I got a B. Well, a B+ actually, one fricking percentage point below what would've given me an A-. This annoys the hell out of me because it's a blemish on my record, and yes I am perfectly aware of how much of a git saying that makes me look. But you don't live in my head, and I share my head with OCD - I know some of you do too, so I know some of you probably understand how much that blemish bugs me.
My mind ran the usual gamut from "What the hell?" to acceptance reasonably quickly. I know it wasn't my best work and it was my first time doing case studies - and I only had 500 words to say my bit about each one. Those of you who've been reading this for a while will know that I can't even describe brushing my teeth in less than 500 words. So yeah, not playing to my strengths, this assignment. The tutor is new at it but all assignments are peer reviewed and the peers clearly agreed with the mark, so there you go. Not an auspicious start for the first course I've run across that's in my field of study, and I'm grinding my teeth because I'm trying to make sure these people know who I am for when I go on to postgrad study. I want them to be going "Yep, Tats - that standout student from 2012" not "Oh yeah, Tats - she was reasonably good at drug policy."
Luckily for me, it's only an assignment mark, not a course mark. Which means that if I pull my finger out and do standout work for the other two assignments, I can still scratch back my A. Unfortunately the feedback on the case studies tells me nothing. Apart from a couple of comments where I could have expanded on an idea, and a couple suggesting an alternative word, all of the comments say things like "Good point." And the final comment is something along the lines of "You have made good points, this is well thought out and well presented. Good work." Which tells me absolutely nothing about how I could have made it better, so I have zero useful feedback to apply to my essay.
I'm on my own.
This has made me cave on my plan to take the risky (and complicated) path for the essay assignment. It doesn't mean a total rewrite - I can still keep my analysis of our drug policy document and laws - but I will now be doing a comparative analysis of ecstasy and alcohol because basically, I'm afraid not to.
You see, I have worked my fucking arse off for that string of As. I know people think I'm smart and I probably am, but the fact is that those marks came more from sweat than talent, and from my obsessive focus on whatever topic I'm writing about. It's one of the reasons that I'm really looking forward to finishing my degree - not because I want the bit of paper but so that I can have a rest from the constant shadow of having to think about complicated issues and how to explain them, churning away in the back of my mind. This morning I woke up at 3am composing sentences explaining objectivism vs constructivism - that's what it's like inside my head when I'm writing an essay and that's why I get As. So getting a B is, for me, failure.
Yep, still a wanker.
That failure, while I can accept that it's fair, has affected my confidence to take on risky topics. This is a 200 level introductory course on drug issues, and what they want is a 200 level comparative analysis that demonstrates I understand what social constructs are and the way they apply to drugs. So that's what I'll do. Hopefully I'll do it well enough to raise my previous mark back to where I want it to be.
It seems likely that the sense of relief I feel through having made that decision is a good indicator that I was on the wrong track, eh? So I guess that B+ was a positive thing?
Yep, it's confirmed. I am, in fact, a wanker.
Meanwhile, one of the main beefs I have with evo psych (as interpreted and applied by the likes of writerspleasure and other oversimplifying, misogynistic, gender-determinant wallies) is that despite their insistence on objective beauty standards, waist-to-hip ratios and monkeys playing with cooking pots as Real Science That Shows How We Survived The Stone Age, pretty much everyone still manages to get laid sooner or later. People are not rare, in fact they're pretty damn common, and they got that way at least partly through breeding like flies. We like nooky, we like it a lot, and even folks with a less than ideal waist-to-hip ratio get some. This leads to lots of children (or at least used to, before we invented birth control), and even back when not many survived, it was still enough for us to take over the planet.
So I wish they would kindly STFU about how I should look like that photoshopped apparition on the cover of Playboy because of Science! I don't, yet I reproduced anyway. And so did the cavepeople. Nyah.