Stoned Student Tackles Oedipus

This link (warning: Not Safe for Work because of language) ranks high on the stupid meter, but I'm posting it anyway because it reminds me of the days that I worked as a TA in a freshman writing program at UC San Diego. It's supposedly a student essay that some guy wrote while high and then handed in... and despite this sorry excuse for an essay he passed the class, because attendance counted. Is the paper real? That's hardly worth speculating about since there's no evidence either way. It would be easy enough for someone to fake this (get out a red pen and mark up a paper), but I also remember seeing many papers that were worse than this when I was a TA, so I'm inclined to believe it's real. One of my students handed in half a page of incoherent sentence fragments as his attempt at an assigned three-to-five page essay. From a TA's point of view, the awful papers are actually the easiest ones to grade. It's the students who seem to be making a real attempt but still end up with bad essays that really make you work for your money.


Posted on Thu Jan 13, 2005


Hmm. They still work for me. That site must be getting a lot of traffic. Give it some time.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  04:54 PM
If you know how to use BitTorrent, you can download the essay here.
Posted by The Curator  in  San Diego  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  05:35 PM
Fake or not it's pretty funny. The written threat and citing tubgirl as reference is "priceless". The TA/teacher handwriting looks suspiciously childish thought.
Posted by sbnature  in  sb ca  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  06:09 PM
Speaking of students doing class work while high, I saw something much weirder/sadder while in highschool.

This guy I was sitting next to in Spanish class -- white guy with dreadlocks wearing Jamaica-themed clothing -- was stoned, but no one seemed to notice. The teacher handed out the test and announced that we had 30 minutes or whatever to finish it. The guy picks up the test sheet slowly, looks at it for a while in a daze, slowly turns it over, looks at that side for a while, turns it back to the other side and places it on the table. He then proceeds to carefully put his hand smack in the middle of it in a middle-finger-flipped gesture and very, very deliberately traces his hand with his pencil. He takes the entire test time to do this. Just before he finishes, the teacher announces that we have a minute left. He looks up, looks around kind of confused, looks back down at the paper, slowly flips his pencil over and starts carefully erasing the tracing. He was still erasing when I turned in my test and left, so I don't know what happened when he handed it in.
Posted by kf  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  07:06 PM
He ONLY got one point off for each curse word? That must be a pretty lenient class, if this is real, that is. I've had professors ready to fail you if you wrote a fragment or misspelled more than a few words; I could only imagine what a professor like that would do in THIS case at the first sign of cursing.
Posted by Sarah  in  Dallas  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  07:35 PM
That was hilarious! But, I don't think that there's any way that's real, unless college paper standards have dropped way below what they used to be. What teacher would actually give somebody a 61% for that? Talk about lenient!!
Posted by Shannon  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  09:35 PM
That is one of the most hilarious examples of the failure of the USA's system of "higher" education! I don't think I want any of what the author was smoking. Nevertheless, Shannon, if you want a good example of just how much the American tertiary educational standards have dropped in the past couple decades, log onto any of the e-University sites; (a not-to be-named one in Arizona comes to mind). If you even send a simple inquiry to them regarding any of their programs, they won't leave you alone for at least a year. And talk about the prices!!

Back in 1975, I sat thru a college introduction speech given by a full-fledged professor, who told the audience that, "If you think you are going to have a valuable experience in higher education by attending here, you must realize that we are only a business that sells courses; nothing more, and nothing less." Extropolate from there.
Posted by stork  in  the spiracles of space  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  10:26 PM
Awesome. I went through in the 80's, I can see a paper like this getting a passing grade. When it comes to English lit or philosophy you can get some good grades for daring and creativity.

Especially if you can make some ancient greek story that doesn't make any fucking sense relate to anything modern.

My philosophy instructor was stoned the whole time anyway, he would have loved this paper.
Posted by bahhh  on  Thu Jan 13, 2005  at  11:12 PM
That's really damn funny, but it has to be fake. I REEEALY doubt that a teacher would actually read / grade the entire paper after seeing that the first paragraph calls the main character a "f*cking douche bag". Also the comments are way too thorough, I mean, I don't remember any of my papers being so heavily edited ever; and for a paper like this? Say what you want about the American educational system, but it's not THIS screw up!
Posted by brian  on  Fri Jan 14, 2005  at  11:52 AM
I too think it's fake, but hilariously funny. I've used the f-bomb in a paper before and had no points reduced. For a film class, the curse word was in a quote from the film.
Posted by Bill B.  on  Fri Jan 14, 2005  at  01:24 PM
It is entirely possible that the student knew he could fail this paper and still pass the class if it was a points based grading system. The TA also could have to continue grading a paper or risk getting demoted. raspberry
Posted by thephrog  on  Fri Jan 14, 2005  at  06:21 PM
.em ot esnes edam lla tI ?elpoep uoy htiw gnorw s'tahW
Posted by Hairy Houdini  on  Sat Jan 15, 2005  at  06:36 PM
I think that the author who wrote it graded it himself. He thinks his essay is way more amusing than it actually is & thought he'd keep it going by writing 'witty' little comments throughout as if it was actually handed in and graded. And if this IS actually graded where the hell did the teacher grading this get their diploma?! Note on page 3:
'Where is the text!' Should TECHNICALLY be 'Where is the text ?!' and further down: 'Page is to big' should really be: 'Page is TOO big.' (And who would actually write a comment like that anyway???)
Stupid little anal points, of course, but you would like to think that TEACHERS wouldn't make grammatical errors like this.
Unless of course, the 'teacher' is actually a childish frat boy dumbass with minimal writing ability and awfully unattractive/borderline psychopathic penmanship.
On a side note - the worst was when you got a paper back with the dreaded big QUESTION MARK. Know what I mean? Like you would hand in an essay in grammar school and sometimes a few sentences (perhaps an entire paragraph) would be circled in red and then a question mark scrawled above it.
It was spirit-crushing to me as child to see the QUESTION MARK on an essay I had wriiten. It's equivalent to a teacher simply writing 'What the hell is THIS?'
Posted by Electra  on  Sun Jan 16, 2005  at  03:42 PM
i laugh
Posted by bj  on  Tue Feb 15, 2005  at  09:44 PM
Hrm... this isn't cool at all. I read this paper a while ago... and found it really amusing. I remembered it the other day and wanted to show a friend... so I searched for the site. And when I find it... the link isn't active anymore. If anyone reads this and knows how I can get my hands on the essay, please tell me!
Posted by Melinda  in  Here  on  Mon Aug 29, 2005  at  01:26 PM
Posted by kevo, your savior  on  Sun Feb 12, 2006  at  09:55 PM
if you don't think that paper is absolutely hilarious then you're gay. no gay sex.
Posted by azn pride  in  yo momma  on  Sun May 21, 2006  at  08:20 PM
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