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MIT student blogger Laura N. '09

And for my next trick… by Laura N. '09

...I'll make J.B. confess to copying the answers to Ms. Hauser's test!

So here’s the new plan: instead of me always spending all week planning out these elaborate blog entries for you guys involving photos, anecdotes, lots of links, and coherent structure, and then only getting around to writing them once a week…I’ll just write stuff. About my life and all. And we’ll see how that goes.

So, catching up on everything ever:

Responses to Comments:
(Lots of people helped me out by responding to questions, so gold stars to them! I’ll repost the questions and answers here, in case anyone missed them.)
Jess: Okay, so your roommates are picked by just rock/paper/scissors? Are there any dorms where you can live with more than just one person? Thanks for that, it was really helpful!
Michael Borohovski: Jess, you can choose your roommate AFTER rex if you choose to do so, but if you don’t choose one (i.e. staple your applications together :p) they’ll choose one for you should you get something other than a single. Some dorms (baker, for one, and others as well) have plenty of rooms with more than just one roommate.

If, after the housing adjustment lottery, you are assigned to the same dorm as someone you’d like to room with, you can staple your floor preferences together and you will be guaranteed roommates. I’d also just like to add that while Baker is especially famous for triples and quads, sometimes rooms that are ordinarily doubles in other dorms are “crowded” into triples. This is generally not a good thing though, because while the rooms are usually comfortable enough for 3 people, they were really meant for 2- so it means that the dorm is technically/officially overcrowded.

Kristin: Hey, the housing info was awesome – thanks! Now I can link my parents here so they can stop asking me how the whole process works, as if I’d know.
You’re welcome. My mom still asks me questions about financial aid that I don’t know the answers to. Hi Mom. =)

Tasha: Thanks for the housing info, but I have one more question: If you skip CPW, do you get assigned randomly for Orientation? Or is there some other process for your initial housing assignment?
Noah: If one does not attend CPW, then you’d have to select your choices (there is a lottery in June) based on i3 videos/dorm websites and/or previous visits alone.

Right. CPW and the summer housing preferences sheet are not technically related. CPW just happens to be a good time to get a head start on getting a feel for what the different dorms are like. Whether or not you attend CPW, you’ll get the i3 stuff in the mail. If you never had a chance to visit campus, you’ll just have less information to go off of when you rank your choices.

So. We are now in a new semester! Here’s what I’m taking:

8.02t (Electricity and Magnetism: TEAL format): Lots of people hate TEAL (Technology Enabled Active Learning). Basically it’s supposed to be super-interactive: you work on problems in groups during lecture, answer questions with these corny little remote controls, and are generally overwhelmed by the sheer number of video cameras and projectors around the room. I personally love it. It makes me feel like I’m on “Who Wants to be a Millionaire” or something. Plus, I love physics. No really. I mean that. No sarcasm. I go to MIT, ok? I’m allowed. Anyway, I will say that the class is a little over-the-top. There are so many elements going on that sometimes you feel like you spend more time figuring out what assignment/problem set/in-class problem/problem solving activity you’re supposed to be doing than actually doing physics. Which is uncool, but doesn’t make me love physics any less. So everything’s ok. (Oh, and one more thing: I pulled up the course webpage today, and I found…well…Physics for your iPod? I have no words for this. Seriously.)

21H.105 (American Classics): American Classics is a course that focuses on reading and analyzing important historical works that everyone cites/talks about but no one’s ever actually read- like Ben Franklin’s Autobiography, Common Sense, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, and other fun stuff. There’s also some not-so-fun stuff thrown in, like the Lewis and Clark journals. Now, while I’ve never actually read said journals and don’t know what they’re actually like…well, I’m looking at the book on my shelf right now, and it’s way too long for me. Basically, this class is going to involve A LOT of reading, but hopefully I’ll be able to keep up. The polisci nerd in me is excited, though.

18.02 (Multivarable Calculus): You know. Calc. Only in more than one dimension and stuff. Pretty straightforward. I’m encouraged by the fact that so far I’m kind of understanding what’s going on. I might just even…*knock on wood*…do well in this class! That’d be pretty cool, to be good at math. I hear that’s sort of useful around here…

18.03 (Differential Equations): Yes. Yes I am taking two math classes. No. No I’m not happy about it. (Basically I have weird academic circumstances, and taking 18.03 this term was about my only option to fill my schedule.) At least everyone reacts with sympathy when they find out that I’m taking two math classes this term. It freaks me out, trust me. But then I realized- that’s what math majors do ALL THE TIME! How can you handle that? I’m only in the first week of the semester and I don’t think I’m gonna make it without losing my sanity. (More on that later.)

And now…futon pictures! The story goes like this: April and I decided we wanted a futon. So we emailed a bunch of people who were selling theirs on The next day, April’s boyfriend Kenny drove us to pick it up. We took it apart and stuffed it into his MiniCooper. Seriously. (Oh, and the girls we bought it from were super impressed that we knew how to take it apart. It was kinda weird. I think they just got all caught up in the fact that we’re MIT students.) There are pictures of this somewhere. I’ll see if I can get them. Anyway, we put it back together in our room. About a week later, with Rick’s help, we finally got around to putting up the mirror and shelf that we planned on in the first place. (Our mirror used to be on the back of the door, so we were constantly hitting each other in the face when we came in while the other was doing her hair. This was not ideal.) The next day, we spontaneously decided to rearrange all of the decorations in the room. We even made an awesome new poster out of old pages of a LotR calendar. Because we rock like that. Here’s the photographic evidence, with before and after pictures where appropriate. Oh, and the third picture is just something I think perfectly portrays April- she was the foreman of her high school’s construction team and is the one with the tools, and she stored all of the set screws and nuts from the futon in a little ivory drawstring change purse. She’s just like that.














Yeah. We’re cute.

9 responses to “And for my next trick…”

  1. Dan says:

    “Yes. Yes I am taking two math classes. No. No I’m not happy about it.”

    What!? Math is great. I’m gonna be one of those crazy math majors who handles a whopping 2 math classes or more! But not yet – I’m a junior in high school.

  2. Sam says:

    I guess you probably have enough math already, but…

    Lofted beds = SO COOL

    Richard with a power tool = SO HOT

    Laura = SO AWESOME.

  3. Phil says:

    Not to say that it’s even close to the amount of brain-shocking work that your two math classes will require, but im taking AP stats and AP calc ab. I guess this doesn’t really make me appear any cooler/less cool than before, but whatever. I could use some community sympathy also. smile

  4. Adelaide says:

    Awwww… people uninitiated to TEAL! I keep on forgetting you people exist, and then you all start swooning over the little remote controls and PRS questions and “group participation”.

    And it’s cute.

    As is your room, by the way — but I’m sad that I left that night before we got the drill out. Playing with drills is fun.

  5. Brit says:

    I love the Veronica Mars quote!

    I’m a math major at a different school, and this is my second semester attempting two math classes and the first semester I’ll actually finish both (I dropped a class in the fall…). I’m not sure about my sanity.

  6. brittany says:

    SO i definetley like the new way u decorarted ur room it looks great. And I love ur title its from Veronica Mars right? I LOVE that show!!

  7. Sam T says:

    When I visited MIT last month I went to a TEAL class (8.01? I’m not sure) and it was really fun. I actually got a lot of the questions right : ).

  8. A says:

    Hey Laura,stupid question : I just wanted to know if you have to buy the TV, or do you rent it or… ?

  9. sam k says:

    wooohooo i love your lotr poster. glad to see there are some other ppl out there at mit what love the movies and book.