Wednesday, September 5, 2007

And Fall Semester Begins!

Oh man, this is going to be a long post consummating the last several days.

New Apartment

So I moved in on Sunday. I was (am) so excited about this apartment with this set of roommates (though 2 of them were my roommates last year too). The apartment is SO much larger than the one last year, more than twice as large, and it's in a great location. It's actually right next to the gym and behind an all-girls' dorm, haha - not that there's anything to see as the windows are usually drawn on both their end and ours. And I've several friends who live in apartments above me, so that's exciting as well.

There are some peculiarities about this apartment, seeing as it's rather old. Most of the rooms only have 2-pronged sockets, which is utterly stupid. There's random damage and wear here and there, probably due to its age and previous tenants. All this is more than tolerable and to be expected. But, the internet sucks so bad. First of all, we're not allowed to torrent or anything. And the internet is slow, so direct downloading takes forever and streaming videos also takes a while. I've been kind of cut off from my anime and porn, alas. I might go insane. And that's where the library with the university's MUCH quicker wireless comes in. I'm so going to be living part-time in the library, which is annoying. I'm currently trying to convince my roommates to get DSL, but I've made little progress as they seem content . . . for now.

Other than all that, moving in has been a very slow process and there are still lots of boxes that need to be fully unpacked, and stuff that need to be put away in their proper places. Unfortunately, my roommates are too busy/lazy. And it's gotten to the point where I've put away some of their stuff for them in order to make room. Anyway, don't want to do that.

Ah, classes. I don't really like some of mine this semester. I have to take Evolution, which is okay. And General Ecology is the only other one that fits my schedule (gah, don't want to take that "hippie" class). In both classes there are couple people I know, but don't know well. They're more like good acquaintances. I also anticipate both classes to be easy, which is good.

And then there's Chinese 104, an ultimate class. It's so intense, as 95% of what's spoken is in Chinese. It's really cool and forces me to get better in so many aspects. And the instructor is from Beijing and has an aura that kind of suppresses you so you don't really want to speak, because you fear feeling inferior. My friend, JW-M calls it a "suppression aura," lol. But it's still a really great class, I can already tell. And again, it's intense, and it'll be a lot of work. I'm glad I remember as many characters as I do, otherwise it might be really hard.

Today in Chinese, the only person I know in the class sold me out. At the end of class as we were preparing to leave, one of the students said he couldn't read and write ANY Chinese characters other than his name, whereas the other people in class could at least recognize what was written on the board. So the instructor asks if there was anyone who was good with characters. My "friend" singled and volunteered me, so now I'm going to have to help him in class and afterwards (if he wants) with learning Chinese characters. Thanks a lot "friend."

So this guy, this freshman, I'm now "helping" is an interesting fellow. He says he doesn't speak very well, but is of course a "native or near-native" speaker otherwise he wouldn't be in the class. He has an accent on his Mandarin I can't quite place, but I think it's almost a Cantonese one. And his English is slightly accented too, which confused me when he said he wasn't really good at speaking Chinese. Anyway, while I don't like Asian accents, they can sound sexy if it's a slight accent spoken by the right person. He's definitely one of them. I must admit, I have a tendency to develop small crushes on some people in my small classes (like Spanish). In my Chinese class, it's him and this other freshman girl who's Cantonese. She's so cute when she speaks, and with that slight accent too. Too bad nothing will ever come of any of this, as after class everyone goes their separate ways and disappears. Sigh.

Oh, I also stupidly bought both the traditional and simplified versions of the textbook when I only needed one or the other. And both recommended dictionaries when I had one of my own. The place I bought them from has a 3-day return policy, and since my dad bought these books for me with his credit card while he was in town and I don't have his credit card, I can't return these books. So now I'm trying to sell them to some freshman who doesn't have a book yet in my class. Alas, most of them seem to have their books now. Crap!

My last class is my Environmental Journalism class, which is a seminar I have on Friday from 9am to noon. Gah, 3 hours! It's also the only class I have with any of my friends, so I only really see anyone on Fridays. I'm going to be so out of the loop this semester, and that's sad. Oh well. I am looking forward to that class, despite it being 3 hours on a Friday morning.

Not much left to tell, other than I visited SR-F and JW-F to see their new turtles. The turtles have taken a strange liking to hiding behind the filter, or sit on top of the heater. It's weird. They're called Max (Max Bruch, the composer) and Mahler by the way. I also went running with JW-M yesterday evening, that was good. We were practicing our Chinese against each other as we ran, and for a white guy who's entering his 4th year of Chinese here at the university, he's pretty good. He has most of the accents and tones down.

I've also been thinking for the last several weeks about "coming out" to SR-F and JW-M about my bisexuality. Of all my friends at the university, they are definitely my two closest friends. I don't consider myself to have a "best friend" as I have several close friends that the qualities of a "best friend" are divided amongst. That's how I think of it anyway, I don't have a consummate friend that "fulfills" every aspect of me. That's actually kind of hard, as I tend to be such a random person with many random idiosyncrasies and "secrets" (though I suppose everyone has their secrets). In any case, the opportunity to "come out" to them hasn't presented itself, and I think I'll have to make it, which is annoying.

And last, completely unrelated to everything else in this post, JW-F wants to start a chamber string orchestra as a branch of the main Pops Orchestra. The program she has planned is really awesome and I really want to be a part of that. This, of course, was inspired by no other than the anime Nodame Cantabile, a great anime for anyone who likes classical music, has played an instrument, and likes comedies. It's definitely in my top 5 animes. But yeah, the orchestra should be awesome. This also means I'll be VERY busy this semester, with Pops Orchestra taking up 3 hrs/week, the string orchestra taking up 2 hrs/week, small ensembles (trio) taking up 2-6 hrs/week, my job taking up about 3 hrs/week, and research taking up probably 9-12 hrs/week. Yeah . . . that's a lot of time commitment. On top of all that, med school interviews (hopefully, here's me praying).

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