Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Posts from last year

It's end of term reflection time, and I'm procrastinating on my Expo presentation with a blast from the past. It's turning out to be one of those "the more things change, the more they stay the same" things.

Re: inability to ask for help

[Talking about the Olin-as-deep-end-of-pool analogy] If I sink, I will sit at the bottom and slowly drown as I stare at the sunlight filtering through the water. I won't ever let anyone save me. Some strange little part of my brain still thinks that if I let myself be saved, then I will not be able to save anybody else, when in fact it should be the other way around.

If I let myself be saved, that makes me fallible. Fallible people can't swoop down all godlike and help others. They might fall apart themselves. (from here)

Re: Eye.size > stomach.size syndrome

Behold a small dipper from the continuous stream of sage professorial advice which I'll forever remain grateful for. Man, we're lucky to have great teachers here.

Gill Pratt: "Life is the art of knowing which things you can let slide." (from here)

Re: Being simultaneously arrogant and underconfident

I hate being smart, but I like being smart. I hate that other people think that I'm smart (I'm not). At the same time, I like that they do. (I'm not.) I like looking smart. (I'm not.) I want to think that I'm smart, and sometimes I do. (I'm not.) And I hate that I like to look smart (because I'm not).

Hubris, anyone? (from the same post as the first quote)

I wrote this stuff when I was 19. I'm 20 now. I wonder if I'll still be able to call these things true when I'm 25. A small voice in the back of my head keeps saying it's narcissitic to quote yourself like this, so I'll stop now, reply to the comment backlogs, and then actually get back to "real work."

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

First, there's nothing wrong with quoting yourself. Second, I think that so much of our angst about being smart is due to the fuzziness of the word itself. Everyone knows that there's not just one kind of intelligence, but we keep trying to lable ourselves and others as if there is. You are, beyond a doubt, full of curiosity, you can intake information at an astounding speed, and you have a very respectable base of knowledge. I don't know if that makes you smart, but they seem like worthwhile traits anyway.


PS There's also the problem of balancing modesty with confidence, but you can't let it strangle the truth no matter which way you err.