Why so serious?

Why so serious?

Erik Perez

Erik Perez has dressed up as the Joker on exam days in his organic chemistry classes.

“My name is Bond … Covalent Bond.”

Erik Perez, a senior studying biology at Chaminade, has been the talk of the science department when it comes to exam day. Perez has been known to dress up in a costume and bring amusement and ease the intense, stressful atmosphere amongst the science students.

When Perez first got the fun idea to dress up, he wore a kung fu outfit that belonged to his father. “I have trained many years sensei,” Perez said to organic chemistry instructor. People were so amused by his dressing up, that students asked him to dress up again.

Something that started out as a light, fun joke ended up turning into a big phenomenon for students in the biology department.

“I originally meant to dress up for that one exam and that’s it, but now I do every time,” said Perez, who has only been dressing up for the past year. “It is infamous for being a hard class and in hopes to reduce stress for everyone, including myself, I dress up and make people smile instead of having a stressful frown.”

Perez’s intention for dressing up before each exam last fall was because that class was easygoing and not as stressful. However, when he was moved up from organic chemistry I to organic chemistry II, he stropped wearing costumes.

Perez recalls one of his biology teacher’s jokingly asking him one day why he doesn’t dress up for any of his exams, and that’s when it clicked that he should start dressing up again but not just for organic chemistry but also for all his stressful, difficult classes.

When talking to Perez, who is from Guam, he wanted to stress that he only does this for hard classes like organic chemistry.

“I do not do this for easy courses because there is no stress in the room when the exam is about to begin,” he said. “What needs the tension breaker the most are the classes where everyone is scared or not fully confident. I feel that this is my way of implying to my classmates that the course is not too bad, don’t stress, you can do it.”

When asked if dressing up was somewhat of a memorizing mechanism for him Perez said, “It actually does not help me remember stuff, but what it does for me is relieve last minute stress/anxiety. I may get nervous, but with dressing up, I’m concentrating on how I look and what to say. And with all of that, my stress over the test goes away, but this doesn’t mean I do not study. I actually study ahead and do my best to stay on top.”

Perez is also infamous for reciting famous movie lines before his test to his fellow classmates and teachers.

“I think my favorite quote would be my recent one,” he said. “I had two exams on the same day. I was the Godfather. And instead of saying ‘This is the day of my daughter’s wedding,’ I say to the instructor (in the Godfather voice) ‘You give me this exam on this day of my biochem exam.'”