Rice Essay

Cringey essay for rice from 2016?

Please provide a statement that addresses your reasons for transferring and the objectives you hope to achieve. You can type directly into the box, or you can paste text from another source. (250-650 words)

It’s hard to extricate the personal from the academic. Empirical sciences interpret the world through approximate models while literature imputes argumentative value through the realm of the subjective and aesthetic. A dichotomy emerges that manifests itself in the schools of higher learning, e.g. schools of liberal arts and of natural sciences. Of course the areas available to study today convolute this one example of higher learning’s equivocal function. Other conflicts can be drawn from the explanatory/philosophical, to the highly practical/mechanical: the debate between theory and practice. The lines further sharpen and bleed into one another as aspects of a subject appear inevitably linked with the definition of another, as when the question of interpretation in empirical sciences exchanges paradoxical glances with the empirical weight of literature in anthropological studies. Out of this mess of distinctions and indistinctions emerges some loose definition of higher learning’s function- a university’s function. However loose and amorphous, the definition encapsulates my reasons for transferring and the concomitant goals therein. 

I believe that the purpose of a university is to teach its students how to proceed through life. 

-deep sigh-

An accompanying shaking of the head in disbelief would be appropriate, but I reiterate nonetheless- universities guide students through the process of life. It sounds utterly banal and commonsense, the fodder of commencement addresses immemorial. Could an accompanying poignancy be latent? I have to ask, what is life? It’s the seed of germination, the chicken and the egg, the cause and effect- personal and academic, the individual and the family. What is life? When I considered it fully, I never saw myself concluding what I did: that life was inextricably everything- a concert of contradictions that makes the Gordian Knot look like a simple shoelace tie. 

All these crossed lines and bloody contradictions might suggest higher learning provides students with sharpened wits as to cut, like Alexander the Great’s sword, through the mick-mash of obfuscating life. But I believe the opposite is true, that universities hold the tools to see these lines and somehow help students embrace them as a homogeneous whole- in other words, that universities help students study life. This life includes the personal and academic- together.

This life includes the family and individual- together. This life exists in between the lines, is made up of the lines and as a whole has no lines at all. 

When I looked at life at my college, I realized that I had, in a major sense, been running away. The contradictions of the self and family peeled like salty brine at my insides, so I threw myself in the lukewarm solace of isolation 1,600 miles away, away from the problematic.

Unfortunately in life the problematic is also usually essential. What I did at my school newspaper I saw myself doing anywhere- writing is always going to be a part of me. Still, the newspaper gave me a chance to see myself in print for the first time and exposed me to the impact of college newspapers (e.g. the debate issue and Sigma Pi hazing piece proliferated nationally), but ultimately I’m not essential to the team, to the university.

I’ve meshed the academic and personal for most of my life. I remember sharing the details of Saturn and Jupiter to my father in between clothes racks too tall for my head to clear. I hope to continue meshing the personal and the academic in the process of learning how to live life. I hope to understand the implications of a life necessitated on each individual part of its gestalt, a life with self responsibility, familial responsibility, academic vivacity and the incessant progression of ideas.

the best place to be on a wednesday afternoon

the best place to be on a wednesday afternoon is the fourth floor of the paley media center library, where a quadragenarian with long brown hair greets you within the striated lighting of closed blinds. the greeting is soft and open. you are offered two choices of archives specific to the current season, but you choose neither* and are led instead to the classic archives, a section past two others, near where you can see vintage models of what-seems-to-be monitors lining a back wall. 
a comfortable chair with armrests is pulled out for you. you sit. say thanks. the archive is a computer system, and the librarian tells you of its various components. curator’s choice, made in nyc, interviews with cast members. mrs. maisel is referenced and you smile – there is a lot to see and watch. headphones – the type available in public school computer labs and libraries, small and bendy – are pointed out to you.

the exhibit below says upstairs in the fourth-floor library, paley has interactive exhibits. i guess public computers are interactive exhibits. the time allotment of 1:30 hours is given to you and you’re told accommodation for more time afterwards is possible. you find a mrs. maisel paley panel video that’s about that length. but it’s been five minutes – time to go back. you hit the lower left hand corner back button a few times just in case, going back in the session’s branching click history made in nyc > tracy jordan on conan > log out. before you leave you hear a different librarian explain the computer system to a new guest. are you familiar with it? -here’s how much time you have- 
smile at the person who helped you on the way out. 

*the choice is non and feels open and friendly, opening immediately to another thing – and I process it by looking away from my love of this ease.

Ender’s Game

Just watched the movie. Out of pure curiosity, I mean there’s a movie, why not watch it? Gavin Hood directed it, and he also did Wolverine, which was absolutely pounded by the critics. I found that out after the viewing, so I could watch it unbiased and develop my own opinion in contrast to the book. All of my following statements are obviously my own personal opinion, I don’t want to sound pretentious, or odd about the whole thing.

A book adapted into a film will always have it’s shortcomings. Unfortunately, Ender’s Game had many, but it had some redeeming factors worth pointing out. The book allows the reader to peek into Ender’s mind, and the benefit of the third-person limited-omniscient viewpoint is that the protagonist is much more complex, and his thoughts are compounded thoroughly, resulting in a truly visceral experience.The movie on the other hand was handicapped by it’s inability to see into the Ender’s mind, therefore we had to rely on the character’s actions, and put our faith in Asa’s acting prowess. To say the least, he did well! I didn’t like how Gavin modified the script at some points, he even omitted the kiss from Alai, which I thought was a pivotal point in the plot structure. Instead he allowed the momentous encounter to pass without much recognition. A kiss on the cheek implanted the instance deep into the reader’s mind, a mere gesture of departure does not do the same for the viewer. This along with many other details, were chopped off from the body of the original plot. The movie suffered from shallow characterization in favor of eye-catching special effects, which were, as expected, spectacular. One thing I did like about Gavin’s revision was the alteration of the mind-game. It was practical in it’s execution, and added a layer to the otherwise woefully mundane Ender. The movie moved too fast for my taste, a side-effect of the many omissions and revisions. Now that I’m done degrading the movie, I can’t find any reasons to commend it. I mean, the Battle School was a dazzling set to look at. Asa Butterfield is great, but that deserves it’s own little draft, because if I’m gonna mention greatness, I have to point out Harrison Ford, Ben Kingsley, and Viola Davis. I couldn’t get Davis’s maid character in The Help out of my head though….

Well that’s all, I thought I would have an intelligent discourse on the film, but I guess in the end I’m just disappointed. The book wowed me so much I read it twice! I was hoping the same for the movie, but in the back of my mind I knew this crazy sci-fi concept would be blown up in favor of mass appeal. So yeah; lots of action, explosions, not much character development, but I understand that. Once again-Asa Butterfield, that is all.#asa butterfield#ender’s game#harrison ford#viola davis#ben kingsley

A Single Man

Just watched this movie directed by Tom Ford (yes the fashion designer) and I am completely blown away. The visuals were so gratifying, but at the same time served an important purpose in the film’s style and themes. Ford tells the story (based on a book) so strikingly well, there are times when I slowed down in sync with the scene slowing down. I’m typing this on my phone so I can’t express completely how impressed I am by this movie. The great art direction, moody music, and powerful performances come together incredibly well. I honestly only have praises for this film, which means I should probably stop typing. I only write when I feel the need to critique a movie (Ender’s Game), but this one moved me so. I should analyze what I think certain parts of the movie mean.

Just Kids

I’ve been going through the pages of Patti Smith’s life with Robert Mapplethorpe. Roberts have been popping up, Robert Graysmith is another, from Zodiac. I’m not sure if that movie was what I wanted. I wanted something more shocking, more Silence of the Lambs. “Hurdy gurdy gurdy, hurdy gurdy gurdy gurdy man….”

It’s April. The theme for this month is…..solitude. No I think that’s been my theme for long enough. I picture my junior year as a new start, I want to reach out to people more. Join more clubs, talk to people, stay after school for activities. Can an introvert really do all those things? If I can learn anything from Susan, it’s that you need a solid-rock-hard heart for this. But I don’t…right now. Anyway she’s already extroverted, a people person.  

I can’t seem to develop my own thoughts, I’m everywhere with repetitive words and meaningless rambles. I type and type, but most of the clicks and clacks are backspaces of furious neglect. See? That didn’t even make sense, can I just <—–JUST! always just, always okay always whatever or whoever this whole thing, my vocabulary, is laughable! You think I use words well? Well think again because well and well right after each other. I’m so dissapointed in myself. Wow a typo, no actually you’re just dumb. JUSSSSSSSSSSSSSSSTL;JKA