UQ Law student Francesca Harris (22) was in a position that can only be described as perfect before her Medical Law exam on Monday evening.
She had memorised every relevant case verbatim, owing to her strategy of employing Stephen Fry to record each key judgement as an mp3 file.
She had become majority shareholder into a local paper mill, in order to acquire enough capital to print her lecture summaries.
She had attended class.
Ms Harris’ preparation was faultless, and she had been told by a former High Court justice, whom she flew interstate to consult on problem question strategy, that she had an unprecedented knowledge of all relevant areas of law and had earned a place on the nation’s highest court once she had completed the exam on Monday evening.
However, all of this exceedingly thorough preparation came to nought. On Monday, upon entering the Holt Room, Ms Harris sat down to her realise her fate was predetermined. She sat down to the only thing that could have blocked her on her ascent up the stairway to 7.
A wobbly desk.
At first, she didn’t believe it. ‘Surely just me moving it as I sat down,’ she thought.
However, as she gingerly shifted her elbows across the surface, the gravity of the situation became apparent – this was a wobbler through and through.
She’d heard the stories. Nightmares about students destined for greatness having the entirety of their knowledge about a given topic evaporate upon being faced with a slight little click back and forth of a desk on a floor.
Ms Harris threw her hand up with the ferocity of a Dothraki Khalasar. The youngest invigilator, a spritely gal of just 104, put to one side her massive mobile phone detector and jogged to Ms Harris’s desk.
‘Desk! Wob!’ Ms Harris could barely breathe, pushing the words out with difficulty.
‘Let me help you, deary,’ said Beryl as she folded up an A4 piece of paper and jammed it under the offending leg with all the precision and care of Dr Patel.
‘All better now.’
Whether Beryl the invigilator was blind or vegetative was unclear, but the desk was very obviously still fucking wobbly.
‘It move! It fuck move!’ Ms Harris was barely human by this stage, her stress rapidly suffocating her facilities.
Beryl called on Gavin, who was essentially dead, to execute his ingenious plan of folding a second piece of A4 paper into a square and putting under the wrong leg of the desk, causing one side to now lean over as if he was Jack Sparrow trying to capsize the ship in the criminally underrated Pirates of the Caribbean: At World’s End.
‘Up is down,’ muttered Gavin as kicked the desk upon rising and knocked all of Ms Harris’s notes to the floor.
‘Sorry love.’ Gavin scrambled to pick up the notes but was unable to contain his dribble which flowed so freely that the notes were a mushy gel of ink by the time they returned to the desk.
Moments later, writing time begun and Ms Harris was forced to push on. But it was too late; the wobble had led to the evacuation of any and all comprehension of course materials from her brain. One small disparity between reality and the controlled conditions of the desk Ms Harris had conjured in her mind was her unravelling.
Take it from The Obiter: if your desk wobbles, take the gamble and apply for the supplementary.
It is too dangerous otherwise.
For those who take on the wob, will be sure to lose.
The wob always wins.
More to come from this heartbreak.