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Monthly Archives: April 2015

I was reading an article this morning about what it’s like to be poor in Ivy League colleges. I felt what the students are struggling: my mother is a Kindergarten teacher while my dad, well, I don’t really know what he does. He’s more like a custodian, but not in the janitor-uniform kind-of-sense. But I mean, a custodian. He has the keys (he’s a keyholder), he takes care of the garden (he’s a gardener), and he pretty much has a right to be anywhere in the school. Honestly, had I applied and been accepted to Harvard or any Ivy League college four years ago, I wouldn’t be paying tuition.

I consider it luck that I’m in college right now. And I do feel sense of entitlement (in regards to the research that was mentioned in the middle of the article), since I went to a pretty elitist public school (yes, elitist! yes, public school! and yes, Dunning-Krugger effect!) On the other hand, kids are not lucky. They worked hard for their entrance to a big, elite private college. So I guess it’s just right that I’m paying more because I don’t feel like I’ve earned to be in college.

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It’s a very early Saturday morning. I actually didn’t fall asleep until 4 am last night because I was working from 4pm to 2am. That night didn’t go to waste, however: Right now, I am at the library waiting for someone so I can discuss a research topic I thought of at 3:45 in the morning. Dear goodness. But I have other things that I have to do this morning, so I will do that as I wait. For now, I’m just writing and writing and writing and writing and writing…wasting the morning away for 15 minutes….and writing and writing and writing and writing…because I have to do this…and because I do want to really write, express myself, and improve my writing…oh i probably shouldn’t do a PhD if I can’t even form a good sentence. But there’s time. I have two more years til I graduate and I go waste away my life at a graduate program, maybe in Stanford, or Yale, or Northwestern, or maybe the state up north. JK, I’m not going to waste away my life. Last night I thought of something to blog, but I’m not going to tell you all because that would spoil everything away. Although it is kind of related to what i was saying in my ‘distractions’ entry. so yes. seven more minutes? this kind of writing…the stream-of-consciousness-writing? Haha, I miss this, I miss it when I just write random things and just write what’s on my mind, even if it’s just ‘blablablablablablablablabla’ yeah i’ve actually written it very many times. i really wish i stuck to writing. apparently ‘sticked’ …well…it doesn’t exist…i should have known (facepalm). anyway, i do wish i stuck to writing. i found that when i write i can also express myself quite well in oral communications. and i wish i was sitting at a different spot right now because there’s light literally heating my eye and distracts me and just blinds me. by the way, i will be talking french in the future. not just french topics but topics in french. yes, i will write them in french. but anyway. french fries. my ra told me last year that when he went to france, french people are so slim because of their eating portions. he saw this one guy order a pack of french fries, eating one very slowly, and just threw the fries away after that. yeah. haha. i have actually found satisfaction in just eating little things. european life. yeah, i’m kind of wishing to have a european lifestyle, especially with its minimalist (couldn’t find a better word) approach to things. mainly when it comes to eating. and also dressing. yeah they don’t have a lot of clothing honestly. there is this thing called the french wardrobe, where you only have very few clothes. i’m trying to put away some of my clothes, give them, throw them away, etc. but anyway my 15 minutes is up so bye.

In response to The Daily Post’s writing prompt: “Powerful Suggestion.”

I never listen to anyone, really. And if I do, I would forget what they have said. It would be sweet if someone had said something that really moved me or changed my life, but now, that I think of it. I am just not that kind of person. I believe in myself. I believe that one must live life and learn from his/her experiences, success and failures. But if I were not that person, I wish my French teacher in high school convinced me to take AP French. I don’t know why, but I just do. I guess I could have been better at French when I started college; i could have majored in French. Perhaps I could have loved and learned about the culture and language even earlier, because having a passion of something like that does not happen very often. And I’m not talking about obsession. I am talking about passion! Oui! Je souhaite que ma professeur de français m’ait convaincu de continuer d’apprendre le français.

I’ve only had one person whom I’ve called a mentor officially, but to say that kind of ‘mentor‘ is  a bit of an overstatement. If a ‘great lesson’ is to be had through that person to be my mentor, then no, I’ve never really had a mentor. My mother has always said that I like working independently, that I didn’t go out much as a child, and that I’m just so quiet. I honestly admit that I am a slow person–sometimes I just don’t get things, but I do pick them up and I think about things a lot. I just read a book a few weeks ago, which I’ve already read a couple of times and even written about in my first old high school journal, and I didn’t realize how much  that book had impacted me until I read that journal a couple of weeks ago. I was identifying with the character in the story, and I still am. I was like “This author gets me.” But anyway, back to the topic, if there were no pre-qualifiers and anything goes, a mentor? I guess it would be my small group leader since I began college. I don’t have a great lesson from him, but he’s just become  probably my first role model.

There has been a lot of times I was distracted and I was unaware of it. And sometimes this can last an hour to a few days. Just this weekend I have been contemplating of switching my career path to French–as I said yesterday, I have a lot of space to do a French major, and I can take those to grad school, where I might do a Masters/PhD in French Literature. It’s all plausible. But that, I didn’t know, was a major life decision. It took a few people to make me come to my senses. That I need to go to sleep. I need some rest. This is why we need people, friends, acquaintances even.

But what if I went there? What if I really did quit all of my psychology classes and got a PhD in French and not in Psychology?

Well, I just thought of this yesterday: yes I would be taking the road less traveled, but I would be taking a road I’d more likely to travel to. Robert Frost was not that clear about this. For me, yes, I do love French, I can devote a life studying French literature, yet that’s always it. I’d be good at it (let’s just say, but not with certainty), but I probably would be  a less well-rounded person than I would be. If I quit psychology, it would mean that I would not go back to it. It would mean that I am done with psychology and other things: I’m doing this my way, and I’m doing this the easy way. Has anyone ever thought of this? Doing things the easy way? That’s the main problem with this whole thing. It’s a form of instant gratification!

However, I will be continuing to pursue a knowledge in French language, culture, and literature for the next century or so, maybe even learn another language. We don’t know, we don’t know.

It’s 11:00 pm. And I’m going to write this very carefully, as this is not really a freewrite–more of a resolution, a supposed-to-be carefully-crafted blog entry.

First of all, I am very excited for the end of the school year, the end of what most people call the “sophomore slump.” It’s been a tough year: I have an apartment, I started working in a restaurant, I started working as a research assistant. Having all of these thrown at me once? Well, I don’t know if I could have made it better, but what’s done is done. I think I can only really look forward to the future now.

And speaking of the future. It seems bright for me. This summer, I will be working as a summer intern for a lab at the University of California Berkeley! I submitted my resume and cover letter, had a Skype interview, and voila! I know it’s not magic, but I am terribly excited and nervous at the same time. For the rest of my semester, I will be in the lab more often and be more active with what’s happening research-wise.

And in terms of after summer, I will be collaborating with another research assistant for a project that we will be presenting at an undergraduate symposium (at least that’s the plan!) in the spring. We have not yet decided on what to research about yet, so it is our goal to reach onto that part. After that, I will either be doing a thesis, or continuing the project further and have more participants. We’ll see.

But that’s my two-year plan right now. Oh, and I will be completing a minor–or possibly a double major, just because I have plenty of space in my schedule– in French. Oui, j’aime le langue! And having more rest and sleep and exercise.

So, au revoir! (That actually literally means “until we see each other again.”)