Yesterday, I posted an entry on standardized tests, but I actually wrote it — and intended to post it — on Tuesday afternoon.  It was about 1:15 and I needed to leave the office in time to reach Boston College for a 4:30 information session, with a stop mid-route at Kayla’s school for parent-teacher conferences.  I proofread the post and hit “publish.”  The little “I”m working on it” swirly icon kept swirling.  And swirling.  And swirling.  Finally, a message about something-or-other “timing out.”  Aaargh.  Hit “publish” again.  This time, I’m packing up the things I need while the swirling carries on, but the result was no different.  Now I really need to leave, so (for insurance) I cut the blog text and pasted it into an email to myself, turned off the computer and left.  The draft was still there on Wednesday and the publish button was much more agreeable.

Last Friday was the deadline for students to apply for positions on the Committee on Admissions.  There aren’t many classes on Friday afternoon, so it’s completely understandable that students would leave the task to the last minute.  How could they know there would be a huge explosion and fire in Medford Square that knocked out electricity on campus until the next day?  Not a lot of printers will work without electricity.  While the applications reached us in time (and we were grappling with the black-out as well, so it was easy to sympathize), the students were sweating over it much more than they needed to.

Dear blog reader, you’re probably wondering why I’m telling these little stories.  The reason:  to remind you that there are forces beyond our control that occasionally pop up to thwart our wishes to meet a deadline.  So many of our applications come in date/time-stamped 11:59 p.m. on the day they’re due.  Please don’t do this to yourself.  The Early Notification deadline is November 15, but you really can send us the application on November 14.  Really.  Leave yourself a little time to solve any problems that come up.  Line up your recommendations and take your standardized tests well in advance of the deadline.  If nothing goes wrong, you still get to breathe easy.  If you hit a snag, you’ll be glad for the breathing room.

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