The Apgar

You know those dreams you have where you show up for an exam unprepared and notice that you're the only one naked? That's not a dream. It's a flashback.

I feel bad about my Apgar score. Hopefully it's not all colleges care about. I plan on having lots of extracurriculars just to be safe.

For the record, nobody told me there was even going to be a test. I would've studied. Spent the last few weeks in the womb cramming...practicing responsiveness drills, I don't know. Maybe they could have given me a few moments to collect myself. In my defense, it's not easy following up the most M. Night Shyamalan experience of your life with a pop quiz.

Then there was the thing about the drugs. First: I want to say that I'm not addicted. Did I enjoy the one time she had a little Tylenol PM? Yes, it was magical and I saw things, but I'm not a habitual user.  I feel like the teacher had it out for me.

"Are you high?"

"No...I mean...yes....I mean, I had some second-hand epidural but I'm really just tired-"

"That's all I needed to know. Please open and close your fist."

WHAT IS A FIST is all I could think as I struggled to keep my eyes open against the interrogation lights.

"Do you guys have a dimmer switch or something?"

"Why. Something wrong with your vision?"

"Uh uh. Quick question: are we in space?"

"Before we start our evaluation do you have anything to declare?"

"What is this, customs? Look, I'm like, six seconds old and not even from here..."

He didn't respond.

"Is this open book because I didn't have a chance to pick up the text..."

Another officer prodded my bare stomach.

"You can stop. I'm not carrying anything. Is this going to be graded on a curve because-"

Before I could finish, Sipowicz wrote something on my chart and I knew I'd pretty much bombed. Nobody said anything about makeup dates.

Your number tends to follow you around; it's like baby's first credit score. Pediatricians will ask. It's awkward. I try not to let it get to me. It's just one test. The first test. But just one test, right? Whatever I'm not even worried about it. I have a plan. Deflection.

"Thank you for coming in for an interview today, HT. All of your papers seem to be in order. We at Arby's Market Fresh Sandwiches would love to have you on the team, there's just the small matter of your Apgar score..."


That should work.


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