Queef it again, Sam.

My Final Semester of Grad School

(also titled I Am Going to Shoot You With  A Gun Now), starring Myself.

Have you heard of this thing called the Internet?  It is the word we use for a bunch of computers that are connected.  These connections allow people to rapidly move ideas and things back and forth.  Here is what the internet looks like:

Electric spaghetti = the Internet

The Internet allows us access to something referred to “e-mail” (the widely-used abbreviation for the term “electronic mail”).  Electronic mail is, for most people, a very confusing concept.  You know, people who are more comfortable with skinning a sheep, preparing a square of vellum, crushing berries and deer bones for ink, and then rolling the whole business up and sealing it with wax so that it doesn’t come loose when the courier takes it over the rocky hills into the neighboring fiefdom.  The problem is that e-mail is annoyingly quick and involves hardly any prep work, or walking, for that matter.  In light of this, most people do not like it.  Take the elderly receptionist across the hall, who doesn’t understand the concept of “forwarding” an e-mail.  She likes to ask me questions by forwarding an e-mail to me, any e-mail, from whenever, from whoever, appending her questions somewhere within the many responses attached to that e-mail.  The questions have nothing to do with anything that any parties involved in the original e-mail chain are discussing.  What’s great is that if I reply, she sends this reply back to me, as well as to everyone else involved in the original e-mail.

This type of situation calls for a fresh e-mail, a new e-mail, one unfettered by irrelevant banter or business.  However, my coworker is under the impression that the Internet is under ration, and that we must carefully preserve every sheet of digital paper we have, lest we run out.  Can you imagine??  What if you clicked Compose and your Computermatronic Machine barked back, “YOU HAVE USED ALL OF YOUR E-MAILS.  PLEASE RECYCLE.”

He will eat you if you don't.

(This same receptionist believes in saving newspapers.  They are removed from the shelf near my desk every week, and found stuffed around her CPU under her desk, in true A&E “Hoarders” style, which probably has something to do with the facts that 1. her desk smells, and 2. her computer has caught fire before.  Of course, the smell could be the clinically depressed fish in their tepid water, which she stirs with her fingers to “wake ’em up”, the rotting food given to her by her “connection” in the cafe downstairs at the end of the day, stockpiled in her file cabinet, or the 14 large fountain drink cups filled with Pepsi from God-knows-when sitting in her overhead shelf.  But I’m pretty sure that the newspaper hoarding caused the fire.)

Anyway.  This information is neither here nor there.  But it sure is stinky!

I expect this sort of reaction to technology when dealing with someone who’s almost seventy and is too lazy to write on anything but cartoon animal Post-Its, or write with anything that doesn’t have a plastic ice cream cone or fuzzy Santa head on the end of it.  I do not, however, expect this kind of absolute fear and aversion to technology from the people who work in the Graduate Admissions Program Evaluations office at the institute of higher learning to which I pay lots of money (to be spent on things like Internet connections and e-mail programs).

When I say “pay lots of money,” I mean that in a few short months I will be paying out the ass and bleeding out the eyes because tuition loans will come knocking like Jesus on your nasty old heart, and I most likely will not just be handed a job as easily as they hand me a piece of paper saying I’m qualified to do a job.  So, it’s a little frustrating when they make it harder to GET that piece of paper by burying a million forms in the big yucky backyard I like to call “my school’s website,” and expect me to first know how many there are, that I need to go dig them up, then to actually go and dig them all up.

Not only are the forms outdated, containing references to permission numbers and systems no longer used by the university, they are also written for students who actually physically attend the university.  I mean, hey, if you’re going to have a blossoming online program, why take the extra half hour it might require to update a couple of things so that people who rely entirely on the website will know what the fuck they’re doing?  No.  Instead, directions are as follows:

Want to graduate?  Follow these steps carefully, and DO NOT CALL US.

1.  Go to this website.  Turn up speakers and listen carefully to instructions.  DO NOT CALL US.

2.  Open all 12 pdf forms, then close them again.

3.  Open all odd-numbered forms beginning with vowels only and save to your desktop.  Be sure that your desktop background is a picture of a waterfall or a kitten, as the forms will not work otherwise.

4.  Re-name form A yourlastname_yourfirstname_streetyougrewupon.pdf.  Rename form E yourlastname_biddlenuts_wtf.pdf.  Re-name remaining forms I, O, and U with this naming convention, except substitute your last name with the maiden names of maternal and paternal grandmothers, and for the third form just make some crap up.  For the first name, use the name of imaginary nuts (be sure to follow up imaginary nut name with “nuts”).  In the third field, use the names of the three architects of the tomb of Henry VII in alphabetical order respective to the form.

5.  Fill out all forms, print them, pee on them, then scan, save, and re-name following the filename conventions CLEARLY outlined in Step 4.

6.  Send to your grad advisor in an email with the subject line reading I DON’T LIKE YOU, EITHER in all caps.  Find your grad advisor’s e-mail address here.

7.  Failure to complete all of these steps exactly and fill out all forms correctly results in late graduation or no graduation at all.

8.  Please do not begin step 1 until you have filed the Permission to Fill Out Graduation Forms with the Forms Permission Office located behind the dog factory in Dongguan Province, China.  **This form must be hand-delivered.  Please bring 8 forms of I.D., excluding passports, state issued I.D.’s, and pieces of registered mail.  Please allow 18 months for approval of this form, during which you must establish legal residency in China.**

9.  DO NOT CALL US.  NOBODY WILL BE AVAILABLE TO TAKE YOUR CALL.  WE DO NOT LIKE PHONES OR CALLS THAT ARE ON THEM.

It’s probably like this because, in order to make any changes, there are 1,520 other forms to fill out in order to secure permissions, publishing rights, and rights to wipe one’s ass or take a coffee break while editing old forms.  So, might as well just leave them the way they are for full-time, on-campus students, scatter them in the web wind for the online students, and set a rigid schedule of deadlines for the completion of each form.  Didn’t get that Permission to Fuck Yourself form in on time?  Well, guess what, you don’t get to graduate.  So, you know, permission granted, you poor asshole.  Enjoy your Ramen, because you’re coming back to pay us this summer.

So, yeah.  When my school attempted to tell me via a mass e-mail that I wouldn’t be graduating until next fall, I decided to pick up the phone and call them, even though they haaaate that.  After about an hour on hold, I spoke with a woman who sounded like she was sitting in a La-Z-Boy with her jeans unbuttoned, and answering my question was keeping her from reaching for that 2-liter of grape soda on her side table.  You know, lots of heavy sighs and “let me seeeeeeee here” and crackly, spitty mouth sounds on her end of the phone.  She informed me that I couldn’t take the final course I needed to graduate because I hadn’t submitted my permission form that is apparently required for admission to the course.  I told her I’d send it that very second.  She proceeded to tell me that since the form takes 4 months to be approved by everyone who needed to sign off on it, I would have to either send it 4 months ago or send it now and wait four months.

“So,” I said, “Let me get this straight.”  Then I went into this scary lawyer mode, repeated everything she said, only in a way that made it sound just like the bullshit it was.  “You people can’t be bothered to move that form through your office to fast enough get five signatures in under four months?  EVER HEARD OF E-MAIL?  DO YOU HATE IT AS MUCH AS PHONE CALLS???”

That’s pretty much where my explanation of e-mail, discussed at the beginning of this blog post, came in.  While explaining the concept, I demonstrated it by e-mailing the form to her.  “See how quick that was?  Now just bang that through to all 5 people who need to sign it, and we’re done.”

If you do enough bitching and make people feel dumb enough, you get what you want.  Normally, I hate that approach, having spent so much time in retail, but as a retail employee, I never said, “Aw, you know what?  My handbook, written by Moses, clearly states that before you can buy those pants, you have to stand on your head and queef the Star Spangled Banner.”

So, guess who got into the final class she needs to graaaaaduaaaate on tiiiiime?

It’s me.  I threw in a little something about how I’d sue the all-fired shit out of them if they tried to make me pay for another semester of courses just because of a pissfuck form.

3 more months of school.

9,341 more 2-liters of grape soda.

Remaining forms to fill out: endless.

3 Comments

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3 responses to “Queef it again, Sam.

  1. Are you for serious that that was going to take four months? I sense some exaggeration in parts on this post.

    I’m glad I never went to college as that form circus might have been the only thing I’d be able to complete.

    • cupcakeheartbreak

      SOME exaggeration, yes. Some, but not all:

      “Graduate Admissions and Program Evaluations (GAPE) takes at least four months to properly evaluate your candidacy petition and notify you. They will notify you if your candidacy petition has been approved or denied through the mail, e-mail, and under “Other Indicators” on My SJSU after they have evaluated your candidacy petition. Make sure MySJSU has your correct and current e-mail and mailing addresses. SLIS has no information as to the status of your candidacy application; please do not contact SLIS for this information.”

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