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An Open Letter to The Professor of That 9 a.m. Exam After Halloween


Dear Professor whatever your name is, 


I don’t know you. I don’t know who you are. Probably because you don’t take attendance in lecture, so I never go. But we’ve come a long way together. We’re halfway through the semester now, and what a journey this has been. Sure, we’ve had some ups and downs, like when I got a 4/10 on a quiz where my name was worth two points. Through it all, though, I have trusted you to guide this class through our academic journey.

But I want you to know that I have suffered. We have all suffered. We suffered when you decided to schedule an in-class midterm the morning after Halloween. Not only was I shocked, I was outright betrayed.

Mere hours after we stumbled back to our dorms, barely coherent in the night’s costume of choice, you forced us to actually use our brains. You took our night of carefree revelry and turned it against us. You took something from us that we can never get back.

And do you feel any remorse? Do you see the pain in our eyes and ask yourself why you’ve done this? You should. You should understand the magnitude of what you’ve done to us. You should know that this is not the way to teach lasting lessons, mainly because my head hurt so badly that I took four ibuprofen pills before class, and I don’t even remember taking the test.

But don’t worry, for this has made me stronger. You have forced me to understand myself on a deeper, more spiritual level. Never again will I walk into an exam hazy and unresponsive to stimuli. Never again will I be brought low by a teacher who has no concept of how to enjoy one’s self at school. No, for I will rise above it.

Instead, I will walk in with my head held high, proudly certain that I can pass any test, with a C- at the very least. I will do all of this knowing that I am not the reason for my suffering, but that you are. I will remember how I felt sitting down at one of those absurdly small desks as the words on the page decided to float up around my face, and I will remember the professor who did that to me.

Then I will laugh at the memory and continue taking shots regardless of the fact that I have responsibilities. Also, I just found out that drinking Ensure in the morning really helps with hangovers, so that might help a bit too.

So next Halloween, when the spooky season is calling my name and I venture out to explore the wonderful world of the UMD bars, I will not concern myself with exams. I will celebrate as I wait in the frigid air for an hour in search of cheap alcohol, because I know in my soul that this will not faze me. I can stand strong in the knowledge that I have defeated you through my unwavering willpower.

College is hard, and I haven’t figured everything out yet, but what I do know is that this experience has changed me for the better. So, thank you. Thank you for showing me the strength I have in me. You never even knew my name, and I won’t bother to learn yours because the next midterm is online.


I’m going to be okay, no matter what.




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