Monday, February 27, 2006

Symposium Woes

My good friend Mahesh seems to divide his college going time into two equal halves- the time he attends his own college, and the time he visits other colleges. Naturally, he seems to have a list of college woes that are longer than everyone else's, as these include other colleges too. He is so intent on visiting other colleges that he event went to great lengths to type out the entire schedule of one such college's culturals on his blog. I mean, this is absolute craziness. A visit once in a while is ok, but to visit twice a week... I however am not typing out this post to find fault with a good friend of mine.

I am going to point out the common problems encountered by the unsuspecting, unwary student who wanders into one of these events by chance, or to evade classes or to improve his visual acuity by looking at those that the eye naturally has an acuity for. Or of course, we have the odd one who sincerely hopes to participate and win and put it on his resume.(Mahesh belongs to this category I hope).

1. The inauguration invariably starts at-least one hour behind schedule.

2. The inauguration invariably ends only a few minutes behind schedule with the Chief Guest leaving in a huff as he was forced to cut-short his beautifully prepared lecture on the maintenance of obscure power plants.

3. Participants have to register for all events beforehand, sometimes even on computers, where all details are entered into a database, whose file is then selected with the left mouse button and then awarded with a majestic SHIFT+DELETE key combination.

4. Participants are invariably presented with the map of the miniscule college premises that never actually tally with the real layout of the college.

5. Participants are invariably presented with the useless assortment of files, pens, scribbling pads, CDs and other odds and ends that invariably end up in the local dust bin or in front of a cycle's handlebar.

6. Events which were originally planned to be held in such-and-such timings are invariably held at all timings except the such-and-such time.

7. Lunch is provided at prices that would have made Dhirubai Ambani think twice before eating. In case lunch is provided free of cost, it is made sure that it is so lousy that the Ambhani brothers would have hugged each other rather than partake the offerings. And without any seating arrangements.

8. Events are conducted by final year students who are in no mood to conduct an event, but to have loads of fun. If at all events are conducted with some seriousness, care is taken to ensure that the host has absolutely no knowledge what he is doing. Sounds like something right out of an Alistair Mclean book involving a commando mission doesn't it? "The little you know the better".

9. Usually, the quiz is the worst affected. It either involves a selection of questions copy pasted from the first hit in google for the keyword "quiz" and a visual-round that consists of videos lifted from encyclopedias, or a desperate attempt at outdoing the previous year's Odyssey quiz.

10. The host invariably tries to emulate Derek O'Brien, but ends up being worse than the fellow who used to conduct "A question of Answers" on DD. Nothing against him though.

11. Prizes are distributed at the end of the day to all those participants who were the friends of the hosts. Participation Certificates are awarded to all other honest participants.

12. Prize money is usually so large that the winners invariably have to file Income Tax returns. The money however vanishes into thin air after a few samosas at the local canteen.

For further details of a first-hand experience, contact my good friend Mahesh.

So, I sincerely advice you to not got to any of the culturals unless you know the host on a first-name basis, or want an upset stomach, or of course want to improve your visual acuity. Otherwise, better sit at home and try to figure out the probability of selecting a defective component from a selection of a thousand un-biased pieces.

Yours Symposially,


TD5M4PP3R said...

Nice description of college symposiums da!!!

Mahesh said...

First of all GOOD POST @ right time man.
Some symposiums may be of bitter experiences.But this give us a oppurtunity to learn life better.Moreover,a student who sits in his college without such activities will be created by two things.
1.their college profs.teach so well that they dont want to miss the classes.
2.their college is so good that they donot need a change of atmosphere.
I go OUT as both of the above mentioned facts are 100% false when my (s)c(h)o(o)lage is considered.

Sundar said...

It is necessary to visit other colleges to gain certain exposure and interact with other students. However, to go to a symposium too often is more of trouble is what I believe. I sit at my own college because :
1. I do not get O.Ds very easily.
2. I do not have enough proper companions in my college who are willing to visit other colleges. Except Arun Ofcourse...

Sundar said...

Visiting other colleges requires a lot of effort and I am extremely lazy to take the necessary action.

Sundar said...

And I do not have the requisite talent or abulity or knowledge to compete in symposiums successfully

navneeth said...

nice one

Marc Z said...

Excellent post, and so true.

(s)c(h)o(o)lage <-- nice one, Mahesh.