Today hasn’t been fun.

I slept late last night trying to study/prepare my cheat sheet for my programming midterm the next day.

I was stressed about it. Regardless about all the people telling me how easy CMPT 165 (HTML, CSS and a bit of Python) is, and how the average for the course is an A-, it was still stressful.

For starters, it was an online course. Everything was self driven learning. The only aid I’ve ever gotten from the school was the ‘guide’ (aka: textbook). There’s weekly lab assignments with occasional real assignments, but all of it is self conducted. There is no instructor reading over instructions, clarifying details or going over the process. Everything was on me.

Just that alone was pressure. Can I keep up a schedule without the pressure of attending mandatory classes? Previously I’ve done quite poorly on online courses, where I would lose motivation either a few days in, or half way through. Just having to do this was stressing.

But to walk into a room and having the first examination in a self-driven course was not a test of knowledge, but a test of self. It was a test to determine how well I’ve been motivating myself to learn, to improve, to continue with the course – all by myself.

That was scary.

Also the expectation that I should be getting close to perfect, if not perfect doesn’t lessen the load.

Then the exam is at 7pm. On a day I get off of class at 1:20pm. 5 hours away. 5 hours to do nothing at school.

The day before two group projects are due, both of which are separate sources of discomfort.

The day before a large programming assignment is due (I’m not even 20% complete).

The week before 2 more much harder midterms. One seriously important, and one just important.

During the start of the last month for my IBE project, where we have to sell a self-designed product.

In which we still haven’t even confirmed the product we will be making. 2 weeks before the commercial for the product is to be completed. 3 weeks from the selling day.

There was quite a bit of stress.

Some of my friends don’t help either.

Especially one of them.

I’m not sure how I can explain their behaviour, as I’ve only recently (some hours ago) began to think of it, but it isn’t very helpful.

Most of the time when people complain or are under stress, they’re looking for help. When people want to discuss/debate a topic, they want it to be peaceful and removed from emotions. When people want to talk about serious problems they are facing, they want to hear advice from concerned parties.

Basically, empathy is what people seek.

He only gives sympathy.

No, the say only is an exaggeration. He does do it on occasion. Although it is only about minor, minor things. But that doesn’t mean he always does it for minor things (e.g: where are you going to sit from the 3 chairs). Most of the time, small matters lack that bother him.

[Annoyed] Why does it matter? Why do are you thinking so much about it?

Even medium difficulty ones do too.

[Annoyed] It’s hard to choose. Why are you asking me?! I don’t know everything!

And especially hard ones.

[Annoyed] It’s so hard! I don’t understand. Why are you asking me? It’s not something I can do. Ugh stop asking me.

Yeah.

Though to be fair, they’re just a small, small part of my stress today.

I finished my mid-term. I open my phone to see

Kevin, go Google it.

2 hours ago.

Obviously I have to reply, as this is my group project that I am a part of. What do they want me to search up? What is going on?

No response.

Ok.

???? I’m very confused.

I decide to just go home and do some readings on the bus. Maybe they’ll explain more when I get home.

I get home.

OMG KEVIN THERE U ARE WE WERE LOOKING FOR U

Sorry guys, I had a midterm until an hour and a half ago, I just got home (10pm).

WE MISSED U OMG

If it wasn’t so sarcastic, this might have been sweet.

Obviously they’re upset that I haven’t been doing my share of work. I know I haven’t been doing my share of work, and I haven’t been actively trying to find out what they wanted me to do. In fact, after the first day, I had complete disregarded the group work. Of course, I’m in the wrong here, there are no excuses for that, but the whole thing about this project has just been such a bother. It made me incredibly frustrated and upset that I quickly gave up and threw it aside. I was done with it. No more. I’ll take my deductions, just get me away from here.

It started a week ago on Tuesday night.

One of the members was trying to gather everyone together in order to prepare to start working. Everything was fine. She used e-mail, I replied and gave my Facebook link (this was the fatal error, trying to do work using Facebook) so I could be invited to the group conversation. We were going to meet up after class tomorrow to discuss it further.

Great. Everything is going well.

Skip over to 5 minutes before class starts, some of the members weren’t going to come to class (normal occurrence as people dislike this class [BUS202 set up your game]), but we were still going to have our meeting. Cool.

An hour and a half in, it was break time. I spent the 10-15 minute break with my one group member still remaining (the other three were studying for their mid-terms or just skipping because it was boring) discussing issues with our product and our lack of progression towards the end goal. Apparently during this time the rest of them, using Facebook Messenger (which frankly, I don’t check in class, or at all), decided to hold the meeting during break. Unaware of what had happened, I ended class to tried to find my group. Couldn’t find them (partial due to only meeting them once for 3 minutes 2 months ago) so I went to Facebook Messenger to find out.

Scrolled up about 30 or so messages, no indication of the meeting being canceled. So I sent a message asking where everyone was.

We’re all done here. I’ll send you the information later.

Wow. So fast. What happened? It’s only been 3 minutes since class ended. Oh well, I guess it wasn’t too important.

Later do I find out that about 60 messages ago, they decided to change the meeting to during break.

We arrange to start completing the e-mail that evening at 8pm. All eight of us on one Google Doc, trying to work things out (any group work over 5 on a Google Docs without all being on a voice-communication software is pretty horrendous). No one had the same idea. No one wanted to delete someone else’s work, and no one would respond to suggestions. After 3 hours of this, and having 3-4 different versions of the same e-mail, all saying the same thing and none saying the same words. I had put a few suggestions and questions out to the group in the 3 hours we had been working. Maybe 5 or 6 questions, a miniscule amount compared to 2 or 3 people in the group asking 2 questions a minute. Obviously, none of my questions were answered, and single digit numbers of theirs were answered.

I got turned off from this project real fast.

Disorganized working. No leading figure. No structure of working. No clarified tasks. No communication. No attempts to include others. No attempts at discussion. Nothing.

I left that Google Docs at around 11:15 pm and went to work on my own things. At 1:30 am, I notice them still working on the e-mail, now with maybe 2k words worth of e-mails, while only needing maybe 150. Nice. I’m out of here.

The next day I started to feel really bad about not doing any work. I send a message or two out asking what other things we can finish before the weekend. I didn’t get a response to my question, but there were indeed responses. About 500 of them. In around 15 minutes. None of which concerning me, apparently. Once again, I was taken aback, turned off, and did not want any part of this discussion. 500 messages of nothing. It took me longer to scroll through and read them all then it did for them to all appear.

I stopped actively checking that conversation. Maybe two to three times a day. Every time I open it, there would be at least 300 messages there to scroll through. I stopped reading them. I stopped caring. I wasn’t interested in a group where no one wanted to respond to a question, and all they did was want to chat with each other.

They tried to promote teamwork.

‘Lets all work on the e-mail together.’ ‘Lets all work on the biography together.’

No. That doesn’t work.

Every other successful group before mine (we were the last to present) delegated tasks to each person. Person A would write the e-mail, B would edit. C would write the biography, and D would edit. E would conduct the presentation, F would greet the guest, G would ask questions and H would summarize the presentation and thank them. Instead, we had to have all 8 of us do the e-mail. Then 5 of us on the biography (Me and two others didn’t participate). For me, all the group work was becoming increasingly and needlessly difficult, time consuming, inefficient, and not worth the effort.

So I stopped giving it effort.

My issue of course, but it wasn’t something I was keen on working with.

It’s ironic, the class where we are all supposed to learn about teamwork and team dynamic, I experienced the worst teamwork and team dynamic. The second time I’ve ever abandoned group work completely. I even felt guilty too. Guilt wasn’t enough to make me go back. That’s the real shocker here.

Back to current time, the group was (or at least select individuals were not pleased) by my lack of attendance in the meeting that was scheduled for 7pm. Or was it 8pm. Or was it 6pm. I tried to read some of the messages when they were setting it up, and the time wasn’t selected for about 150 messages, so instead of paying attention to things I couldn’t attend, I went back to studying for my midterm in 2 hours.

Of course, I felt a message saying I was going to be writing a mid-term at 7pm, and wouldn’t be home until around 10pm.

Of course, no one seemed to notice.

So when I did return at 10 pm, no one seemed pleased at my apparently lack of care for the group meeting schedules.

Of course I would disregard your group meeting schedules if you disregard my ability to make meetings (I was unable to attend a Saturday meeting because I was working on another group project, but that doesn’t stop them from arranging the time to be set during it). I ended up just picking up one of the empty speaking roles. I’ll be presenting a biography tomorrow afternoon. Great.

The final large stress accumulator so far was the other group project I had been working on – IBE.

This gosh darn product creation and agreement process is so poor. Before the Saturday meeting, I hadn’t seen my all of my group together for maybe 3 weeks. Every class someone would ditch. Never can get discussion in with everyone. It was frustrating. Even the Saturday meeting was frustrating. We were supposed to meet up at 1:30, but like all meetings, not everyone arrived until much, much later. At 2:00pm, we were missing the last person, who was always going to arrive at 2:30. We spent almost 2 hours not doing anything.

Suggestions? Ideas? What can we do?

I don’t know.

2 hours.

Of that.

The last member who had only suffered through an hour of this, became outwardly upset. Coherent sentences like ‘ARGH’ and ‘UWAHHH’ and ‘FUSHHHHH’ littered the one woman conversation.

When we finally started to create ideas, it somehow became all up to me to create the damn thing. Apparently no one can draw (myself included). But from the ones who cannot draw, I was the one who was closest. I was also the one most willing to do work to get something done. At around 4:45, we have the genius idea to go print things out instead of drawing them to save time. 2 of them leave to go print out images instead of drawing them, and the other 2 take a rest. After having to draw lightbulbs for close to 2 hours, I was just going to have fun drawing out the rest of the work I was supposed to do. Just for fun (and to kill boredom). Some technically difficulties arose, like an inability to walk less than a km, desire to walk the opposite direction for Starbucks, and delay of 10 minutes in line, the printed images arrived at 5:30, almost an hour since the journey started. I had been done my panel for about 15 minutes, and if the rest of my team were working on theirs the entire time, they would have been completed too. Instead, we waste an hour of time, and have to part ways to work on it another time.

That time was today.

Right after class.

During the 5:30 hour gap.

Before my midterm.

When I should be studying.

Cute.

However, it’s kind of fun talking and interacting with them. It’s not fun being the main person doing the artistic work (good lord how it turned out to be like this) while the others looked at the phones. It’s also not fun when you’re the only person who has a looming deadline in a few hours, and instead of working towards that one, you’re working by yourself on the one with a later due date (like my programming assignment that’s due tomorrow that I’m not doing to write this).

That was stressful.

Pressure from these 3 things were destroying any will I could muster to enjoy the rest of the day.

I still had to read 50 pages of material and answer a quiz in which I got 7/10 on. 2 of which weren’t even included in the readings, but were apparently tested anyways. Not amused.

Then came home to my mom denying that she had ever compared me to another child, either my friend or their friend’s child, and asked why couldn’t I be as good as them.

My mom then went over and lectured me about how I could only apply for the best companies, and that I should be ashamed I haven’t gotten a job with them yet.

My mood was so negative, not even an absolute sign could make it positive.

It’s so bad I had to resort to math jokes. Pity jokes.

I wasn’t happy to enter a Facebook conversation about how I was MIA again (it had only been 10 minutes since I responded to anything, even though I’ve been reading it, and Facebook even says that in the corner of the messanger client). I wasn’t happy to get told my thinking was ‘retarded’ because I questioned why certain instructions were in place. I wasn’t happy to find my quiz mark to be below average when the questions didn’t pertain to the reading content.

I wasn’t happy.

I wasn’t happy.

I wasn’t happy.

I wasn’t happy on Wednesday when my mom told me about our relatives (was going to be a post that came before this, but things happened, or didn’t happen).

I wasn’t happy to see my bus take 25 minutes to arrive even though I was 15 minutes earlier on my 5 minute early school schedule and then to arrive late.

I wasn’t happy to see another individual not know what was going on with the group project of 8 people and then be told they did a good job on the work they didn’t do.

I wasn’t happy so much this last week, that I might as well continue to not be happy tomorrow because that is what is going to happen anyways.

A project not started, lines not learned, and business attire being worn.

 

I am simple just not happy this week.

And for all the many weeks that lie in store.

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