Thursday, January 13, 2005

Cows, Flatulence and Physics

During my sophomore physics class, it became abundantly clear that the portion of my brain that processes 3 dimensional thinking and the ability to decipher word problems was left out. It is one of the reasons my dream of becoming a physician never came to fruition. Of course the fact that I was more of a relaxed versus aggressive student played a big part as well.

I did extremely well in the physics lab class, which is a really good thing. At least in the lab the 3 dimensional deficiency was overcome with the models that we used. Also the lab consisted of 30 students where it was less intimidating asking questions. I was not apt to interrupt a lecture with 450 other students present to ask a question. I have tried to erase most of this experience from my memory banks as I try to do with unpleasant events in my life. However, I will never forget the final exam for that class.

I attended the University of Maryland - GO TERPS!!! Back when I was there the physics department was so big that the final exam took place in Cole Field House, the basketball stadium. The students were seated strategically to avoid cheating with a piece of ply board on our laps as make shift desks. The test was handed out and we had 2 hours to complete it. To my horror the test consisted of 25 word problems. I did my best to plod through the exam.

I had an outer body experience right after I read question 15. The question was this: A cow is grazing in a field. There is no wind. 250 yards behind and to the left of the cow sits a young boy reading a book. 250 yards behind and to the right of the cow sits another boy writing in a journal. If the cow expels gas which young man will smell the odor first? I cannot make these questions up; this truly was question 15.

I calmly wrote down my answer complete with expletives, got up, gathered all my belongings and turned in my exam. Shortly after that I dropped my pre-med minor. It just was not meant to be.


Anonymous said...

You graduated from Maryland? Cool. So did my little brother. The bastards rejected me...but I got them back by going to work for a physics-test development company.

HotForSimon said...

Unreal. This story STILL cracks me up!!!

I seriously would like to have known the answer and how they came up with it.

Wicked H said...

Well, I think Anon might have the answer. Give us a clue Anon...

Anonymous said...

Anon here...Actually, it's Howard, I just forgot to include my name. Yeah, I know. DORK!

It's a trick question. The answer is neither. Cows fart methane gas, which is odorless.

HotForSimon said...

Oh geez....LMAO!!!!