Name: neener
School: USC Marshall School of Business
Status: Employed...finally
E-mail: Click here!
Reason for blogging: I'm incredibly self-absorbed.
I'm listening to...
::"Stay Beautiful," The Last Goodnight
::"Spaceman," The Killers
::"Green Light," John Legend
::"Superstar," Lupe Fiasco

I'm watching...
::The Office

I'm reading...
::Taiwan, A Political History, by Denny Roy
::The Devil and Miss Prym, by Paulo Coehlo

I've just seen...
::Slumdog Millionaire
::I Love You, Man
::The Reader
06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003
07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003
08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003
09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003
10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003
11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003
12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004
01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004
02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004
03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004
04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004
05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004
06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004
07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004
08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004
09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004
10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004
11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004
12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005
01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005
02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005
03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005
04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005
05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005
06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005
07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005
08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005
09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005
10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005
11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005
12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006
01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006
02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006
03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006
04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006
05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006
06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006
07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006
08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006
09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006
10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006
12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007
03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007
04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007
05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007
07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007
08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007
06/01/2008 - 07/01/2008
09/01/2008 - 10/01/2008
10/01/2008 - 11/01/2008
11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008
02/01/2009 - 03/01/2009
03/01/2009 - 04/01/2009
04/01/2009 - 05/01/2009
05/01/2009 - 06/01/2009
06/01/2009 - 07/01/2009
07/01/2009 - 08/01/2009
08/01/2009 - 09/01/2009
09/01/2009 - 10/01/2009
11/01/2009 - 12/01/2009
12/01/2009 - 01/01/2010
02/01/2010 - 03/01/2010
04/01/2010 - 05/01/2010
05/01/2010 - 06/01/2010
06/01/2010 - 07/01/2010
07/01/2010 - 08/01/2010
08/01/2010 - 09/01/2010
09/01/2010 - 10/01/2010
10/01/2010 - 11/01/2010
11/01/2010 - 12/01/2010
07/01/2011 - 08/01/2011
10/01/2011 - 11/01/2011
12/01/2011 - 01/01/2012
02/01/2012 - 03/01/2012
03/01/2012 - 04/01/2012
Saturday, August 23, 2003
Dog Tired  
The past three days have flown by. I've been so busy and/or tired that I haven't been able to update until now. So here's the recap.

We kicked off Wednesday with a class on communication for management where we got our first assignments (we have to give a 5-min presentation in front of our teams, which is going to keep me from sleeping well since I hate public speaking), and we also got a short tour of campus. After that, we separated into our cores for a pep rally where 2nd-years showed us slides and videos of the fun stuff they did last year and tried to instill some core spirit, since the cores were going to compete in the afternoon. The afternoon event is known as Teamwork at Marshall Day (known as T@M Day, pronounced "tam"). It's a competition in which teams from each core compete in a variety of activities, trying to accumulate points, and the core with the most points at the end wins. You can liken the competition to a string of Survivor-esque reward challenges, except you don't get voted off if you mess up. The cores are like the tribes on Survivor. We were all wearing our core T-shirts and were waving around little pom-poms and donning face paint. Very spirit-y. My core did not do well (had it been Survivor, we would have been voted off), but not for lack of trying, I can assure you. Marshall people love to talk about getting out of your "comfort zone," and for me, these activities definitely had me out of my comfort zone. One activity was called "The Spiderweb" and required teammates to carry one another in attempt to pass them through these small gaps in the "spiderweb" (big gaps, fewer points; small gaps near the top, more points). Now, let me just state that I hate being carried. It just makes me feel self-conscious about my weight, but since I was one of the shorter people on my team, everyone just assumed that I should be one of the carried instead of the carriers. All I could think the whole time was, "What if I'm way heavier than they think and they drop me? I'll be mortified!" On one hand, I felt sad to be in the "flabby" minority at Marshall; on the other hand, since there are so few flabby people, there were plenty of really strong, fit people who were able to carry me. On another activity, I had to sit on someone's shoulders. Although everything came out ok, I was frightened out of my wits during the actual activity, for several reasons: (1) I was afraid I was going to make the guy carrying me buckle under (remember, I feel self-conscious when I'm being carried?), and then we'd both be in the hospital. (2) My sense of balance sucks, so I was digging my heels into the guy carrying me while my two hands were grabbing the shoulders of two other teammates with a vise-like grip for fear of losing my balance. Every time the guys moved around (we had gotten to our spots way faster than the other team and the guys were getting restless), I'd plead, "Don't move! Stay here!" for fear that I'd fall off and crack my head open. (3) I'm scared of heights, and my perch just happened to be the tallest guy I've met. I was sure I'd teeter over, but my teammates were very good and didn't let that happen. Anyway, although it was scary, it was a fun day and there was a lot of physical activity involved, which was good because we'd spent the previous two days sitting in conference rooms all day.

After the T@M activities, I was tired and sweaty, so I opted out of the comedy club performance we were invited to and instead went home and changed into something nice before going to the night's other social event: The Standard, a hip, relatively new bar on the roof of the Standard Hotel in Los Angeles. I knew that most of the students were too tired to go, but since I had never been, I figured this would be the perfect opportunity to go and take a look. From what the second-years have been telling me, I'm going to forget what "free time" is very, very soon. Dubya joined me, and we mingled a little bit. I wanted to talk to more Marshall students, but I was having trouble recognizing them without the usual business casual wear and nametags. I would approach someone only to swerve away at the last second when I realized that I wasn't positive that I'd seen them before. Dubya and I did talk to several Marshall students (including the one I think is cute and one she thinks is cute), and played some of our favorite games for bars/clubs: "Who's Gay?" and "Male or Female?" Oh, don't look all know you wonder about certain people too. I'm just being candid. The Standard has some funky, modern furniture that I liked a lot. The lounge chairs beside the swimming pool are these sleek, curved shapes, and they have these little enclosed waterbeds that Dubya calls "Hershey Kisses" because the enclosures are kind of shaped like the candies. They were fun to sit in, but I can't imagine actually sleeping on one...too much movement, and I had an arm workout just trying to get off the bed. Ol' anti-social me actually stayed until 11:30 pm. Quite an accomplishment, if I do say so myself. I am amazed at the number of "social" things I've done so far. I'm really quite proud of myself for going to these places, given my predisposition to vegetate in solitude.

Thursday was all about leadership. We spent the entire day in the same conference room listening to people talk to us about important qualities leaders need and the issues leaders face. We talked about the different issues that people have to address when they're working in a team and common problems that teams run into when they consist of people with very different styles of working and interacting. During lunch, we had a guest speaker who talked about his experiences and what leadership skills he needed to accomplish his goals. It was kind of boring to have to sit in the same room for the entire day, but I did think that the information we were given was interesting. In addition, the international students, who had arrived at Marshall one week earlier than the rest of us, gave a very entertaining presentation that made us all laugh and gave us a much needed break from the many lectures we had to listen to that day.

Today, we were introduced to the case study method. It was scary with all the cold-calling that was going on, and I was just sitting in my seat, thinking, "Don't call on me. Don't call on me." I already know that I don't always "think on my feet," and I think that's a large part of what case analysis is. The case study method is very different from the lecture style that I'm used to, so I know it'll take some time for me to adjust. I can't copy the notes from the board like when I was in math class at college. If I did try to copy the notes that way, they would end up making very little sense and wouldn't help me on future exams or in future classes. It's more about the process of analyzing situations and coming up with solutions than about the actual solutions themselves, which I'm not used to. I think my statistics class will be more the style I'm used to. After the case study, we had a barbecue lunch. While the food was not the best, it was a great opportunity to meet more people and to see our favorite faculty members trash-talk the students, who were trying to dunk them into the dunk tank that was set up on the lawn. All in all, it was an enjoyable week, but it was just soooo busy, what with all the different activities and events that had been set up.

I'm looking forward to the weekend and a chance at getting more than 4 hours of sleep a night.

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