Thursday, November 24, 2011

The Day I Gained my Freshman 15

For good food, green grass in November, a big blue house that is really warm for being my family's big blue house, good food, a chem lab report and pre-lab due Tuesday, a nice bed to sleep on at home and an okay one at Maple, good food, clothes in my closet organized by decreasing wavelength, a Calc test Tuesday night, a Calc worksheet due Monday, two Earth labs due Thursday, finals coming up, good food, opportunities in life, an average of 7 hours of sleep per night, a job that pays me a little over minimum wage to watch sporting events, a loving family, awesome friends that I grew up with and awesome friends that make college amazing, all the blessings in my life, and last but not least- good food, I am thankful. 

Happy Thanksgiving.

Monday, November 21, 2011


It was a crazy week. I had two tests. Thus, I did not write. I have the SolidWorks retake tonight. Thus, this post will be somewhat incoherent. Props to you if you understand any of it. So here goes...

SolidWorks is lame, let me get that out of the way. I had no idea how to use it until 7p.m. last Monday. Which is unfortunate because I was tested on it from 5p.m. to 7p.m. But what can I say, I'm a Geo major. We're not supposed to care about MechE programs...unless we understand it, and then we just do it for fun 'cause we're nerds. I even started an unofficial club Geophysicists Against SolidWorks. It's the next big thing, I tell ya. Let me drop this on you- this is what it sounds like to take SolidWorks:

HA HA HA HA ....
Again, props to you if you get it. You either are here at Mines already, or you should be. 
Another thing Geophysics majors are supposed to hate is Chemistry.  I don't though, and especially with Racicot teaching it, I don't think anyone hates it. Lab kinda sucks- even more so depending on your TA. I kinda suck and am the last one to finish. But I calculated my labs and I think I might have a B. Which is good. I just really need a B on this past test, which was really long and no one had time to finish. It makes me mad because I wanted an A so badly. I haven't gotten an A on any test yet. I got an A on some EPICS assignments, but those don't really count. Bleh. Oh yeah, here's our filter we're building. It's pretty legit. 

But yeah, I studied so hard for Chem. Sigh. That book is falling apart. 
 One more day of classes, just one more day. Then I go back home for Thanksgiving Break. I am so stoked beyond words for Thanksgiving. I love Thanksgiving, but there is one thing that makes me swoon: the thought of all the good food my mom is going to make. Heck. Yes. Ahem, but uh yeah, I love Thanksgiving and am excited to spend time with family and study for the Calc test. 
Oh, that. Yeah- we have a test right after Thanksgiving, which makes the cranberry sauce turn into lamesauce. Bleh.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Why Did I Come Here Again?

I still can't believe it's November already. I can't believe I'm this old- a "college kid". I still can't believe I'm here at Mines, actually doing this stuff. It's crazy. Midterms finally ended. I can't believe the next round of tests is just around the corner. I can't believe I've made it this far and am still loving it.

There are still times, though. Times where you are in the midst of trying to complete a ton of assignments, while maybe studying for the test coming up. Times you wish you had more cash, or that you already graduated and were rich. Times you wish your floor was more social, or you didn't have all this homework keeping you from just doing things from friends. Times the laundry piles up, and the dumpster outside seems so far away, except for trash day when the trucks wake you up at 6. Times that annoying people annoy you while being annoying. Times you want just one more hour of sleep. Or that your brain would stop working during the designated time for sleep.

College is crazy, man. Mines is crazy. Life is crazy. During those difficult times, the thought goes through our heads: "Why did I come here again?". Other friend's from different colleges complaints about music class's unbearable difficulty sicken us. Or their fear of failing underwater basket weaving- I mean, come on. And we're here learning to be helluva, helluva, helluva, helluva, helluva engineers. The land of evil Chem TA's that make students write 15 hour lab reports and professors that put you to sleep after lunch and EPICS teachers with evil laughs and jokes that aren't funny. The place where math never ends in any subject, except for the few liberal arts writing courses that everyone complains about anyway because they are, well, liberal arts writing courses. The poor nerdy guys can't find a girlfriend. And school is so hard.

Then we remember where we are. But we still try to remember why.

"I like science", "I got the free application", "I wanted to be an engineer since I was two", "I...really don't know" we manage to say. I really do like science, and didn't want to pay to write an essay to apply for college. I always thought Mines was for crazy geniuses, and never considered it until Junior year in highschool. And then suddenly I wanted a good education and a college experience and a high paying job at the end.

Somehow it turned out to be more than that. This sounds cliche, but: I love the small community of Mines, and the fact that we are all here for science, math, and engineering. (Except for Econ majors. I met one. They exist...kinda.) I love how we accept and promote each other's nerdisms. I love that Golden is a pretty town that doesn't stink most of the time. And yeah, it's good that our hard work will turn into a degree that matters.

I'll say it again: time flies. When it's all said and done, will we even remember the evenings at Solid Works session? Or the failed chem labs? And that time will come so soon, if we just enjoy it. And it will all be worth it. One day.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


PA is an interesting creature at the Colorado School of Mines. First and foremost, its name. We are forbidden to call it PE, because apparently everyone in the world would think us to have Petroleum Engineering class where we have to wear closed toed athletic shoes. Strange, I know. But Petroleum gets naming rights. Secondly, PA is plain amusing accounting for the fact that we're all a bunch of wimpy nerds put into a strange gym-looking room (the field house) forced to do athletic things. Funny...I don't feel exercised at all.

At the beginning of the year, we were told this was to be our fun class that will be the easiest to pass, so make friends 'cause it will be boring if you don't talk. So we made friends. And we talked before class. And our coach took forever to show up, so we waited- sometimes until 10:15. But once he got there and took roll call, we played dodgeball (sometimes after running/walking two laps). And while pretending to play dodgeball, we stood in the back talking and exercising our voices and social skills..if we have any. This is how it's been for 10 weeks, except the nice days in September that we played kickball outside.

There is a specific strategy for dodgeball, and I think Mines students have figured it out. After waking up at 9:50, get there all groggy and walk to the nearest wall. When a kid yells "3...2...1...Dodgeball!", don't run up to the line. Stay behind and stand in the back of a very large person for a shield, but not too big that you can't see what's going on. When numbers start dwindling, and it looks like you'll have to do something to avoid being the last survivor, try to catch a ball and fail. Or throw a ball so the other team catches it. Then you'll be out of the game. Sit back, relax and enjoy the show that is The Wizard (some weird kid) yelpping as he gets hit. Some kids will try to jailbreak the team while out by making a basket on the other side of the court, but that is pointless- you'll only have to go back out and play.

Oh, once in a while we hustle. Sometimes the team I'm on wins. But usually dodgeball is a very good display of poor athleticism, except for the few former baseball players who throw curveballs that go right towards your face. PA is mostly a waste of time: I get a better workout walking to and from PA than the actual class. We never do anything. Except for that one time we ran a mile, which was more like crawling for some of us who were gasping for air and holding our sore limbs. Easy A.

I'm starting to make my schedule for next semester. I think it'll be fun, with a dose of horrible red boxes from Physics on Lon-Capa. Or however you spell it. I think I'm gonna try to get PA only once a week at 8 a.m. Which might be stupid, because no one is a morning person, and we'll be playing dodgeball even more lethargically. We might even be able to play while sleep-walking.