Author : Steve Smith, Staff Writer
The Dean of Admissions flipped once again through the file in front of him. He’d memorized the contents, but hadn’t quite found a starting point. Pulling his pocket watch from his waistcoat he regarded it solemnly over the rim of his glasses. If he didn’t get on with it he’d miss afternoon tea.
“Mr. Sans,” he began.
“Horatio sir, if you please,” The man on the opposite side of the desk spoke calmly, enunciated perfectly, “call me Horatio.”
“Horatio Sans?” The Dean raised an eyebrow and studied the man’s plain grey suit, simple tie and generally unremarkable appearance. “Hmm, yes, completely without flourish. Of course.”
“Sir?” Horatio put his hands in his pockets, then removed them, straightened his jacket against his side then finally folded his hands together in front of him. He drew his shoulders back until he felt them pop slightly, then relaxed as much as he could, although he still fidgeted from foot to foot.
“Horatio,” the Dean started again with purpose, “there has been an issue brought to my attention with regards to one of your admission tests. The issue, specifically, is that you failed it quite completely.”
Horatio stood stunned, jaw hanging loose for a moment before he took notice and snapped it shut. “Failed? Good heavens, that’s not possible. Was it the English test? To be fair sir, the answers on any test like that one are purely subjective. If I didn’t capture the essence of…”
“No, no, no, not the English test.”
“Certainly not the maths, those are absolutely my strongest subjects. If there’s any question about the maths I’d have to ask that you…”
“No, your math test results were actually quite exemplary.” The Dean flipped through the sheaf of papers on his desk and whistled when he read the math scores again. “Quite exemplary.”
“For the life of me I can’t imagine any of the tests that I could have possibly failed on. I studied thoroughly for all of them; chemistry, physics, biology, I even ran laps and did calisthenics in preparation for the physical.” Horatio was becoming visibly upset, wringing his hands, his eyes imploring. “Please, tell me, what test was it?”
“The Turing test, Mr. Sans, I’m afraid you failed the Turing test.”