The last straw for me was something that happened at my university. In post-Soviet universities, you didn’t choose what classes you had to take. Each semester, a huge hand-written table appeared in front of the Dean’s office informing each group of students which courses they had to take, where and when. We weren’t computerized then (I don’t know about now), so sometimes a mistake or two would creep into the schedule.
Once, at the beginning of the semester, my group huddled in front of this hand-written course schedule to see what classes we were going to take. Immediately, we noticed that two classes were scheduled (by mistake, of course) to take place at the same time on the same days of the week.
Now, I’d like everybody to take a moment to consider what you would do in such a situation.
For me, the answer was simple: let’s go to the Dean’s office and tell the people who work there that a mistake had been made in the schedule. My groupmates, however, shushed me down.
“Why do you have to be such a troublemaker?” they asked indignantly. “You never even show up for classes, yet you want to make trouble for everybody.”
“What trouble?” I asked. “I’m just saying we should inform people in a very polite way that there is a mistake in the schedule.”
“Will you stop being such a jerk?” one groupmate exclaimed. “You always have to protest, complain, defend your rights. You are so annoying!”
Of course, I shut up and withdrew. It was true that I wasn’t planning on attending either of the courses scheduled for the same time slot. In the meanwhile, the group discussed the situation and decided to show up for one of the courses and ignore the other one.
By now, readers must be wondering why the group was refusing to mention the problem with the schedule to the authorities. Please, offer your answers in the comments. I’d love to hear what you think.
To be continued momentarily. . .
P.S. Thank you, Maria, for asking me to write about exactly what I wanted to the most. 🙂