Saturday, April 21, 2012

A Semester-Long Battle With Physics

It began with the chirp of a droid....

Then there was homework...

And studio....

And studying...

And the Kinematics Exam...I was stoked.
(I was actually nervous inside.)

My grade before the exam.

Then Lon-Capa's all:

And I'm like:

Then we started torque...
Awesome TA's are awesome.
And I started getting less and less sleep.

People needed help with homework on Sunday night...

and I fought on until the Torque Test.

And then we saw it. And were like:

My life is a failure and surely I got an F or G!

People were mad...
Yeah, we mad, bro.

Then I got the test back and Lon-Capa said

"How'd the test go?"

Then I was all 
Heck, yeah. I got this stuff.
I studied hard. Sometimes I needed help.

I knew I could do really well and get an A if I tried (and didn't sleep). So I woke up early the day of the test and went to 8a.m. studio.
"If you don't define a system or axes or write equations in their general forms,
you're gonna have a bad time."

I was wrong.

You know, sometimes it's better to be lucky than good. 
And I had the worst luck for the Energy Test (stupid conceptual questions).
But upon further review, I shouldn't have had to rely on luck that much in the first place.
There were a few questions I had to make last second choices on. 

And when I woke up, I realized

It would now take a miracle to pull an A in physics.

I became angry and emotional.

Well, more angry and emotional than usual.
I got sad texts and awesome news from others. But I was stuck in the middle: the average, or right above it.
All week I went back and forth between wanting to try to ace the final so someone can make an inspirational movie about me or giving up and screwing physics and forgetting all the people that might want to study with me but focusing on other classes. I'm pretty sure I did a million calculations.

I still don't know what to do. 
But I'm proud. 

For: "I have fought the good fight, I have (nearly) finished the course, I have kept the faith." ~ II Timothy 4:7

And I only need a 35 on the final to keep my lovely B. 

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Hanging Tight

Last semester about this time (a little earlier actually), I was writing about how we're really a bunch of kids here at college, even more immature than we were during high school. Again, it's awesome. I look out the window and humans are fending off a zombie. And then I shake my head and do homework.

It's like Mines has told us: hey, welcome. Thanks for choosing a program that will give you security in the real world. Now here's four-five incredibly stressful years before you have to be an adult, so run with them and have fun! (But not too much fun- you have an exam next Tuesday). You can do, eat, dress, and act however you want. And it's been great so far.

But I failed to give us credit. Either that or us freshman have grown so much in nine months. (Nine months- wow!) Either way, we're at the part of the semester- no, year- where we have to buckle down and hang fast. And it's hard, but we're doing it.

This past week was registration for Sophomore year. It's so weird to think of Sophomore year, but I'm excited for my new classes and to meet the new Freshies. But you know, I'm just putting my sched together, meeting with my adviser, running back and forth getting things taken care of. Later this month I'll sign a lease for a house. Dang, I'm getting old. But I still need to do laundry.

But you know, I'm proud of us and how far we've come. All week I've been hearing about everyone's plans for next semester and life. We're starting to break apart into our individual majors, and it's sad but cool at the same time. For example, I'm so glad I don't have to take Thermo or Statics or any other real engineering classes. But it'll be weird not living together and comparing bad test nights because we share every class with everybody. Well not really. But still.

But look at us, thinking about our degrees and classes and stuff!

All we have to do is not break down or burn out with the rest of the semester....sigh. Go 2015, go!

Saturday, April 7, 2012

If You Ain't Dreaming About It

The mind plays tricks on us.

Like making 190 plus days of torturous winter pass by really quickly. Dang, it's April already, and as happy as I am that it is...dang.

There was a moment during E-days (and I'm not exactly sure when) that I became done with school. It's not that hard. It's not. But I'm done with the constant deadlines and 3 a.m. nights. Annoying people are getting on my nerves more than usual. I hate being behind homework all the time, and babysitting for the one subject that I like to get ahead. I used to love it all. What's different? Maybe it's just the last couple weeks. But it's not just me. My friends are so done with school too.

After E-days, I was left with all my homework due during the week. So I did everything the night before it was due. My mind escalated everything. But I know my limits. I knew it'd be impossible to get all my math homework done in one night. So I didn't, because I couldn't, but tried my best. My body rebelled.

My mind also thought for some reason (maybe the fever had already set in) that I had to write the draft for my final NHV paper in one night. Panic set in, and the sickness already had. By the time I was set straight- that it was due in one week- autodestruct already took place. And I had made myself sick. I was so hot and so cold at the same time and I finally gave in and slept. I called in sick to everything Wednesday and Thursday.

I had some trippy dreams while feverish, but I can't remember all of them. I remember one of them had to do with Dubstep, which is trippy itself. Our window was open, and I think I could hear my friends outside my window talking, but I don't think they were really there. I also thought someone was calling for their dog: "Obi-Wan! Obi-Wan!". How cool, they named their dog Obi-Wan, I thought. Not totally unlikely at this school, but...yeah. Pretty sure I was hallucinating.

My cough wasn't like a normal cough- it felt like there was something in my chest. Like my cold heart had frozen over, so cold that only baseball could save it. Friday, baseball came. Opening Day was different than the others. It felt different. Of course it was good, but for some reason I was tired Thursday night and went to sleep- like I wasn't excited or something. I made up for it by getting up at 8 a.m. for my 11 a.m. class. And then it was a normal day, except at 5 p.m. I went up to 2nd floor and locked myself in and watched the game. Baseball season started. And I was still sick.

Don't get me wrong again: I'm glad it's Day Two of baseball season. I'm glad for the time I've had at school this semester and last. And I do think I'll manage to concentrate on both. But I guess I'm taking it one day at a time, and that's not working anymore. I need to look forward to the great stuff that'll happen. And dream about that stuff, because if I ain't dreaming about it, I ain't ready.

But then again, it's gonna go by so quick. I don't know what to think anymore.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Nerds Just Wanna Have Fun

College Freshman. First E-days. Didn't die!

I am spent. I haven't done any homework all weekend, but I am exhausted. Oh wait, I did. What a nerd. Nevermind. But the Mines holiday weekend of the year has left me in want of sleep and normal routine.

The E-Pocalypse started on Wednesday night for some, as a few classes got cancelled. I could hear outside roars of kids making dumb decisions already. But I had NHV to do, and my friends their subsystem analysis, so we pressed on. And were up for quite a while. No matter how late my classes start, getting up after staying up so late sucks. I kind of feel bad for being out of it during a lot of NHV classes. It deserves better. Not! After my last paper I am just so done with NHV and its stupid readings and its stupid research. Blargh. You know, that's not fair- I am just done with school. At any rate...

I had class until Thursday at 4. Then it was E-days (E-DAYS...WOOOOOOO!!!). Mines Activities Council put on quite a few events this weekend (not all of which I attended). It started with the comedian which was alright, but I had to bust out my "Shut up, drunk frat guy!" line already. Afterward people decided to do their own thing, but the friends I hung out with all weekend decided to toss a frisbee. Then we went to explore Chauvenet (the really maze-ish Math building), but it really wasn't that sketch. So while loitering and making our way back to Maple we got stopped by a cop. Security is ten-fold during E-days.

We were going to wake up at 7:15 Friday for the Ore-Cart pull, but we still stayed up late watching a movie. I know, weird: staying up late for fun rather than work. So I was tired boarding the "very special people" buses (seriously, they said this on the back). And the trek ahead of me was 7.4 miles, or over 100 blocks. But it was a great tradition to be a part of. One of my upperclassman friends encouraged me to "commit for a couple miles and pull the Ore-Cart". So a few of us weaved and jogged and caught up until we grabbed on a piece of the rope. It was great and I fill fulfilled in Mines tradition, especially singing the fight song every so often.

At the Capitol building, the lieutenant governor proclaimed it E-days and said some stuff about Mines being the most important school in Colorado. Heck, yeah. And then my feet fell off. I had a blister on each toe.

Some kids took a nap, but I went to Physics homework help and finished after 5...that homework was pretty hard. Sigh...I'm such a nerd.

We watched another movie Friday night- a scary movie. I think we all just wanted to go to bed. You see, I use weekends to sleep in and recharge and do homework. Saturday I woke up at 10 (still too) early and missed the cardboard boat race. The carnival was fun though. The trebuchets were cool to watch and the food was good too. I played this one game where you try to drown frat guys by throwing a softball at a target. I succeeded.

Saturday ended with me being a pretend physics TA again. Before that there was a rootbeer kegger. Sunday I had way too much stuff to do. Oh yeah, at 8am Sunday morning on my way out of Maple I saw a guy passed out on the couch snoring. I don't even think he lives here. But that was E-days. I'd say the Ore-Cart Pull was the best part, since our fireworks show was postponed. Note to future freshies: stay with friends, make good life choices, have fun.