Hey guys –

a mostly unplanned, spontaneous post here. I stumbled across one LM’s blog and felt inspired and introspective for a moment, and remembered: my best thoughts come from channeling procrastination into self-reflection.

So: Life is, on the whole, pretty good. Being a junior is awesome; I’ve got this romantic relationship which I’m pretty much a fan of; I feel like I’m heading in a direction, and I am very, very happy that it’s a cool direction. And I feel like I’m making my own future regardless of what my past consisted of — my trajectory can forget its initial conditions.


Amazon Prime

This is very old news by now, but in case you haven’t heard, students with a valid .edu email address are eligible for one free year of Amazon Prime, a service that provides free two-day shipping and would otherwise cost $80 a year.  When I first signed up for it, I never imagined that it would drastically change my shopping habits, both online and offline.

Freshman year, our room was located right across the street from the 24-hour CVS, and I frequently made trips to buy a single item.  Since moving to an upperclassmen dorm, I’ve treated the four block walk to CVS as an arduous pilgrimage of sorts that is worth trekking at most every couple of weeks.

With Prime, instead of walking to a store, I just click a few buttons with my mouse and have items delivered in two days.  Something just feels weird about ordering a single pack of mechanical pencils online instead of walking a few blocks, but my physical laziness usually gets the best of me.

An aside: when buying food, Nabisco’s 100-calorie pack snacks are not really worth it.  I paid $20 for the equivalent of 28 ounces of crackers (although the portion control aspect of the packaging was successful).

Now, is this service worth paying for after the free period expires?  Unless I double my shopping frequency, probably not.

the GRE

I doubt anyone will care, but I just wanted to get this out there:

The GRE book I had (and probably most other ones) will tell you that you can’t copy in the essay editor, only cut and paste, and that you have to click some buttons to do those things. This is false: I noticed that Shift+Ins and Ctrl+Ins perform copy and paste as usual. I suspect that Shift+Del will cut, but I couldn’t remember that one to try it during the test.

This has been your DZHU™ PSA for the day. Thank you.

“Dear audio diary! Today I learned why we measure lifetimes in years and not ‘failed trips to Uranus where only corpses show up at the end’.”
– T-Rex

the MBTA

The first part of my trip to school today:

7:00 I get on the Fung Wah bus.
11:05 I get off the bus, 200 miles away.

The next part:

11:05 I get off the bus at South Station, thinking I should easily be able to make it to class at 12.
11:15 I get to the Red Line, just barely missing a train. Dang. Well, there should be another one coming along within ten minutes.
11:17 I realize that the train from before has not completely left the station.
11:19 The announcer announces “The next train to Alewife is now approaching.” The other train is still there. I idly wonder just how this is going to work out.
11:25 Same announcement again. I realize the first train has left, and I become filled with hope.
11:30 Announcer: “Due to a medical emergency on the Red Line, shuttle buses will run between Harvard and Broadway.” We all go stand outside.
11:45 The first bus arrives. I am standing behind the last person to get on it.
11:50 The second bus arrives. I get on it.
12:10 Bus arrives at Downtown Crossing, .5 mile away.
12:45 Bus arrives at MGH, another .5 mile away.
1:05 Bus arrives at Harvard.

A hypothetical second part of my trip:

11:05 I get off the bus and set off toward Harvard on foot.
12:00 I get to Harvard.

the lens.

I’m finding something.

Something: it’s not until you introduce something really new into your life that you get even a small glance at yourself — what you are, what you’ve become, and whether you think this is even a good thing.

Things are happening in my life and I am (as always, always, always) re-evaluating everything around me, but it’s only close encounters like these that let me evaluate myself.

Have I changed? Have my desires changed? My bad habits? My sense of self-control? My fears, hesitations, inadequacies?

I’ve not a damn clue of what’s to come, but I shall treat it as an adventure, and attempt to be wise, kind, and thoughtful at every step.

Computer surgery

Dear readers,

Let me tell you a story, full of tragedy and despair. In December 2009, through an accident involving a high-speed pen and poor aim, I cracked my laptop’s LCD screen. The damage wasn’t so bad at first – a couple of dead lines on my screen – but as the months went by, the amount of dead screen space got bigger and bigger. I finally caved and bought a brand-new replacement screen for my computer…

and decided to install it myself!

I’ve always wanted to get better at knowing about the insides of computers, and this was a great opportunity to do this.

Here’s an image gallery of my wonderful exploits.

Long story short, it turns out that in a ThinkPad, if you want to replace the screen you have to literally take the entire computer apart. What a pain.

It was fun, though.

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