Trick questions?

“What do you think of the descriptions of the sea in Schiller’s ‘Maria Stuart’?”*
There aren’t any, and I couldn’t believe that I was being asked that question by a lecturer who was interviewing me for a university place.
I answered the question as well and as politely as I could: ‘I can think of one metaphor about the sea, but no descriptions.’ I quoted the relevant text, which I have since forgotten, but could look up if I ever find the time and inclination.
The lecturer nodded and made no comment.
I was eventually offerred a place and I accepted.
When I met all the other ‘freshers’, they started talking about ‘trick questions’ at their interviews. One of my favourites was not the question itself, but the answer given by the interviewee:
Question: ‘What type of poem might begin with the words ‘Alas, alack, alackaday’?’
Answer : ‘A very bad poem, Sir.’
The moral of this story? That’s debatable ๐Ÿ™‚
This all happened many moons ago, but it made an impression on me, apparently.
* If anyone reading this knows of a description of the sea in ‘Maria Stuart’ please let me know, and I promise you I will eat a big helping of humble pie!

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3 thoughts on “Trick questions?

  1. suesconsideredtrifles

    One of the funniest answers to interview questions I ever heard of was this. The interviewee was asked about her hobbies. She mentioned golf, having in mind putting in a garden. The next question was, What’s your handicap? She replied, I have trouble hitting the ball. Sue

    Liked by 1 person

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