Monday, June 6, 2011

Weekend of my Senior Year

Extended weekend, that is, as it started on Thursday, with Awards Night. I won awards for having the highest math and science awards in the senior class - made even better by learning that my sister had got both three years ago. Mandachan was up on stage several times, including receiving a band award, and three of my close friends also won scholarships.

Friday night was my very last high school band concert, and it was my best. We played three neat songs in Symphonic Band, ending with von Suppe's Light Cavalry Overture. It was by far the most difficult and demanding piece I have ever played, and it was fantastic. You can listen to it here. Then, we played 4 good songs in Jazz Band, ending with "Rock with You" - an actual rock version - in which I had a solo. Finally, everyone in marching band came out into the audience to play one final song. I dropped the octave and played the trombone part on my trumpet at purely ridiculous volume. The perfect end to four great years of band.

After the concert, we hit the road. I drove to Bridgeport, and my dad (who, it should be noted, is rather awesome) drove the rest of the way to Penn State (a 7-hour drive, on I-80, overnight) for my last ARML math competition. Not a bad drive, except for the piece of semi-truck coilspring that got caught in our undercarriage for a few miles and made us think the bumper was falling off). I was on the Connecticut B1 team, and we did great. Third place in the nation in the B division, which means we'll be getting brand-new top-of-the-line TI N-spire calculators. I was one of three on the B1 team with a 7/10 on the individual round. (8/10 qualifies you to take another test for nation ranking). For the first time, there was a CT student who took that runoff - go Kei!

Here's my cell phone shot of the Delaware River Viaduct at Delaware Water Gap. Built in 1908-10, it's the largest continuous-pour-construction concrete structure in the world at 1452 feet long and 65 tall. It was built as one of the crowning jewels of the Lackawanna Cut-off for the Delaware, Lackawanna, and Western Railroad, and it's in the beginning stages of being restored for NJ Transit passenger service.

After getting back on Sunday, I went straight to the final party/banquet for tennis. My last time hanging out with my team, and my coach. Buncha wackos, all of em, but a great team, and I will miss them.

Finally, I finished and printed out my senior critique - my last high school thesis paper, and analysis of an entire novel. My final title was "Console Cowboys, Razorgirls, and Artificial Intelligences, oh my: Elements of Transhumanism in William Gibson's Neuromancer". Doing it on Gibson's seminal cyberpunk work was far more enjoyable than reading a "classic" piece of literature.

So, that was my weekend. The end of band, tennis, and math team for my high school experience, and my last major paper completed. Bittersweet, but a wonderful weekend.


Rebecca said...

Woo! We've got a math and science monopoly!...except only every third year...and we have no more siblings. Oh well ;)

Go Ms. Welch for letting you read something different.

Nice work on all brother boy :)

Brian the Sane said...

I resent being called a whacko, even if it is true. It's interesting* what you manage to find on the internet when you are trying to avoid homework on a Sunday night.

* "Interesting" sells this blog short, but at the moment, I can't think of a better word.