It’s week two of spring break… and I still don’t really know what to do with myself and all this free time. Free time. As in, time I don’t have to spend frantically finishing a French essay, punching complicated chemistry equations into my calculator, or struggling to understand biology concepts that my professor insists are “the key to understanding biology”. Not to say that college isn’t fun and exciting, it’s just a lot of, well, work. But strangely, now that I have free time I find it slightly unsettling. Hooray! No obligations! Now what?
It’s Friday! Hooray! To celebrate, I thought I would write a post with lots of photos, because everything is better with pictures.
A few days ago, I decided to take a walk around campus and take some photos. However, I’m definitely not a photography expert.
Every time I encounter more proof that the human body is fragile and naturally decaying in an unstoppable way over time it scares me.
Why this sudden shift in mood, you might ask?
It all started, like most things on this blog, in my biology class. Continue reading
In each of the bathrooms in my dorm, there is a sheet of paper with a different question on it, like “If you could be a super hero, what would your super power be?” or “Write a spell and explain what it does” (that’s not a question, but you get the gist). Anyway, our bathroom tends to lack inspiration, but the bathroom upstairs has an interesting challenge: “Write a story in 3 words”. As far as I’m concerned, that’s pretty much impossible, but some of the responses were amusing:
In honor of Valentine’s Day, I thought I would write this post to my only recently discovered true love: Protists*. Specifically, an unassuming protist called Physarum polycephalum.
Dear Physarum polycephalum,
When I first heard about you two days ago, on that fateful day in my crazy evening biology lab, I was unimpressed. You seemed so small and, well, boring. To be honest, you were kind of cute, with that bright yellow color, but really? Hanging out on tree trunks by yourself? That’s just weird, and a little gross. Not a good way to impress anyone.
But then I watched this video, and my life was forever changed. A small protist that could solve intricate mazes? A small BRAINLESS protist? That can figure out a city’s whole railroad system?
I was overwhelmed by your sheer intellect.
So even though I know you don’t have a brain, and your name is hard to pronounce, will you be my Valentine?
*Yes, I know, I’m a nerd. And occasionally, I’m even a science nerd. But nerds are awesome. So deal with it.
I was obsessed with the movie The Parent Trap when I was little (the newer one, for those of you who are die-hard fans). During that opening sequence with the boat and the photographer, when the parents were all happy and lovey-dovey, a song is playing in the background. It went a little like this:
L is for the way you look at me/O is for the only one I see/V is very very extraordinary/E is even more than anyone that you adore can/Love is all that I can give to you…
Which, of course, was sung by a sultry Nat King Cole.
I love alliteration. It just makes titles flow so much better.
Last night, I was in biology lab. We have this crazy weird biology lab that meets from 7:30PM-10:30PM, which must have been created specifically for mad scientist night owls. I, unfortunately, am not a night owl (though the “mad scientist” part is debatable). So by the time it hits 10PM I’m usually ready to sleep, and end up yawning my way through making histograms and graphs of worm lengths (yes, we did measure earth worms one time).
Last night was different. It was 10:30PM and I was PUMPED. Last night’s lab was so cool that some part of my brain still thinks that I dreamt it or something. We had the opportunity to look at plant cells and uni-cellular protists with a really powerful microscope. It was so cool that I just have to put some pictures of it in here, because there’s no way I can tell you how cool it was, you just have to see it for yourself.
The coolest part for me was the plant cells, because we could see a process called “cytoplasmic streaming”. That might seem really complicated, but it’s actually just like a highway for chloroplasts. We could see the chloroplasts zooming around each plant cell, and then were able to watch as the chloroplasts entered the stream and whizzed around to other cells. Pretty cool, right? It was like looking at a big city highway, except it was in an aquatic plant called Elodea.
Maybe I’m becoming more of a “science”-y person after all. But I honestly think that anyone can see the beauty in those plant cells. There are some things in life that are worth marveling about.
Writing blog posts while doing the whole college thing is hard. For some reason, I had this deluded idea that it would be just as easy as thinking of something, and then BAM, write blog post and be finished! Alas, I have found it to be more difficult than I thought to keep this up while still actually doing my homework. However, I will try my best to write at least once a day from now on, even if it is only a few meager lines (because something is better than nothing, right?).
The big reason why I have not written a post in two days: THE SUPER BOWL. Also homework. But that is not as exciting as THE SUPER BOWL. Continue reading
The Blog Project, Day 2
I’m realizing that, in writing a blog, I feel this weird pressure to write about things that are deep, intelligent, witty, or somehow earth-shaking…but when I think about it, that sounds pretty pretentious.
And I’m definitely not interested in being pretentious.
Case in point: Over winter break (which feels like eons ago) I went to this meeting that was billed as a FREE (very important factor for a college student) conversational French group. Being a French nerd and wanting to practice my French over vacation, I decided to go…and found myself in a small room in my local community center, surrounded by women over the age of 60 discussing (wait for it) plant sex. That’s right. Apparently the whole group had decided to read this book called “Les langages secrets de la nature” by Jean-Marie Pelt (or “The Secret Languages of Nature”). It quickly became very uncomfortable, as the author began to describe the details of orchid reproduction in very flowery, romantic language. The so-called “conversation group” became a slow, tear-inducing form of torture, wherein each of us had to read the book, paragraph by paragraph, out loud in front of the group. I learned very useful key vocabulary, such as “étamine” (stamen), which will, no doubt, be useful at some point, if I’m lucky.
So because I really want to avoid talking about pretentious things like orchid reproduction on this blog, I will instead write about a lighter subject… the TV show “Friends”.
Despite the fact that this TV show was created before I was born, I recently discovered it on Netflix over winter break, and now I’m hopelessly addicted. I decided to confess this addiction to my parents, and it turns out that they are also fans of the show. In fact, my mom watched it when she was pregnant with me. I’ve decided that this basically means I was pre-natally destined to become a fan.
And with that, here are the reasons why I like “Friends”.
1. The episode titles. Each one starts with “The One ____”. A few of my favorites: “The One with East German Laundry Detergent”, “The One with the Thumb”, “The One with the Dozen Lasagnas”. Dedicated fans will notice that these are all from Season 1. That’s because I’m still on Season 1.
2. Chandler’s facial expressions
3. 20 minute episodes. These are the perfect length, because they are just long enough so I feel like I have actually watched something, while short enough that I can fit them into my schedule.
4. The theme song. It’s just catchy. “I’ll be there for you…”
5. Phoebe. Enough said.
That’s all I have time for right now- until tomorrow!
…and why I want to start one.
Blogging has always bothered me because it has become so trendy, so much so that for a while it seemed like everyone had a blog- from that cat crazy neighbor down the street to that guy who works at the gas station. It’s always the same spiel: “Check out my blog!” Shameless self-advertizing, and often the results were disappointing. Either the blog hadn’t been updated in years, or it was so poorly written that no one wanted to read it anyway, or it was so mundane and/or self-absorbed that it was painful to read.
I could go on.
The point is, that I don’t want to write a blog like that. The reason I’m starting this blog is not because I want people to like me more, or to comment on what I write, or even like what I’ve written (ok, to be honest it would be nice if someone liked it). This blog is for those thoughts that I have when I’m on walks and I don’t have a piece of paper, when I see something so beautiful and astounding or so shocking and horrid that I feel this innate compulsion to sit down and write about it.
It’s for that reason that I’ve decided to keep this blog quiet for now. I’ve never written a blog before, and so maybe my desire for anonymity arises from a selfish desire to avoid total public failure…or a desire for freedom. I’m not sure which one it is yet.
Keeping in line with this concept of anonymity, I also don’t really want my personal identity floating about on the Internet. While I may drop little details about my life, I want to keep my private life separate from my blog one for now, so please respect that.
Phew! Day 1 of the Blog Project is complete- until tomorrow!