Don Rags 3.0

Well, I finished my Don Rags a couple hours ago, and they went much better than expected.
Mr. Clark started out by describing me in glowing terms, and extolling my grasp of Ptolemy, which set a very nice beginning tone. I don't think I deserved it, but Math is one of my favorite subjects.
After that Mr. Collins talked about how in seminar I ask good questions, sometimes about things other people take for granted, which he likes alot, and that I should do more of that.
Mr. Wodzinski observed that Mr. Clark's description of my love for Ptolemy sounded alot like his impression of my admiration for Euclid last year, and said he was glad to see that I didn't spend all my time on Math, but studied Philosophy diligently as well. He also said he appreciated the way that I was willing to ponder over the "simpler" and " more obvious" thins in Aristotle, while some of the other bright members of the class liked to skip them, though they were necessary to be understood fully.
Miss Zedlick said that I was doing alright in Latin, and she could tell that I was trying, even though I wasn't doing that great. Meh.
Mr. Decaen was quite humourous. He said it was clear that I had a good background in science, and that I knew the material well and enjoyed it, so that I was almost always on the right track. He did say, however, that sometimes I was a bit...violent when correcting people, like when I once said, "No. No No NO NO NO!" Although eh did admit he exaggerated a bit, and that the people did desrve it. The other tutors found this hilarious.
Dr. McArthur noted that while I did occasionally interrupt people in Theology, he said it was more like, "No. You're wrong. And this is what Agustine really means...", and that sometimes I seemed like a light in the cave to him. Which is one of the best compliments I've received in a long time, especially considering the cource of it. (to read more about Dr. McArthur, go to The Rostra, a blog that a few of my friends and I started. And which I should post more on.)

So Don Rags went quite well in general, much better than last years, and not a single tutor mentioned me sleeping in class (prbably because I haven't been).


Summary of the last month of college

I know I haven't posted for quite some time, but Sophomore year is much more demanding then freshman year, and I'm still trying to find a good way to post several pictures in one blog post with small thumbnails so once I figure out how to do that I have several pictureposts in the works.

All my classes are going quite well, with the exception of Latin, which is quite a trying class. I studied this morning for two hours before our test, and then Miss Zedlick didn't show up, so I'm going to have to study again tomorrow morning.

Mr. Decaen has commented that he likes my lab reports, they're well-illustrated and thought out. We've been studying heat recently, which has been a bit frustrating for me, because we're measuring something, and we don't even know what it is. Last class, he actually let us talk a bit about quantum theory, and what heat really it, which was quite fascinating to me, although I don't think everyone shared my interest in "probability waves" and the like. We did think it amusing though, that while most scientists beleive that quantum mechanics not only explains things better than atomic theory, but proves atomic theory wrong, in highschool most people are told that quantum mechanics is some sort of witchcraft, and end up studying the useful (but fictional) atomic theory. However, that tied in nicely with our discussion of absolute zero, which, though it isn't known to exist, is a very useful fiction.
He also related in the previous class some of his bug-eating adventures (he's eaten many more than my dad) including the time he ate a tarantuala, but didn't quite burn off all the venom-filled hairs, because the ones on the stomach were covered by the goo from the ruptured abdomen. His mouth was only numb for a couple weeks after that though. Speaking of which, Will and I are thinking of stocking chocolate-covered crickets in the dorm store. It's been doing fairly well recently, although this week sales have been a bit slow, theft has been fairly low this year, and I've made enough money off of it to pay for a visit to Houston the week after next.

Dr. McArthur and I have had several debates against the rest of the class, and I've found that it's quite encouraging to have the tutor backing you up when the rest of the class thinks you're wrong.

This has also been the case in Math, because we're dealing with lots of abstract, yet visual concepts relating to the movement of the stars in the heavens, which I find are very easy for me to visualize, but when I try to explain it to the class, sometimes it just seems that no one gets it (although Angela and Will usually understand me). I can tell from Mr. Clark's gestures that I'm saying the right thing, and explaining it in the right way (because when people aren't he usually doesn't wait very long until he subtely gets someone else up to the board, or goes up there himself), but sometimes it just seems so fruitless. However, I saw him after he was playing basketball tonight, and he encouraged me and said I was doing a great job in class and was a blessing to have. So I've got at least one tutor solidly on my side going into Don Rags.
It's also been quite interesting observing the heavens, because Ptolemy's observation of the heaven's and explanation of the Sun's, Planets', and Stars' motion around the earth are quite convincing, and it's hard to contradict them from our observations. So I've just given up on trying to prove him wrong until second semester, when we get to Copernicus, who doesn't subscribe to a geocentric view of the universe.

In Philosophy I've been studying the readings more, because we're getting into quite abstract concepts there with Aristotle explaining substantive change and the principles of being. However, some of the same people who are difficult in Math tend to like having concepts "thouroughly explained" to them in Philosophy as well. Know there's nothing wrong with fully exploring a concept, but Dominc and I agreed after yesterday's Philosophy class that we killed the horse in about ten minutes, beat the dead horse for anothe ten minutes, and then spent an hour mashing it into a bloody gooey pulp. Argh.
I love my section, and think it's great, but we do have a tendency to occasionally get hung-up on things.

Seminar, on the other hand, has been completely unadulterated enjoyment. We've been reading Livy's History of Ancient Rome and about Roman's in Plutarch's lives. The discussions have been extremely deep and focused on topics very applicable to today's society, which eerily resembles corrupted Rome far too closely for my comfort. I can't do these discussions justice in now, because I have to go dancing soon, and learn more waltz moves from Sean and Matt. However, I hope to cover them in the future.

All in all, college life is going very well for now.