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MIT student blogger Bryan O. '07

optical illusions by Bryan

don't try this at home kids. use the crosswalk whenever possible.

So one of the perks involved with being an MIT student is the ability to get into the Museum Of Science for free. A few weeks back, Diana, Evelyn, and I went to check out some of the exhibits. Now probably one of their coolest permanent exhibits is their indoor lightning storm. Warning: This exhibit is not for the weak-hearted. The constant crashes and flashes of thunder and lightning had me jumping out of my seat. The museum is huge, and it’s pretty much impossible to do everything in one day, so multiple visits are encouraged. I know I’ll be back in the fall for their Star Wars exhibit.

Just a couple photos from the Museum that I was “allowed” to take:




Now fast forward to this past weekend. Saturday night, I went out with a few friends for a late night dinner at the Asgard a few blocks from MIT; it’s an Irish restaurant but I had a veggie burger because I’ve decided to become a vegetarian for the rest of the summer, except this weekend, I’m going home and since my drive home requires me to drive by open pastures of cows, I might cave. We’ll see.

So by now, I think you all might know that I have this thing for ice cream. One of my goals for the summer has been to try as many of the ice cream shops here in Boston and Cambridge and give you the dish on what’s hot and what’s cold. Dinner ended a little late on Saturday, and I wasn’t able to visit Toscanini’s on Mass. Ave, but fear not, there was a Shaw’s across the street that I could satisfy my craving with.

Unfortunately, this stretch of sidewalk didn’t have a crosswalk and the time was ticking down until they’d close. Clearly, the appropriate response when life gives you lemons, you make lemonade. So when life gives you no crosswalk, you make one. (Don’t try this at home). I decided to run across Mass. Ave with traffic coming from both directions, and I lived to tell the story of getting four half-gallon tubs of ice cream and happening to come across a flasher in the grocery store. (Some days my life just is not normal)


Sunday, I went out with some friends to celebrate my friend Elena’s ’08 birthday. We went to Brown Sugar Cafe, a really nice Thai restaurant that has too many menu items that I just end up ordering the same thing every time. And of course, what happens when you get a bunch of MIT kids together in the same room? We analyze the centripetal motion of a fan.


The fans were really cool though.

We celebrated with an ice cream cake from JP Licks.


Now it’s not normal that I have two near-death experiences in the span of 4 days, but I did.

Tuesday night, I was all ready to go to bed, in my PJs and all when my roommate asked me to go to Midnight Madness at this restauarant where if you buy a soda you pretty much get a meal for free. Initially, I was pretty reluctant but one thing I think I have learned at MIT to be is spontaneous, and I decided to change and get ready to go with the rest of my brothers. To save 5 minutes, we decided to take a shortcut. This shortcut involved squeezing between fences, walking down dimly lit alleys, and a skunk.

Yea, like this guy.:

I originally thought they were joking when they said skunk, and here I am with camera in hand trying to capture our trip to Sunset in photos. When it came my turn to squeeze between the last set of fences, I look over my right shoulder, and who do I see? Just the skunk of course. Now, I have had bad luck with animals, and when I saw Pepe raise his tail, I knew it was time to bail ship, so what do I do, I run.

Where…you might ask?

Right into the middle of Commonwealth Avenue, of course. That’s safe alright. Everyone just kinda laughed at my hysteria surrounding the skunk; I did not want to have to bathe in V8, gimme a break.


So eventually, we made it to Sunset where we stayed for a bit and then headed home.

5 responses to “optical illusions”

  1. Jessie says:

    Oh yes Michael, there ARE skunks in Boston. It is not unknown – very weird, but I promise not unknown – for a skunk to make its way onto the MIT campus.

    On that note, Bryan, remind me to tell you about my amusing encounter with a skunk. It’s not really a “post in a public forum” sort of story. *grin*

  2. Brown Sugar is AWESOME. We went there for CPW, iirc. Their Thai iced tea, albeit very sweet, was really good.

    And skunk in Boston? I don’t believe you.



  3. Annie says:

    V8? No, no, no. Please swear that if a skunk targets you one day, you will not use tomato/v8 juice. It does not work at all and the mix between the smells is not very nice.

    I saw a skunk too yesterday.

  4. Mitra says:

    okay **blog police**

    The pictures are great, but the vegetarian thing sounds a lot like Sam’s experiment for the summer. What’s next, are you going to try to turn turkey waste into lamp oil?? Really, Bryan, we have enough people who are doing that.

  5. Sam says:

    Wow, another temporary vegetarian. Good luck making it through a weekend in Texas. I’ve spend the past four weeks in Boston and I’m still about ready to gnaw off my own arm. Just gotta get through to Sunday somehow…