Key to Finals Success: Work Hard, Pray Harder

The best ways to rack up as many blessings and miracles as possible before you walk in to take your finals.

Reading Time: 4 minutes

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By Natalie Soler

Principal Yu ventures to the boiler room, and a deal is struck. The result? Answered by the little verse the Big Sibs love to recite:

The Principals of Stuyvesant High

Go out looking for a cry

With finals that have always been so spry

That’s right: ’twas the season to be jolly, and ’tis the season to be melancholy. Well aware of the fact that you’ve already burnt through a couple of lives during your time at Stuy, I’m here to kindly remind you that your finals are just around the corner.

P.S. I’ll also be here to remind you of your June finals when those come around <3.

“Well, crap,” you say, and with good reason because you’ll need a couple of miracles to endure it. The main strategy to get through finals (tested over the past century) isn’t related to studying. Besides, look at your current studying time. Oh right, you don’t have one because you’re too busy girl-bossing Stuy by being a world-class tennis star, math team wiz, and part-time world-class musician all at the same time. Instead, rack up as many blessings as you can right before you enter the classroom on your doomsday. Here are some of the most popular ways.


Seeing little piles of homework, tests, and lost objects surrounding a deformed figure made from soggy paper towels from the bathrooms scattered around the Hudson Stairwell really makes you wonder: has Stuy officially lost its mind?

No. What you are witnessing is actually the “Plan A” of many underclassmen (and the occasional junior) as they snatch whatever they can get their hands on to create shrines dedicated to the patron gods and goddesses that look over Stuy, such as the ancient Pegleg Pete and the mischievous spirit of the sixth floor.

Though Stuy students worship a myriad of deities, one, in particular, stands out among them: The Grind, the patron of coffee. She blesses students with the endurance to grind through three essays and half-ass four STEM assignments with her magic cup of ground coffee beans. This ensures around 30 minutes of pure study time on your way to school, all for the price of your mental sanity.


If petty larceny for The Grind’s shrine isn’t your idea of worshiping, don’t worry! There’s another way. All it costs is your time and dignity—so basically, nothing that you hadn’t lived without before. All you have to do is to hunt down and worship a senior until they are defrauded of their precious wisdom through a combination of flattery and bribery. If you’re athletically inclined, run errands and do favors for them to get any tips and gimmicks. If you’re an individual that would rather take the two-to-three escalator instead of walking up the stairs, you can offer the seniors No. 2 pencils for the same advice.

Now, seniors may not always be satisfied with the favors that we do for them. In that case, resort to flattery. While some believe that genuine compliments would be more effective in convincing the senior, it would require the ability to establish personal connections with people, which would exclude a large part of the Stuyvesant student body. Instead, we should only use the most excessive forms of praise with the senior. The more unnatural, the better. Plus, if the senior tries to run, you can yell the praises at them and intimidate them into giving you advice.

There is some risk, however, due to senioritis. Our targeted seniors may be plagued with that illness, and we may obtain nothing from them despite our efforts. Still, this is not a complete drain of effort. For underclassmen, this method counts toward our tithes and duties to the seniors. Nothing goes to waste in this closed system.


Now, some of you might still be unsatisfied with the options given and, tragically, might have even started to think about studying for finals. Thankfully, there remains a third method for the exceedingly desperate that taps into the arcane arts: sacrifices.

To begin, you must first identify the ideal location. Luckily for us, our predecessors recorded this information, which can be found hastily scribbled on the bathroom stalls or sprayed across the mirror in a language long forgotten. Using the translation key etched on the sixth-floor benches, you can piece together the clues. For the sake of convenience (and because we’re nice), we’ll just give you the answer. Though there are many good contenders, like the fifth-floor cafeteria or the fourth-floor hallways, the best spots are near the windows installed in bathrooms, especially the ones in direct view of the toilet, because of their apparent proximity to evil (according to our predecessors’ notes).

Once you have found your favorite bathroom window, you will need a friend (or if you’re friendless, you’ll need two pens, preferably Muji) to follow you to the bathroom with a notebook from one of your failing classes that is ready to be sacrificed. Together, you and your friend (assuming you found one) will loudly chant the obscure Stuyvesant school song, which should be on the school website, once to the window (or twice to intimidate any unsuspecting student using the bathroom during your ritual). After chanting, take out your notebook and rip out all the pages, crumbling and flushing it down the toilet all at once (with you clogging the toilet, maybe you are the “evil” that our predecessors’ notes refer to).

And that’s it! Now, you are well equipped to withstand anything during finals week, whether that be coping with the imminent emotions of despair or finishing any last-minute work that teachers loop-hole in (and most recently, having to actually GO to school </3). If you are disappointed with the results of your rituals, you can improve the efficacy of the blessings by copying the phrase “i forgor” 50 times on a piece of paper while accepting your doom (optimally at 3 a.m., at which time you should normally still be awake, anyway). While you’re at it, one more thing: go kick some ass out there, you math team wiz of a tennis star (and part-time world-class musician)!