May 20, 2008

Summer Goals

Hopefully this will be a reminder of what I plan to do this summer

  • Do lots of math.

    I need to do my specialty exam at the end of the summer, so it would help if I actually had something to talk about.

  • Do more math.

    I may or may not be spending time at Los Alamos this summer, which will result in me working on some new stuff. Hopefully I'll find out what that is today.

  • Learn some physics.

    My advisor does a lot more than numerical analysis - a lot of his research is in mathematical physics. This is a problem for me since I haven't taken a real physics course since high school. Next semester I'm diving right into possibly more than one graduate physics course, so I need some background. Learning more physics should also expand my horizons, research-wise, and give me a better idea what the other grad students are talking about in our working seminar

  • Learn some Chinese.

    I realized during my final year of undergraduate work that I loooove learning new languages. Sadly, as is usually the case, my first year of grad school wiped out any extracurricular activities that I might have been interested in. I hope to work through the 'learn chinese' books that I bought by the end of the summer at least, and hopefully be able to carry on a basic conversation with some of the other grad students.

  • Ride my bike

    I hate bike riding, because I have terrible balance and the seats always make my ass hurt. Seriously - what is the deal with uncomfortable bike seats? Anyway. we're moving farther away from campus next year and it would be the perfect distance to bike. I would have to take bike lanes on city streets (rather than ride in the street) but I'm still pretty uncomfortable with that. I need to build up some bike confidence this summer if I'm ever going to do this. Luckily I'll still have the option of taking the bus, but any option that does not require using gas is fine by me.

  • Go to the gym

    On a similar vein, I'd love to (finally) build some upper body strength. Even when I played rugby (which, sadly, was probably when I was the most in shape in my life) I was a pretty wimpy guy. I've always had mad leg strength but I can barely lift anything. I'd love it if I had the strength to swing for the fences one of these days when we play softball...