Sunday, May 28, 2006


Done with finals I've been relaxing a bit. A few friends came over for some chocolate fondue last night to celebrate being done with finals. It was really nice to see everyone with time to chill.

Tonight I watched the Weatherman, a movie about career success vs. success in life. I liked it, especially the ending. I guess in life, you have your goals and the picture, however, fuzzy, of the kind of person you'd like to become, the kind of life you'd like to live. Unless you're quite lucky, not all of it works out exactly perfectly. I feel like at the end, the main character continues to strive after his goals, yet somehow also is able to accept who he is and become seemingly more than just momentarily, satisfied with the life he leads even with its imperfections. I suppose that is truly the challenge.

Thursday, May 25, 2006

Tim the beaver

IMG_0907.JPG, originally uploaded by eesley.

Tim the beaver is MIT's mascot. He works hard all through the night.

Finals were last week and this week. I have my last one at HBS Friday so I had to stop and rub Tim for good luck!

Sunday, May 21, 2006


In "Stumbling on Happiness, Daniel Gilbert, a Harvard psychoologist shows that people have inflated expectations about the joy they will derive from a vacation, a new car or child, or a second dessert. We also overestimate how bad we will feel if we get fired or lose a tooth or even a friend or mate.

"We treat our future selves as though they were our children" Gilbert writes, "spending most of the hours of most of our days constructing tomorrows that we hope will make them happy." But the children turn out to be ingrates, complaining that we should have let them stay in the old house, or study dentistry instead of law.

A little knowledge from the psych labs may provide grist - not a guide on how to achieve happiness but on understanding why, in the end, you probably won't.

Cut generously from a Scientific American article on the book. I wonder if it applies to the happiness I anticipate from being done with finals . . . or grad school for that matter. Nonetheless, I think there is also under-anticipated joy in little things, like a walk along the park, a good cup of coffee, or renting a good movie.

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Development of Science and It's Application to Industry

MIT's little dome in HDR, originally uploaded by swhitt.

This is a great photo on Flickr of the dome in building 7. I always feel like such an MIT newbie staring up at it in the morning when everyone else is rushing by to class.

Ahmadinejad letter

I've managed to avoid political posts for a while, but I just have to say that the Bush administration really dropped the ball in their response to this letter from the Iranian President. The administration seems to have interpreted the letter as if the contents were intended for them, when it seems clear the message was as much or more to the rest of the world and to the Arab world in particular. By dismissing the letter rather than responding, not to Ahmadinejad but to the rest of the audience, it seems the US has missed an opportunity and no doubt made the Iranian president's comments strike an even stronger chord with their intended audience.

BBC NEWS | Middle East | Ahmadinejad letter attacks Bush: "US Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice dismissed the letter as 'offering nothing new' and the White House said there would be no formal written reply."

While I'm complaining about the world, on a more personal note, I think I was stood up for the first time ever by a girl the other weekend for a semi-formal. I guess I didn't really believe stuff like this happens in real life or that people were this mean. The thing that sucks most about being stood up I learned is going through the stages of, 1) oh, she's late, I'd better call again 2) being perplexed about how someone could be THAT late or what happened 3) acceptance, ok, the event is not going to happen 4) the waiting to hear an explanation, apology, something 5) the anger that someone could be that mean to not even pick up the phone and finally 6) the acceptance that ok, this person completely sucks and I never want to interact with them again. Obviously I didn't know this girl that well, but still I guess what I've learned is that no matter how nice someone seems, how intelligent, or what medical school they're in, you can never tell in the beginning what their personality is really like or how messed up they can act . . . and that it's great to have good friends to bitch about it with after the fact.

Friday, May 12, 2006

The cookies

PICT0029.JPG, originally uploaded by Baking Fairy.

No need for me to post a photo, Baking Fairy already has. . .

Thursday, May 11, 2006

Have you met the Baking Fairy?

Have you met the Baking Fairy?

The Baking Fairy sent me the best white chocolate chip, pistaccio cookies last week to help with studying for finals. I took a picture of them and have meant to post it but I've been so busy studying there hasn't been a chance.

Thanks Ozlem!!!

Thursday, May 4, 2006

Thesis Defense

It's that time of year. All the 4/5/6th year students are defending their dissertations. Lourdes was last week, Kevin (in photo, looking smug) defended yesterday, and today Nico defends his thesis. It seems like it will be such a long way away for me, but seeing their faces after it's all over, I can't wait for my turn!

Good luck and thanks for all the great advice over the past year!