Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Each time it comes, it eats me alive/
I try to behave but it eats me alive/
So I declare a holiday/
Fall asleep and drift away...


It is a miserable-weather day in a miserable-work week. Blustery and cold, with an 80% chance of failure.

Deo gratias propter "Gratias Agere" ago!

And Thank God for Alice too. And hey, it's really snowing now.

Oh, the weather outside is frightful...

P.S. I suppose all good things must come to an end. They had begun to jump the shark, but the Strong Bad Emails still took the right way out. I think.

Sunday, November 14, 2004

The Math Subject GRE:

You try the best you can/
You try the best you can/
The best you can is good enough...


Not fun, anyway. I think I probably did well enough, but I'm not sure how many stupid mistakes I made. As Dean told me, "Don't worry, Patrick... this can only hurt you."

I've sent everything necessary to two of my recommenders, and begun each application online. So I should have them all finished in time. If I'm not a complete fool.

P.S. In a moment both encouraging to me as a mathematician and discouraging as a sane human being, the maximal function in Rn (or at least something based on the essential supremum) played a central role in the dream I had last night.

P.P.S. Scheisse. Won't say why.

Thursday, November 04, 2004

Plato's Cave is full of freaks/
Demanding refunds for the things they've seen/
I wish they could believe/
In all the things that never made the screen...


1. When I visited Princeton in the summer, I met with Dr. Jordan Ellenberg, a Director of Graduate Studies in Mathematics. Recently I stumbled across this novel. Same guy. Weird.

2. Speaking of graduate schools, aagh. Why do they all have to have different formats for letters of recommendation? It makes the professors' lives tougher and mine more stressful. And my Math GRE is coming up on the 13th.

My (almost completely set) list of applications:
Princeton
MIT
Michigan
UCLA
Berkeley
Minnesota
Wisconsin


3. My thoughts are on the election are pretty much irrelevant, except for this: I have much praying to do now for our nation and the world. If Kerry had won, I would have much praying to do as well.

Agnus Dei, qui tolis peccata mundi, miserere nobis.

4. Reynolds Club Scheduling has problems. They shifted the Pro-Life Association to Cobb 101 for last night's meeting. Then they double-booked Cobb 101 with a Latin drill section. The drill section for my Latin class. Disorientation and confusion ensued.

5. I love my new job as a Harper tutor. All of the "helping people with math" and none of the "grading 30 problem sets" of being a Course Assistant for Calculus. It pays less, but I'm fine with that.

6. Analysis midterm was yesterday. It was that bad; as promised, Ryzhik introduced Hausdorff dimension and other things we hadn't covered, just to mess with us. I did one problem out of six, missing even the two "quickies"; an hour just wasn't long enough. Then, to top it off, five minutes after leaving (without, mind you, looking in my books), I realized how to solve each of these "quickies":

Quickie 1: Prove that a monotone function on R has at most countably many discontinuities.

Quickie 2: Prove that any collection of non-intersecting regular figure eights (one can be contained within one loop of another) in R2 is countable.

Ah well. I talked to Ryzhik and he told me not to worry about my grade, no matter how badly I did. So that should be okay. But still, dratn!