That would be a cool trick.

Imagine if you worked really hard to make good things happen in your life. Imagine if you set goals, and trudged away, day after day, through the tedium of hard, boring work, to finally accomplish those goals, and when all was said and done, your successes were only marginal at best.

Got that?

Now imagine that I am a big fat jerk who comes up to you and says, “What? You work really hard to accomplish your goals? Well, I set the same goal, and I never worked a day in my life to meet it until the night before the goal was due, and that night I smoked a joint and had a total breakthrough of brilliance and the next day when I woke up, I found I had achieved my goal in my sleep. And on top of that, all my pimples had disappeared. Also, when I was through with my morning sit on the toilet, I wiped my bum just to find that I had started pooing enormous diamonds.”

What would you say?

Have you ever met a person like that? I have—lots of them.

For some reason, those kind of people at school seem to pick me out of a crowd just to brag to me about stuff like this. Why? I have no idea; perhaps I have a sign across my forehead that read, “Picture of Mediocrity; Easily Annoyed by Others’ Easily-Won Success.” Whatever the reason, though, I just keep finding myself stuck in classes with jerks like this. The other day, for example, I was walking out of my final class and this guy sidled up to me and started making small talk, and this is how our conversation went, not a word of a lie:

Him: So, brutal class today, eh?

Me: Yeah.

Him: I know. Professor So-and-So seemed overly harsh, eh?

Me: Yeah.

Him: I know. [If you know so much why do you keep asking me about it?]  She seemed especially grouchy at your comments, Camille.

Me: Yeah. I guess I’m on her bad side.

Him: I know. It’s not easy to get in good with her.

Me: Yeah. [Do you sense a pattern in my responses? I was trying to convey the message that I was disinterested in our conversation topic. But he didn’t get the hint.]
Him: It was funny, though—out of all the kids she snapped at today, you would think she would’ve snapped at me. But she didn’t. Even when I said that totally idiotic thing about the word she wrote on the board…she just sort of gently skirted around it.

Me (thinking that this has probably been one of the most blatant fishings for compliments I’ve seen since Sadie Saget used to hover around during senior year of high school and talk about what outstanding scores she’d gotten on her latest test and badminton game): Yeah. She must really like you.

Him: I know. I don’t know why, though. But you’re right. She does seem to like me. And you know what else is funny? She just keeps giving me high grades! I don’t even deserve them—the last paper I wrote, I started at four in the afternoon and submitted it at midnight, and I got a 97% on it!

Me (I couldn’t take it anymore): That’s ridiculous. I hate people like you.

By this time he had followed me practically to the parking lot, so I was glad when he chuckled (pleased with himself at finally annoying the living daylights out of me, no doubt) and slithered away to harass some other unsuspecting hard-working student with detailed accounts of his glorious glories and jolly good luck, ho, ho!
I always try not to be bitter when I am faced with people like this, but I inevitably fail. I understand the compulsion that we, as humans, feel to brag about our successes (however deserving of them we may or may not be {and sometimes the undeserving successes are the most delicious to flaunt}), but those are the sort of conversations we should have with supportive parents and spouses—people who are by our sides every step of the way—not fellow classmates who are secretly wishing every other student to get a worse grade than them on last week’s midterm.

It irks me. He irks me.
My only consolation is that he probably doesn’t really poop diamonds.

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.
This entry was posted in failures, my edjumacation and me, oh brother what next, watch out or I'll blog about you, woe is me. Bookmark the permalink.

14 Responses to That would be a cool trick.

  1. Casey says:

    I mean, if you really think about it, pooping diamonds would be quite painful.

  2. Maureen says:

    Haha, did he actually say “eh?”

    I’ve found that a lot of female profs seem to like the guy students better. Annoying as heck.

  3. niki says:

    this makes me laugh.

    i’m sorry for your woes. this is totally an annoying situation. but i just love you.

    it’s all about karma, camille. one day it will come around…to both you and the lame guy who wipes his bum in the morning.

  4. Camberley says:

    I can relate to this post on many levels. I love hearing your thoughts put into writing.

    The “Picture of Mediocrity” comment made me laugh so hard.


  5. I feel your pain. I swear there are some people who can just breeze through things whereas I am busting my hump trying to just get by.

    And to brag about it… that’s just impolite.

  6. I have a hard time with bathroom jokes. They make me feel violated and oily. But that’s me. Mike’s not allowed to say poop anymore. That’s me too. When my sister-in-law married in she cursed my sisters and I because she couldn’t toot or burp or anything anymore because we didn’t and that’s what my brothers think of girls. I guess we’re pansies in that area.


    I think in high school I was one of those people. I mean, I don’t remember ever working hard or trying really, but I got to wear smart people things to graduation and recognized for my GPA. But I didn’t talk about it. It wasn’t ’til college that I figured out that wasn’t normal, that half the kids graduate without knowing how to form a sentence (really, I don’t know how they pass).

  7. geevz says:

    Did you just give high school me the name Sadie? And Sagat like Bob Sagat? Can I be Jane or Elizabeth : )

    I’m sorry he annoyed you so bad. He probably had no idea. Was his ‘eh’ a canadian eh like in strange brew? Because that would be awesome.

  8. Chloe says:

    Oh, Camille, I just feel that same hatred toward those people! They are so annoying! And they get on my nerves!
    I feel like an idiot, when someone tells me he/she got a 100% without deserving it, and I had to work a lot to get a lower grade! I find it insulting!

  9. dunno says:

    You know, dear, i’ve tried to intimate in some of my comments how to develop my insular skills…but they’re hard to teach in text…and it might be awhile before i get to L.A., all i can say right now, is, grow a menacing scowl. And don’t look directly at people, look through them, like they’re not there…because they really aren’t. I was easy peasy marks in school too, but never a braggard. I hate those people.
    Two guys i knew, in University, had this favourite remark to make when we would comingle….”You’re SOOO insular!”
    Eventually, i hated them too, for being so proud of their special word, and speaking above most peoples vocab. Those low self esteem, look at me type of people just hunt us quiet, unassuming types down, possibly because they don’t have as much opportunity to do show and tell for their parents anymore, after having started grownup world.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Sadie Saget, huh? I almost died laughing reading this! I repeating the name over and over in my head, until finally it clicked!!! How funny. I hope she doesn’t read your blog.

    Anyway, it’s kind of ironic that you feel like this because I have felt like this towards you upon occasion. You’re so smart, pretty, and talented, and most of the time it comes pretty easily to you. I, on the other hand, always had to work for every single thing I got. As such, I can tell you that I’ve learned a lot that others who get things easily haven’t, namely hard work, perseverance, tenacity, etc. (Not that I have mastered these qualities, by any means.) Anyway, I know it’s one of those crappy answers that sounds like something your mother would have said when you’re twelve, but you’re really better off in the long run. That guy isn’t going to know how to survive in the real world. Can you imagine having a huge project due at work and sloughing it off until a few hours before and then acing it? Highly unlikely. If it makes you feel any better, he’ll get his someday. Too bad you probably won’t be around to see it happen.

  11. Anonymous says:

    Shirley Elizabeth is annoying. People can’t fart around you? Seriously? Enjoy having kids. Let’s reconvene in a few years and discuss this more then. I wish you five teenage boys.

  12. jami says:

    Sadie saget!!! So funny…it is so true about her! I remember thinking the same things but I just can’t write funny posts about it. Also you are brilliant…seriously. And this post made my day. I have been laying in bed, with greasy hair that smells. I was super pissed today, and this post was brilliant. Thankx

  13. Rachel says:

    Are you tempted to one-up the guy? “Oh, you got 97%? I got 98% on that assignment. Started it at 10 the night it was due and it only took me about an hour, but probably less since I only worked on it during the commercials.” I’m always tempted to lie through my teeth to people like that. It’s not because I want to save face, just that the one-uppers get annoyed by being one-upped.

  14. TeamHaynes says:

    It always baffles me when I hear people try to one up me. Oh really? Your life is better than because you got a better grade than me? I think not. I’ve got a good husband, people that love me, and I could give a flip about some teacher’s grades (aka Opinions if you ask me) I’ve received because none of it will ever matter. NONE of it.
    It is pretty incredible you meet so many of these people. I guess I have met a lot but I grow cajones every time they want to get a little competitive with me. They either run away or stop forever. Its nice. You might want to try it, just borrow mine if you can’t muster it up yourself. I really love that Taylor is amazing at school, but most of the time I never know when he gets the highest score until I ask. He would never gloat because he cares about other people’s feelings. What a concept.

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