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Sam M. '07

Feb 18 2008

An old man’s thought of school

Posted in: Best of the Blogs, Life & Culture

DID YOU KNOW? The famous Pioneer Zephyr trains of the 1940's were named because a railway president wanted his trains to be considered the "last word" in transportation. He had originally told his coworkers to literally look up the last word in the dictionary, but decided that "zymurgy" was not a good name for a train.

Yo, I'm in grad school. How's that going? Well, not too bad. In a way, I can't seem to ever get away from MIT. Half the books I use in my graduate classes were written by my MIT professors. During the first week of my product design and development class last semester, we were assigned a reading about all-around drug delivery rock star and MIT professor Bob Langer. The professor asked if anybody in the class knew who Bob Langer was. Half the hands in the room shot up, and a bunch of awestruck students breathlessly explained, "OH, he came to my school once to give a lecture, and I could totally tell that everything in this article is totally true, like when he was... read the post »

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Jul 28 2007

I who have nothing

Posted in: Academics & Research

DID YOU KNOW? In Renaissance Spain, when white skin was cultivated as a sign of royalty, princesses drank water from clay vases and then ate the clay, which would absorb all of the water in their bodies and give them a pale appearance. History has not recorded what happened to these princesses a few hours later.

So this will be my last MITblog entry from Europe. Probably forever. I'm just chilling here in my air-conditioned (!) hostel room, listening to the dude above me snore, and I thought that rather than reading all the entries at some for the bajillionth time, I should make good on my promise to write something from Spain in my last entry.

I wanted to title this entry "Now I'm a little boy in Spain playing pianos filled with flames" but it messed up the formatting on the MITblogs website, and also I've been thinking a lot about the song "I who have nothing," by Jordin Sparks, because I'm totally done with all this MISTI reporting business. I have nothing! I mean,... read the post »

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Jul 12 2007

Dig me, but don’t bury me

Posted in: Academics & Research

DID YOU KNOW? Super Smash Bros. Brawl is coming out for the Wii on December 3, 2007.

France. I'm in France. But I just got done with Italy. And I just got done with uploading way, way too much blog to the other blog that MIT pays me to write. So you should go over and read that now. At your leisure. I mean, because it still applies here--you, too could write 6,000 words of blog entries on an 8-hour train ride, if you just choose MIT as your undergraduate institution.

Basically my job has evolved into a never-ending search for free wireless access. Today that came in the form of a McDonald's in Marseille, France. Seriously. As Samuel L. Jackson prophesied so long ago, their main hamburger is indeed called a "Royale with Cheese." But one thing I wasn't ready for was that another one of their sandwiches is called a Croque McDo, which I guess must be some unhealthy version of the Croque-monsieur, which is itself just grilled cheese with cream on top, and a fried egg, if you're a lady.

... read the post »

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Jun 25 2007

I was out of bullets.

Posted in: Academics & Research

DID YOU KNOW? The gigantic Bayer sign in Leverkusen, Germany, where I worked last summer, is the largest corporate logo in the world.

So I'm here in Germany, meeting up with tons of MIT interns while staying at sketchy youth hostels and subsisting mostly on döner. I was planning to live a little more comfortably, but after seeing the rent on my apartment in Berkeley next year, I thought it might be better to be a little more frugal.

Just playin'. But seriously, maybe it's because I only get to eat it in Germany, but döner is seriously the most delicious thing on earth. It's like a gyro, except the meat of indeterminate origin is slow-roasted for tons of flavor, the bread is some kind of wonderful crispy toasted flatbread, and it comes topped with three tons of cabbage and tomatoes and cucumbers and yogurt sauce. There approximately two döner stands on every city block in Germany, and you will never pay more than three euros for one sandwich. What's not to love?

I've already met... read the post »

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Jun 16 2007

I O Europe

Posted in: Academics & Research

DID YOU KNOW? The drummers for the bands Queen and Duran Duran are both named Roger Taylor.

I started writing two entries while at home this week, but I was just never really in the state of mind to finish them. So, someday in August, just remind me that I owe you two entries, called...

Don't let it control you! about the work/play balance at MIT.
I'm bleeding this about my awesome 120-mile bike trip with Tester Lab.

I'm counting on you, Snively. And all you other commenters. It's just that Snively was the first one I remembered because his name is funny.

This past week has been pretty good. Well, I graduated from MIT. I was the most worried little kid, because we all had to line up at stations and get our names checked off, all of this at like 8:00 AM, so we could stand in line for two hours. I misread my major in haste and accidentally went to station the for Course 10B, which is chemical and biological engineering TOGETHER, which is basically just chemical engineering but you... read the post »

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