Written by evan keliher

Saturday, 20 February 2010

image for Grandpa Ganja's High School Survival Guide Ch. 4

Cheating - Since we're concerned here with truth rather than moral balderdash and buncombe let's take a close look at cheating generally and see what we're dealing with in the real world.

Of course, there are a lot of people-mostly teachers-that think students shouldn't cheat on their exams, and they have some good reasons for thinking so. For one thing, if you cheat too much you run the risk of ending up a total ignoramus, but that's a price you should be willing to pay for success in a world which cares for little else.

Others say you shouldn't cheat because it's dishonest, but this is the weakest argument of all. Everybody cheats; he just cheats at different things. We all pay the traditional lip service to honesty and strongly recommend it-for others. We teach kids that honesty is a highly desirable commodity in the world when nothing could be further from the truth.

Take another gander at that George Washington and the cherry tree bullshit. Here we have a patent lie routinely fed to little kids everywhere as a fact. It's an apocryphal story from beginning to end and everybody knows it. Washington never cut down any cherry tree with his little ax, and if he did he tried to cast suspicion on a nearby colony of beavers just as you or any sane person would in a similar situation. This base canard only serves to further reinforce my point: the hypocritical blackguards in the adult world even lie when they're trying to encourage honesty in their kids.

The fact is most people have very little regard for honesty except when it benefits them. We all want to be honest ourselves as long as it isn't inconvenient for us, or our interests. And this includes your teachers.

How many of your teachers are thoroughly honest when they're trying to unload a used car on some poor unsuspecting sap? Or when they call in sick because they want to go shopping? Or when they report their taxes to the government? They'll lie and cheat in each of these cases and thousands more and still demand honesty and integrity from you.

That's bullshit. I think you should emulate your teachers in all things and do as they do. Look out for your own best interests just as everyone else is doing and you'll be a lot better off for it.

Okay, now that we've examined the issue at great length and found the truth of the matter, let's get on with some tips on how to cheat successfully, raise your GPA, and finally gain admission to Yale or Princeton where all the big-time cheaters go.

(A) The Wastebasket Caper

This one is a surefire gimmick that works every time. Wait until the end of the day when all the teachers have left the place (about three minutes after the last bell in most cases) and sneak into the teachers' workroom and go through the wastebaskets. Teachers running off tests on the copier inevitably ruin several copies of the thing and toss them into the wastebasket. You pick them out and bingo! You've got an advance copy of the next test and a guaranteed A.

A caveat: don't share the answers with anyone. Remember, you don't want to raise the class average any higher than necessary. Your own A will look even better if everyone else flunks the test.

(B) Crib Notes

This is an old and much used method but one that still works. You just hunt up the answers to some questions you're fairly sure will be on the test and jot them down on your cuff or on some scraps of paper or the back of the guy's shirt in front of you and copy like hell. Be creative. Put them up on the ceiling and gaze heavenward for inspiration.

You girls can jot notes down on your thighs and just slide your skirts up your legs, as you need fresh answers. The main drawback to this method, though, is that male teachers' eyes are naturally drawn to skirts moving upward on pretty legs and you stand a good chance of getting caught. Besides, if it's a very long test and the skirt gets too high you'll paralyze the minds of all the guys for four rows in every direction and they'll flunk and their girlfriends will beat the crap out of you for being a shameless hussy.

On the other hand, you may get away with this dodge even in a case where the teacher does spot your sliding skirt because most men would be moved to helpless inaction while they breathlessly watch with heightened interest to see just how high said skirt will eventually rise. It's often a good idea to jot down some extra unneeded answers 'way up there so as to keep the old guy's hopes alive that he'll see unexpected marvels if he's patient and doesn't do anything stupid like accusing you of cheating.

(C) Be A Counselor's Aide.

Another foolproof plan is to volunteer to be a counselor's aide (for your own counselor, of course) and you'll have access to all the records. All you have to do is change all the undesirable grades on your transcript and stick them back in the files. Nobody will be the wiser and you'll probably win a scholarship to the Graduate School of Business at Harvard or Stanford.

I even knew of one guy who dropped out of high school to join the Marines and later managed to get a high school diploma from a school he never attended. He was dating a girl who worked in the office and she just typed out a complete transcript and stuck the thing in the files with the others. If it worked for him it can work for you.


Incidentally, I know some people out there will decry such practices as deceitful and counter productive and even loathsome, but rest assured that some of our finest, most respected citizens regularly do exactly the same thing themselves. There's a flourishing trade in phony diplomas sold through so-called diploma mills all across the land. For a fee anyone can acquire a college degree without going anywhere near a real college or taking a single college course.
And guess who buys the majority of these phony diplomas? Ministers, that's who! Men of the cloth, guys with their collars on backwards along with their scruples, the very same spiritual leaders who spend all their time telling you to be a Christian and morally straight while they send off for phony Doctor of Divinity degrees paid for with money contributed by morally straight parishioners.

The preachers are not alone, either. Half the résumés sent out in this country contain phony information including non-existent diplomas, false employment records, and exaggerated salary claims. It's a widespread practice in the business community and everybody knows it, so what's the harm in you following suit? I say if it's good enough for your preacher, it's good enough for you. After all, isn't the only thing that matters that famous bottom line?

(D) Steal the Grade Book

This plan is brilliant because of its simplicity. You steal the grade book and throw the damn thing away. Without the grade book the teacher will be forced to give everybody at least a passing mark, i.e., a C, and that's a lot better than the F you'd otherwise have.

Sometimes she saves all your test papers and it will be necessary for you to steal them, too, or she'll be able to reconstruct the grade book and give you your just deserts. If the old bat has cleverly recorded her grades somewhere else, it means she's had previous experience with assholes like you and she's taken steps to thwart you. If that's the case, you may have to do the unthinkable and actually study and learn something.

(E) Spy on Your Neighbors

When using this scheme be sure to sit next to somebody who knows what the hell's going on. It's foolish to sit next to some bikers or jocks because you'll just end up copying the wrong answers. Copy from the Asian guys with thick glasses and calculators hanging from their belts; they know what the hell they're doing.

This time-honored scam involves just looking at your neighbor's work and copying the right answers. Of course, you have to use some care here because teachers are always on the alert for this trick. You need to develop a series of shifty, sidelong glances and subtle distractions that will throw them off. Be quick to take advantage of any disturbance that momentarily distracts her.

If somebody raises his hand to ask a question you can sneak a peek at your neighbor's paper while the teacher looks at the question raiser. Or have a friend across the room drop a book on a prearranged signal and cop an answer when she looks that way. Also be alert for any interruption as when somebody appears at the door with a message or she has to answer the intercom.

In other words, this device relies mainly on opportunities that present themselves through chance or by design. It's one of the least satisfactory gambits but one that can work if you're clever enough or if the teacher has very poor eyesight or unusually slow wits.

(F) Original Ideas

It pays to be creative and original whenever possible. I knew one kid who had an exam in a first-floor classroom. He sat next to a window, balled up his exam paper, and tossed it to his friends waiting outside with a textbook and notes. They filled in the answers and threw the balled up paper back into the room.

Unfortunately for him, it fell at my feet and I caught them in the act, as it were. Still, I was so impressed with the sheer brilliance of the scheme that I let the kid take the exam over and this time he failed it all by him self and went on to meat-cutting school where he belonged in the first place.

In other words, you need a little luck, too.

(G) Lie

A good, well thought out lie is always useful, especially when all is lost without it. Suppose you have a test coming up and you haven't the foggiest idea of what it's all about. There's no chance in the world you can pass the thing and your whole future hangs in the balance. Clearly, this is a situation calling for drastic measures.

Show up for the test. Spend the period doodling and watching all the skirts slide up and down the girls' legs, and when the test is over don't hand in your paper. When the teacher later asks what happened to your test paper (she knows you were there!) you claim you gave it to her and she lost it. Refuse to back down. Insist you did it and that she's at fault. If you're persistent enough she'll give in and you'll come up with some sort of compromise grade.

(H) Mnemonic Devices

You'll have to actually do some studying for this one but it works and is worth it if you're desperate. Find the answers and come up with a mnemonic device (look it up) and match it up with your answers. You'll end up with a series of letters or numbers or nonsense syllables that will be meaningless by themselves but which will give you clues to the answers they represent. The nice thing about this is that you can leave it in plain view on your desk since it means nothing by itself. The teacher will never be able to prove it's anything more than doodling so you'll get off scot-free even if caught.

We could go on, of course, but you get the picture and can probably improvise for yourself. The main thing is when you leave high school you want to look good. Nothing else matters.

©Evan Keliher

The story above is a satire or parody. It is entirely fictitious.

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