Dyspeptalk #5.

All this talk about marks and scores and results, it gets to you eventually.

No matter how far gone you are, what you’ve made of yourself, or how old- the thought of that exam you flunked, that semester you scored lowest in the class, that test score you hid from your parents- reminds you of an opportunity missed.

I believed that time would heal my low test scores, that once I’m old enough, my father wouldn’t remember the day he took a leave from his office because everyone would wait to ask him about my results.

My father, who never missed office even when it rained bitterly for weeks and we had only moths for company in our dark, damp apartment,stayed at home that day.

My father, who was never afraid of going out amidst thunderstorms to get medicines for my toothache, was afraid of what the person behind the next desk of filed papers might think about his son’s results.

There’d be a  look on your uncle’s face when he reminds you your family expected better, there’d be a shrillness voice of your neighborhood aunty speaking of her son’s rank with pride- little things you never thought would matter, now does.

It’d remind you of the moments you let everyone who believed in you, down. ”

What is the worst part about bad scores?

“When I was in high school, I won this interschool competition, and I was so agitated till the moment the results were announced, that I never noticed my pen was leaking ink from the back.

There was a thunderous applause as we were swept up our feet and positioned in the middle of the stage, a smiling principal handing us wrapped boxes of what we found later was an Oxford Dictionary, and all I remember thinking in that moment was how I was going to wash off the stupid ink stain spreading across my shirt from the pocket where I had kept my stupid leaking pen.

That’s the moral of this story, I guess.

If you care about an ink stain more than the applause, you don’t need to be applauded.
If the thought of annoying neighbours and dejected parents is the only things driving you to score higher, you don’t need higher score. Because it won’t make you any happier, and that’s kinda the whole point, right? “

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