Does It Ever Bloody End?

The Struggle, I mean. Why is it that education is a never-ending uphill struggle, and the farther up the hill you get, the more you feel like you’re fighting against the world? Shouldn’t getting educated be as easy a process as possible? Aren’t we the future, and all that hippy crap?

As an opening, that probably makes it sound like I didn’t get what I wanted and I’m all angsty about it. In fact, I got exactly what I was expecting to get (arts in maynooth [MH101]), so I don’t really know why I’m angsty about it. Getting my first choice, psychology in Maynooth [MH106], would have made things a little easier, but ultimately the only difference is now I have to finish top 30 of my class in order to continue. Which is probably doable, considering that out of the 200 or so people that will be in my class, 150 will probably be dossers that just think it sounds cool. Still, it takes away from the relieved feeling of “I got what I wanted”. It seems like almost everyone else has got their future layed out in front of them (or at least believe they do). They’re off to become lawyers or doctors or mathematicians or whatever. Maybe I’m just in a pessimisstic mood, but I can’t help but see all the future roadblocks. If I don’t finish top of my class next year I’m screwed for psychology. Then again, I don’t even know if I like psychology. It’s not like you’re prepared for it at all up to this point. Up until this point psychology has been my goal — and it still is — but now I have to pick two other subjects, which I’ve barely given a thought. Yet if I don’t get into psychology, I’ll be forced to use them as a back-up. So should I pick easy subjects that I can coast through, to allow me to focus on psych? Or should I pick the other two subjects with a mind to making a career out of them if psych doesn’t work out? Or should I just go with what’s interesting and figure it out as I go? Then again the details about the courses are so vague it’s impossible to make a properly informed decision. I mean, what the hell is sociology? The study of societies? Society encompasses everything, so it’s basically a course about everything. How am I supposed to know if I’d like that?

Then there’s accommodation. My application for an on-campus dorm was denied, entirely on the basis of random selection. Which is crap,really. I’m neat and tidy and respectful (when I feel like it) and fairly quiet (when I’m not debating something). I’d pay on time, every time. Plus I’ve always lived quite far from my friends, my whole life, so I was kind of looking forward to this as a chance to have friends right down the hall or across the street. And I got the application in on the day they started accepting them, online. I was probably among the first 10 to apply. But now I have to go through the added stress of researching areas to live off-campus, visiting them, making sure they’re not hell holes, digging up dirt on the landlords for future extortion, etcetera. Hassle.

It’s always been like this for me, too. All through secondary school I suffered with headaches that kept me home over 50% of the time. That’s a lot of time. In Sixth Year, there wasn’t a single week where I came in every day. Everyone — friends, families, teachers — all expected me to fail. Or at least scrape by. I mean, I’m a smart guy, but I’m also lazy. And I’ve got a screwy biological clock which makes it impossible to get to sleep most of the time. So I’d end up sleeping through school hours. WAAY back in first year I actually cared enough to bother my friends for the homework. But then my absences became so frequent and stretched for so long, keeping up with it became overwhelming. Plus I was lazy and I didn’t care. Then I got 405. I actually beat my closest friends in points (granted, we’re of the cynical underachievers Β crowd so that’s not too amazing. Still, I was considered least likely to succeed out of all of us). Like I said, I’m probably lazier than the average person, especially in terms of study (plus I had hard-ass subjects. History, Biology and Chemistry all together was a bit of a mistake in retrospect) and I rarely attended school. The fact that I even managed an above average score just shows how screwed up the system really is. Or maybe it just shows how much of a genius I am. Either way, I can’t help but feel that I’ve beaten it, somehow. I got what I wanted, and I didn’t even go to school or work particularly hard to get it. Hell, I probably put more time and energy into this blog than I did into study. Just goes to show there’s still hope, even for the seemingly hopeless.

I’ve never mentioned my absenteeism here before because I figured it would make me harder to identify with. Seeing as how most of the other bloggers were bright young ladies and gentlemen pursuing medicine or law or journalism, I felt I could reflect more of an everyman’s perspective: smart, but not too pushed about the whole school thing. It seemed to work, too. I dunno if any of you were following that Aidan O’Something’s column in the Irish Times, but that (paid) job was actually offered to me, then snatched away at the last minute by some nepotistic editor (ooh, love that sound – nepotistic – rolls off the tongue) who apparently knew the bitch. And then that Aidan punk didn’t have the courtesy to suffer a terrible mishap and let me take over, so I was left with but a broken dream. Although the journalist who contacted me felt a bit guilty about it, so she seemed to give the blog extra media attention. Which was alright. Plus it gave me more time to not study…

I guess this’ll be my last post. Unless I steal think of something really funny or interesting to post about before the next batch of Leaving Certers come along. Poor guys. They’ve got big shoes to fill. Wonder who the new me will be. Maybe it’ll be a chick. Ooh, maybe she’ll be hot. Always wondered what my personality transposed into the body of a hot chick would be like. Undoubtedly sexy.

24 thoughts on “Does It Ever Bloody End?”

  1. One positive of using a girly alias is that it could be comfortably assumed by a girl.

    Hey, if the next generation of bloggers are reading this, continue my legacy by tagging your posts with ‘Emerald is cool’. Maybe eventually I’ll be bigger than the leaving cert itself…

  2. I take strong exception to you calling Aidan O’ Shea “a punk”, or implying that nepotism was involved in the decision to select him as a column writer. Maybe somebody playing intercounty football as well as doing the LC provided a slightly more compelling persepctive than somebody who rarely deigned to attend school? Possibly.

    Aside from that, good luck in uni. To finish top (or top third), you’ll need to put down a whole lot of hard work, but it may be worth it. I’d probably advise you to judge whether such a high ranking is possible. If it is, pick subjects which are 1h-able, and will push you into psychology. If that isn’t a realistic aspiration, choose subjects you’re interested in. Otherwise, the year could be extremely dull.

  3. you were offered that Irish Times post?!

    and that cretin with the intelligence and interesting flair of a terminally ill tortoise got it instead?


    christ, he was one one dull sonofabitch. he was constantly drivelling about his place on the Mayo team playing muckflakin’ football and how little study he was getting around to doing. which came full circle in quite a satisfactorily vicious way, like the provocation of a coiled cobra, as i dont think that he got his course.

    ho ho.

    I think that you would have made a far more spectacular and wonderful impact on the opinions of the paper’s target audience, who now must all think that we crave nothing more than conformity and football.

    fucks sake.

    anyways, i enjoyed your blog, and best of luck

    au revoir

  4. Maybe instead of feeling like a victim, you should take the initiative for a change. The crux of your post is you didn’t get your course, so now you will have to work extra hard. So maybe, instead of being lazy, by your own admission, you should have worked hard, and now you would be reaping the benefits.


  5. Got exactly what I wanted, doing exactly what I wanted. The only thing I didn’t get was a dorm, but that was randomly distributed so it’s not like I could ‘work extra hard’ to get it, unless you’re suggesting I should have tracked down the residential manager at Maynooth and offered sexual favours in exchange for accommodation.

    Yuck. You, Mr. John, have a sick sick mind…

  6. If you care to read your post again, you will see you didn’t get your first choice, which was psychology, and now you will have to work hard to get into psychology. If you had worked hard in the first place, you would have gotten psychology. QED.

  7. Ooh snotty. Sounds like Mr. John isn’t in a very pleasant mood. What exactly is your point? I should take the initiative to build a time machine and go back and work harder?

    Besides, I don’t even know if I like psychology. I think I will, and I seem to be the type, but at least arts will give me the opportunity to try a few other things. And if I do like psychology, then I’ll be able to work hard at something I enjoy, rather than wasting time on the contrived aul Leaving Cert, toiling away at subjects I don’t care about. See, I don’t dwell on regrets. That’s what victims do. I just really really enjoy complaining about stuff…

  8. I agree with Liam. Emerald, you would have been brilliant for the Irish Times job! Loved reading your blog. How frustrating to have been offered it and all…

    Anyway, best of luck in Maynooth.

    I’m off to History and Politics in Trinity, looking forward to it πŸ™‚

  9. For what little it’s worth, I think you’re extremely well suited to psychology! πŸ™‚

    Pity about the accom! πŸ™ But I’m sure you’ll sort something out. Maynooth is practically populated solely by students! I’m sure there’s loads of places going that are still fairly close to the college! πŸ™‚

  10. Also got arts in maynooth and have no idea what subjects to take, prob should have thought more about it before applying to the whole CAO thing, but how are you meant to seriously think about what you want to do in third level and do the whole leaving cert thing in the same year! Grr! Anyways best of luck to all next year! πŸ™‚

  11. You know Emerald, for the level of cockiness you showed throughout your posts, you had me believing you were going to take over the world and get 700 points. I honestly laughed hard when i saw you only got 405.

  12. Pleeease, as if the Leaving Cert really counts for anything.
    And what did you get, Mr. John-who-laughs-hard-at-other-people’s-failings?

    Either you did great, and have come to gloat, or you did about the same as me, and got so broken up about it you’ve come to take it out on other people. Or you’re some kind of crusader for higher educational standards who’s settling for lecturing random underachievers over the internet.

    In any case, makes you out to be quite the douche, doesn’t it? QED.

  13. John, why on earth would you laugh at someone’s points? I have a friend (of sorts) who displayed (and always did display) far more ‘cockiness’ than Emerald. She was expecting certainly over 500 and got a good bit less – but I wouldn’t laugh at her! Much less tell her I found it funny. A nasty part of me is pleased that she got a wake up call at last, and won’t go on thinking that she can just get all As without putting in the work.
    But come on, don’t be so nasty.

  14. Not to mention that I was never cocky about the Leaving Cert. I’m just cocky in general. Part of the whole Emerald package.

    I honestly don’t mean any offence, Mr. John. By which I mean, y’know, it’s nothing personal. I just like to mock people, and you burst in and made yourself a bit of a target…

  15. It’d be weird if people were still here, really. Leaving Cert’s over, results are in. Final posts made. It’s over. Only reason to stick around is if you’re obsessed with me…

    Uh, and like, I still get the emails. Which draws me back here. It’s not that I’m obsessed with myself.

  16. Okay so I’m this years leaving cert batch and I must say, I’m sooo impressed by what ye guys have put together here. I mean, it’s very productive and pretty amazing considering the average teenager. I hope I’m not being over flattering here but an hour studying irish does make your brain melt a bit, so reading this blog is a nice refain. πŸ™‚

    Well done on getting the course you wanted anyway! Even reading these blogs makes me realise how small ireland is (and it all honesty it makes me shudder a little ha) because my best friend is going up to Maynooth to study pyschology too. I guess 5 million people doesn’t give you a lot of social leg-room…

    So, I’m probably to late, but how does someone get involved in the blog writing here?

  17. Are you suffering from CFS (Chronic Fatigue Syndrome) or ME? Have disturbed sleeping patterns?

    You should consider taking brain-friendly nutrients and food supplements.

    I suggest you to take the following below:

    Udo’s Oil Choice Blend (source rich in omega 3, 6 and 9)
    or take Eye Q fish oil supplements
    or optionally take both.

    Vitamin B complex. (Ensure this product includes vitamin B6)

    Antioxidants (the more diversified, the better. I take Sona’s Antioxidant.)

    Your brain needs lots of oils, particularly those of omega 3, 6 and 9. In body, your brain consumes most fats (in dry weight only, your brain is over 60% fat).
    Your brain sings when it gets plenty of the desired oils: omega 3, 6 and 9.
    Besides these oils prolong your youth. Another thing, when your brain has plenty of those oils, you are least likely to suffer headaches or migraines, chronic fatigue, sluggishness, etc.
    Fishermen and their families rarely suffer headaches because they consume fish rich in omega 3. Same story with Eskimos and Japanese. None of them suffer from CFS.

    Your fat-rich brain always needs diverse vitamin Bs, (water-soluble vitamins). They build your neurotransmitters. They enhances your moods and improves your sense of co-ordination, concentration, etc.
    Antioxidants protect your brain’s fats from the destructive oxidants.

Leave a Reply