Monday, October 27, 2008

A Tang poem by Wangwei we have translated in class

Summer House in Zhongnan Mountain

In my middle age, I very much enjoyed Buddhist Dharma.
In the later of my life, I established my house at the site of Zhongnan Mountain.
When I get inspired, I always go to the mountain alone.
There are many interesting places that only I know and appreciate.
When I go to the place where a river ends,
I sit and watch the clouds rising.
Randomly, I meet old men living in the forest.
We talk and laugh; we have no practical time to go back home.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Emma advised my husband to take Brian as his English name

I got a B on the first exam of Anthropology. The grade is better than I imaged. I lost many points on the questions that I understood but did wrong due to carelessness. I worried too much on the DNA part and left little time to take care the rest. If I just gave up the one or two questions I didn’t know and the spent time to double check the whole exam again, I would possible get an A. I regretted about that and learned a lesson from this failure.

I though I could get rest after the three exams this week. So when my friend Emma asked me to go to a party this Saturday night in her home, I agreed. However, after exams, I found there are more than expected jobs that have to be done within very limited days. I realized that I got back forward on my study for spending too much time to prepare the exams.

I couldn’t cancel the Saturday party; Emma is so kind to Brian, my husband’s new English name, and me. Also, meeting English speakers is the best opportunity for us to improve our English. I made the decision that I will go tonight. I wish I can get up early on Sunday morning to study although I doubt. Isn’t it hard to get up early if you have an exciting party the last night?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

I didn't do well on the 1st anthr exam

I didn’t do well on the first exam in my biological anthropology course this Monday. I feel so bad. I have been studying so hard, but I still cannot achieve a good standard in the college study. I suppose that professor Stinson will be disappointed by my bad grade also. She has spent extra hours to help me individually. In tomorrow class, she may return the exam to us. I am just afraid to go to the class.

I took the mid-term exam of the American history class today. I believe I did better in this exam than the anthropology one. Life has to go on. I have the third exam this Thursday. I have to encourage myself in order to deal with my future as good as possible.

I went swimming in the afternoon after the exam to cool down myself. There were a few people swimming. Probably it is not convenient to swim in the middle of a day. I have been the swimming poor during the evening hours; there are more people. When I returned home at 2 o’clock, I took a shower and washed my swimming suit and towel. After that, I made a plenty amount of fried noodle for lunch. I mixed shrimps, mushrooms, eggs, green peppers, onions, and other several vegetables into my noodle, which made the noodle so delicious. I have cooked the same style of noodle for my friend Yujun. She likes to eat it too.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Both of us were young

My hair had hardly covered my forehead.
I was picking flowers.
I was playing by my door.
You, my lover, came on a bamboo horse.
You were trotting in circles.
You were throwing green plums.
We lived near each other.
We lived on a lane in Ch’ang-Kan.
Both of us were young.
Both of us were happy-hearted.
At fourteen I became your wife.
I was so bashful.
I dared not smile.
I lowered my head toward a dark corner.
I would not turn to your thousand calls.
But at fifteen I straightened my brows.
I laughed.
I learned something.
No dust could ever seal our love.
Even unto death I would await you by my post.
And I would never lose heart in the tower of silent watching.

Thursday, October 02, 2008

Professor Stinson

I usually write blog when I work in the Media Center. The main duty of my job is taking care of students who coming to borrow laptops, videos, or asking anything about the center. I don’t have to work all the time, if nobody comes, I can read my books or use the computer. However, I rarely have large pieces of free time during work. People come unexpectedly, maybe every a few minutes, or maybe continuously. It is annoy that being interrupted. So, I prefer do something relax to using that time to study.

I will have three exams two week later, expect Sukhu’s class. I wish he gives us the mid-exam a little bit late, so I can avoid having time shortage during mid-term exams season.

Professor Stinson of Anthropology 260 is a very very nice lady. She got her Ph. D on Biological Anthropology in 1970s. She organizes the class very well. She often gives examples after some abstract theories to help us to understand. I love examples; it is easy to be confused by fancy definitions in science, but examples make you believe that everything has to make sense. One day, to illustrate the translation of portion, professor Stinson asked students pretending to be different DNA and RNA strands and moved around in the middle of the classroom as RNA strands travel from the nucleus into the cytoplasm. It was so funny and different to be forgotten.

She assigns relatively short reading, leaving enough time that students can go back to reread in order to get completely understanding. Can you image if every week you have to read a hundred or two hundred pages that you still have time to take care of the old text. She also gives us assignment every two weeks, which contains the questions related to the exams. If you can do these assignments, you will do well on the exam. If you fell difficulty on the assignments, there is still time that you can work on it.

She always encourages us to ask questions both in and outside class. I went to see her during her office hours because she said several times that she was waiting students coming during her office hours. She explained my questions patiently despite my bad pronunciation and my ignorance on the field of biology.

I have little biological background, and I have totally no idea that how allele, DNA, chromosome are in the beginning of this class. Also, there are a lot of extremely long and stranger terms that we have to deal with; I feel I just cannot pronounce them correctly. This course is not an introduction course, but an advanced 200 level course. I suppose that a student in this class should not be on such a low level as me. Despite those disadvantages, I actively study. I study class notes and the textbook, visiting professor, conducting the Internet. Professors often dislike student looking up Wikipedia for academic research. However, I think Wiki is very useful to get some general information.

There are many middle age female professors in my college whom I admire. They work hardly and carefully, respect students and patiently. I think they are one of the most useful powers in our society.

My comment on American history

In the more often situations, the most important and the true things appear like plain, less exciting, and worthless. For example, the statement of that there are always brutal conflicts between men and men, or an ethnic group and another throughout human evolution. When I study American history this semester, I think this statement can be the best comment on this piece of history. I am sad about this extreme of the raise and fadeaway of different races.

The main clue of the American history is not too complicate. Europeans had long been attracted by exotic goods from the East and the rich of China since the middle age. Due to the motivation, they voyaged and mistakenly discovered American continent in the late of the 15th century. The initial immigrants suffered much difficulty and many failures to settle down. Nevertheless, they gradually established permanent spots to live and created colonial societies by the first half of the 17th century. More and more people came. They were religious people such as Puritans, poor Europeans such as indentured servants, and African slaves who were sold here by force. The societies became diversity and complex. Although there were constant conflicts between different groups of people, in general, the land of American had been growing vigorous and prosperous. After the US gained it impendence in 1773, as we all know, within other two hundred years, this nation developed to be the richest one in the world.

This is a fabulous legend in our human history. Our study in the college class room naturally focuses on the wonderful success of the European descendants as well. However, I want to ask that can you still keep a positive view and a joyful feeling if you were a Natural Indian. I assume that many people do not want to think about it, but I just could not stand to feel sad, so sad when I encounter greater and greater success of Europeans in the land of North America. Some ethnic groups’ success is exchanged by the other groups’ failure and extinction. Can you merely conclude that the weaker should die?