Thursday, 16 July 2009

This is Some A-Grade Sh*t, Right Here

You get it if you get it. If you don't, forget it

So, for the first time in weeks, I actually managed to get everything I wanted done. I've spent my lunch and the following hours relaxing, and this evening I shall be reading in the late-setting sun on my balcony with an ice-cold glass of horchata (drink from Valencia: like milk, but made of nuts). Bliss.

One of my several paperwork issues, today, was to finally collect my grades from the entire year. I already knew most of them, since the teachers put up a piece of paper on their office doors so that their students can either lord it over the rest or publicly weep over their poor grades. I, however, need to put them all in a nice orderly list and send them to my UK university, so that they can be converted into British grades. In Spain, you get a number from one to ten, ten being the best of the best. In the UK you get a number between one and one hundred, one hundred being for the genius who is so clever he or she should run the entire world. The numbers also form grade strands. In spain these are Sobresaliente (Outstanding), 9 or 10; Notable, 7 or 8; Aprobado (Pass), 6; Suspenso (Fail), 5 and below. In the UK these are (typically, for the British) considered "classes": First Class is 70% and above; Upper Second Class (or 2:1) is between 60% and 70%; Lower Second Class (or 2:2) is between 50% and 60%; Third Class is between 40% and 50%; while anything below 40% is a fail. My UK university handily provided us with a conversion table, and now I know my entire year's results, I can work out my marks for each module and the mean mark for the year. Since all I seem to do, this week is list, here's another one for you.

First Semester

Novela hispanoamericana del siglo XX (20th Century Hispanoamerican Novel) - 9.5 (Sobresaliente) = 82% (First)

Literatura española y marginalidad (Spanish Literature and Marginalisation) - 7 (Notable) = 60% (2:1)

Teatro español del siglo XX (20th Century Spanish Theatre) - 6 (Aprobado) = 50% (2:2)

Second Semester

El teatro hispanoamericano (Hispanoamerican Theatre) - 10 (Sobresaliente) = 85% (First)

El cuento hispanoamericano (Hispanoamerican Short Story) - 9 (Sobresaliente) = 80% (First)

El ensayo hispanoamericano (Hispanoamerican Essay) - 8.5 (Notable) = 75% (First)

La mujer en la literatura española (The Woman in Spanish Literature) - 8 (Notable) = 70% (First)

Literatura española y cine (Spanish Literature and Cinema) - 8 (Notable) = 70% (First)

So, the pattern reveals that hispanoamerican literature is my forte, while my low mark in Spanish Theatre can be put down to me having been dumped into a new university with a completely different set of rules and regulations. Also, I stopped going to the classes, since the teacher just rambled on about stuff which had nothing to do with the class itself. I was bound to do worse in the first semester. However, I hadn't forseen just how well I'd do in the second. I was told by some of my spanish friends that marks like that are rare even for spanish students. Which leads me to conclude either I'm spectacularly intelligent, or a relatively-clever foreign student who piped up in class and got extra points with the teachers for it. I suspect the latter. No matter, my UK average mark is 71.5%, meaning that once again I have scraped a First Class mark, despite having been a layabout with a "selective" attendance record and far too opinionated in class for my own good.

My regular readers may be asking the question: "but what about that evil bitch from the bowels of hell who gave you such a hard time? Where are her marks?" Well - suprise, surprise - she failed me in both the classes I had with her, but it turns out I did more classes than I actually needed to. The minimum requirement for us foreign students is 6 or 7 classes, and I took 10, so I junked her classes from my official list, meaning that - officially, at least - I never had to deal with her. Up yours, Consolación Baranda Leturio! Even your machinations couldn't stop me!


Did that make any difference to your life? Probably not, but it gives me a chance to strut my intellectual stuff. As I have said before, I may not be intelligent, but I sure as hell ain't stupid.

Not bad for a boy who failed his first year at University.


  1. I invited him to his first Horchata!!
    I'm so proud! :P

  2. omg well done!!! at least someone is doing well. dont let it all go to the dogs on ur final year!

  3. Efrén - It's true, I have you to thank (or blame) for my addiction to horchata.

    Stupendous - With 50% of my degree wieghted in my final year, don't think I haven't thought about ensuring I get a first!