November 28, 2005
(Toledo, OH) UT engineering student Marla Waiblinger sat down for her exam in Fluid Mechanics, thinking that she was well prepared. She had studied, attended all classes, and remembered to bring a pair of #2 pencils.
Unfortunately for Waiblinger, hers were unsharpened, and the lecture hall did not have a sharpener.
“I though to myself: Oh...my...God!” recounted Waiblinger. “I had 4 minutes until the exam began, and I was without a working pencil!”
Waiblinger asked her classmates for a pencil to borrow, but “they all just looked at me with dull-eyed stares,” she said.
Classmate John Henderson recalled the look of horror on Waiblinger’s face.
“That know-it-all geek was about to piss her pants,” he said. “No one wanted to help her, because she spent the entire semester sucking up to the professor. Plus, with her out of the picture, the curve would probably drop 5 points. Fuck it!”
Waiblinger next turned to the professor, who had no pencils.
She began to gnaw on some of the unsharpened pencils, but was getting nowhere with her efforts. Desperate, she began to roam from room to room in Snyder Memorial, unsuccessful in her attempts to locate the necessary implement.
“My heart started racing; all I could think about was how this was going to totally wreck my 4.0 GPA,” she recalled. “Plus, I don’t know how I would ever be able to face my parents if I failed this exam.”
Luckily for Waiblinger, she spotted a couple of stubby Putt-Putt pencils on the ground.
“I raced back to class with 47 minutes to spare,” she said. “I only got a 97 on the exam, but it was better than failing, that’s for sure.”
Henderson said the entire class groaned when Waiblinger returned.
“Just when we thought that God had given us a gift, He took it away,” he said. “What a cruel, cruel world.”