Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Identity Crisis

This morning, I broke the trend of the past two days and slept in until 7:15. I was glad for the extra hour of sleep, but I discovered that I’m much better at getting out of bed with my alarm clock when I know I have to train, not just go to breakfast. Oh, the love-hate relationship going on with my snooze button… Breakfast is getting a little tedious, but I think I’ll manage to survive the food here. I’m used to eating the same thing over and over again, because during the school year all I eat in the morning is oatmeal, but it’s somehow it feels different at home.

Today’s lecture was on another mind-blowing concept of modern physics–quantum mechanics. Apparently, light has all kinds of identity problems. We already learned that light is a wave, but that the light waves are made up of particles called photons. Today we learned that depending on how you view photons, they behave like particles or waves. I was very confused, but Bill and Ryan reassured us that that was okay; most physicists are confused too.  Bill also gave us a quick tutorial about experimental uncertainty, and then explained our afternoon lab. Our assignment was to determine Planck’s constant by finding the energy and frequency of LED light waves. 

Ryan shows us the intensity of light waves from an incandescent bulb
Thus far, I had been trying to steer clear of ethnic foods, but tonight I finally visited the taqueria station and ordered chicken and rice. Of all the food that I miss from home, rice is probably the thing I miss the most. I usually eat rice every night, and it’s been really strange not having any. I think when I go to college I’ll follow my dad’s example and make huge batches of fried rice that will last for weeks.

As a little break from routine, there was an ice cream social tonight. It was a great opportunity to meet new people, and of course, it’s hard to turn down free ice cream. To justify consuming all that fat and sugar, Ivette, Chloe, Alysa, and I went to the gym for a workout. With friends who are as enthusiastic about exercise as I am, keeping in shape over the summer is going to be less difficult than I thought it would be.

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