Miscellaneous Week 4 Events

Firstly, my iPhone broke. And by broke I meant got shattered. Won’t even turn on. Zero life.

It was all happened after the crew date last Friday when I somehow dropped it on the way back to Stanford House. Or was it on the way to Wahoo

And of course, of the 5 millions times I dropped my iPhone before, it has to break when I am abroad in a country where I get lost on a regular basis and 3G is the only thing that is keeping me alive. Fortunately, the replacement is coming in a few days.

Secondly, my tutorial psets took over my life the last few days. My tutor told me to attend the Oxford’s game theory lectures to help with the psets. I was excited, until I realized the lectures were not even offered this term.


To be honest, compared to MS&E 121 psets (Stochastic Modelling) which were absolutely IMPOSSIBLE to do at times (how I passed that class I do not know…), these ones were not that terrible.

The hardest part was that here at Oxford, I had no lectures to teach me, no sections to discuss, no office hours to ask for help, and worst of all, no friends who were always with me late at night working on the same problems together.


I miss the endless study group gatherings in FloMo dining hall with the white board grinding through problems together.

I spent about 10 hours in the Brasenose library yesterday. I left to go back at 5 am in the morning when it was absolutely desolate outside.

Fortunately, my College Dad visited, brought chocolate, and entertained me until 4 am, which was nice. Nevertheless, watching the sunrise has been never been more depressing.

Formal Hall

Yes, I finally made it to the right 2nd seating of Formal Hall, and actually had the experience of eating with Oxford students, all wearing gowns. There was a student who spoke in Latin at the beginning and all the professors sat at a higher table.

Since I joined the Brasenose Chapel Choir, I get free Formal Halls now! :D


Made it the right Formal Hall

Us Stanford students started talking to a couple of Brasenose guys. The conversations ranged from particle physics, European politics, nuclear vs. renewable energy, to well… FMOTQ (Full Moon on the Quad).

We were trying to compare the traditions between Oxford and Stanford. Now, they probably thought we were just weird.

British Dancing

After being here for 4 week, the British social scene is still intriguing. After turning in all the psets yesterday, I had to go out and celebrated with a couple of Stanford kids.

Pubs: These are literally the best since they are not as common in the US. The only thing is that I get very awkward when forced to decide what to order on the spot, especially when there are like 20 kinds of beers. But pubs overall are chill.

Clubs: Park End

After hearing people recommending the place, I finally went there yesterday night. We danced with the Corpus Christi students and then with some of the boys we met on our first crewdate!

On the subject of the overall men to women ratio, there were probably 5 guys dancing around 1 girl given any time. The Ministry of Sound was also the same. As my friend said:

"I mean it is kind of cool and flattering, but at the same time, I don’t know where to look."

Anyways, being out makes me miss all my dancing best friends back at Stanford who would kill it at the clubs. Nevertheless, great fun!

A couple of things to look forward to: Wales trip this weekend, punting this afternoon, and Brasenose Croquet Tournament (my team of 2 was the only Stanford team that signed up, I have also never seen croquet in my life).


anonymous said:

Hey, I'll be a Fresher at Oxford in October - any tips?

Things not to do:

  • Be kind to people and open to talking to everyone. University is a time where you meet all kinds of people from all walks of life, and you never know who will become your best friend.
  • Get yourself in a good routine early but don’t sacrifice lots of social time. Getting off to a good start is handy but you wanna make sure you settle in first. 
  • Be yourself and try all the things you want to. 
  • Don’t feel bad if you aren’t a ‘drinker’ or whatever, as there’s plenty to do without feeling the need to drink. Just think of a sober Parkend as anthropological research. 
  • Don’t feel bad if you haven’t done all the work/reading you needed to by the time you get there. Barely anyone has.
  • Enjoy yourself! Just let yourself get swept along in it all. Oxford really is a unique university experience, and though at times it will be crazy, exhilarating, stressful, upsetting, etc, it’ll also be really good fun. 

Things to do:

  • Sign away your soul to the essay Lord (all hail the essay Lord).
  • Do not go outside. There are bugs and drunk people and cars and WHY GO OUTSIDE WHEN YOU COULD BE WORKING. 
  • Do not make friends - ‘friends’ are satan’s helpers trying to hold you back from ACADEMIC DOMINATION.
  • Your tutors are now your demi-Gods. Build shrines to them and worship their all-knowing brains. 
  • If you’re determined to go clubbing during Fresher’s, bring a pen and some work. Do not make eye contact with anyone. Do not dare dance to the Spice Girls - from now on you may only dance to the mellifluous tones of James Joyce reading Finnegans Wake.