The sentences just didn’t seem to flow as I attempted different potential blog concepts. I had ideas, but none came out smooth. They were choppy, disjointed, or I simply did not like them. Of course, when a semester ends, it’s pretty customary to write something about how the term went. But for this term, it was kind of a blur. I couldn’t really think about what to write. It felt like I barely knew what happened. So I started looking around for things to stir thoughts in my head, a stimulus of sorts. I didn’t look around physically, since I’m not on campus. Through having my google drive run out of storage (thanks to me uploading photos that were too high in quality), eventually, I came up with the idea of writing a blog chronicling the semester, photographically, one day at a time. I had wanted to blog about some casual photos I had around for a while since I wrote nano.pixels. Just the mundane, simplistic images you gather during daily life. So, it was cool to recount the moments during this semester, sweet and sour, while I looked through my photos. Let’s start at the beginning…
9/8/21 – First Day of the Semester
After all the pre-semester fun, the time had finally risen for all of us students to return to classes, which was a moment I was not prepared for. Why can’t I just sit down and instantly get my degree??
My friend sent an email to dormspam, which is basically a school wide club/event promotion system. I saw the email, recognized my friend’s name, and screenshotted it and sent it to them being like, “wow, I see you :O”
A completely different friend decided to take the worst schedule I believe one can create at this school. It made my 57 units look tame. They were enrolled in 84 units, and unfortunately, this was the first weekend of that experience. Luckily, they dropped some classes later :), which I’m very happy they did
I, for some reason, was walking across the Longfellow Bridge from Boston, and walked just when the sun was setting and reflecting off some buildings in Cambridge. I took a picture, and continued walking on my merry way.
The Longfellow bridge has really stellar views, I would recommend walking on it if you get the chance!
One of the classes I took this semester was 6.034, which is Artificial Intelligence. It was a pretty cool class, and here is a picture I took of the boards for future reference. Perhaps to study for the next midterm. I never looked at the picture again.
The first of many EC desk emails I have saved on my phone, ranging from wholesome to passive-aggressive to furious.
Oh wait, I never mentioned I moved to EC on the blogs… oops, that might be an important piece of information. Long, long story, starting with housing losing my application in Freshman Spring. I was in Simmons for a few weeks, thought it was fine but I wasn’t personally vibing super hard, so I switched out.
MIT BSU made an Instagram post and sent some emails about Black Convocation, and I screenshotted the poster they made. I wasn’t able to make it, though it would have been really nice to go :(. Well, there’s always next time
Probably the biggest WTF email I had received in a while. I think it speaks for itself, I can’t begin to describe how glorious this email, the squirrel was fine and made it out alright :). ALSO ZUKO MURAL
After several hours, I finally finished decorating my room and fitting it to how I wanted things to be. It was pretty rough, but I was very happy with the end result and my room. I changed the heights of the bunks, added posters, lights, vines, and some other stuff. Also, I also set up the bottom bed to be a couch/seating place, put in the rug on the floor, and generally cleaned around. It’s a pretty big space, which is very nice, and I wanted to make it feel homey/a nice place to chill in.
For the 2025’s orientation, the winning flag color team (about 100 students) won tickets to a Red Sox game. I am clearly not a 2025 (yet), but I was an orientation leader for Black Flag right before the semester started. They had some extra tickets to the game, so a few OLs got the chance to go. I don’t understand baseball, but doing the wave across the stadium was rather fun
At the beginning of the semester, my friend (yes a different person, how hard it is not to use names) and I would pset 6.034 (AI) together, and I would often go to Macgregor to work with them, or they would come to EC. One night, when I was walking back to EC, I noticed the sky was pretty cool, so I took a picture, as I do.
During the fall semester, another class I took was 24.917, which is “How to Construct a Language,” also known as Conlangs. We were discussing a lot about how some languages are set up in order to work towards creating our own, and I found my professor in the Wikipedia article of one of the languages we were discussing!
Ah the sheer horror upon seeing this email, and looking at the attached picture to realize, Next Dining does indeed have larvae in their rice. Mildly unsettling, but to be honest, I am not surprised given how dining can be at times. It’s hit or miss, though this was quiteeee the miss. I swore to never eat at Next Dining again. I ate there multiple more times over the course of the semester.
I was taking the Red Line either to or away from Kendall Square this day. I don’t remember why, but as per usual, if I like a skyline or sky or anything else, I take a picture. The dark clouds and the bright part of the sky come together nicely I feel.
Never have I felt so attacked in my life. I apply the “You can only start at top or half of the hour,” religiously, and I’m not quite sure why. It can be 6:01, and I’m like well, you clearly missed your chance to start, better luck next time.
I lacked many pictures on this day, but I had a screenshot of a NEW friend’s Instagram story. They go to Stanford, and while I love them and Stanford is cool, their tree mortally terrifies me. More so than the old TIM the beaver even. Nightmare fuel Tim is below for context
Hm, I lack any photos
At EC, a majority of people aren’t on a meal plan, but when the opportunity arises to get free meals, lots of people go to dining halls, including Maseeh. I’m not sure how it works, but sometimes some GRAs, or members of EC’s houseteam would have 30 or so meal swipes and send out an email with a sheet to put your name if you wished to go. These forms filled out lightning fast, so you needed fast fingers to have a shot
This meme reminds me a bit about MIT’s mission statement and Mens et Manus. Probably an accurate representation of what would happen if there were a supervillain who went to MIT. Marvel, what are you waiting for…
On this day, I was planning how I wanted to put stickers on my laptop. I wanted to show many different things, and I had way too many stickers to deal with. I guess it’s somewhat anxiety-inducing to put stickers on somewhere since it feels so permanent. You won’t be able to ever use it again really, unless you have multiples. I finally pushed myself to use the stack I had, and make my bland laptop a bit cooler.
I only had memes saved on my phone from that day, but this one truly describes the struggle of longing for sushi at 11pm in the student center, but your only option is to go downstairs to La Verdes, and buy overpriced sushi. Pain.
The cool group of people, known as Class Council, were very deep into planning our class’ first big event of our MIT Time. We, ahem I mean they, were planning our formal, which we, ahem, named Twenty Fourmal, because who doesn’t love puns.
During this planning process, one step was visiting the hotel we were going to hold our formal at, the Westin Copley, to see the space, and plan how we wanted to set up the event. Here was one of the areas, kind of like a waiting roomish place.
During an empty office hour session I was hosting (I am/was a TA for ES.1801, which is Calculus in ESG), I was a bit bored, but didn’t want to start real work. So instead, I drew a formal TIM the beaver, which I felt could be cool, especially since my head was very much into twenty fourmal planning
Here lies another picture of a board that was never looked at again. This is from 2.001, Mechanics and Materials. Generally, we would have lotsss of notes on the board, and lots of diagrams too. I would try my best to follow along, but confusion and fatigue often got the better of me. It’s kind of interesting to look at it now, and how much more sense it makes than it did back then.
I took this picture while leaving Building E38, which is on the east side of campus. You can see the slight reflection of the mirror in it. It houses Admissions, and the MIT Innovation Hub, which is a really cool workspace I like to go to often. It’s less than 3 minutes away from EC, so as a being who cannot study in his room with any level of efficiency, sometimes I retreat over there.
One of the most painful moments at this school has been not being able to get free boba because I couldn’t vote :(. The sheer turmoil of seeing the boba delivered in the EC lobby, but not for me. The horror… Jokes asides, considering the STEM students have some of the lowest turnouts in elections, it’s a good motivator because everyone here, myself included, is addicted to boba, and MIT lacks good boba shops in its immediate vicinity.
I was planning to go to the barber because my hair was literally chaos, and I was looking for a reference image for what I wanted. I usually go to Allston for haircuts, since the barbershop there (VIP) is pretty good, and can cut my type of hair well. This brings me back to high school, when I remember I was very confused when a friend called my hair “kinky,” as I didn’t realize that was a term for it.
I remember this EC-discuss thread pretty well. It was beautiful to read as a bystander. I don’t remember how it started, but it was related to MIT not having Dorian Abbot as a speaker around this time and also to washing machine 1044 stealing everyone’s money and not starting. Somehow Noam Chomsky got dragged into the email chain, to which he actually replied, saying, “And I would like you to get your odd circle of friends to stop swamping my mail.” I remember the top person in this image was, well to put it nicely, interesting.
One day for lunch, I went to Stata to get food before heading to my next class. I got the chicken korma bowl, which was alright. It was pretty badly priced, but at least it had some spices and taste. I did not return to Stata for lunch very much after then, mainly because it was really out of the way too.
I was walking along the BU bridge at night, and the highway was interestingly empty, so I took a picture. I think I went to go get insomnia cookies, since you get a pretty cheap box near BU at night. The cookies were very good, and so were the sights and sounds around BU’s campus
On this Friday, I was playing an Assasin’s guild game, and me and two fellow players were stuck in a room, trying to avoid being ambushed. We, unfortunately, learned that one player was actually a traitor and sold us out, which reminded me of that scene in AOT. Ah, the betrayal.
While “dying” on the floor, I noticed that a blackboard had pretty helpful notes from a 6.034 recitation. It wasn’t my recitation, but I thought it might be helpful, so I took a picture of it, only to never look at it again.
So I have one photo on this day, and I refuse to share it with the greater world, for reasons. Let us continue to the 17th…
I was walking around Boston this day to do my passport application, and someone on the street was like “Hey, do you want to talk abou-“
Normally, I walk away as fast as possible, but they had an Amnesty International flag, and I was in our school’s chapter in high school for a short time, so I talked with them for a few minutes. I don’t remember exactly about what we talked about, but they had this binder I very much agreed with, and I took a picture of it.
I nearly died of excitement this day. The twitter page for the show had been counting down to 100 for almost 3 months by this point, and I forgot about the countdown for a while until I remembered it around 97. It’s one of my favorite shows, and Mob as a character is extremely, extremely relatable for me, so it holds a special place in my heart
We were in the final grind of planning for our class formal, and we were also promoting it so that members of our class would RSVP before the deadline to do so. Of course we had multiple people email us immediately after the RSVP deadline, but alas, I can’t really blame them, I might have been in the same spot considering my forgetfulness.
Very slow day for photos, so this was basically my only one. Cami (yep, the same one you’re thinking of) gave me a good laugh with her comment.
On this day, I was in Stata, near one of the elevators to the loading dock. Stata loading dock has lots of free cool stuff, so its a great place to go to find random things. One person’s trash is another one’s treasure. TIM’s ID was on the wall near the elevator, and I found it pretty cool how old this seems it is. It expired in 2004, which feels like quite a while ago. I don’t even remember 2004. Also, for reason, his name is not TIM? But “The Beaver?” Interesting
I went to a party without clothes.
Alright, that was slightly clickbait, but you weren’t supposed to wear actual clothes at Burton Conner’s anything but clothes (ABC) party. I made an outfit out of a long tube of plastic from buying my big rug for my pants, wore a plastic bag as a shirt, a blanket and pillowcase, and duct tape to put everything together. I think it came out pretty nice, especially considering how fast I stitched it all together
Finally, our 2024 formal happened! I was really happy to see months of our work on Class Council come all together in our class’ first big event in person. We had over 600+ people attend, which is amazing :D. We had our formal at the hotel, and earlier a dinner on campus for 2024s to get food before they dress up and go to the event. We had dance and chill rooms, a DJ (in the very back of the picture, very cool guy, he’s an MIT student), some games, a photobooth, badass lightning, and some raffles for prizes. I was the one announcing the raffles, and I hate speaking in front of big crowds, so it was a bit nerve-wracking. I can do it alright (I think?), but if I can avoid it, I will. I survived it all luckily
Lots of this day was me trying to catch up due to my decisions over the weekend. At my office hours for Calculus, there were some pumpkins for any people in ESG to take. I took one, drew a ^_^ kind of face, and named it Pumpky. Pumpky sadly did not make it too long, but he was very cute.
This meme was one I found looking through the Instagram page’s old posts. It was all too relatable, since I was in 18.03 (Differential Equations) during the fall, and I would constantly forget how to find eigenvalues, even though I did it so many times.
It’s so crazy how such simple answers can be insanely hard to find. These took way too long if I remember correctly. It was for 2.001 (Mechanics and Materials), a class where I always longed to see the green check marks on MITx, the platform we used for our problem sets
The East Campus courtyard in this time of year had so many leaves to crunch on the ground. The colors on the trees were all really nice, and there was a lot of variety in the leaf colors you could see. There’s a tree outside my window, and that tree had very different colors than those really close by. Which makes sense, but is still pretty cool
Stickman, an EC floor, has a tradition of dropping pumpkins off the Green Building (tallest building on campus) right before Halloween. This year, there was construction at the Green Building, so they threw them off Tang Hall, so that grad students could look out their window just to see pumpkins falling in midair. In actuality, I think the reason is that Tang Hall is one of the other really tall campus buildings, and has a good field near it. Pumpkin Drop was really fun, I enjoyed it with a few friends, and borrowed their DSLR for a bit during it.
On this day, there was the ECTC MIT Taekwondo tournament, which was my first tournament and the first in-person one since a bat got eaten and Covid happened. I did pretty bad personally, won’t even sugar coat it, I was a hot mess on my form, but I absolutely loved watching everyone compete :D. MIT did really well overall, and I was so impressed by our school, so all-in-all, it was a pretty good day.
Around Halloween, people did a small hack that involved giving the alchemist a witch hat and a very cool cape.
Leaving Macgregor from working on a pset with the earlier mentioned friend, I ordered a saferide because I didn’t particularly feel like walking. Saferides are buses you can call until about 3 am, to get picked up/dropped off anywhere in the immediate campus/Boston area. I went to get my bus, which I couldn’t find because the GPS said it was far away. Unfortunately, the GPS lied, and the bus accelerated towards Macgregor on the map almost instantly. I realized a bus that passed me a minute ago, saying “Somerville,” probably was my bus, I went back to get it, and when I got to the door, it accelerated away from me. Wow bus, I have feelings too :(
I’m not sure what I was doing this night. But this is Ames Street, near EC. It’s a pretty curvy street, and it can be really empty at night. During the day, it’s far busier, and sometimes I’m crossing, and a car is coming at full speed, and I wonder, “will you slow down or not…?”
This is a mural on my floor, and it pretty much sums up me looking for summer internships. Though I’m not as sure as this fellow that I will get a job somewhere. We will see what happens with due time.
I know someone on MIT volleyball, so I followed the team page as they were going through the playoffs, and on this day, they won the regional championship :D which is incredible. I guess though this makes me wish sports games were sometimes given more of a spotlight at this school, since it’s hard to find out when games even are :(
A different friend and I started talking about politics, and reactions to Big Bird getting vaccinated. We found it comical how some senators were responding to it, especially considering Sesame street’s vaccine advocacy for years.
For our class formal, we charged $24 for non-2024s to attend, to subsidize the cost of hosting extra people who are not within our budget, and we got this golden quote in a student newspaper article about the formal.
If you are curious about the rest of the article, here it is: Class of 2024 Fall Formal held Oct. 24 at Westin Copley Place | The Tech
We started learning Mathematica in 18.03 on this day. We were supposed to follow along to our lecturer doing things on the screen, but I forgot to charge my laptop, so I mainly sat and watched what was going on. It was cool, but also very confusing. I don’t think I’ll be using Mathematica too much unless I learn a bit more about it.
Class Council hosted another class event, which was a movie night at a local AMC theater. The film we watched was “Eternals,” which isn’t classified as a comedy, but everyone started laughing at a scene that was supposed to be deeply emotional. Scanning everyone into the event for contact tracing purposes was a bit tricky but it went alright I think. There were so many ads, no one missed any of the movie.
All EC residents got an email about the impending renovations, set to happen in Fall 2022 (but they got delayed a year after this email was sent). I screenshotted this email solely because I wanted to get free dinner, but I found it good community workshops are happening. I am hoping that those in charge listen to the input that they get, compared to how they used the information when building New Vassar: A history of broken promises in the New Vassar dorm design | The Tech
I was very happy to receive the passport I had applied for not too long ago. Back in September, I applied for and got into GTL-Korea, which is a program where you teach over IAP (January) in a given country overseas (Global Teaching Labs | MISTI). The only problem was I didn’t have a passport, so I had to scramble to gather some documents from home, finish my application, and submit it as soon as possible. I was really worried I would not get it back on time, but it came back in only 5 weeks! Now I only had to hope Covid didn’t cause the program to get canceled.
What if we took pset problems… and made them extremely cursed? While working on a 2.001 problem with a friend on the 5th floor of the Stud, I was stuck and bored and created this monstrosity. Do I regret it? Not for a second. It made solving the problem marginally better. Picture was taken hours before my grade imploded
Round 2 of working on that 2.001 pset, the “No” (not drawn by me) depicts my mood doing work during the semester and especially that week, which was drop week. That day was also my birthday actually.
The calm face of the axolotl juxtaposed with the firey background is… a mood. Drop date was not a time, as I was questioning whether or not to drop 2.001, and I was having a rough stretch in some aspects :(
I lack a photo from this day… oops
This photo made my friend “jump in fear.” I was bored and tired of working on problem sets, so I decided to screw around with a glowstick in my room to create photos with odd lighting. I feel I learned a good amount during this too. I think the red gives heavy edge-lord vibes though, oops
For the whole semester, I kept wanting to draw stuff, but I was horrible at allotting the time to do so. With one less class than I previously had, I decided to draw an eye. Which was horribly difficult. I looked at some source images and started from there, and it took me a really long time since I don’t really have drawing experience per se. It was really fun though, and I was very happy with how it turned out. I saw an eye with a tear that looked cool when I was looking at examples to see how to approach it, so I tried drawing the tear in a similar way too.
I spent some more time drawing the next day, and on this day, I tried drawing a kitten (as suggested by a friend) fighting yarn. I had no clue how to draw a kitten, and it took a lot of trial and error. I had to look at some pictures of how kittens look to get started, and also how their fur patterns can look. It’s really time consuming to draw, but the end result makes it pretty enjoyable
Oh no, another day, another time I lack photos :(
After having office hours at ESG, I looked outside the window from the 6th floor of building 24 to see a very nice sunset. The windows at ESG are a bit hard to take a picture through, but they face campus too well, so I have to at least try.
I arrived back in New York pretty late at night. I came back home for Thanksgiving break, which was urgently needed to prevent a severe case of a horrifying illness known as The Burnout. Thanksgiving break was pretty nice and restful, and I missed my home city and home, since the last time I had been there was almost 3 months before.
After months of debating, I finally got a camera :). I’ve wanted a camera since I was basically in elementary school, so I’m very happy I now have one. I didn’t get to use it very much immediately after getting it because of how busy the semester was around then, but I was really looking forward to doing so.
I saw this picture on a friend’s story of a de-stressing event Mcc was holding that sounded very cool. With things being in-person, I learned quite a lot about Mccormick and found it to be a nice dorm. That being said, I will never live there because I don’t quite meet the prerequisites.
Though this picture was blurry, I think one can make out the words in the email. I got two “desks are absolutely full” emails at the exact same minute from two different dorms, which I guess goes to show the chaos Black Friday shopping can enact on dorm mail offices.
I saw this poster in the infinite, and I thought it would be a pretty cool concert to go to. I had recently been going to so many acapella concerts, and each one was an amazing experience in its own unique way. Going to those concerts, I was really happy to see how many people showed up, because back in high school, I loved to go to similar music and theater events, but they often were really empty :(
Ah, as the semester came down to the final stretch, I found myself using Rapid Tables grade calculator a little too often. The math was not working out amazing for me to bump some of my grades up a letter, since I had to pull off unprecedented test performances I had not done once during the semester so far. I had 2 finals to look to (18.03 and 6.034, though this one was slightly optional), and one final project (24.917). My other classes didn’t have final assignments, as they were a 6 unit and a 3 unit, and 2.001 had been dropped.
We held another class-wide event, and this time it was a skate night. We rented out the campus ice rink and prepared a table with hot chocolate, candy canes, and marshmallows. The stand was pretty makeshift, we had two kettles (which were plugged into one surge projector, but I can promise they were not on simultaneously) which we had to run and get water for a lot. I didn’t skate, since my foot was iffy, I wasn’t really feeling it, and just because, but it was fun to watch people in our class on ice.
This email was a pretty gold one. I do relate to the pain of walking into the laundry room and finding everything occupied, and I have sometimes also been the reason why a machine is occupied, because I am a clown who completely forgot. There, I admit it.
I scored tickets to go to 2.009’s final presentations, which were absolutely amazing, and I loved it so so much. I had the professor who teaches the class for 2.00B, which is Toy Lab, and he was incredible there, and as expected, was here too. I enjoyed watching all the team ideas, and it was cool seeing the concepts we started learning in 2.001 appear very slightly in some projects. 2.009 presentations made me more conflicting on changing my major cause of how interested I found myself in it, so alas, decisions, decisions.
I spent some time at Next house with a friend, planning to solely work on my final project. Of course, that didn’t happen, and we winded up playing a Sporcle quiz about naming as many countries in the world as you can. We both are geography nerds I would say, considering our geoguesser experience. We got 168/197 countries in the world in 15 minutes, which I would say is pretty good. We struggled a bit with some countries in Oceania and Eastern Europe, but I’m rather happy with how we did
I went to my friend’s (same as above) final 18.100B (Real Analysis) class as it ended and found the room full of many little, squeakable pigs. The pigs are used in the class as a way one can ask a question, so everyone would get a pig every class to return at the end. I’m guessing since it was the last class, the pigs were allowed to roam freely
I was very happy to see this in my newsfeed on the last day of classes. I first listened to Stromae in my high school French class, and I really like his music :). I was enrolled in French 4 for a hot minute at the beginning of the semester, but I dropped it pretty fast since I didn’t feel I had the bandwidth to take it on at the time.
We had our final formal meeting for teams in GTL-Korea. By this point, I was surprised the program had not been cancelled yet. During the meeting, we went over a lot of things about Covid procedures, what we need to do before we leave, and plans for when we land. There was a kahoot at the end, and the winner won a $30 transportation card for Seoul, and I was very happy to be that person. The competition was fierce. I wasn’t sure if I would get to Korea to use the card, but I luckily am in the country now :)
This was my GTL team’s final in-person meeting before we left for Korea. We had spent hours over the semester planning STEM workshops for two groups of middle schoolers in Seongnam and Jeonju, and we were running through the experiments/activities to get a feel for the difficulty and how long they would take. Here, we were testing out copper tape cards, since we want to teach the students about circuits, and this is a nice way to ease into that. That being said, the hippo is mildly terrifying.
“I am looking forward to finals weeks,” my friends said calmly.
Stress was in the air right before finals week for most people on campus, besides the few who did not have any. I wouldn’t say lucky few though, because as one of those people last year, I got brutalized by final projects instead, though I find that personally preferable. My finals were at the end of the week, but some people had finals the very next day 😬
I watched people survive the first day of finals, but ceased to have any pictures :(
I used my camera outside for the first time today :O. I went out at sunrise and walked around a bit on the river’s end of Cambridge. I managed to find a really cool balcony to take photos from, and it was a very fun experience during an otherwise stressful finals week
Yet another poster from walking through the infinite. I saw this poster for a web dev class that seemed pretty cool, which I sent to a friend who took Weblab (an IAP web dev class), and works on websites for some class-wide events. I’m considering potentially taking the class, so I guess the poster got the point across pretty well.
I went to Makerlodge to laser cut some tokens to give the students we will be teaching in Korea over January. Going there for the 2nd time in that week, reminded me how watching a laser cutter is weirdly therapeutic. It’s very nice to go from a simple piece of acrylic to something rather unique so fast.
12/17/21 – Fin
And with that, the fall semester was over. I took my 18.03 final, which somehow went alright despite me having no idea what I was doing and getting locked outside of the door. It felt kind of surreal for it to be all done. Kind of unreal. I laser-cut this piece the day before using a picture I had taken and brought it home, so I could bring a little part of Boston back to New York in a sense. I went to my dorm room, packed my bags to go home, and then fly to Korea, knowing I would see it again in about a month. Bye fall semester, I’ll see you again in 9 months.