Delegates Fail Paraphrasing Exercise

By Ianni Tan and Jeslyn Tan, The Onion

English teachers around the world mourn the dearth of variety.

All delegates failed the exercise, with the highest score being an F.

It started out with delegates gathered in a hall, papers on the table, hands swift as lightning as they took down the sentences flashed in the study guide. Within a short two hours, the friendly paraphrasing exercise would commence – and each delegate was gunning to win the championship for their respective countries. It came down to pride, honor, and the size of one’s vocabulary.

The chairs were looking forward to a wide variety of statements, wide vocabulary and hoped that delegates would truly show why paraphrasing exercises were of a higher calibre than the common spelling bee.

Once the delegates were given a short one minute to consolidate their thoughts and begin their individual presentation, it soon became clear that the judges would be let down.

It appeared that most, if not all, delegates possessed a firm belief in utilising repetition as a literary device to create emphasis. These delegates indeed seemed heavily invested in the topic at hand, and at the oddly similar words leaving their mouths.

Repeated clauses included the “imminent danger” at hand, how each delegate “strongly believed in fruitful discussion”, and “delegates, your discussion has been going nowhere”. The judges were left with painful smiles on their faces and the occasional wince every time a new speaker took to the stand.

After thirty minutes, both reporters got up and left the hall. It was soon revealed to the reporters that all delegates had failed the paraphrasing exercise, and the entire event was thrown under heavy scrutiny to see if it had possibly been set at a level too high for the delegates’ current capabilities.

Upon receiving the news, English teachers at local schools were horrified and expressed their heavy disappointment at the bleak outlook put forth by these delegates.

“If this is the future of our countries, I don’t know what I’ll do,” said one teacher, as she comforted a sobbing colleague. “Isn’t English supposed to be the World Language?”

It was also reported that there was a sudden dramatic exodus of English teachers from the profession, with many teachers abruptly handing in resignation letters.

When questioned on this front, all delegates, once again, gave identical responses of “no comment.”



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