERIOUSLY. This is even more proof that you never listen to me. Why do I even bother talking?

  6. Katie says:

    I’m a flashcard junkie myself. Anything that can get me through 2 years of Spanish is a system worth keeping!

    Congrats on the first mid-term. You’re half way done…with one class…and one semester…but STILL! Way to go!

  7. Whitney says:

    Ive never been one for flashcards. I dont know why, I just never loved them. As for MIZ white… I hated her too.

  8. jami says:

    well I hope that I do as good as you on my exam.
    You ARE smart! You are one of the smartest people I know.

  9. Holly Decker says:

    oh my lanta.
    congrats on doing well.

    and um, this is unrelated to your post- but can i just say that i am glad you are no longer on Blogger? no more tech problems… your site is a constant as long as i have internet. i love it.

  10. niki says:

    flash cards are the only way to go!

    girl, you can pull off the hat look. and the beanie look for that matter. just put it on your head and go along your merry way. no body is thinking anything of it, except for maybe, “that girl’s hat is really cute.” so whatever you’re afraid of, is all in your own head. “you can do eeeeet! “(name that movie)

  11. sarah says:

    I’m glad that you did well despite your unusual uneasiness. I’ve never been a good test-taker and always got nervous. What do you mean you had to write your test?? Thanks for the luscious comment on my hair. :)

  12. HeatherPride says:

    I always used flash cards!! That is the way to study!

    What is it with English teachers and their MIZ status? I had one too. Drove me crazy.

  13. anon10 says:

    Flash cards. Also one of my many loves.
    I always get so nervous for tests, but I really am a good test taker so I shouldn’t worry.
    But, seriously flash cards are the way to go!

  14. Granamama says:

    ALLITERATION= The use or repetition of a succession of words with the same initial letter or sound —ex: “A fair field full of folk.” (CONSONANTS)

    ASSONANCE=Resemblance in sound; specifically, in prosody, correspondence of the accented VOWELS, but not of the consonants. (Aunt Annie’s alligator)

    You can look these up in any GED book.


  15. Laughed so hard at that last line!

  16. anonymous says:

    At’s phat.

  17. Alicia Wach says:

    As an 8th grade teacher, I’m feeling much more successful since I, in actuality, just completed the poetry unit and drilled and quizzed on the difference between alliteration and assonance. Plus it’s really fun to tell 13 year olds to watch their assonance. PS- I’m Geneva’s sister and know Adell a bit so I’m more than an internet stalker. But only just a little bit.

  18. Anonymous says:


    Mom is wrong. Don’t listen to her.

  19. Pseudo says:

    As a 10th grade English teacher it is nice to know my students were supposed to learn alliteration in 8th grade. Cause they play dumb at everything.

  20. Casey says:

    Thanks for explaining it, I would have been lost with the whole “writing exams” thing. I always finished my exams early too but then I wondered why and if I was missing something because everyone else was still working.

    Glad you did well on the test!

  21. anonymous says:

    haha funny post

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