Gertrude Stein recalled that on the copy of her final exam for a class taught by William James she wrote, “Dear Professor James, I am so sorry but really I do not feel a bit like an examination paper in philosophy today.” She then left the room. The next day a note arrived from Professor James that said, “Dear Miss Stein, I understand perfectly how you feel. I often feel like that myself”—and then awarded her the highest mark in the course.Not a recommended strategy, and possibly apocryphal... but true to the spirit of William James!
(And that reminds me of a book by his student R.B. Perry... and of another by Jacques Barzun... but I'll stop now. To Mill!