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MIT student blogger Sam M. '07

And I realize I’m going home by Sam M. '07

Cards for sorrow, cards for pain, cards for my last blog entry from Germany.

DID YOU KNOW? In eighth grade, my science teacher taught me that the formula for the surface area of a sphere (4 pi r squared) was not exact, and was merely the best approximation that scientists had come up with. He said that if anybody could come up with an exact formula and prove it, they would get a lot of money. No, really. This man had been teaching science for 30 years. No no. I’m serious.

Well, this is it: the last time I’ll be on the internet in Germany, unless I succumb to temptation and go to the little Turkish internet cafe on the corner tomorrow. But I’m pretty good at not succumbing to temptation. Did I tell you about the time I was a vegetarian for a month for no particular reason?

Here’s a picture that I uploaded to my webspace a couple days ago, and therefore must be featured in my blog according to my law of conservation of webspace.


We had another potluck last Saturday and Ling ’07 decided to bring the American delicacy of mud to again show off our proud cultural heritage. The Europeans had a hard time wrapping their minds around the idea that it was just called mud, not mud pudding or mud ice cream or crИ©me mudde or something. As a double-majoring engineer and biologist, Ling was easily able to compensate for the lack of Oreo cookies at Aldi by substituting smashed-up Twix. Oh, the places you’ll go with an MIT education.

I actually never had mud growing up, nor fluffernutter sandwiches, which were apparently pretty standard in other parts of the country. Are they regional, or did you all eat them too?

There are other things to be said, but my job (I mean, my real one with Bayer) is kicking me out early today, so no more blogging for me. Catch you on the flip side, planet Earth!

For those of you out there in TV Land who have been stalking me, here’s my plan of attack for the next few days.

Thursday — “Check out” from my dorm room here in Germany. Check out my entire summer salary from Volksbank, who doesn’t want to make a transfer directly into my US account, because they are losers. Have a great dinner with what’s remaining of my dorm-mates, hopefully figure out some way to use the myriad 5-cent coins I’ve amassed in Europe

Friday — Nothing much planned, just hanging out in my dorm room, to which I hopefully will still have a key

Saturday — Leave from Cologne-Bonn airport at 10:15 AM, head out for Philadelphia by way of Frankfurt on my free, MIT-sponsored flight from Lufthansa. Get to Philadelphia at 4:20 PM, hopefully make it through customs without having my Swiss and Belgian chocolate confiscated. Settle in for a drive home with Sam’s Mom, eat some homemade beef stew and dumplings, pass out because it’s 2 AM Germany time.

Sunday — Wake up at 4 AM or so, go pants-, running shoes-, walking shoes-, jacket-, button-, and other things-shopping with Sam’s Mom, stopping at Hong Kong Ruby for lunch sometime along the way.

Monday — Buckle up with Sam’s Mom in the early morning for the 8-hour trip up Boston way. I can’t wait to see my room… according to MIT field correspondent Ruth ’07, neither could some of my readers, either. Get back, loft my bed on four cinderblocks that (hopefully) stayed in my suite over the summer and begin unpacking the million little boxes into which I crammed my life last May.

Tuesday — Registration Day! Tasting and judgment. Decide sometime in the morning whether I want to take Signals and Systems or Spanish I and go see my advisor. Hang my head in shame as he inevitably asks about my as-yet-unplanned life after graduation. Decide to make a meeting with my UROP professor, who knows me best, to talk all about that as soon as I can. Try to be as antisocial as possible as I continue unpacking and grocery-shop with Sam’s Mom. Probably fail at that goal.

Wednesday — First day of classes!

Thursday — Wage a land war in Russia in the winter.

I can’t wait to see you all! That means all of you. Each and every person reading this blog. Old MIT friends, new MIT friends, beloved high school friends, stalkers, secret admirers, people I don’t even really like, mothers, admissions workers… I will see you soon. And I can’t wait. Even if you were googling “giada zucchini frittata” or “my son’s mouthpiece is stuck in his trumpet” or “what does an avocado tree look like” or “why an’t the aztecs here anymore” [sic], I promise that I will see you someday. I can’t wait.

10 responses to “And I realize I’m going home”

  1. Not Mike says:

    Sam Sam Sam Sam Sam Sam Sam. Wait. Wait. Are you saying that there might be something wrong with science education in the public school system? The same public schools that taught us why waging a land war in Russia in the winter is the best possible strategy to conquer Europe?

  2. Jon says:

    oh…better yet….my 8th grade science teacher was convinced rocks were alive and had DNA, that Al Gore invented daylight-savings time, and that Vitamin C directly cured cancer……most people would think I’m kidding…..however, I am not.

    to prove my point? the same woman was fired a few years ago for “helping” kids on the MCAS, our statewide teaching assessment/something you need to pass in order to graduate… joke

  3. Ruth 07 says:

    In 8th grade we were discussing temperature, and I asked if there was a point where F and C were equal (abbreviated here because I can’t spell them). She said no. I argued that the difference between 212 and 100 was much larger than that between 32 and 0, so surely there must be some overlap. She said no, there wasn’t. Granted, I kind of already knew the answer and was being an ass, but I found it very frustrating at the time.

  4. Drew says:

    *cough Spanish cough* Okay, so it’s not as subtle via Internet. But my point remains.

  5. Colin says:

    Am I considered a stalker or a secret admirer?

    I guess the “secret” part doesn’t really apply, though.

  6. Mitra says:

    I bought fruit & vegetables (nectarines, apples, bananas, carrots, and celery) and a bunch of dipping sauces (yogurt, jam, peanut butter, and humus). Our entire suite is currently experimenting to find out just how many of the possible combinations are edible. Hurry back & help

  7. Robbie says:

    Fluffernutter = Awesome. Just for everyone that wanted to know.

  8. Kristin says:

    Well, private schools aren’t all great either… my 8th grade history teacher told us that latitude was vertical and longitude horizantal.

  9. Shawn says:

    Heh, I grew up on Fluffernutter and mud. Although crushed up twix looks a lot more convincingly like mud than do Oreos.

  10. Anonymous says:

    Answer is not exact (because pi is not exact). Formula is exact. Fahrenheit and Celsius are the same at the temperature which is equal to the combined IQs of the above mentioned teachers (figure it out).