Tuesday, September 29, 2009

Why am I Writing this Right Now?

Hi everyone! So right now it is 3:20am on September 29th, 2009. That brings up quite a valid question: what strange motives convinced me to post a blog entry now of all times? And I don’t have the answer to that question. Just kidding. There are actually several things that persuaded me to do this. First of all, it is 3:21 in the morning. How many bloggers post stuff this late? Early. Whatever. But I’m sure the number is quite small. So now I have bragging rights. When I encounter people at MIT who say things like, “I built an electric car,” or “I published an academic paper at age 12,” or “I’m hungry,” I can counter with, “Yeah? Well I posted a blog entry at 3:20 in the morning.” Rather than eliciting gasps of awe, I have an unfortunate feeling that I’ll be given strange looks with a response along the lines of “What’s wrong with you, dude? Do you have swine flu or something? SWINE FLU!!!! QUARANTINE!!!”

The second thing that convinced me to post an entry is the fact that the last one I posted was 20 days ago. No, wait… it’s now the 29th. That means it was 21 days ago. So I felt like I should keep my wide circle of followers appraised of my activities. Here are some of the things that I have experienced over the last 3 weeks: I swam 100 yards, I treaded water for 10 minutes, I dressed up in aluminum foil, I got 100% on two problem sets in a row in 18.022 (Multivariable Calc with Theory… I think that violates some kind of MIT law of having your self-esteem crushed… oh, well, I know I didn’t get 100% on the third :-P), I created my own fraternity/independent living group, I bought chocolate milk, drank chocolate milk, bought M&M’s, ate M&M’s, bought more M&M’s, ate more M&M’s, stayed up until 7am to finish a problem set due at 11:45am (I had a class from 11-12), campaigned for president of Class Council, ran for Senator of MacGregor House, found out I wasn’t allowed to do both, was forced to drop my name from the presidential ballot but still had people write me in :), signed up for Intramural Soccer, found out that we suddenly didn’t have an intramural soccer team, listened to fellow students argue about knots being discrete quantities rather than continuous, published an article in the Tech (MIT’s newspaper) trashing the frats’ Rush week (they spent $500,000!!!), published an article about the proposed budget cuts that suggested closing the Athena clusters (computer lab type things… unpopular idea apparently), published an article on why Israel shouldn’t bomb Iran, officially became Opinion staff on the Tech, was introduced as such and greeted with, “Oh, you’re Opinion, right? Yeah, you’re the kid everyone hates!”, discovered that this means I was doing my job right, I memorized the periodic table in one hour and nine minutes, I run several miles a week to each of my classes since I am perpetually running late, finally figured out how to get hot water in the shower (that was week 3 or 4), felt dumb as some of my friends talked about computer programming, washed several apples for my friend in exchange for his help on a homework problem, ate lots and lots of Subway, discovered that my screen comes out meaning I can get onto the roof if I really want to, discovered that to hold my screen in, the window must be perpetually open at about 45 degrees, which is nice for the breeze, discovered that when rain blows sideways and you can’t close your window things get wet, learned that about 23-25 seconds is the optimal time to put M&M’s in the microwave to melt the inside but not the outside, and left everything until the night before it’s due. Although that’s probably because it seems as though there’s something due every day.

And now I’ve written probably the longest grammatically legal sentence ever. And I did it at 3:38am, which is also good for bragging rights. Oh, and I found out that one of the singers of Mayday Parade left and started his own band! What?! It’s called Go Radio, it’s alright. Wow that was off on a tangent. Speaking of tangents, I also learned some ridiculous math. I’ve decided that I may not double major in Courses 18 (math) and 8 (physics) because despite the amazing coolness of quantum mechanics and relativity, I despise 8.01 (physics- mechanics). Maybe 8.02 (electricity and magnetism) will be better and change my mind. And because if I was to major in math it would be like a soccer player majoring in soccer. Pure fun. I’ve also been thinking more about what I actually want to do with my life after college. Initially, I wanted to get a PhD in mathematics and be a college professor and do research. I would hopefully also be able to write novels on the side and, eventually, go into politics. Now that’s shifted. I don’t really want to be a college professor because it lacks the interaction that a high school teacher has. Also, my time writing with the Tech and finding out that pretty much everyone enjoys reading my articles has influenced me to consider becoming an opinion writer or columnist for a newspaper. And with my increasing involvement in the promotion of the Uxbridge school project, I have seen that I also really enjoy politics because I sincerely care about the results. I think it’s sad that politics has seemed to lose the “public service” aspect over the years, which to me is the best part; the ability to give back and do something great for your community that will affect them positively for years to come.

Of course, before I can do any of this, I have to survive MIT. A popular saying among upperclassmen when my friends and I are optimistic, cheerful, happy, or just not miserable wrecks, is, “Oh… you guys must be freshmen. You haven’t had your souls crushed yet.” So that of course makes me very much look forward to drinking from the fire hose for another three years following this one :) I hope to be able to update this blog more often now that I’m getting into the swing of things here at MIT. By “getting into the swing of things,” I mean “getting used to solving difficult math problems and doing philosophy on 3-6 hours of sleep.” So I suppose that at this point I should stop avoiding my chemistry homework which I am being quizzed on tomorrow and actually do it. Oh, that was the third reason for me doing this. I just didn’t really feel like chemistry. I always enjoyed chemistry in high school, but as my second year of high school chemistry is now being compressed into a single month, it’s slightly less enjoyable. Math, however, continues to provide me with a limitless source of enjoyment, as does writing for the Tech, hopefully, serving on the Senate and the unique characters of my friends. So now it is 3:51am. I would say goodnight, but as it’s morning, I feel as though that may not be proper. Yet good morning is usually a greeting… Oh well. I could just go with an indeterminate value: goodbye!!! Oh, it’s now 3:52. Just thought I’d let you know.


  1. Now you sound like a real college student. Normal waking/sleeping hours will seem strange when you go home for vacation!