The Bud Factor



Hey, all you college kids – listen up.

If someone comes up to you and suggests that, instead of studying, you should rely on the “Bud Factor” to pass tomorrow’s exam, don’t listen to him.

I used the Bud Factor once. I know what I’m talking about.

It was a long time ago, and I was in a sixteen week school. All we had to do to graduate was pass three major exams. Just three. Easy.

I got by the first two just fine, after buckling down and hitting the books. I only had one more and I could get on with my career.

We were housed in older quarters, with adjoining rooms. My “suite” mate, a fellow student, played life a little looser than me. He didn’t study much, but he had a great tan and seemed to enjoy himself – at least more than me.

The night before the big test I was elbow deep in engineering schematics when he knocked on the door. “It’s too late for studying,” he said. “If you don’t know it by now, you never will.” Then he went on to explain the science behind the Bud Factor.

He told me that the best way to prepare for a big test is to relax the brain. That way, unencumbered by the anxieties that come with major exams, it will operate at peak efficiency and facts that normally wouldn’t have been at hand would spring forth.

And the best way to relax the brain is with alcohol.

He spoke with such conviction and confidence that it was hard to argue with his logic. Besides, he had done well on the previous two tests, and he swore it was only because of the Bud Factor.

So I went to the club with him. We drank, we laughed, then we drank some more. By the end of the night my brain was so relaxed I’m not even sure how I got back in my room.

And the next day I bombed the test.

My drinking buddy passed it with flying colors.

I was left with the humiliation of dealing with the consequences of a terrible score, and although I was allowed to graduate, it was only because of my previous test performances – plus I think they took pity on me (sobbing in uniform can be very effective). As I think about it, I suspect my suite mate only invited me to go along with him because he was broke.

So if you have a big test coming up, take my advice and study. Get a good night’s sleep. The next day, after you have passed the exam, you’ll feel a lot better about yourself.

It’s amazing how much that relaxes your brain.


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