Sunday, January 16, 2011

After x months...


I just reread my own posts after years... there's a certain "time capsule" feel to it.

I hope I can blog again, even occasionally. At kahit hindi seryoso or english. :)


Friday, July 10, 2009

I Want You, Bank

(This entry’s title is obviously wordplay on one of my favorite songs of the late King of Pop. I have to admit that I’m not an MJ fan, but I have to agree that his contributions to popular music was immense. In effect, he paved way for more talented black artists to emerge, and he also redefined showmanship in the world of music videos. Obviously, millions want you back, MJ, since you’re gone too soon.)

A significant number of Pisay students were sick these week, hence the cancellation of classes starting Wednesday. Because of it, I had the time to actually do things that I delayed for months already, including updating my passbook. So to the bank I went to days ago. Apparently, the branch relocated anew, about four blocks away from its previous spot (its first relocation was just 30 steps away from the original site). Since the new branch location is considerably far from my home, I decided to close my account. Here are things that I learned that day:

1) Employees’ uniforms actually have a purpose. As I entered the bank, I approached a yuppie-looking man in front of the cashier and asked him about my predicament. He laughed; he was simply a companion of somebody in line. Red-faced became me.

2) Your signature defines you. Years after having my bank account, I decided to change my signature because I though the first one was corny and very grade school-y, just in time before graduation. The new one featured more strokes and self-proclaimed sophistication (haha). Obviously, the specimen signatures the bank had were my previous signatures, so when I presented my valid IDs, the process was stalled. I explained that in the previous bank branch, I already had the matter settled. Oh well. So please, to my students, have decent signatures as early as now.

3) Spelling numbers is not effortless. Since I was closing my account, I was asked to write down the remaining amount on a certain form. Then the guy asked me to write again, this time, to write in words. Woah. Writing digits 12345 is brainless, but twelve thousand, three hundred forty-five is not. The dash is tricky.

4) Interest rates are almost non-existent. We put our money in banks primarily for security, not for the money to multiply in excessive proportions, because it will not happen. Math 5 students should once in a while take a look at the interest that a certain amount earns in x months to further understand the epsilon-delta definition of limits, especially that of limits approaching zero. If I only had the business acumen, I would have invested my money in profit-generating ventures.

5) A hot fudge sundae guarantees a smile. Enough said.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

I'm Thirsty

I spent my Holy Week in Batangas, where my mother’s mother resides. During summer vacation, we siblings (at times with our cousins) are sent there almost every summer when we were children. In retrospect, we actually had ho-hum summers, doing practically nothing but playing (and secretly getting junk food and softdrinks from my lola’s small sari-sari store), and waiting for beach day, which is always the culprit of our sunburns bad enough to actually survive June. In contrast, a student I chatted with recently has a jam-packed summer consisting of three sports, and cooking class on top of that.

On Good Friday, the mayor of our small town decided to cut off the water supply. I suppose I’m the last to find out, waking up at around 10:30 a.m. and finding no water in the comfort room. Apparently, mister mayor wants us to involuntarily sacrifice, and he drove his point I guess, water being obviously essential. We had little water to drink as well. Talk about abstinence. Pork I can give up, breakfast I already did (for two days), but not water. I suppose there wasn’t any advisory, else we could have prepared water pails and all the containers. Losing water was such a horror; I didn’t move much so as not to get thirsty, since the water bottles in the fridge are all empty. Tell me, how can I live with no water? Can’t drink, can’t bathe with no water. Haha. There was also a 10-minute power interruption by 6:30 p.m., which we assumed was to last until whenever, making us conclude that mayor is a tyrant.

There was still no sign of water supply by dinner. My cousin got a pitcher, put plenty of ice, and poured Sprite. Soda’s effervescence (the jumping particles on the surface that can tickle one’s nose) has always amazed me. But there was no water. Hmmm. I haven’t drank softdrinks since exactly four years ago by Black Saturday, and I don’t want to ruin my streak. Man can survive for three days without water, said science, so the plan was to chew my food slowly to prevent me from choking. If I really need to, then I have to drink Sprite. It’s very odd that we have to drink soda to sacrifice for Lent. Plan B was get a block of ice and let it be water for x minutes, but that would take too long. I realized that my no-soda streak was about to end.

In a shocking twist of events, another pitcher apparently contained water. What. Sprite and water can be indistinguishable at times, especially in the dark, and when placed in translucent containers. Yey! No more dry throats. I wondered where it came from (since I couldn’t get a drink all afternoon), but I asked no more. Those two glassfuls were bliss.

Water supply was back the next day. Indeed, absence makes the heart go fonder.

I guess the same goes for other things that people take for granted. The same can be told about good friends. And school. Yearly, as March ends, I chat with a lot of students who were jubilant after the last periodic exam (or submitted requirement), troop to the malls, forego sleep for online games or PSP, yet were already bored after four or five days of “freedom”. In parallel ways like water, good friends and school refresh, support, and sustain us. No wonder, the first day of classes is one of the moments when pure joy is indeed both observed and experienced, and when the thirst for knowledge begins.

Don’t it always seem to go that you don’t know what you got ‘til it’s gone, as the song goes.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Pushing the Boundaries of Dance: My Personal Account of Math Unit’s Low Number

The brains behind the Humanities Week concocted a new twist to the pseudoannual Talent Show. Billed this year as Talent For a Cause, the project urged the Pisay community to vote for their favorite student performer, and/or their Academic Unit of choice. Proceeds will then go to the outreach projects of the school. Only the top five student performers/groups will be given the chance to perform, so friends and fans alike poured in effort to collect coins and bills for their (usually batchmate) peers. In the other division, the three units that will top the money votes will be “required” to perform on stage.

Here is my personal account of the craze that lead to the ubertalented Math Unit’s Low.

Pre-Humanities Week
Thursday, 28 August 2008
In the front lobby, on my way to Ateneo, Juan (Thy Kingdom Camia 2010) informed me that the Math Unit leads Talent For A Cause voting (alongside Chem and SocSci). I am clueless, so Juan explained the mechanics, that students get to vote for the units they want to see perform. I shrugged it off, since a lot can still happen, including persuasive campaigning for other units. Kidding.

Friday, 29 August 2008
A Talent For a Cause update revealed that the Math Unit still leads with 3000+ votes. The Math Unit even outvoted all the other units combined. Either people really clamor for us to perform, or students want revenge, given the piles of homeworks and seemingly intimidating exams. Sigh. Oddly, the students’ names were also listed, and the amount they contributed. Hmmm…

Humanities Week
Monday, 01 September 2008
I once in a while went to the 4th Floor Auditorium to peek at the Opening Salvo. The scorching sun practically uninvited me to the grandstand. Teasers of the student performers were generally okay, save for (Hello ARCI’s) Isabel’s Alicia Keys-ish number, which was very upbeat and classy. I stayed in the Math Faculty Center, trying to check papers, while waiting for Bow & RO 2012 students who will submit their problem sets early. The Math Unit still lead the tally.

Tuesday, 02 September 2008
ACLE time meant that I’ll stay in the 4th floor again. Ma’am de Joya (our unit head) sort of assigned me to be in charge for the Math Unit number. At the rate the Math Unit generated votes, we’re 99% sure to perform. I left for Ateneo in the afternoon, so I missed the KKKwiz (the Cardiac RS 2011 teams had a 1-2 finish!). I texted Cyd Calub (formerly of Sagala) if he can help the Math Unit with our performance. He asked what particular songs we like to be mixed, so I texted back: Go Girl (for the boys), Don’t Cha (for the girls), and Low (all together now). He did not reply after that.

Wednesday, 03 September 2008
An update was posted in the front lobby, reminding the Math, English, and Physics Units to somehow prepare for performances in case the units stay in the top three.

The Filipino Unit held the annual batch competitions on this day, so I was in the 3rd Floor Auditorium the whole day. I’m so proud of Bow & RO 2012’s sweep in Kilos Awit (Ruby’s Dakilang Lahi finished first, while Opal’s Handog ng Pilipino sa Mundo placed second). Their performances were very simple, yet honest, striking, and goosebump-inducing. Congratulations!

The sophomores’ Katutubong Sayaw was mildly interrupted by a shattered glass. Cardiac RS 2011’s efforts were rewarded as well: Sampaguita’s Singkil earned third place, while Rosal’s perfectly-lit Pandanggo sa Ilaw placed fourth. I, personally, found Jasmin’s Manlalatik/Subli the best in the bunch.

The juniors’ Di-Kumbensyonal took the competition a notch higher, with each section presenting original songs. Cesium’s winning sailor package – with their song, white sail, sailor costumes plus matching (Krispy Kremes-based) hats – was practically highlighted by the chimney-sounding bottles. Rubidium’s vocal harmony was above the rest, so they really deserved their second place finish.

Finally, my most-awaited contest, the Sayaw Interpretasyon, commenced. I thought Tau’s Tatsulok had it, with an angas feel throughout the performance, and each sequence with a different protagonist. Instead, Muon’s Posible clinched the first place trophy, largely because of unique ingredients – the puppet portion, and the reliable black light drama. Truth (the third-place section) and Graviton deserve extra applause for using their original songs. Electron, meanwhile, opted for a supreme showcase of their overflowing talents, which surely wowed the thrilled audience. Cyd and his gang deserve some props too.

Back at the Math Faculty Center, I was again reminded of the performance, so I sent Cyd a text message. There was no reply. On my way out of the campus, some pairs were practicing for the Art Fashion Show, including Jio (who won as Best Model two years ago under the Hipon banner). I told him about the dance thing, and asked him too to do choreography just in case Cyd cannot come up with one.

Thursday, 04 September 2008
An official post declared that the Math Unit topped the voting. Meaning, the dance number should materialize. I stayed in the Math Faculty Center the whole morning, studying for my Ateneo make-up exam.

I tried to call Cyd at around 11 AM, but he was inaccessible. Panic mode.

Since I had to attend my Ateneo class in the afternoon, all I can do is text Jio to go up the fourth floor (once the fashion show ends) to try teaching the other teachers whatever he can come up with. Providentially, I chanced upon ARCI’s Julia, another Sagala member. So I told her my dilemma, and pleaded for her to go to the Math Unit as well after the fashion show. Thankfully, she agreed.

I attended my Ateneo class, and then looked for my other teacher after for my make-up exam. It dawned upon me that this is the first time I’m missing Pisay’s fashion show.

I finished my exam, then hurriedly went back to Pisay for the dance practice. Meaning, there was much brisk walking in between two jeepney and one pedicab rides.

Back at Pisay, I was in the second floor of the SHB when Sir Vlad was walking towards my direction. “Anong gagawin ng Math?” he asked. “Wala akong idea, nandun sila sa taas,” I honestly replied.

At the Math Faculty Center, Jio and Julia (with other Sagala members) were already acting as dance masters to Sir Nat, Sir Sherwin, Sir Leo, and Ma’am Dinah. Good thing I wasn’t that late, and they were doing the chorus of Low. The students dance really well, and they were showing no signs of fatigue; in contrast, we teachers already felt aching legs even before we mastered the steps.

The kids had to leave already, and we still only had the chorus done. They were suggesting other moves that we felt were either very complex, or too funny-looking for non-dancers. The idea of mixing songs were dropped, since nobody had the time for it, bit that’s okay. Ma’am Dinah had to leave for TriNoma, and Sir Leo went home. So, Sir Nat and I searched online for Low dance moves. We laughed our hearts out: the choreography’s more intricate. We had no choice but to invent the dance moves ourselves.

We were supposedly tired, but we were having so much fun that the exhaustion was not yet felt. We tried to incorporate the Running Man and the Roger Rabbit, but the transition’s too fast, we had to drop them. We also planned to pull out hankies from our sneakers in the second chorus, but we never succeeded in pulling this trick off (no pun intended). We also orchestrated the blocking and formations (and the domino effects), so as to fill in the gaps of the unchoreographed parts. Haha.

The hungry group trooped to TriNoma. Slowly, lactic acid formed in our bodies. My legs were too shaky. After dinner, we went to Coffee Bean to meet Ma’am Dinah. We taught her the moves inside the coffee shop, and I drew the formations at the back page of the placemat. All the time, Sir Vlad was either texting or calling Sir Sherwin regarding school stuff. We then concluded that Sir Vlad was fishing to be included in the number. Haha. So I made adjustments in the formation groupings.

We went home, tired but happy. I was able to call Sir Vlad to invite him to join us. He was only too glad at the thought of dancing with us.

Friday, 05 September 2008
I waited for the teachers to come to practice what we have. The idea of Ma’am de Joya doing rhythmic gymnastics suddenly popped up. We weren’t able to attend the entirety of the Recognition/Convocation program. One by one they came, and last night’s dancers felt similarly about our legs, so we stretched properly before grooving. Last-minute editing were done to guarantee smooth transition, and the final pose was particularly hilarious to create. We were never complete before lunch, so the blockings weren’t practiced ever.

Sections that won the competitions performed again, over lunch by the faculty and staff. I couldn’t finish my food at the thought of performing in a few hours.

Before proceeding to the gymnasium, we were at last complete, so we were able to have run throughs (if there is a plural in this article, this should be it). I couldn’t count anymore as to how many times I changed my shirt. At last, after freshening up, the dance troop was ready.

We were scheduled last to perform, so we were able to watch all the numbers. The numbers of the English and Physics Units were received warmly. How I wish I could whistle songs, as well as front a band. The student performers were above average as well; I particularly liked Isabel Serrano’s moment.

The Math Unit rehearsed a few times backstage before our time to shine, so as to counter the nerves.

Actual Performance
Chaos. The adrenaline rush made us forget about our aching body parts. From the very beginning until our very “rehearsed” wave, the crowd cheered us on. Down the stage, I was semihounded by former homeroom students from Jasmin 09 and Camia 2010; that was such nice short moments of getting together again.

Days after
Videos of the performance were uploaded; sadly, almost all of them were from the same vantage point. After x times of viewing, we dancers never tired of watching us perform. Upon closer inspection, it was very funny to see the reaction of select students after we danced. Slow-motion replays also showed the particular second when Ma’am Dinah dropped her pendant, and when Sir Nat’s 100-peso bill popped out of his back pocket. It was interesting to note that introducing us took way longer than the actual performance. Some of my students already memorized my part.

Dancing was such a nice group experience for the Math Unit. It was a release that a Coffee Bean checking/storytelling sessions or Red Box moments couldn’t match. Personally, I think my previous schoolyear’s SexyBack/Lovestoned number was better in terms of choreography and visual appeal, but I enjoyed Math Unit’s Low more by a mile, since I’m dancing with the math people (no explanation needed). Plus much of the effort – choreography, transition moves, formation, insane ideas – came from us.

After the performance, we failed to recognize the people who helped us with the number; perhaps the cheering distracted us positively. So thank you, Jio Santos, Julia Negre, and the other Sagala members who dropped by. Thanks too, Cyd Calub, who could have had helped us given different circumstances. Plus, personally, thanks to Vince Severino’s magic shoes (both for Low and SexyBack).

After the buzz has died down, we remain as Math teachers. Nothing thrills us more than teaching Math, where the classroom is our dance floor.

Sunday, August 31, 2008

Heath Of the Knight

Heath scared me. He will almost always surely give the audience lasting creeps with his performance in his last fully-finished feature film, The Dark Knight. His acting is so raw, so larger than life, it seems Joker will literally follow you until you get home – then initiate a “game” that you’ll eventually lose, to his utmost delight.

The Dark Knight has broken box-office records as fast as the Batmobile can transform, and the mighty movie Titanic is the only ‘iceberg’ that stops it to be the ultimate champ in terms of kerching-kerching (ticket sales seems to be the domain of older films like Gone With the Wind). It’s been said that Titanic’s staying power is attributed to its use of universal themes: love, and good versus evil. A movie is usually escapist: people are allowed to halt their lives for two or so hours, as they enter a different world where their can-never-be-fulfilled wishes or moments – the hot car, the mansion by the seaside, the to-die-for man/lady, the passionate kiss, the rags-to-riches story, the sweet revenge, snow – come true. Good versus evil is a given in superhero movies, but the love aspect is not as dominant in The Dark Knight.

Heath Ledger’s untimely death is the film’s undeniable x-factor. The trailer that I watched almost did not feature Batman that for a moment, I thought the term Dark Knight doubly referred to Joker, given his very dark character. Perhaps the idea of a dead person acting on screen, that there can be no future releases featuring Heath, prompted fans and non-fans alike to troop the theaters. (Apparently, Heath has an unfinished fantasy movie, and his character will be jointly portrayed by Hollywood superstars Colin Farrell, Jude Law, and Johnny Depp)

I’m not a Batman fanatic, so I can’t say that I was floored by the movie. Heath’s acting is indeed exceptional, but Aaron Eckhart’s turn as Two-Face is commendable as well (I just found his coin-flicking villain portion too short). Morgan Freeman delivered another Morgan Freeman performance, so that’s not surprising. It’s nice to note that Maggie Gyllenhaal (who replaced Katie Holmes) is the brother of Jake, who co-starred with Heath in Brokeback Mountain. Also, Maggie, for me, looks like Kirsten Dunst, Jake’s former lover.

Oops, before I forget, I just need to mention this: Batman’s voice annoyed me. Christian Bale was really good; it’s unfair that all his efforts were somehow overshadowed by Heath. His Batman showed a humane side, unlike the action-figure acts of the previous Batmans. However, his voice, when in costume, isn’t pleasing at all to the ears. In fact, I was too distracted that I failed to absorb what he was saying.

Heath’s death saddened the world, given that his career is in an upswing prior to the over-dosage. This might be a reminder to us to give our best in whatever we do, and that we should learn to appreciate things while they last. The likes of Heath can inspire in a span of 120 minutes; we normal beings, without our utmost knowledge, can do the same as well.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Tennis, the Menace

Tennis has always been my favorite sport – to watch. I never had any opportunity to play a serious game, though I remember some short rallies back in high school x years ago. Some athletic batchmates wanted to maximize the then-brand-new Pisay tennis court, so before they played, I borrowed a racquet and tried some balls with a fellow non-athlete.

I don’t know when or how my fascination with the sport began. We didn’t even have cable TV in when I was still in elementary or high school, so I had no visual memory as well. Everything I know, I got from newspapers (and encyclopedia for the history). Somehow, I can relive the experience just by reading the facts mixed with emotional statements from the players. Given too that I am a data person who enjoys lists, I constantly looked forward to the updated ATP rankings, or the new Grand Slam champion, whatever the surface is. The game’s scoring and analysis is easy to follow (unlike baseball), and the game proper is very engaging (unlike golf). The stars of tennis are a plethora of personalities, each with a different game plan and surface of choice, though the really big ones can practically play on mud or sandpaper and still bring home the trophy. Coming from a country that’s generally celebrity-obsessed, my short list of icons include Pete Sampras, Andre Agassi, and other tennis hitters (of course, besides “rockstars”, kind people, and respected mathematicians).

Sampras and Agassi. We soon had cable when I was in college, and I was always on a lookout if there’s an upcoming tournament. Alas, the two superstars were featured in the finals of a major tournament (I couldn’t recall if it was Wimbledon or the US Open of 2001 or 2002). That fact shouldn’t be surprising, except that both players were past their prime at that time, though they still were serious contenders. I usually go to school at 8 AM even if my classes start after lunch; this day was different. It’s just necessary to stay home and finish the classic match. And so I did.

I am a fan of both players, though I was rooting for Sampras more. Maybe because he was the silent type like me, unlike the outburst-inclined Agassi. Maybe because he has more Grand Slam titles, though Agassi has at least one title from all four tournaments. When the game began, I was clapping for every point, whether for Andre or for Pete. I actually wanted a long game, so I was cheering for the person who was lagging behind in points. The two are friends off-court, but as the game was in play, it’s as if they were tasked to kill and obliterate the opponent. In a very civil way. In the end, it was Sampras who prevailed. Not surprisingly, Agassi was happy for Sampras.

Fast forward to the present. The Sampras-Agassi rivalry has long retired in the annals of tennis history, and the current top tennis superstars – Switzerland’s Roger Federer and Spain’s Rafael Nadal – are revving up for another epic match in the 2008 Wimbledon finals. Nadal, a power hitter, is a four-time French Open champ, doing it in consecutive years. Meanwhile, Federer is perhaps the most elegant player today, and is Wimbledon king the past five years. The newspapers have highlighted the Mr. Clay vs. Mr. Grass angle a million times: Nadal was Wimbledon runner-up the past 2 years, while Federer is twice runner-up as well in Roland Garros. There is no doubt that they are 1 and 2 (even if Australian Open winner Djokovic is slowly making his presence felt); therefore, it’s a must that I get to watch the finals. This should be an epic match.

Since we don’t have cable TV at home, I had to watch with a coteacher. Since it’s a Sunday night, I was preparing Math 1 stuff while watching. I’m rooting more for Nadal, because he came close to winning last year, unlike Federer’s French Open loss, which is very much lopsided (in exchange, I will be cheering for Roger in next year’s French Open). And he leads their career match-ups. Plus, Nadal is a leftie like me. Haha. Anyway, after the replay of the Williams sisters’ finals showdown, I was a bit impatient already because a drizzle delayed the beginning of the game.

As soon as the game commenced, I realized that Roger finishes a point almost immediately after he serves, and since I’m busy working, I miss the winning shot almost always. In contrast, Nadal allows me to work, since he maximizes the 20 seconds allowed before the ball is served (to the dismay of his opponents). Every point is very hard-earned. Just like before, I was clapping for a point by any player. Rafa won the first two sets overwhelmingly (even coming from behind in the second), and is all set to demolish the grass king.

And then the rain poured. Federer is leading 5-4 when play was stopped. Argh. Practically, the rain saved Roger from being robbed of the crown. This gave me time to work. However, I finished my Math 1 stuff already, yet the game has not resumed. It’s already midnight, and there are classes the next day, so I had to go home with much reservations. True enough, the moment I hailed a cab, play was on again. Apparently, it was the first of three rain delays. When I woke up, I was greeted with text messages that were actually straightforward regarding the outcome. The paranoid person in me insisted that Federer won a 6th, and for a time I felt sad for Nadal, for he had the momentum already, winning the first two sets. Later that day, through the Internet, I verified that I was incorrect, and Nadal succeeded in having his first non-French-Open Grand Slam title. Whew. Somebody commented that I just missed what was probably the best tennis finals in history. But I had class the next day, so it was a choice between being the supreme spectator on the couch, or the player in center court, in front of the class, on the platform. The choice was easy.

There’s something about tennis that resembles life. All the rules are laid out, things are measured (the court’s length and width, the net’s height, racquets should be in regulation, etc), and yet, once the serve is under way, nobody is in control. A player must learn how to adjust to the varying ball spins and speeds, to the wind’s ever-changing directions, to the rowdy crowd (the grunting Monica Seles must know this after her stabbing incident), to the misjudgment of the umpire, to weather changes that may cause the game’s suspension. Both players must have practiced every possible shot – backhand, forehand, frontline slams, crazy spins, unexpected drop shots – about a million times with equally agile practice partners for years, yet they are bound to commit double faults and unforced errors. That’s life. You can never be totally ready, but somehow, you should try to dominate and enjoy the ride. Who knows, after five or so hours (years) of struggle, and when the dust has settled, you will be declared victor.

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Sir Recites

Summer. I personally look forward to April and May, not because I dread school work, but more because of the opportunity to do things that are simply not possible or not recommended during the academic year. Sleeping late (and getting up late as well) caused by various reasons (watching TV, on-line chatting, etc) is one of these things, as well as movie marathons, frequenting the malls with high school / college friends, and the afternoon siesta. But I couldn’t afford to do as much pleasure this time around, since I’m back to school in Ateneo to continue (yet again) my MS degree.

Back in college, my course – BS Mathematics – required me to attend summer classes twice (between my 1st and 2nd year, and between 2nd and 3rd). I was free for the next summer, but I opted to enroll, together with my Math friends, so as to earn a minor degree in Economics. That summer was the only time I paid a certain nontrivial amount during enrollment, because my scholarship didn’t cover that particular term. My summers became different after becoming a teacher in Pisay, though. I was free, basically, to do practically anything. But not now.

For many reasons, I am currently enjoying my re-entry in the Loyola Schools. Being in a classroom where I sit, listen, and recite (instead of stand, talk, and sweat) is refreshing (again). Also, this is my first term in Ateneo wherein I bump into a lot of former students (mainly from Batch 2007). My classes the past semesters were scheduled either Saturdays, or late in the afternoon (4:30 to 6 PM) weekdays, so as not to interfere with my teaching schedule in Pisay (most of my classmates teach too). But since I do not teach during summer, my sched now is not set in unpopular hours, just like that of my former Geom students. I even eat lunch with them at times.

Graduate classes are very different. The pace is faster, depth is expected, and classmates are scarce. I was in a class of 10, and that was the maximum that I had so far. Some of my classes, especially the one I’m currently enrolled in, have the problem-solving approach, meaning we have to learn by alternately solving problems in front of the class. Hmmm. So if there are 15 questions in a 90-minute period, and there are 5 students in the class (including myself), in the spirit of fairness, each of us should answer three problems, given an uncertain permutation. Or in the case of a hard random problem, there is a 20% chance that I will be called to present in front. That’s a large percentage, versus a one-in-thirty chance as a Pisay student. Argh. I should study more, I guess.