‘Haan Yehi Sapna Hai Mera, Pre-Read Karke Jaana Hai’ – Humour On Campus – SPJIMR
B-School Life shouldn’t and isn’t about learning new things, sitting for lectures, making timely submissions, networking, finding the right question to answer and so on. It’s supposed to be the most amazing time of your life. And it can’t be the most amazing time of your life if there is no FUN involved. So to promote this idea – B-School is not all work but also FUN, we, at InsideIIM, have come up with a new series called ‘Humour on Campus’. Just in time for April Fool’s Day.
We have all seen the evolution chart with flattering images of a primal ape slowly and steadily transcending into a more refined species of existence – humans. Putting it into the ‘MBA’ perspective, what we observe is a reverse chronological order of events. So a confident freshman in S.P Jain comes wearing the badge of an overachiever with medals of honour, a CV full of talent (if any), the despair of the previous job held and certificates of humanitarian work to deem high the ‘ethical’ value. What essentially is left after a year of quizzes, assignments, projects and some more quizzes is a war survivor dragging her feet to the dome wearing the sticker on her head #IamSPJIMR
The pre-reads in an MBA curriculum are an equivalent of trying to develop a habit of reading a newspaper. We all mean well in the beginning and hope to understand what is being said amidst the complex web of terms used by the columnists, economists, politicians and Sobhaa De. What we are reduced to in the end are sports pages and juicy gossip of the entertainment section. Chale the Mint padhne, haath laga Times of India! The first pre-read handed over to us was a classic case of HR dilemma (yeah, sure!) and we revered it like the holy Bible. I remember our entire academic group sitting in unison on time a night before the pre-read to do the pre-pre read. Not just us, the entire ground floor of Boys’ hostel was bustling with academic groups fighting for the chairs, tables, plug points and the mats to do the huddle and discuss this life altering battle between Sasha and Dana. As expected, the next day we all went into the class oozing confidence of having done our homework and the very first question rattled us down. What’s the context? People went all guns blazing with their answers, hands up in the air waiting to be picked by the professor. One by one, they all fell.
There was an air of dismay. Not a single person got it right. We all died a thousand deaths inside, thinking ‘God, why oh why?’ The professor smirked and said, “It’s the Internet bubble burst, stupid!” (Ok, not stupid). Thrashed were our hopes of shining in the class and a sense of hopelessness hit us hard with the realisation we all took forward. “You’ll never it have it all, pre-read or no pre-read!”
Nonetheless, a swarm of pre-reads followed and we took our chances. Over the time, our energy wavered and the pre-pre reads were more of WhatsApp work allocation. The untouched stack of Mint found its twin in the pile of Ivey cases. What started out as an army of German soldiers became a secret society of Ghissus a.k.a the nerds. But hail the ghissus for saving our backs. More often than not, we all came unprepared in classes carrying doped faces and blank looks. The professor showing his mercy might throw the question for an open house only to get more quizzical faces staring him down. Disgruntled, he would charge like a hawk around the room ready to prey on faces hidden behind their laptops. In that very moment, a shaky hand would go up and there he was our messiah, Pranav. With the bolting speed of light, he had managed to read the Slideshare summary and had a half-baked answer ready to hold Sir at bay. After spending an eternity at iterating words like ‘holistic approach’, ‘competitive advantage’, ‘customer satisfaction’, etc. with his animated hands, Pranav had done the unthinkable i.e CONVINCE sir! We were all wearing BeingPranav T-shirts in our heads. Since Roadies salute wasn’t an option, we chose to honour his valour with some old-fashioned desk thumping.
The cat and mouse chase still ensues with luck dicing about for and against us. There are days when even the backbenchers rise up to the occasion and score on a googly. And sometimes, even the momentary drifting off fetches us a cold call. What remains constant is pre-read and the fact that ‘slideshare hai na, bacha lega’.