Before Blogging: Some Nostalgia

I was thinking of ideas to blog about today, but then I found on my computer a 10,000-word document that was basically a journal I kept from June 2009 to Nov. 2009. Why did it end Nov. 2009? Well, it is precisely on Nov. 4, 2009 that I started this blog.

This document I had completely forgotten about. It’s titled “Daily Notes,” but it isn’t daily by any means. In fact, in its entire existence from June 13 to Nov. 5 it contained just 12 entries.

Some excerpts I find somewhat nostalgic are listed below. Remember, this is me writing prior to this blog, and keep in mind also that it was written privately, not originally for publishing.

1. Saturday, June 13, 2009

This entry marks the start of my daily notes. I am starting this for several reasons. But first, let me locate myself in the context of the current events of my life, so when I read this later, I know exactly when this occurred. (And for this reason, this first few entries may be significantly longer than average.)

I am seventeen years old. My birthday is December 28th, so I am about seventeen and a half. Currently it has been a week after school ended, eleventh grade. I believe it would be appropriate to begin this note with a reflection of my past year, the year that has been of utmost importance to my life so far. Actually, I would really like to begin with the entire story of my life so far, but that would have to span many, many pages. I will leave it to Checkmate: An Autobiography to cover my life up to the end of my tenth grade year. This autobiography was the last assignment for English in sophomore year, and I will not revise or add to this; I want to later see how myself as a tenth grader thought and wrote. It does not cover many events in depth, but it does cover a wide breadth. I will begin my explanation here with where that writing previously ended with the summer of 2008, to fill in the gap between then and now.

Likewise, I will not revise or add to “Daily Notes.” The rest of this entry talks about my 2008 summer, including a lot of chess tournament stuff.

2. Sunday, June 14, 2009

Of course I have many other prolonged memories throughout the last year. Our English class included many seniors who made the class much more interesting than it could have been. In European History, I probably did the most homework and learned the most out of any of my classes. Band class was mostly boring, since I focused more on my academics, yet it was a well-deserved mental break for me. Health gave me the experience of being in a non-AP/IB class and how much less productive such a class could be. Physics gave me the opportunity to do much homework for Spanish, the class I had next. In Calculus, I simply tried to relax my mind as much as I could. Finally, I had computer science, which really allowed me to do homework for other classes or simply chat with my classmates. In the second semester, TOK (Theory of Knowledge) replaced Health, and I found it to be one of the most intellectually stimulating classes alongside European History.

I found this passage on my 11th grade classes in the middle of the entry. It’s pretty interesting to reflect upon now. For instance: “Our English class included many seniors who made the class much more interesting than it could have been.” Guess that explains my creative-ish behavior during my own senior year English class. 😀

“In European History, I probably did the most homework and learned the most out of any of my classes.” I totally agree with this now. European History prepared me for college classes more than any other high school class.

9. Tuesday, October 6, 2009

Since my last entry, I have been doing quite normally in my senior year of high school. An enormous amount of my time currently is dedicated to marching band, in which we have rehearsals quite daily. That should subside as the season ends, but I will say that my grades this year as of the first six-week reporting period are quite high. Even with all these IB courses, I still managed to have my highest overall average ever at Westwood. I do have much to say about school so far.

Oh, high school marching band…

10. Sunday, November 1, 2009

For me, this day marks the start of a new stage of my life. Since the last entry, several events of various degrees of importance have occurred. Regarding college applications, MIT and University of Chicago “early action” applications were due for me today. I had submitted them about a week ago, but today’s date nonetheless gives me a new view of life as college is now lifted prominently into my conscience.

I started college applications about a week after the last entry, and worked solely on this tedious task for at least a couple weeks, disregarding much of my schoolwork. I think it has paid off. My high grades the first six weeks can easily balance out the deficiencies this session. Plus, I think I did great on my college interviews, especially with MIT just last Saturday, the 24th. It was somewhat strange in that something I had totally neglected to put on the Common Application (which in my case was used for the University of Chicago) and only indirectly and marginally mentioned in my MIT application ended up being the main topic of discussion: BattleShips Pro. We talked about community interaction, teamwork, specific balancing issues, and other nuances about the map and the map editing process. I realized I had completely forgotten about video games in my college applications. I did not think they could be so important.

As for another matter, I feel both great joy and great sorrow right now. Joy that college is coming steadily closer and almost in plain sight. Sorrow that there will be so many things I have done in high school that I will never do again, and so many people I have met who I may never see again. This ambivalent emotion came to me during the senior sendoff for band the past Friday night. This feeling had already been rising due to band. We are performing the marching show just one more time. It seems that time flew so fast. I still remember learning the first chart of “Chain Reaction” as a freshman, and it deeply smarts me that I will only be able to perform a marching show just one time more, and most likely never again in my life. I was very certain how I walked onto the field my first marching performance, but I know not at all how I am going to walk off of it for the last time. It seems such a great sorrow to accept. At the sendoff, I saw so many either jubilant or indifferent faces of freshmen, sophomores, and juniors who were going to do it again next year. For the seniors, there was no such emotion. Yeah, we laughed, but there was a deeper sensation in our heart, a sensation that permeated throughout us, reminding us that we are about to encounter the end of one road that we have for so long traveled together and the beginning of another road that we all must independently walk.

College! Interesting that I was not thinking about Cornell at all.

12. Thursday, November 5, 2009

I really should start with something I had to say about yesterday, but first, to continue the previous line of thought: I created a blog using WordPress and found it to be the most suitable for my needs, and yesterday during computer science class, I made an account on Twitter, though I plan to not use this often, if any at all.

Now, back to what I was going to say about yesterday, November 4, 2009. Last night was the last time we performed “España,” and for me, that was probably the last marching show I will ever have done. I made sure to add in some high notes, such as a high B-flat at the end of the second movement. It was just an amazing experience, one that was hardly describable with words, however articulate I may try to be with them. The most accurate way to describe the situation would be that it was an experience that will always be remembered.

Funny, I mentioned “yesterday” 3 separate times. And I did not realize this, that the founding date of this blog coincides with my last performance of a high school marching show. I thought it would be the last marching show I will have ever done. Guess I was wrong. 😛

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