## what i learned from AP tests

• though math is called the universal language and is lauded for transcending cultural bounds and barriers, every discipline in which math can be applied has different rules for rounding numbers. i’m 95% confident that the difference between the proportion of conflicts that math creates due to significant figure debates and the proportion of connections math has forged is between - oh, never mind.
• no matter how much data you analyze, you can never prove that your explanatory variable actually explains your response variable. for example: if morgan spurlock eats mcdonalds everyday for a month, his weight gain is not necessarily due to his extreme diet. there are always lurking and confounding variables in an experiment. who wants fries?
• you can know whether or not three statements are true, but once they are numbered I, II, and III and are paired together in different combinations, you begin to believe that everything you ever learned is a lie. it is true that blue and red make purple, and it is true that 2 is an even number, but is it true that blue and red make purple and that 2 is an even number? this is too difficult. skip it and move on.
• if you come up with two answers on a question and aren’t sure which one is right, write both and cross one out lightly so that if the answer you think is wrong is actually right, your grader can give you full credit. hey, if you were correct at some point in time, you might as well get credit for it.
• don’t fall in love with a man in a portrait. he is likely a piece of propaganda and, unless you’re ogling an ancient roman bust, highly idealized.
• just because it looks like a pipe, doesn’t mean it is a pipe. images are treacherous. c’est dommage.
• history will remember rothko and oldenburg but not carpeaux.
• it is important to know how to draw a straight line through a set of data points. in fact, it is so important that you must know how to do it in order to be considered competent in physics with calculus.
• if a man is pulling a live polar bear with a rope, the most important thing you need to know is that they are on a frictionless surface, meaning the center of mass of the system will not change.
• don’t leave a full test tube rack in a precarious position if you want to preserve lab equipment.
• don’t leave the lid off a container of a rare chemical if you want to preserve your chemistry grade.
• always study molecular orbital theory. it is never on your comprehensive exams, but knowing it makes you feel intelligent.
• never Imagine a Perfectly Clear Breezy Summer Night. it will probably suck because five strong acids will be floating around in your swimming pool.
• in AP Calculus BC, the C is to remind you to add a C at the end of your indefinite integrals. the B is to remind you of your math grade after taking the series test.
• in AP Physics C, the C is to remind you that everything you need to know is on the constant sheet with the formulas. except you don’t have the formulas during multiple choice. perhaps it serves to remind you to pick C when in doubt. more likely it just means “C-what-you-got-wrong-once-you-get-the-formulas.”

…and i only took 6 tests (counting both physics). imagine how much smarter i would have been had i not been an underachiever and had self-studied more than one, being that my school offers so few…