So, I have been doing British university entrance exams, and, let me tell you, they are HARD. To add insult to injury, I was given the privilege to write these exams in return for a massive kick in the nuts, to the tune of $2000. SATs? No problem. LSATs? A bit harder, but fun enough, except for the logic games/matrix puzzles section, which bites. Miller Analogies Test (widely accepted as a proxy IQ test)? Are you sure this is a post-graduate entrance exam? And none of them cost over $200 (well, air ticket to Detroit to write the MAT notwithstanding).
So I go to my first exam, which, as luck would have it, is a law test. Jesus H. Christ on a motherloving bike. Pick three essay questions out of twelve (I think?), time allotted, one and a half hours. And even the best three questions were a royal pain, because they asked for hypotheticals and pure opinions, rather than quote-unquote the facts as you see them. I sweated all through the exam and had to sneak a smoke in the boys room, something for which I was warned.
Well, the second exam on that day was much, much easier. I had been expecting a wrecking ball to the nuts, but this one was a cake walk. It was an exam on I.T. (computers), and to do the test, I was given a fully Internet-enabled laptop, and told to use whatever software (including online help) I saw fit. The task sheet dealt with an MS Access database and I was able to breeze through it (it took me half the time allotted!) with the exception of the last question, which was a bit of a meat grinder and I did not even attempt it.
That was three days ago or so. Today, I was faced with a law paper again, but the questions were more to my taste (here is a case, well, two actually, but they were two cheeks of the same arse, now give me your judgement, with reasons, as a judge would). Time also an hour and a half. What I thought at the time notwithstanding, my mental state at the time was right down the middle of Csikszentmihaly^s Flow theory graph. This would correspond to a state colloquially called fun, and which Csikszentmihaly scientifically quantified as peak Flow.
Next, I have a French exam to do. No worries this time. I speak French very well, with a slight Norman/Jerriais accent, and I can read and write it to perfection. In fact, I am just now reading Le Point, France^s counterpart to TIME Magazine, just sommer (that is a South Africanism but I can not quite translate it).