Christopher Pratt (cpratt) wrote,
Christopher Pratt

Some old stuff

One thing's for sure: when your parents come to visit, you wind up talking about the past. Yes, I showed them some pictures from New Caledonia and we chatted a bit about what they've been up to lately, but inevitably the past reared its fusty head and hey, well, we wound up talking about the past for a while.

I always seem to remember being a terrible student. It turns out that it isn't necessarily the case; I did wind up earning a 2.99 GPA at Berkeley (somehow!), but of course there is indeed evidence that proves I was in fact a terrible student. Here's a sample:

AP Calculus Spring 1987
The AP exam did go well; I got a 5, which meant I didn't have to take any math classes in college. Oh, and do note the excellent early dot matrix print job here.

Yes, that's a D in Calculus. This was my final math class in high school. In college, I'd wind up getting 2 Fs in calculus as well, but only because I took self-paced courses that I never actually attended. Oops. I love the subject, but I really wasn't one to prepare for anything.

Still, this kind of made up for it in a way:

Chris GRE 06-91

Yup, my GRE scores. I took it just for the hell of it after my junior year at Cal, thinking it'd be kind of amusing. Sure enough, it was kind of fun, but what was really funny was getting the results delivered to me at work (I worked in the computer shop at the student union bookstore) where none other than John Searle congratulated me on an admittedly pretty good showing. Better analytical skills than 98% of American grad school applicants? Why yes, thank you, I am smarter than the average bear. This turned out to be my secret weapon as a test engineer: figuring out complicated stuff. Plus, I did finally grow up a little and begin preparing before meetings and otherwise behaving like a responsible adult.

This was obviously not always the case, though...

Japan has breasts

Although I wasn't a member of the Model United Nations club, I did somehow talk my way into attending a Model UN convention with them in Oakland during my senior year (this would have been early 1987, I reckon). I was in the (bad!) habit of removing the Gideon bibles from hotel rooms and cutting them up Brion Gysin style, and had just found that feeeelthy passage in the Song of Solomon which I then passed along to Japan for the hell of it (I was Bahrain). I'm pretty sure she was a friend and not some complete stranger... I hope. Tacky!

Before graduating, I took it upon myself to put together what I called an "alternative yearbook," which was a dozen or so pages of pretty juvenile ridiculousness photocopied late at night. Almost all of it was rude, prank-y paste-ups of a bunch of stuff stolen from God only knows where; I think it was mostly National Lampoon type magazines plus maybe the odd bit of porn (I'd only just discovered a bookstore in Stockton that sold stuff like Penthouse Variations and Honcho. Yeowch!).

Here, much to my shame/credit, is the cover:

RLS Alt Yearbook 1a

And here's the dirtiest page I could find:

RLS Alt Yearbook 2

I'm very glad no one figured out who'd produced the thing at the time. Smells like expulsion!

The summer after graduating was fairly uneventful; I got a job for $3.70 an hour...

Thrifty 06-21-87

... and I spent it on music, mostly, with the odd foray into videotapes. Now listen here, kids: back before the days of YouTube, you had to go to a "video store." There, you would spend a long time convincing the staff that what you wanted to order actually existed - there was no "AltaVista" or "Infoseek" or whatever it's called, so you had to get them to write it up on paper:

Test Dept Tower Video

Then, you'd pay a deposit and wait a month or two before it actually arrived. What you see here is a receipt for videos by Test Dept. and Cabaret Voltaire; as luck would have it, they never were able to get a hold of either of them, so I eventually got my money back shortly before I began school in the fall. They were however able to find a copy of Soft Cell's Non-Stop Exotic Video Show or whatever it's called, so I did get to spend some of my hard earned scrip on something other than Psychic TV and Foetus records that summer.

And that, my friends, is quite enough for now. I'm going to remind myself it's now 2009 with a small snifter of cognac and then retire for the evening. Good night!
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