Friday, January 2, 2009

Ali the Auggie in 2008: Dids, learns, and so on

***I studied in Tokyo, Japan, for one month over the summer. The organization I went through is called CIEE, which stands for Council on International Education Exchange. I learned a lot. I took two classes: Japanese Business and Management, and Japanese I (a language class). I have since forgotten most of the language I learned, but I will be continuing my studies next fall, so never fear!

Shinjuku

The Pokemon train

Front left to right: Ricky, Chelsea, Rebeka
Back: Francis and me
(Japanese Business and Management buddies)


***I braved the Minnesota-cold to protest Prop 8, which reversed the California Supreme Court's decision saying denying gay marriage was unconstitutional. Boo bigotry!

Me at the protest

So inspiring!

***I became involved in politics; specifically, Barack Obama's campaign for the Presidency. Over the summer, I phone-banked. Once school started, I contributed by donating a little of the money I made as a student-worker to the campaign. And, of course, being a flamboyant, convincing supporter.

Two students--one an Obama supporter and the other a McCain supporter, high-five

Me OMG-ing as MSNBC announced Obama's win

***I started my own radio show, You're a Nerd, and dj-ed every Sunday night at 8 P.M. in Augsburg's KAUG studio. I played video game, anime, and other nerdy music, and between songs, talked about various news or issues in the nerd world. I even gave away prizes!

Me at the mic inside the KAUG studio

***I became addicted to the Twilight series, after giving in to the exploding phenomena. I found myself procrastinating dangerously on homework to read the books. The last two books, Eclipse and Breaking Dawn, I read in two days--Eclipse one night, and Breaking Dawn the next. I learned, through the realization that the books are garbage in terms of literary merit, that it doesn't matter if they are or not (I believe they are)--I can have and enjoy guilty pleasures without feeling insecure about my intellect.

Me in the fort Mitch built me, reading Twilight, the first book in the series

***Of course this is not all that happened in 2008, but they are certainly some highlights that stick out in my head. Here are a few other things that made 2008 2008:

I:

*rekindled my love for Coldplay, and found a love for Paramore.
*maintained my 4.0 GPA.
*along with Mitch, settled on the Shiba Inu as our breed-of-choice (for when we move out this spring and get a puppy).
*proposed, and had accepted, my application for an SCLE, or Student Created Learning Experience, which is much like an independent study, only through the Honors Program. So this spring, I'll be taking a "class" on gender in kabuki, which is an ancient form of Japanese theater.
*finally met up with Taryn and Cassie (old friends), and Calvin (old friend and senior prom date), after not having seen them since graduation.
*got a job tutoring public speaking in the Communication Studies' Speakers Lab.
*was awarded a post-secondary Dollars for Scholars scholarship.
*damaged a tendon in my right-hand pinky, which has caused me to, under doctor's orders, constantly have that finger in a splint.
*was offered (and took) the position of Editor of Homemade, which, as you may know, is the reason for No, I Am a Cat!
*became a summer-Tour Guide for Augsburg Admissions.
*took these courses: Interpersonal Communication, Small Group Communication, Liberating Letters, Foundations of Fitness, Honors Effective Writing, Riverside Singers, Lifetime Activity: Badminton, Performance Studies: Voice, Japanese Business and Management (at Sophia University), Japanese I (likewise at Sophia), Argumentation, Christian Vocation and the Search for Meaning II, Principles of Microeconomics, and the Scholar Scientist.

I finished out 2008 with our little gang of friends (minus Katie, as she was celebrating in New York): we ate at Chiang Mai Thai, walked over to the Lagoon theater to see Milk (it was amazing), and then went over to Tony's for homemade cheese dip and video games. A somewhat typical night for our gang, and yet, as I fell asleep on Tony's floor that night, I realized it was exactly what I would have liked 2008 to end like. It was a good year.
Er, minus all the bad stuff that happened to the country and such. :D

So here's to 2008. On to 2009!

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