Opinion: A Song of A’s and F’s: Finals Are Coming

Westeros, a land inhabited by a people known as the Eagles, descendents from the First Men and Women for Others, is experiencing the end of a long summer, and with that, the looming threat of a cold finals season. The Eagles thought their biggest problem was behind them: The Battle of the Blackwater, also known as midterms. Though many people made it through relatively unscathed, some still bear gruesome scars that now mar the faces of their GPA’s. However, the war is far from over, and the Seven Kingdoms are still experiencing the skirmishes. The north is recovering from the massacre of the Red Housing Selection, the Brotherhood Without Dining Dollars are already causing hold-ups in the dining hall lines, and Melisandre, the academic advisor, has done more harm than good when it comes course selection. Campus is already in turmoil, and now students must face the ever-present threat of finals. No one is safe.

Photo courtesy of Boston College/ Facebook

Photo courtesy of Boston College/ Facebook

In the northernmost region is Castle Bapst, the Night’s Watch, and the Wall, a block of solid concrete also known as O’Neill. The Night’s Watch is comprised of TA’s, those who have given up any chance of a social life for the valiant calling of education. They have taken solemn vows to forsake their youth, their free time and their energy to protect us from ignorance and wrong answers. The brave men and women of The Watch, Castle Bapst and the Wall serve as the last line of defense between the students, and the fast approaching White Walkers who bring nothing but cold, fear and failing grades.

The northerners are prepared. They live their lives chanting the mantra of impending exams, and they have been warning you all along. Robb and Bran are constantly in the library, Sansa scolds you when you miss class and Arya has compiled all the available practice exams and has taken each one three times. Ned Stark, however, is the most dedicated. He has booked a study room for every night from now until the last exam, and already, he has wholeheartedly adopted the finals wardrobe of sweatpants and animal furs, as well as a “shower seasonally, shave never” policy. Watch out for Ned, he tends to lose his head before finals even start.

Down in King’s Landing, Robert Baratheon scoffs in the face of finals. He chooses a hunting trip with his Bro’s Guard instead of going to class, and a jousting tournament in O’Neill Plaza over writing the paper that is due tomorrow. Prioritizing recreation over education, he has a different perspective on how to get the most out of his time at Boston College. Robert is the envy of every Eagle, until he is gutted by the boar tusk of responsibility.

Close friends of House Baratheon, the members of House Lannister provide more variety. There is the brilliant loner, Tyrion, who is the smartest one in the class and he makes sure everyone knows it. He would be an ideal study partner if he were not so rude and self-isolating. His Lannister counterparts are smart as well, but in their own way. Jamie and Cersei, the beautiful ones, get you to share your notes and your 30 page study guide using their charm, good looks and seemingly endless supply of dining dollars. Unfortunately, the twins will then use your notes to cheat, shove your brother out of a window and score so well on the exam that they ruin any chance at a curve. Never trust a Lannister.

GIF courtesy of elementofcrime / Tumblr

Daenerys Targaryen is a wild card. She is always posting pictures of her crazy nights off-campus at the bars Qarth, Yunkai and Mereen in Essos. She never shows up to any lectures, so you assume she withdrew from the class. But keep an eye out for the Mother of Passing, because chances are she will show up to the final and do just that. There is also the chance she will bring her three dragons and burn down the lecture hall, so make sure you sit near an emergency exit.

Finally, we have Professor Joffrey, the sadistic, power-hungry ruler. He seems to enjoy torturing his students, adding last-minute paper assignments onto an already packed syllabus, banning the use of calculators on exam days or executing your father on the steps of St. Ignatius. Beware, those who failed to heed the Maesters’ advice on PEPS: Joffrey will make your last weeks a new kind of hell. Begin studying now, or finals season might leave you broken, emotionally destitute or with your head on a pike.

Take a lesson from House Stark: Finals are coming and we all need to be prepared. Hopefully George R.R. Martin gave you the intelligence of Tyrion, the forethought of a Stark and the ability to relax like a Baratheon. Go forth and study, Eagles, and remember: When you play the game of finals, you pass, or you die. There is no middle ground.

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