Saturday, September 06, 2003
*I wrote this yesterday, but Blogger was having fits and didn't let me post it. So I wrote it and emailed it to myself and now I am posting it today. News from today near the bottom of this entry.*
Massive goshdarnit! Blogger is not letting me blog! I sign in OK, and then I click on the link to let me post to my blog, and it gives me a vast page of error coding. I have no idea what any of it means, except that I can't blog. I certainly hope it's not long-lasting.
And although I probably should be trying to sleep so that I can get up for the game tomorrow, I feel like writing, and so I shall.
My chemistry professor (Professor Yaghi) is a strange fellow. He is amusing without being overbearingly so. I like him thus far, although of course it's early in the semester, and I shall undoubtedly develop a strong dislike for him once we get into material which I do not understand.
Anyways. He is funny. Today he was trying to explain the difference between 'accuracy' and 'precision'.
"The best way I can tell you what the difference is is by showing you example. Imagine that there are little targets there, and I am throwing at them... those little arrow things? You know?"
"DARTS!" the entire class bellows, and then starts laughing.
"Yes, yes, darts... I am throwing them..."
And then he went on to make his point. Which was a good one. But we were amused. Hmm. It doesn't seem quite as funny written down, but trust me, it was decidedly amusing at the time.
Then he was explaining something about significant figures to us.
"Significant figures are those digits in a measured number (or result of a calculation with measured numbers) that include all certain digits plus a final one having some uncertainty." A pause, in which he gazed contemplatively up at the screen displaying the words he had just said.
"You know, that I do not understand at all. Experiment time!"
And immediately the lights went on, and an assitant in a white coat wheeled in a little table from the side of the room, and he proceeded to experiment. First he got out a scale and put a bottle of Pepsi on one side and a bottle of Diet Pepsi on the other, to show us that the sugar weighed more.
Then he filled a large jar with 7-Up, saying, as he did so, "Oh, I like this one! I was making this one. Yes, this one is mine." Once he had the jar filled, he held it up admiringly. He looked down at the kids in the front row and said, "Oh, would you like some?"
Then he put the jar back on the table and, practically shaking with excitement, produced a large box of raisins. He ripped open the box and put a handful of raisins into the jar. They all sank to the bottom, but then some of them started to float up. Once they reached the top they went back down again, but by then more were floating up, only to sink once they reached the top. And so on, in a sort of continuous Brownian motion.
He held this jar of elevator raisins up to his eye level for our approval, grinning from ear to ear.
It was, as a fellow sitting in front of me aptly described it, exactly like a cheap, organic lava lamp.
It won't go on forever, but it will go on for a while, especially if the jar is big enough and you put in enough 7-Up. The way it works is that each raisin sinks initially because of gravity and lack of buoyancy and all that. As it goes down, it attracts the bubbles in the 7-Up to it, so that by the time it gets to the bottom, it's buoyant enough to float back up. When it gets to the top, the bubbles pop, and down it goes again, and the whole process repeats.
With raisins in various stages of rising and falling, it really does look like some insane grape farmer's conception of a lava lamp.
It had absolutely nothing to do with what we were studying, though.
After we had all seen this magical experiment, he reverently placed the jar back down on the table, so that the raisins could continue their little dance unhindered, for however so long as they pleased. He looked back up at the lecture hall, still grinning.
"Isn't that fun? You can do it in your dorm room!" (although where would anyone get a glass beaker that large?)
He then turned the lights off, brought the screen back down, and recommenced teaching.
It was utterly bizarre yet undeniably funny.
Tonight I did laundry. Yes, Friday night, laundry. What an exciting life I lead. But it actually did turn out to be fun and exciting. Surreally so.
I went in there to do laundry. There were a couple of girls already in there doing laundry. So, of course, we got to talking. Then a couple more came in. What with the waiting for a free washer, and the amount of time the dryers take (a ridiculously long time), we ended up being in there for quite a while. Hours of laundering. And we were, collectively, in an exciteable mood.
Yes, it was a Laundry Party.
We were talking, and shouting, and laughing, and discussing everything from the merits of various chemistry teachers (four out of the five of us are in Chem 130, but in different sections) to the lack of merits of the dryers. Someone brought in a boom box. One of the girls went upstairs and came back down with a large bag of homemade cookies.
I think we actually scared a few people away from the laundry room, but that was their loss.
Yes, mass insanity in the laundry room. It was one of the most illogical parties I have ever been to, but it was most definitely a party. Nothing else describes it.
Football game tomorrow! We're playing Houston. I have no idea how good they're supposed to be, but hopefully we shall triumph. Hopefully I will not get burned again. If I do, I think I will get the sun cancer (alas for biology memories!). Sun poisoning, at the very least.
But I'll be seeing my football buddies again, so huzzah for that.
*end of yesterday's blog. beginning of today's blog.*
Soooo very tired. It has been an exceedingly long day.
I went to the football game, of course. We massacred Houston, 50-3. It was very very hot and sunny out, though, so I sort of wilted by the second quarter. I put on a foul amount of sunscreen, and I put a massive bandage over the bit with the second degree burn (that's what the blister is), so if I burned over what I already burned, the sun hates me.
I got barely any sleep the night before, but the reason for that probably should not be posted herein. It's a fascinating reason, but not, perhaps, entirely blog-appropriate.
Then I came back to the dorm (at that point it was around 4:30) and downed half a gallon of water. Then the loft people showed up and built the loft. This involved moving essentially everything in the room around, and then getting sawdust on half of it.
The end result is... interesting. We got the TV out of the giant box in the middle of the floor, which was very, very good. The loft itself... well. I can sit up in it without hitting my head on the ceiling (sitting straight up, I have a couple of inches of clearance). The ladder is weird... it's just three slats nailed directly into the loft frame, so it's perfectly vertical. I can get up it OK... but it is not fun going down it. And the best bit is, if I let go funny or fall off that end, I smash my head on the radiator.
Oh yes, and there's no rail at the side. So I am free to roll right out of the loft, if I so desire.
the white arrow indicates where the three 'ladder' slats are. yes, i haven't made the bed yet. sheesh. also note my posters on the walls, and the feline-themed cards adorning the left side of the desk.
I got a Border's gift certificate from my Bubbie the other day, so I went on a book-purchasing binge. I put them all on my desk. One of the loft guys today saw them and got all excited. He said, "Oh! You're reading good books!", to which I replied, "I'm trying to." He especially approved of Catch 22, which is, of course, one of my favorite books of all time. I've read it at least 8 times by now.
GUESS WHAT WAS IN THE DORM TODAY?!?!??
I can hope that none of the ResStaff (resident staff... they're in charge of the dorms) read this here turkey, because we're obviously not allowed to have critters in the dorms, other than the unavoidable insect life. A kitten would be right out.
She wasn't a long term kitten. Just for the day.
One of the girls who lives around here (I won't name her herein, just in case the ResStaff does read it) got her kitten to stay over in her dormroom for the day. She (the kitten) was utterly adorable. Tiny, soft, gray, and striped. Her name was Libby.
This girl's roommate was out in the hall telling someone that there was a cat in her room. Upon hearing this I leapt out of my room and squealed frantically, "Did someone say something about a cat??" This amused people. Anyways, I went in to see the kitten. Adorableness.
I think that we should be allowed to have cats in the dorms. Dorm life would be so much nicer that way.
I miss my cats.