There had to be an answer.
“No professor would ever give a test with an unanswerable question, would they?” wondered Lizzie. Rather than chewing on her pencils, she had a habit of chomping them wholesale like a corn cob. She was now on her third.
She raised her hand and waited for Professor Flansburg to sidle over to her desk.
“I’m having some trouble on question seven,” she asked. “I think maybe I’m just reading it wrong, but I can’t seem to find an answer.”
“Well, what would you think to do in that case?” asked the professor.
“I guess write ‘no answer’,” said Lizzie, beginning to do so.
“Oh, no, no,” said the professor, “You can’t leave a question unanswered on the test. I’d have to take off for it.”
“Oh, then am I just reading the question wrong? Cause it really doesn’t seem like there’s an answer.” Lizzie had to push herself not to move onto her fourth pencil in mid-conversation.
“Well, frankly, there isn’t.”
“So then it’s a trick question,” said Lizzie, wondering if the left over pencil cores from earlier in the test could still be used to write.
“I suppose so,” said the professor, looking up at the chalkboard now.
“So then you won’t really be counting it?”
“Oh no, I will be.”
“What, but I- wait is this one of those things where the real test is standing up against the test.”
“No, the real test is the test.”
It was at this moment Lizzie started to regret ever having signed up for Sadism 101.
Also there was a doctor. She was a close friend of the professor’s and, being invited to visit the class on her day off, was asked to go from desk to desk and mess around with people’s papers as they were writing their answers.