Tuesday, May 10, 2005


Today was the GRE. I got my scores for Verbal and Math. I did well. It was kind of a marathon.

I got to write an essay about why the internet will not make tourism obsolete. Yes, a pretty dumb and obvious topic. But I got to talk about the false promise of experience at a distance, the false familiarity and intimacy that comes from just reading about something, or even seeing video of it, as opposed to just doing it. I was going to add, but it was offtopic, that reading blogs is like that too; you really read personas on the internet, you don't read people. The best blogs either disguise this fact, sounding homey and natural, or play it up, creating fictional characters like in the Fafblog.

Then I critiqued an argument about the merits of switching your primary fuel from wood to charcoal. As for me, I have always preferred clean-burning propane and propane accessories.

The verbal section was the most nerve-wracking. I think I actually spent five minutes staring at one of the incomprehensible reading comprehension questions, and I just could not compute it in my head. I started glazing over and I couldn't read the words on the screen. I can't remember anything remotely like this happening to me on a test ever. But it is par for the course in these tests, because you only get one question at a time, and after you lock in your answer, it is completely permanent. I had to rush through the end a bit.

The math was easy.

For fun, I sent my GRE scores to three schools I won't apply to: University of Utah, University of Washington, and Caltech. I suppose if I ever start a doctorate somewhere they will have me on file. They were free score reports, and I didn't really have anywhere else to send them.

This is the last school-related thing I will do before turning in my grad school application, and starting the summer semester. Four weeks of bliss! I am in the seventh Sten book, so I can put something else in my brain soon. I finished the Bridge of San Luis Rey the other night. Man, it was good. It is tempting to just reread it, but too many other things are calling. I finally have time to start Jonathan Strange and Mister Norrell. And I have 30 solid mornings to write the Great American Novel!

Time will tell.

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