A stick to the face in broomball took out three of my top incisors and broke one of the bottom ones as well. I spent a couple hours in surgery last week to stabilize and reimplant some of the damaged teeth, and just went back in yesterday morning to have the shattered roots--and the third avulsed tooth--extracted. Next week is a root canal for the bottom tooth, followed by a crown. Hopefully I'll start the procedure for implants pretty soon--depending on whether I need a bone graft, I may be basically back to normal in a few months.

Not really much pain, I'm just a little inconvenienced by having to eat slower, and my lips are kind of torn up but healing rapidly. Hopefully I can get back to full activities soon!

Brief update, as reading is tearing my life into tiny shreds right now. I died in assassins, after effecting a fifth kill in Burton. Decided the first Aikido Broomball game was worth going to, even though I knew Kevin and his partner would probably be there. I wasn’t killed at the game, but Henry Keiter waited in the trees outside the Libe for the whole game, tailed me home by running the long way around the Olin-Hulings-Mudd complex, and met up with me at the entrance to Nourse. I had time to block his 10-shot, but was exhausted from a hard game, so I was too slow. Henry went on to test his luck against Bendikson in a re-enactment of the Princess Bride iocaine powder scene, featuring two goblets of juice, one with tabasco sauce as a deadly poison. Man, those guys are winners at this game. :-D

Class has been interesting: quantum is tearing my brain to tiny little pieces, metaphysics is alternately interesting and infuriating, and psych of prejudice is absolutely fascinating. Lots of cool stuff about stereotype formation and metacontrast bias, but I won’t write much right now–maybe a paper or two to come later.

Broomball has been absolutely awesome: Reid and I are on four teams each, this year, and that means 1-3 games per night, on top of 11-14 hours a week of Aikido training. I haven’t been this sore in ages, and it feels great. The new liner gloves are holding up great and keeping my hands warm (thanks Dad!), and I even splurged and bought an Underarmour shirt as a base layer. The first game has convinced me it was worth the money: the fabric is warm (I was comfy with it and a fleece at -17 on the ice), breathable, and doesn’t get snow and ice stuck in it. On the other hand, I think the fit is designed for people with much thicker pectorals than me. Ah well, another reason to keep up on those pushups! :-)

To sum up the last term:

I took three classes: Ordinary Differential Equations, Japanese 205, and Classical/Computational Mechanics, affectionately (though with a thin edge of nervousness) referred to by many physics majors as “Classy” and “Compy”. These last two ate me alive: the average weekly problem set was 18 hours in length, although one went up to 25 hours. I spent a lot of mornings (9:00 P.M. – 3:00 A.M.) in Olin, the physics building, staring at Mathematica and struggling through Lagrangians. “You know, the windmill is really pretty at sunrise,” my friend Max told me. “You can see it through the windows of the Olin hallway.”

The last two weeks of the term were consumed by a massive final project: building and modeling a tinkertoy siege engine with the use of Lagrangian and Hamiltonian mechanics. My partner and I wrote hundreds of lines of code, and dozens of pages of equations, trying to model the energy transfer between the pendulum falling and the motion of the wheeled base. The problem consumed my life; walking to dinner, waiting in line, even in other classes, I’d think about drag models, wheel inertia, and projectile efficiency. We worked somewhere around 60 hours per person over two weeks.

Classes haven’t killed me yet!

It’s eighth week, and time for overdrive. Two take-home finals (one expected to take two weeks!), an ODE lab, an 80 hour final project for Computational Mechanics analyzing the dynamics of our tinkertoy siege engines, and all the regular Japanese and ODE coursework on top of that. Of course, this can only mean one thing: it’s time to take harder classes.

So I’m registering (hopefully) for Partials, Electricity and Magnetism, and some mysterious third course. I’m thinking about Epistemology or Philosophy of Physics, although those courses fill pretty darn fast. Philosophy of Physics looks particularly awesome, talking about issues with non-locality, causality, and the far-out world of quantum. Only a few spaces left, so I’ve got my fingers crossed.

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