Saturday, August 20, 2005

Punctuality and Math

It was a lame start: what could be more lame that waking up late on a day that requires nothing less than punctuality? Jolted out of my wits, I jumped out of my bed, looked at the premature yellow rays of the morning sun, checked my clock(which is really my phone), and upon knowing that I had only 30 minutes to take a bath, walk, and review my notes (30 minutes to do all those!), I knew I was in that state called panic-but-not-really-panic. I hurriedly scrubbed my face with soap, shampooed my centimeter-long hair, put on a red shirt and denim pants, and wore my socks without drying my feet.

"Lord, tani hindi ko ma-late." (Lord, I hope I don't get late.).

That was the first stretch, the preparation--and so inevitably came the second part: the 15-minute walk to the Math Building. I went out of the dorm at 6:35 and was quite expecting something as miraculous as a Toki Jeepney on a Saturday, but there was none. I had no choice but to walk, jog, and run and a combination of all of them while still scanning my notes and trying to stick the derivatives of the sech and csch inverses into my head. Prayerfully, I asked the Lord to help me--at the back of my mind, I was thinking, "Lord, You know what's best for me." After all, His grace is sufficient especially in times when we reach the end of our capacities, our weaknesses.

When I arrived at Math, I ran all the way to Room 303 which was on the Third Floor. I was surprised at seeing a rather small number of my classmates--only a fourth of the seats were occupied--and there was no sign of Sir Palma yet. It was another 10 minutes, I think, when he finally arrived.

The exam was good for two hours, but I thought I wouldn't be able to answer all questions (amounting to 70 points) on time. The first part of the test was on calculating the limits of functions (both trigonometric and polynomial) where I found the greatest difficulty. I tried everything possible (or I knew was possible)--the L'Hopital's Rule, the limit laws, et al--but there was no bright light to be grasped: I didn't have concrete answers.

I decided to move on to the next parts which were comparatively easier than the first part. When I knew we had to graph functions, I felt something called dread: I hate graphing. I said, "If If I can't graph this by definition and transformation, I'll have to do plugging, even if that means Sir Palma will kill me (this part is hyperbole)." But the Lord's grace was sufficient--I was able to move on.

I forgot to mention that at the beginning of the exam, we were told to skip two questions. I half-rejoiced at the mere thought of skipping two problems, but I forgot all about such announcement in the middle of the exam (I was too stupid not to have read what was written on the board!). And so I answered one of them, a problem on parametric equations and finding a point in the intersection of the tangent line to that curve. It was so hard but I was able to get an answer anyway. I wasted almost 15 minutes reviewing and re-solving the problem, but of course, it would be of no use.

Two hours came to pass, and when Sir Palma told us we had two minutes left to review our answers, I bowed my head and closed my eyes, and prayerfully thanked the Lord for the answers I've written.

"To You alone the be glory, Lord."

Then I went out of the building, the heat of the morning sun touching my face with a comforting warmness that made me feel as if it was truly the Lord caressing me.


  1. o ayan, nag-comment na ko. NO COMMENT! What more do you want? what do you want me to say? -----popo

  2. Heya Lance! :)

    Found your blog na!

    - Chubby

  3. hi lance, sori di ako nkpagpaalam nung nilagay ko yung link sa blog ko ng blog mo.. kinopya ko lang kasi mga links ni jef, hehe..

  4. hey lance, it's been days since you last updated. Yakal's connected again as of my writing.

  5. Lansoy!!! Room 303 is the exact same room where I had my math17. The exact same room where I sat staring at my 3rd long exam questionnaire,totally clueless as to how i was going to conceive a solution for them,while my classmates were feverishly writing answers on their bluebooks. the scratching of their pencils on paper alost brought me close to tears. i thought i was going to fail. but i didn't. because room 303 was also where i sat smiling to myself thirty minutes before time's up on my 4th long exam. wala lang...hehe... :)

  6. *brought me close to tears. :)


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