After Wallace Stevens
I went on vacation with my girlfriend (Sam) in May. We started in Spain with her family and then ferried over to Morocco. I was hoping to graduate before then and have it be a fuck-yes-I’m-done-trip, but the computer had different plans so it was more of a fuuuuuck-but-fuck-it-trip.
We crossed from Tarifa. Everything you read says that Algeciras, the other point of departure, is a total clusterfuck. Tarifa, they say, would be a much nicer place to stay if the ferries were cancelled all day due to high winds, which is cool because that’s what happened. It was insanely windy on the beach while we waited for the ferries to start running again. The streets and beaches were basically empty except for this couple and their puppy. It was great. We got out of Europe @ 9PM and arrived in Tangier on the late night and blasted immediately to Chefchaouen.
We didn’t have a ton of time in Morocco so we stayed in Chefchaouen basically the whole time. If you google image search Chefchaouen, it’s a lot of tight little blue streets in the medina. Sam likes blue and Chefchaouen means “horns,” (referring to the mountains directly above the town) and I’m a fan of mountains–so it seemed like a good spot to say fuuuuuck-but-fuck-it for a while. It was. This shot is from a restaurant in the medina with a roof deck. It was called Aladdin or Magic Lantern or maybe both. We’re big fans of roof decks, and restaurants with roof decks. There was a restaurant with a roof deck in Istanbul called Doy Doy, and we used to go there every day, sometimes multiple times a day. Cheap Adana Kebab and an epic view. This place had cheap tagines and an epic view. Don’t order the mint tea though, it’s suuuuper sweet which is great since I love sugar, but the bees love sugar, too, and they’re not shy. We spent my birthday on this roof deck.
Hi kids, here is what my life has been like for a while:
I took a vicious little 26-problems-in-4-hours exam to prove that I haven’t just been dicking around in college. I put in work and either just barely passed or fucking destroyed it, depending on which perspective you want to go with. I still wake up with the smoke of some insoluble eigenvalue problem in my eyes and will be pretty happy when that stops happening. But the bottom line is that I don’t have to take it again and I get to be a senior/write a thesis next year, and then I get to graduate.
And that’s about it. College is relatively boring to hear about, and that’s basically what I’ve been doing. Lots of college and not a whole lot else. My friend has an MV Augusta. I play soccer on Mondays and Fridays. It was fucking frigid here for a while. I went to a reading of Howl. I miss my dogs. I have a thumb drive where I put PowerPoint presentations and papers about Electromagnetically Induced Transparency. On clear nights I go to the telescope. We’re trying to take spectra of stars but it’s way more fun to look Saturn and the Moon. The Moon is ridiculous. I’m working on a lab about chaos in optoelectronic circuits. I’m in a non-physics class about the history of the scientific revolution. I heard a rumor from a former student that another former student told them that all I do now is get drunk and scream in the pool hall, so last night I got drunk and screamed at people in the pool hall. I played When The Levee Breaks and Mack The Knife on the juke box. Someone else played DMX and when everyone started screaming “Stop; Drop; Shut-em down open up shop” I screamed that none of them were Rough Riders; and just to prove me right, they all shut up. I drink an average amount of coffee and I get an average amount of sleep. I get out of bed just before I have to be at school. I’m really feeling baked macaroni and cheese these days. My brother is a vegan. I miss my dogs. I don’t shave as often as I’d like to. I work in a coffee shop. I make lattes. I make tea. I play just the right music so that people are intrigued and they say “who’s this?–playing now?” because that’s pretty much your job when you work in a coffee shop. But I gave up most of my shifts for the last few weeks because I was studying for that qualifying examination that I wasn’t so sure that I’d destroy as destructively as I destroyed it. But college is relatively boring so I’m sorry about that. I am going to post a photo of the Tarantula Nebula and one of Duncan and then I’m going to use Ehrenfest’s theorem to show that in fact, for free particles, it is the case that the expectation value for momentum is a constant for all time if you start from an initial wavefunction where that is the case.
TO A POET, WHO WOULD HAVE ME PRAISE CERTAIN BAD POETS, IMITATORS OF HIS AND MINE
You say, as I have often given tongue
In praise of what another’s said or sung,
‘Twere politic to do the like by these;
But was there ever dog that praised his fleas?
WB Yeats 1910
HE WISHES FOR THE CLOTHS OF HEAVEN
Had I the heavens’ embroidered cloths,
Enwrought with golden and silver light,
The blue and the dim and the dark cloths
Of night and light and the half-light,
I would spread the cloths under your feet:
But I, being poor, have only my dreams;
I have spread my dreams under your feet;
Tread softly because you tread on my dreams.
WB Yeats 1899