After a test, inevitably someone will always say “Wow, that was easy!”, usually in front of a group of people. I’m never really sure what these people are trying to accomplish – do they think everybody’s going to be really impressed with how smart they are? Or do they legitimately not understand that anyone in the group who struggled, even a little, with the test, is going to get annoyed?
Casually bringing up a comparison of smartness to a group of medical students is like poking a bear with a stick.
Don’t ask me why it has to be that way. I could imagine a perfect world where we’re all just like, “Hey man, glad that the test went well for you! High-five!”, except – well, wait. No, I can’t. Med school is full of people who were the best and brightest everywhere they’ve ever been, and are frankly a little irritated to find out that they’re suddenly average here. There’s an unspoken rule that you don’t bring up numbers – nobody ever brings up their undergrad MCAT or med exam scores. I don’t even know the MCAT scores of my closest friends here.
This is partially because none of us care about the MCAT anymore, and partially because if you bring up a number, everyone will mentally compare theirs to yours. Our class is unranked, so this is mostly just for the sake of everyone’s psychological well-being – it’s a great unwritten rule, and I like it when nobody breaks it. For a lot of us, I think we’ve always based part of our self-esteem on our intelligence – so accepting that we might not be the smartest person around is actually a huge, painful thing to admit to ourselves. But I’m aware of the fact that it’s a little obsessive for all of us to feel that way about something that’s so insignificant. (And yes, I do think it’s insignificant as to whether someone gets a 22 or a 42 on their MCAT if you’ve ended up at the same school. It’s like worrying about SAT scores – who cares anymore?*)
Anyway, in the end, since this is an anonymous blog and all (although I do a really lousy job of staying semi-anonymous), I guess I can tell you guys that I thought the test was really easy. Sure, there were questions I didn’t know, but I’m happy with my decision to stop studying yesterday around noon. But to everyone else here, yeah, I’ll say that I studied all day yesterday and that the test was “fine”.
See, reading those last few sentences, even I think I sound like a jerk. But the point of a semi-anonymous blog is that I can be honest, so I guess I’ll leave that in.
Onward to embryology.