Exam hell

AP testing began rather turbulently. Starting with two exams back-to-back on Wednesday and another exam on Thursday and Friday, there was nothing I could do beside hit the ground running, fast and hard.

Despite any lack of confidence I might have over my performance on the exams, I ran through the score calculators and the standards for obtaining a 5 have been on the decline. I can safely conclude, then, that College Board really has been dumbing down their tests for the sake of increasing their numbers – indeed, collectivism hinders originality and creativity. I didn’t say getting a 5 was easy, but it has become significantly easier over time. For instance, you only need ~65% correct to get a 5 on the Japanese AP exam, and around 55% for Physics C (mechanics). That’s it! Anything below that, and colleges will know you screwed up big time.

Right now, I’m struggling with increasing secularism. It’s not that people “hate” God per se, it’s that people are simply afraid of talking about God and getting something wrong or offending someone, so it effectively never gets mentioned. They never hear about God, so they just put it away in a corner of their life. And when family is gone and college is in, God is effectively gone. It doesn’t cross their mind anymore. They say, “oh, I do believe in a higher power”… but then when I asked this girl why doesn’t she explore faith a little further, she simply gave me this face of, “why?” Yes, why does tradition exist? Times are changing so why should we go and listen to our thousand-year-old ancestors, because they’re obviously wrong in everything and science is giving us far more results than ever?

Tradition exists because the search for maximum productivity did not. Life was not about squeezing the last minute of your life out of you. It was about sitting outside and trying to piece together a quantitative, metaphysical understanding of the world, knowing that we did not yet have the necessary tools to attain a formal, physical understanding. And indeed, we did the best we could.

Yet now, the idea of tradition is laden with individualistic idea of “you ought to just figure life out by yourself”; that life is, in essence, a unique experience unmatched by that of anyone from any generation or time period. I do agree that life is a “unique experience,” but do we not follow similar basic phases of development and progress: the innocence of childhood, the blind love of youth, the hardening of the middle-aged man, the futility of the retired and ill, the untimely ultimacy of death, the unknown events of the afterlife? We are just specks. Why should we care how many universes encase this one?

Well, what can I do. All I can really do is prepare for this E&M exam that is on Monday, and I only have 3 days to learn the material and minimize damage.

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