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MIT blogger CJ Q. '23

dinners with friends by CJ Q. '23

my wallet is crying

i spent spring break writing. writing blog posts, writing things for our informatics olympiad, writing emails for the puzzle club. the time i didn’t spend writing i spent eating dinner with friends!

on tuesday night, i ate dinner at et, one of the independent living groups in mit. i pledged to et this semester, which means i’m a house member now. i still live in my room in east campus, but i’m trying to spend more time in et. anyway, last tuesday, andy and dylan made an undertale-themed menu, with a steak in the shape of mettaton’s face, dog salad, instant noodles, popato chisps, and starfait. there were also fourteen tomatoes.

the steak was pretty good, both the actual steak and the tofu steak. i haven’t eaten steak in a long time. esp has a yearly traditional texas roadhouse valentine’s day dinner, which i couldn’t make this year because i was running a game for the assassins guild. it didn’t happen in 2022 or 2021, and i couldn’t make it in 2020 for some reason i don’t remember. in fact, the last time i ate steak might be back in the philippines?

on wednesday night, i ate dinner at gyukaku, a yakiniku restaurant in harvard square. i have fond memories of eating at gyukaku with a friend group from promys, this math summer camp i went to in high school. it reminds me of good times, so i’ve eaten there every few months. it’d be more often if it wasn’t so pricey, but the food is pretty good. i ate with sean and steven, friends i met doing math contests in the philippines; steven goes here and sean goes to harvard.

the three of us talked about credit, as in, the credit card kind of credit. i kind of knew that credit was a thing in the us, but it feels like a Real Thing now that i’m going to rent apartments and such. i dunno, back in the philippines being able to pay your security deposits or pay a few months in advance was good enough financial proof. anyway, i applied for a credit card and i’m expecting to get it soon.

on thursday night, i ate dinner at five spices house, a sichuan restaurant in central square. i went with alan and vincent, the bloggers. i’ve been to sichuan once, when i was sixteen years old, and we went to a hotpot place, the first time i’ve been to any hotpot place, and i was unprepared for the 麻辣. i still amn’t, so i stuck to the blander food at five spices. it was still great.

we talked about future plans. i noticed that our experiences with software engineering are quite different. last summer, vincent worked for a 10-person company, i worked for a 100-person company, and alan worked for a 100,000-person company. we all have offers to work for similar-sized companies in a few months, which vincent and i have accepted.

on friday night, i ate dinner at the dining hall in winthrop house, a harvard dorm. i went with hahn, a high school friend from promys. this was my first time eating at harvard dining, and hahn informed me that this was one of the weaker nights, and usually the food was better. the food wasn’t too bad, and at least neither of us spent any money.

after dinner, we went to an a capella concert with the fallen angels, lowkeys, and opportunes. this is another one of those firsts, as i’ve never been to a harvard a capella concert before, and i had a great time! much like the a capella concerts in mit, people gave speeches for the graduating seniors, who all had solos, and there were alumni songs and encores. it wasn’t as hype as i’d liked, but maybe that’s because it was held in the fancy sanders theater.

on saturday night, i ate dinner alone. which, after this whirlwind of a spring break, was a nice chance for rest.