Wednesday, February 6, 2008


There's been so much going on this week that I just realized that I haven't blogged in about a week. Oh no, no documentation of my life! No fear, I'll recap (caution, this will be a long, media-enhanced post):

Friday - 17th Birthday
I expected this to be a horrible day. I had a ridiculous amount of of work to turn in, I had to design something for robotics at the last minute that ended up not being used, and most importantly, the MITES application was due. I'm one hell of a procrastinator, so this involved me pulling an all-nighter to get it done, but I was satisfied with my work by the time I had to leave for school at 5:40am. I spread out all of my stuff across the living room floor, and this is what it looked like at some point during the night.

I always get this weird high/rush after staying up for almost 24 hours. Around noon I got extremely tired, and then I suddenly bounced back energetically, as if I just woke up from a 10-hour night sleep. It's really weird how sleep deprivation can lead such a surplus in energy. My mom made me cupcakes around 1am, so that was my first celebration of the day. I really didn't expect anything at all, btw. When I got to school, it was the same as usual, I even forgot that it was my birthday on occasion...that's how much I cared about turning 17, nothing significant. For lunch, Dominique brought cupcakes! I was really surprised, I didn't expect anyone to even remember. We had a little celebration in Mr. Euler's class:

So I had about 2 dozen cupcakes...these in additions to the ones that my mother baked for me! Interestingly enough, I learned to share :o ! DJ and Dom went outside under the garage door to air out the crumbs from the table cloth, little did I know they had a surprise for me when they got back inside. Sure, it looks like they're trying to fold it...

One thing about birthdays that I really happen to dislike is the "Happy Birthday" song. I really, honestly, hate it, and everyone knows that. Did it stop them from singing it? Of course not...

I don't know what it is about that song that just ticks me. It's extremely awkward, with the second verse requiring the "Birthday Boy/Girl" to respond and everyone else to point and stare. Whatever, it's just me. That's the most eventful stuff that happened at school, except for the bus ride back, involving some serious Om-Nom-Noming of the rest of the cupcakes and fun with frosting and sprinkles.

My grandparents always take me out to dinner for my birthday, this year was no different. I decided to go to Benihana, since I've wanted to go for since like forever. I took a short nap in the car and was carrying on like a zombie when we got inside. Not even our flamboyant waiter that served us drinks could wake me up. When we finally got to our table, it was absolutely freezing, though we figured out why once they turned on the grill. The whole dinner was amazing, except for the shrimp, which I don't eat because I don't eat seafood. I definitely woke up when the cheft started tossing and flipping food around on the grill. That was the most amazing fried rice that I've ever had in my entire life, and the teriyaki steak was definitely awesome. Being a restaurant and it being my birthday, there was ice cream and that song again. We also shared a table with another family that was celebrating a birthday, though like 30 or so years older, but it took some of the attention off me. My candle wouldn't stay lit, it was hilarious....

It ended up being not as horrible of a day as I expected it to be, but I was dead tired when I got home and absolutely exhausted on Saturday.

Saturday - Robotics
This weekend signified the end of week 4 and the beginning of week 5, aka crunch time, in no reference to Team 79, Krunch, at all lol. This is where everything starts coming together, almost magically. Perfect proof is when we were working on the base for a few hours, finally got it done for the most part and moved on to the arm. It went up in less than 5 minutes with the turn of only four bolts. When all of the software guys walked back in the shop, they exclaimed "WOW you guys sure got a lot done". I couldn't help but to chuckle. If you look at it now, as a bystander, it looks like we have an almost complete robot, HA!

what does this look like?

There is still a ton of work to be done. Hopefully some more magic will occur this week. Saturday was one of the most productive build days that I've ever experienced since I've been on this team. I even learned how to use the mill and modify a section on our side panels! It was a long day, I was there for almost 12 hours. We have this theory that there are no windows or clocks in there for a reason! It's amazing how you walk outside going "woah, it's dark!" not even keeping track of time until someone mutters that they're hungry or has to leave. When the majority of the work was done for the day, we managed to squeeze a little fun in before we left. I mean, how can you not play with a huge-mongous blue ball? Introducing, EXTREME hacky sac...

NOW - Everything Else
This week has been overloaded with school stuff. We're working on ROVs in Research V for a little competition at FAU in May, which I'll talk some more about later. I can't believe how I've adjusted so quickly to having 2 work-intensive AP classes in addition to build season going on, but I feel as if I can possibly handle a little more load...not that I'll try to juggle anything else. FLVS is having a little science fair. I usually don't enjoy required science fairs, even though I've won numerous, but I actually want to do something for this since it's optional. I'm thinking of building a Van De Graaff Generator and conducting (lol conduction) a few experiments. Even if I don't get to do it in time for the fair, I still want to make once since they're really cool.

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