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Close Encounters of the C.A 2th kind May 11, 2007

Posted by Ragesh G R in Uncategorized.
Tags: , ,

6th sem: 31 May 2006: I got up to a new day, the day of the Engineering Economics and Financial Accounting (EEFA) exam. It was a very easy paper and one day was more than enough to prepare it well. So reached the college at 9:35 a.m, leisurely by car, with my dad, and went and sat in my usual place on a bench beside where my closest friend, Kalpaka was sitting, outside the exam hall. The exam was at 10 a.m.

Usually, she sits in the left end of the bench with her bag to her right, and I go and sit in the right end of the bench with my bag to my left. And we will be revising silently, not disturbing each other or discussing etc.

This day however, she was sitting in the middle ( to my luck actually) , and I went and sat beside her. Unlike usual days, I don’t know why but I just peered into the notebook that she was reading, and I saw an acronym. I found that strange and new, hence, out of curiosity, I asked what the expansion of that acronym was. She said something that ended with the term “Processor” (!!). I was like , what?? where the hell does Processor come in EEFA??. Still not exactly getting what the situation is I asked her jokingly, “Hey innakku EEFA exam thane? (Hey today is EEFA exam only right?)”, to confirm that its actually EEFA.

All I expected was a simple “ya of course”, but the reply I got was, “Innakku CA (Computer Architecture 2) da, enna da joke adikkariya, bayam puduthada (Today is CA, what are you joking? don’t scare me)”!!!!.

Oh man shit! Was she joking or serious? Who was joking?. The fact is she really thought I was joking. Just then I started getting what it all meant, I looked around. She had the Computer Architecture text book Hennessey & Patterson by her side. Yes, the worst possible thing had happened!! I had studied for the wrong exam!!. I mean I had only heard stories of students coming prepared for the wrong exam, but I could n’t believe it happened to me.

Suddenly, everything went blank! I could hardly hear any sound, all the people who were discussing and yelling seemed mute to me. It was like in a dream, where everything is dark and kind of intangible, an out of body kind of experience. I was not actually panicking, but my hormones, esp adrenalin started to richochet in a frenzie. It took a minute to sink in. I waited for my dad to leave, he said good luck and left. I didnt want to sadden him by saying the news and making him worried, and get myself worried in the process etc.

After he left, I slowly turned to Kalpaka and said “Hey naa innakku EEFA kku padichittu vandirukken ( Hey I have come prepared for EEFA today)”, in a non-chalant tone with an expressionless face. I was still dumb struck!. I was still numb.

On hearing this, “She was actually more taken aback than me”. She could not believe it for a second and then gave a genuine terrified, surprised expression which told the whole story. I got the exact gravity of the situation only from her face, at that time. She was like “Hey! what are u saying? how come?” She could not believe it. Now it was 9:45 a.m.

Suddenly her mood changed. She left what she was reading, and asked me what units I know. I said I know the 1st and 2nd units well, having listened to the classes, and having studied for Unit Tests. 3rd unit also I knew to some extent. So then she started frantically teaching me topics I did n’t know from 3rd unit and 4th and 5th unit. Luckily some topics in 4th unit had been taught in 4th sem in CA 1. I tried to grasp whatever she was trying to teach, but I was n’t able to listen that much. Though I gathered some vital info on some topics. Thanks to her. But my mind was wandering..

I was telling myself, “Don’t panic, be cool, that’s the key. If u start to panic, then that’s it!, you will lose it, u cant control the degree of panic. So don’t even think abt getting tensed or the consequences!. Just go and write the exam in cool manner. Think this is just a Unit Test. You like the subject very well. You have topped Unit Tests etc. You know the subject well enough to pass, but your emotions, your composure is the key. Just look at the questions, don’t think about this exam etc”..

With this resolution, I relaxed myself and went into the exam hall, with nothing to lose and no expectations… The 2 marks were easy. The 11th question was from 1st Unit, which had performance measures, problems etc all mathematics, so my favourite, wrote that well. Some parts of 12th and 13th questions were about RISC processors. Having studied that in System Software, Microprocessors and CA 1, wrote those pats somewhat decently. 14th question was little unknown for me, but from what she taught me I could manage somewhat. Another small question, I remembered having learnt that in class. Somehow I finished the paper, with having written partial answers for few questions and having left out two 8 mark questions. I was banking on the 11th question to save me.

I came out of the exam hall confident that I will pass, my evaluations told me I will get around 50-55 % in external ( so, 40-44 out of 80 + 20 internal = 60 – 64 % total). 45% was the pass mark. But u never know, this could be one of those things. There was n’t much room for comfort. Many thoughts started perturbing me. My placements were in a month and should the unthinkable happen, I could even end up not placed. Having got a clean record and 84% aggregate, what an embarassment it would be. Everyday I was torn apart between the confidence that I have done well enough to pass, and the fear of failure. The night after the exam, I told my dad quietly, “Don’t get tensed but I had studied for the wrong exam, but don’t worry I have done it ok enough to be safe”. He too was flabbergasted, but he too was cool, and I assured him nothing wrong will happen.

The comedy is that on the day of the previous exam, on May 29th, my friend Prem Anand called me up to mark topics in the CA text book. Even then it didnt strike me that the next exam is CA. I thought he will study CA on 29th, and EEFA on 30th as it is very easy. And generally people will message me about something like some doubt in a topic, or how hard it is to study , how boring etc, This time however nothing like that happened. None messaged me and I didnt message anyone. And even worst, my friend Srikanth K had called me on landline to ask some doubt in CA 2, the day before the exam, but my dad had picked up the phone, because I had gone to bathe, so he cleared his doubt from another friend.. May be it was meant to happen.

But I owe much of what I could accomplish that day, to Kalpaka. She just had a calming influence on me, to know that someone is there who genuinely sees the difficulty you are in, and tries to help you out. I thought, “Atleast for the sake of such a friend, as a tribute to her friendship, atleast for the mental tension I gave her and atleast for the time she spent for me, I should do well in the exam”.. In fact she told me after the exam that, she herself got tensed about my situation, and she was thinking how I will be writing the exam.. Trully unforgettable.

The next important reason is that CA was one of my favourite papers, especially the numerical problems, and I found the subject very easy and interesting.. In fact the reason why I thought the exam was EEFA was because, somehow it got into my head that the exam order is in the reverse order of my liking them. So since I like CA more than EEFA, I thought EEFA is before CA. (My friends either ROFL or hit me when I say this crazy reason.. LOL)

The D-Day. The day of the results! By this time many of my friends came to know about my tragedy(?) and had consoled and encouraged me. The site did not open due to traffic. My friend Abitha called me up and told results have come, and that the site is opening for her but when she tried my number, the site didnt open again. So again tried at my computer, and it opened. Prepared for the worst and hoping for the best, I looked at the screen and searched for CS340 (CA 2), and Voila! I had passed!! , I had scores 20/20 in Internals plus 39/80 (36 being the pass mark) in external for a total of 59 ( 😦 ). phew! what a sigh of relief. The letter “P” on the extreme right made me happier than any 100’s and 90’s I got.

Fine! Now, nothing unthinkable happened, but wait a minute! 39/80? that would mean a mere 49% in external. I knew I didn’t do that bad. and I can’t digest have a mark in the 50’s, in a subject in which I should have scored 90% (Though it’s my fault that I prepared for the wrong exam).

I had n’t got the marks I expected in few other subjects as well. So as usual I applied for revaluation in 4 subjects to get back my peace of mind, and prestige. Reval results arrived, I was so happy, I got 29 marks extra in reval, including +3 in CA 2, which made it now 42/80. Hence 20 + 42 = 62%. Hmmm not bad for studying for an exam in 15 minutes I thought… This incident has turned out to be one of the most happy , sad, proud and embarassing moments for me, but one thing, it’s unforgettable..

All I can say is, necessity is the mother of invention, when u are faced with a crisis, one will automatically get the courage and strength and the solution to it, both from within and from external sources, where there is a will there is a way, when the going gets tough, the tough gets going. Sorry for being so pleonastic, but wanted to share this experience.. I dedicate this post to Kalpaka and all others who stood by me.. and Revs who urged me to write a post. Love you guys! 🙂

PS: After this exam , the next exam was in fact EEFA on June 2 , so Ragesh G R hardly had to study, in fact he was watching Morning Raga on STAR Movies and messaging everyone to watch it, at 8:00 pm on June 1. LoL:)



1. BOB - May 11, 2007

Fine post.
And should inspire atleast one or two readers who read it.

Well pls make a remake if I were there instead of kalpaka 🙂

2. revs - May 11, 2007

hey rags,
weightu post.chance e ila..i m sure if i had been in ur place i would have gone directly to the hostel cried for half an hour,cursed everyone except me and then gone to sleep!!LOL!!hats off to u man..and its not flattery when i say that i think u r the only person who could have managed this feat!!:):)

3. Ragesh G R - May 11, 2007

Thanks a lot dude.. but as i say, anyone in that situation wud have got that courage, di, never give up. 🙂

4. BOB - May 11, 2007

“Well FK” good post and bit inspirational if you
hear it first time.(Trust I hear it first time).

And kudos to ur effort,performance and more importantly friendship with Kalpaka.

P.S. I request you to make a remake considering me in that position instead of Kalpaka 🙂

5. nilaa - May 11, 2007


6. Ragesh G R - May 11, 2007

@BOB: Thanks da, glad if I cud inspire, he he he

7. Ragesh G R - May 11, 2007

@BOB:Remake eh, lol its real da, not story, well FK, will try to remake, lol

8. BOB - May 11, 2007

Dei what happened abt the remake
pls comment abt it

9. Ragesh G R - May 11, 2007

@Nilaa: Hi, thanks for reading my blog..

10. revs - May 11, 2007

2 hrs la 9 comments a?? orey popularity dhaan unnaku po!!:P:P…

11. Ragesh G R - May 11, 2007

@Revs: he he ya, but 4 are mine, btw I added many more lines after u read.. LoL

12. Kalpu - May 12, 2007

Hmm… What to say… Darling rags, that exam was sure an experience for both of us! Those fifteen minutes of panic+ prayers+ hope+what not!!! I was just keeping my fingers crossed for u after i saw the question paper.. I saw it was not a difficult paper, not for u, but still was worried the way you went blank moments b4 entering the hall!! I yelled ” All the best da, Nalla pannu!” and u stared at me as though saying,” How to do well for an exam for which i have hardly studied?”… Anyways, ALL IS WELL THAT ENDS WELL!!! he he… After the exam you took my life out by discussing the answers to all the questions!!! LOL..:) And i envied the time u had b4 eefa!! When we were struggling with the it, while u were happily watching morning raga!!!! Kedi!!!!! 🙂 And now that we have successfully finished all our exams, we can both be assured u wont repeat this again!!! 🙂

13. Srikanth - May 12, 2007

Man..Awesome post dude.. All said and done, 15 minutes is too short to handle(Comes from experienced campaigner 😀 ). That too for a topper who is studious and its hard to think about a failure even remotely. But there is a qoute “Passion for the subject will save you” –By someone, which my math tutor guns told us.Your passion for CA which was sky high along with the 15 min preparation made you pass. Write more posts.. And you can edit the hormone sections with some info or atleast provide some links for poor layman like me to understand.

I guess that for first time in your life u made a calculation for passing unlike us who always do it.

14. Ragesh G R - May 12, 2007

@Kalpu: thanks dude, ya it was sure an experience, but in a way its good, made me stronger and able to know my limits, thanks to u… for being there.. Ya I of course, I can’t repeat it again lol!, and the encoded talks abt that in the car on the way home was comedy.

@Morning Raga part: he he LoL! 🙂

15. Ragesh G R - May 12, 2007

@Srikanth: Thanks.. Ya u said it right, passion will take u far.. Aaha I thought more info on hormones wud make it boring and long, I will elucidate that.. @calculation, LoL!,

16. sanjeev - May 12, 2007

dude awesome blog da.. hats off..! man preparing for a sem exam in 15 mins n gettin through is incredible..n yeah absolutely agree with ur methods of handling pressure.. n sometimes pressure helps you when the odds are stacked against you.. in such situations when we know we r fightin with our backs to the walls..we have nothing to loose and to our own surprise perform really well…it reminds me off a memorable incident in my junior cricketing days.. we were playin a strong team .. n at one stage the situation was.. 21 runs with 6 overs n 9 wickets in hand for the opposition to get.. we felt pressure till tht point .. but then we just backed ourselves.. brought the field in .. decided to have some fun.. then i was lucky enuf to pull off a catch n a run out.. slowly.. they other guys felt pressure cos they were expected to win hands down.. from 21 off 36 deliveries.. it got down to 12 off 6 .. n i was bowling the last over.. then it was six off the last ball n the batsman was stumped..! n talkin of 15 mins prep.. i have lost count of the number of unit test logic has cleared after listening to 15 mins of story.. so u have stiff competition there..!!!

17. Ragesh G R - May 12, 2007

Thanks dude, ya pressure helps u bring ur best, and thats an awesome incident u have narrated there, and hey thats unit test man, only 1 or 2 unit, this is final exam, 5 units lol, but ya u are right, even in final exams he prepares 2 units just before the exam, from story, I admire Logic for that, and his Leonine strength..

18. maithreyi - May 12, 2007

hey dude!!! cool post !!! i was about to ask u if u cud post this on your blog!!! when u told about it the other day!!! and it is there… Preparing for CA in 15 mins is like… swallowin an elephant!(howmuchever u like the subject)(no offense meant…)!! wow !!! hats off!!! Truly it inspired me.. cos i was wonderin how im gonna clear this sem n 6 arrears in a sem for a person with a decent record is like a big scar…thanks again for dat!!! and what can i say about your great friends who’ve helped u when u were in this situation!!! hats off to them too!!! wadeva it is as u say it is “PROUD,EMBARASSING,FUNNY,UNBELIEVABLE”..one word says all “UNFORGETTABLE”…

19. swathi - May 12, 2007

Rags… dude.. i still remember how shocked i was to hear this piece of news! man! kudos to your self-confidence,your cool attitude, and of course all those moments u sincerely spent listening to balsu sir while the rest of us were dozing away!! It takes a lot to remain calm in situations like this! gr8 going yaar and am really glad it had a haaaappppy ending! btw jus bcoz u have crawled out of this one dont u ever try such things again!!

20. Ragesh G R - May 12, 2007

@Maithreyi: Wow! such a coincidence eh.. cool, thanks dude, ya hats off to my friaends as well.. And u don worry, u will ace the exams too, i know u are a very curious and intelligent student.. glad if i inspired u..

21. Ragesh G R - May 12, 2007

@Swathi: Thanks di… I was shocked myself.. lol. ya glad it ended well, of course I wont try that again, and even this , it’s not as if I tried it intentionally , lol

22. Aravindan - May 13, 2007

hi da… was checking ur blog often 2 see whether u update…. well i saw u n kalps on tat day… discussing seriously.. thot… “bayangarama padikkaraanga pa!!”… den only chintu told me t super story… he he…scene… sema confidence man… keep it up… keep posting! 🙂

23. Ragesh G R - May 13, 2007

aaha! cool, lol, thanks da..

24. KGR Nair - May 14, 2007

My dear son,
What a way to prepare for an exam the subject of which you liked most & excelled in. Even if you had told me before I left you, I would not have been thrown in a loop altogether. Well, I may have been surprised that you could commit such a gross error. I would have had just been confident that, despite all odds you would pull it through. However I would have been praying for you till you finished writing.(I used to pray specifically for you everytime I left you at the exam hall)

25. Ragesh G R - May 14, 2007

Thanks dad, I knew u would be confident of me, thanks for vesting the same in me, as u always have.. and for the wishes as well..

26. BOB - May 15, 2007

Hats off to both KGR and RGR Nairs for displaying to us the amazing confidence they mutually have upon each other.And it was such a nice feeling to read about how a father reacts to the situation like this.This is easily the topmost or best part in your blog .
Trust me I’m speaking the truth

27. Ragesh G R - May 15, 2007

@BOB: Wow, thanks dude, I am touched 🙂

28. anusha - May 31, 2007

hey… but you still scored well na.. i know u r a great!!!! that was a brave attempt in exam, i should say.. any you hav still not left the habbit of remembering the marks… great memory!!!

29. Ragesh G R - June 6, 2007

@Anusha: Thanks dude.. ya of course , i never forget my marks,

30. mgsanthosh@uiic.co.in - June 17, 2007

My dear Ragu,

While watching, realising that it is a lengthy one, I had only a casual reading. But your Kochamma insisted me to read in detail, that too, inspired by the beautiful reply by ur dad. I went back, we two together, had a detailed reading. In this occasion, let my memories back a few years, say 6 years, am I right?, where u lost 1 mark in the Mathematics exam, not that u didnt knew the anser, but u did not see the question. All that we all missed was that a magic figure of 100/100 resulted in 99/100.

Hence I raise a question to u that is it not ur habit before your every success!

But I really appreciate u for keeping ur cool and ultimately resulting in 60+ at the end!
“……….when the going gets tough, the tough gets going..”

31. Ragesh G R - June 17, 2007

@Santhu Uncle: Thanks a lot for patiently going thru my rather lengthy post. Well as far as your question is concerned, lol! I guess its a habit , he he, don’t worry I ll keep it in check, and thanks for the encouragement, and ya as I have said I believe that “when the going gets tough, the tough gets going”..

32. Nivedita - June 22, 2007

amazing.. thruly thrilling 🙂 i cant imagine being in a situation like that. i wd nt have studied during those 15 minutes, wdnt hav let kalpaka study either, and made a HUGE scene infact :D. hats off dude. so virgos handle tense situtations is it?

33. Ragesh G R - June 22, 2007

@Nivedita: thank you dude.. ya of course Virgos can handle anything :d, he he, hey u too wud have handled it well, u are cooool..

34. Vinod - July 11, 2007

Dei..maplai..maybe you’re setting a trend…anyway…strange that you have blogrolled your list with their sun signs.. what’s up your sleeve dude?

35. Ragesh G R - July 11, 2007

@Vinod: he he Ya I guess, not only sun sign, its the “sun sign/moon sign” format he he

36. praveen - July 18, 2007

nice one……..
its bringing all my exam study times……
reading this post is like autograph movie for me…..
i finished my b.e. and working as software engg.

37. Ragesh G R - July 18, 2007

@Praveen: thanks, oh, cool! I too have finished my B.E and working in Cognizant, I wrote this post on the last day of my college life..

38. rbpravin - August 17, 2007

Studying for the exams for 15 mins and passing is unimaginable for me da.
That was an amazing feat(!).
But had it happened to anyone of the Back benchers, then hewud have been a goner..

39. Ragesh G R - August 17, 2007

@Pravin: Thanks dude, but when the time comes I believe anyone can get the strength dude 🙂

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