My TA for English class is obsessed with homoerrotic themes in all sorts of literature, and my TA for my Music History course is obsessive in his disdain for the use of “is.” So for the last few hours, I’ve been attempting to write a paper on “creative” themes that we haven’t discussed in class, and simultaneously attempting to write another paper without using “is” or “are.”
I am 999% done with this week.
2 Dec 2013 / 6 notes
17 Nov 2013 / 5 notes
That awkward moment when you’re course planning for next quarter and you realize the possibility that you will never graduate because nothing fits into your schedule the way it’s supposed to.
13 Nov 2013 / 5 notes
We read a poem by Alfred Prufrock last year about how some people spend their entire lives, hunched over, attempting to measure life with coffee spoons, only to die, withered and old, left with nothing but empty dreams.
I suppose some people do spend their entire lives attempting to measure every step they take. They have a plan and Excel spreadsheets filled with colors that tell them which step of the way will come after the next, and they want to force the mass that is life and mold it into their plans.
But me, I don’t care to measure life with coffee spoons, or to attempt to force it into my plans. I want to take a road trip across California and like those horrendously hipster photos that I see across Instagram, stop at scenic locations and feel small compared to the mountains and oceans I stand next to. I want to make a bucket list filled with improbable goals to achieve, and somehow, check off each event. I want to discover new music, write songs, share with the world meaningless words that I throw together in half asleep stupors. I want to dream of foreign countries, explore the different parts of the world, and find new adventures to embark on.
I suppose I am a very stereotypical college student, filled with cliche dreams, driven by the sudden influx of hipster-culture, of hippie vans that roll across dusty roads to a soundtrack provided by Blind Pilot.
And so, I certainly don’t intend to measure my life with coffee spoons. But as I stare at the disgusting amount of pre-requisites and major courses that don’t particularly excite me, and the list of strange, eccentric courses that I would love to take, but don’t fit into my allotted schedule no matter how many 8 am’s I move around, when I think about a prospective career that would potentially provide me the means to actually arrive at those foreign countries and experience different cultures… I realize that no one actually intends to live life by measuring out each drop carefully. No one actually dreams of fulfilling a predestined path of mediocrity.
It just somehow happens.
11 Nov 2013 / 7 notes
I’m reviewing for my midterm, and the first 3 chapters are basically all dedicated to “Why Science is Important” and the scientific method.
And then all of a sudden, the minute chapter 3 ends, there’s all this information about special relativity, Lorentz contractions, muons, and then I turned the page and then there was general relativity and all these formulas and a lot of words about space-time and the 4th dimension and the Doppler effect but not really because cosmological redshift is actually due to the expansion of the universe.
Well that escalated quickly.
31 Oct 2013 / 5 notes
23 Oct 2013 / 9 notes
For as long as my memory can stretch, I’ve been asked, “What do you want to be when you grow up?” Most kids will tell you fantastical things: princesses, superheroes, cowboys, president of the United States. At some point, as part of growing up necessitates, I guess, the realization that “What you want to be,” hinges on a lot more than just whims and dreams forces everyone to consider whether or not the answer to this innocuous question is actually plausible, and the answers change. And so there’s a struggle; do we want to pursue the impossible dream that our minds have constructed from the time we were 5? Or do we want to choose something more pragmatic?
And this is where I run into a problem. I’ve never had a dream job. I have no impossible career to chase after, or a goal that I can adapt into a career path.
When I tell people all of this, they tell me, ”You’ll figure out what you want to do—you have time! Think about all the opportunities you’ll have in college. You’ll know what it is you’re passionate about eventually, don’t worry too much.”
I want to tell you that they’re right. That perhaps I’m actually on a path of self-discovery, and one day in the future, I’ll figure out what I want to do with my life. So I repeat these phrases again and again; I repeat them to myself after admitting to strangers that I have no career path in mind, that I don’t even know what I enjoy learning about, and that I’m at the most applied to school in the the US, and I have absolutely no plan as to what I’m doing, what I want to major in, or where I want to go after I graduate.
My mind runs these cliches over and over, as if somehow, these meaningless, empty words will turn into something other than just…words. Life moves on, whether I have a plan or not, and I wonder if ten years from now, I’ll settle and take the path that’s handed to me, or if I’ll actually make something of myself.
22 Oct 2013 / 6 notes
Since arriving on campus four weeks ago, I’ve learned that walking to class is no longer a 6 minute feat, complete with a bathroom stop in between, but rather a 30 minute trek across campus, up hills, and brick steps, and strange alleyways. I’ve found myself having heart to hearts with people I met a few weeks ago. I’ve discovered a new-found hatred for Melville and More, and realized that despite all my complaints in the last 12 years of public education, I miss math and numbers, and I mostly miss a class that doesn’t require copious amounts of reading. I attended my first football game and reconnected with my inner-Key Clubber as I cheered for my school alongside thousands of other screaming college students. I found that late night dining tastes better when you share it with people you’re growing to care for.
Between all of that, I’ve been plagued with the usual bouts of homesickness. It comes and goes, every now and then, and is enough to remind me of the things that I’ve left behind. The Rent soundtrack brings me back to the morning after the Disneyland trip, when I shared headphones with my best friend, and we slept to the entire album looped again and again. Burnt coffee reminds me of Science Olympiad state, and runny grits has been associated with District Convention for me. I miss the quietness that is my own home—the privacy that’s unavailable with 5 other suitemates, and people who live a floor below us with nice speakers that blast lots of bass-heavy music. I miss being nagged to go to sleep, and being reminded that staying up to 4 am with class the next day is not a good idea.
But, at the same time, I somehow know that going home may not be such a familiar experience as my mind has construed it to be. My parents came up to visit me yesterday, and I realized that I don’t miss my house or San Diego as much as I miss the people I associate with the abstract notion of “home.” But, with everyone scattered across the world, we’re bound to change. We’ve already changed. And with that, I wonder what “home” will be like, when vacation forces us all back together.
Today, I watched some of my suitemates rearrange the furniture in our living room, and we made some plans to by some decor for the room, and it really hit me, as we talked about posters and lights and Christmas decorations in December, that I’ll be living in this dorm until June, and I’ll be here on campus for the next four years. I think back to the last month, filled with singing and screaming along to Super Bass and Michael Jackson in an empty tennis stadium at 1 am and spending an afternoon reconstructing my friend’s dorm room into a movie theater, and I realize that while I’m homesick for what I’ve left behind, home really is only a relative term.
The home I miss can be packed into boxes and sent to me in care packages, just as the people I care about are only a phone call away. The home I’m learning to love is full of people I have yet to meet, and new adventures I’m ready to stumble upon. And for the first time since my fall into lethargy last June, I’m excited.
14 Oct 2013 / 6 notes
I spent much of my senior year explaining in essay form the various passions I had for all of my activities. According to myself, I developed a love and dedication to all of these things—and in many ways, I did.
Because I sold my soul to all my extracurricular activities in high school, answering the general question of, “What are you passionate about?” was a relatively easy feat. I could close my eyes and pick one out of the many clubs and organizations I was a part of and talk about each one for hours on end. I could brag to the admissions officers about how great my officers were, and how much they’ve taught me about community service, or science. I could write pages on how my staff and I became a dysfunctional family, and just from a quick glance at my own blog from the past year, I sound like a broken record, repeating again and again the multitude of reasons I had passion for the things I did.
The truth is, I was passionate about these things, but I was passionate about many things. I was passionate about discussing literature, about how our lives were equivalent to that of Franny Glass’ absurdly meaningless existence. I was eager to voice my opinion on cultural and generation gaps, and more than often, talked loudly about what I perceived as problems within our education system.
Someone asked me today, “Tell me about things you’re passionate about.” For the first time in my life, I had to think about how to answer. I had no extracurricular activities to jump to, no funny stories about almost all-nighter feats to demonstrate my passion for a club. I struggled to come up with an answer.
While I eventually drew up a vague answer about education reform, feminism, and racism (thank you, Tumblr), and added in some tidbits of why I was really into community service in high school, I realized something else. All of the things I spent so much time talking about last year—those were all transitory things that I’d developed a love for. Come four years from now, I’ll hopefully have found just as many things that I’ll have grown to be possessively attached to.
But it makes me wonder, beyond fun group activities and clubs on campus, what am I even truly passionate about?
In between getting used to college and the warzone that is LA traffic, and the very long summer that I had, most of which I spent reading books I wanted to read in the last 4 years, I’ve grown strangely mellow and almost dangerously apathetic in the world around me. The sudden influx of human interaction that came with the start of school has tired me out, and I spend long periods of time, listening to silence, enjoying the zen that is nothingness.
There has to be more than just that.
8 Oct 2013 / 10 notes