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Before I studied linguistics, I studied chemistry. I did an honours project my senior year: it was a very official process, where professors ranked students and vice versa. I wasn't chosen by anyone, and eventually the person running the program had to get someone to pick me.

I went to the lab a few times, spilled some purple dye all over everything, stopped going to the lab (easy, since my adviser was never there), stopped going to classes, and dropped out of chemistry with one lab and one physics course to do to get a major. (Incidentally, I had been on the Dean's list until then.)

I switched to linguistics, where I've been very happy since.

I told people the reason I didn't finish my chemistry degree first was because if I did, to study linguistics I would have had to do another minor (true) which I didn't want to do (also true), but the real truth of it was that I think I would have failed those courses before I could have finished them. (I couldn't apply straight to the MA program there because my chemistry marks in that last year were . . . poor. Also I had no one to ask for a reference.)

As a student-at-heart, it's hard to admit to actual failure (not so hard to admit to feeling like one, though). These were bad ones.

I used to stockpile things from the labs. Depression's a bitch, and it's worse when you work with cyanide. (No, I don't have any. No, I never used it. No, I don't still want to kill myself.)