via Mary Robinette Kowal:
365:2010/07/10 – radiation burn (the results of learning algebra)
My GED test results arrived yesterday. I got 100% on Science, Language Arts/Reading, and Social Studies, a 95% grade on Language Arts/Writing, (likely because I was a self-referential smarty-pants in my essay), and approximately 65% percent on my math, which was a passing grade by ten percent.
I got the above sunburn by sitting outside, under a tree, bashing my head against algebra for four hours right before my Friday tests. (I had been wearing a shirt with a lace pattern down the back, which shows in the burn, except where my back was protected by the length of my hair.) It was so obviously painful that one of the teachers giving the test brought me wet paper towels to put on my shoulders while I was writing, and then brought me to the first aid room after the test to put serious anti-burn goo on them, so I could move without wincing. What she didn’t know is that a little kid had bashed my head with a kicked soccer ball while I was out studying, too, which slammed my jaws together, clipping off part of my tongue. I had been sucking ice the entire test, which is the only reason that she could understand me when I spoke. And yet, all that, and I only got 65%. There is no justice.