Wednesday, June 24, 2009

MCATS: The Mmusical or All's Well That ESL's Well

So a little bit has happened in the past few days (or is it weeks? I can't really tell anymore). I applied for two jobs: one teaching an MCAT class for a prestigious prep-course and the other being a student monitor for an English school. I just recently was informed that I had job offers from both that I quickly accepted. One job will have me re-teaching organic chemistry to potential pre-medical students and the other will have me ensuring the entertainment of students enrolled in english courses. One day I will be explaining the properties of Buckminsterfullerene and the other I will be playing soccer with a bunch of kids. There is obvious room for overlap, which is a nice plus when having two jobs. I will now go into a bit more detail regarding these two employment opportunities.

The MCAT position requires me to relearn a whole bunch of organic chemistry that I should have learned in undergrad. I could blame Frank, Alex and Harald (my old professors) and I think that's what I will do. So thanks for nothing guys. Hemiacetal? They never even TRIED to teach me that. 
Before that job offer, I was given two tests to take to make sure I "knew my shit" as the company put it. I was super excited at the prospect of doing some chemistry because my atomic muscles had not been flexed in quite a while and I wanted to get the bats out of the Boron. So I pulled up my sleeves, turned on Star Trek and set to work on the General Chemistry quiz. It took me a while to complete but some of the answers I wanted to be absolutely sure on so I took the long method as opposed to my gut chemical intuition. There were also some questions that I should have known immediately because they are taught in high school. 
So I did pretty well on the general chemistry, it didn't take me that long and I managed to make educated guesses where I was unsure. Now onto Organic Chemistry.
Well, let me tell you. It was like signing a lease to live with your significant other and then finding out the first day you both move in that they are cheating on you and want to break up and date this other person. However, you are roped into a lease so you have to pay until it expires but you don't want to move out and pay rent at another place. So you are forced to live with your ex and his/her new love interest and pretend not to hear the sounds of sexual exploits emanating shamelessly from their bedroom while you try to watch television, eating a raw onion so you can explain the tears. In short: it was fucking BRUTAL. 
I had to look EVERYTHING up. I was even looking up definitions for words I already knew. That's how shattered my confidence was.
" 'In a Friedel-Crafts alkylation of toluene, the toluene acts as:', okay. What the fuck is 'Friedel-Crafts'? What the fuck is 'alkylation'? What the fuck is 'the'? Oh wait."
So it was tough but I submitted my tests and later on I was informed that I would be the next Organic instructor for the biological sciences portion of the prep-course. How that made any sense I don't know. So here I am, frantically relearning various things that sound like I should know, "Aren't hands super-imposable? So how come these molecules are different?" and many things that seem brand-fucking-new, "The internet is on computers now?"

As for the other job, I think I will mostly be hanging out with kids and making sure they are having fun and speaking english outside of the classroom. So I am getting paid to play with kids. I keep thinking that one day I will have to clean the oven and as I am half inside, they push me in, shut the door and cook me for supper. I am also scared that some other type of "catch" is involved in this job, but I will keep you all posted on that as time goes on. 

Long story short, I will now have something to occupy my time and I can start making some bling so I can buy and sell your sorry ass. Look out, world. Here I come. 

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