Sunday, April 22, 2012

Two weeks / Red Bull Chariot Race

Man... it's crazy to think that this semester will be over in two weeks! This semester has gone by really quickly, but at the same time, it feels like it's been going on for forever. But, I think that's just my brain meshing the entire year into one big semester. Yeah, I think that's it.

This week is "dead week." The week before finals week. This is the week where studying becomes your life. You go to class, eat, study, nap, study, sleep, study, shower, study, study, study, study. That's pretty much it. Somewhere in there you blink your eyes. But only sometimes.

And then of course the next week is finals week. YEAH!!! (sarcasm). I guess finals week isn't so bad. You go into beastmode for a few days and then you're done! I guess I can handle that.

I'm pretty excited for the summer. I've got a few classes to take, two jobs to work, and many adventures to be had. I just have to wait two more weeks. I can make it, right?

Well, last week was A-Week. An entire week dedicated to Utah State, service, and fun. There were events all week, but my favorite was the Red Bull Chariot Race. I'll keep the description short... but, basically how it went down was this: USU students in teams built chariots to race each other. The winning team of the event won a trip to Dallas, TX to attend a huge Red Bull event. Pretty sweet, huh? I participated in this event last year. It was a blast! My fraternity (SigEp, the ones pulling a drift trike) competed this year as well and took third place (had to throw in that plug, haha). Check out the video of this year's event!



Until next time...

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Attack of the Seagulls!

Alright, I know it's spring. That means birds are migrating again. Which also means that plenty of avian species are flying through the Cache Valley. In the past two springs I've lived in Logan, I've seen my fair share of birds flying around the valley, heading to where ever they need to be. Usually, you'll see the occasional geese migration, a few ducks, robins, scrub jays, crows, etc. And typically, the only annoying birds are the crows. They're loud.

But, this year... oh man, this year... it's the attack of the seagulls! I don't know whose idea it was to roll eggs down Old Main Hill for Easter, but the timing couldn't have been worse. Around the time families came to campus to roll eggs down the hill, a swarm... or army... of seagulls came to pick up the leftovers.

They haven't left.

If you were to walk on campus around the LLC (Living, Learning Community: one of the one-campus housing areas), you would see hundreds of seagulls. They're everywhere! It's been a few days, and the number of seagulls hasn't gone down at all. The LLC roofs are covered in seagulls, and so are the skies above.

For me, since I live off-campus, this isn't a big deal. In fact, I have to laugh when I see people looking up at the birds in total confusion (I mean, think about it, we don't live by any near-by lakes in Cache Valley). I only live right off campus, though, so I can hear the birds all day long. Which is kind of nice, it sounds like the beach.

I don't know how much longer these birds are going to hang out with us Aggies, but it's been pretty funny so far. I just don't know if I want to walk on Old Main Hill for a while. At least until after the next rain storm. I'm going to try and get a picture of all the birds on the roofs and in the sky. When I do, I'll post it on this blog entry.

Over and out!
Charley

Sunday, April 1, 2012

Crazy Busy

Hey everyone! Man, what a crazy week it's been. There's been so much going on on campus. I'll try and keep it short and sweet for you. Hey, I'll even put it in numerical order.

1) Last Wednesday, our basketball team played its final home game of the year. I know I wrote a blog about our last home game a few weeks back... but that was only for the regular season. Last Wednesday, the Aggies played in the championship game of the CIT post-season tournament. The Aggies were able to play a few more games this year because of this tournament. It was awesome to see our team get a few more wins and make a run in the post season. Sadly, however, we lost in the championship game of the CIT here in the Spectrum. We lost to Mercer University, 70-67. That game was nuts. The Spectrum got crazy! One of the loudest nights I've ever heard in the Spectrum. No kidding. Even though we loss, we ended the season at 21-16. I could go into and elaborate on this entire season, but that would take me forever. So, instead, I will just smile at this season and look forward to next season.

Oh, and to show you some of the madness from last Wednesday's game... here's Kyisean Reed. Three dunks on three straight possessions. The man is a monster.





2) A-Day was two Friday's ago. It was awesome to be a group leader and be able to show a group of high school seniors what it's like to be a student at Utah State. These students got to go to a mock lecture, visit with advisors, have lunch on campus, have a tour of campus, and get a feel for Utah State in a more personal way. Around lunch time, I was able to be a presenter (along with the other MyFriends) for the "Living in Logan" portion of the day. Us MyFriends got to talk on stage to all the students attending A-Day about what it's like to attend USU and live in Logan. It was awesome! And if you couldn't guess already... I spoke on Aggie Athletics. It was great at the end when we got to have all the students and parents do the Scotsman. Although they really didn't get what they were doing at first, they loved it by the end. And I'm sure when they get to go to USU, they'll be even more excited.

3) Exams. Blah! So many exams. Just barely this last Friday I had a Biochemistry exam. Let's just say that cramming for that exam was a joy! (Sarcasm) But, I ended up getting a good score. So, I'm happy about it. I'm just sure my stress levels weren't so stoked. However, with a good score... all is well.

So, although my blog doesn't accurately show how crazy the last few weeks have been (since I left out so much), it really has been crazy. But, when I think about it, that's what makes college so awesome. You're never bored. You're always doing something and staying engaged. And for that, I thank you Utah State.

Monday, March 19, 2012

Spring Break 2012

Well, here I am, sitting in the library on campus. Back to another week of school after a week off for spring break. I miss it already! Although it feels good to be back on campus and being productive, I sure do miss the warm weather down in Mesquite, NV.

This year for spring break I spent the entire week at my friend Jake Frisby's house in Beaver Dam, AZ (about 10 miles outside of Mesquite). We spent every day BBQing, eating tons of junk food, watching college basketball, gambling, and shooting shotguns. For me, this was a perfect way to spend spring break.

In years past, I've had some bigger adventures for spring break. My freshman year I went on a roadtrip with seven of my friends from Logan to Las Vegas to Huntington Beach to San Diego to Zions National Park and back to Logan. I slept on a bed once the entire trip! For the most part, we would buy one hotel room and cram eight of us in the room. I had a blast on that trip, but I think my back was a bit angry with me by the end.  My sophomore year I spend my spring break down in Las Vegas for the WAC basketball tournament. Most of my time was spent yelling my brains out during our basketball games. And to cap it off, we got to storm the court at The Orleans Arena when we won the championship game. Well, to also cap it off, I did win an Android phone for winning a dance competition during a time out. I guess that was pretty sweet, too.

For this year though, it was all about relaxing. With school being so stressful and time-consuming, I didn't want to spend my spring break going from place to place and being stressed from traveling. The most "intense" part of the trip was going spotlight jackrabbit hunting in the middle of the night. I've never hunted before, but this was a blast. Standing in the back of a moving truck with a rifle, shooting at jackrabbits and beer bottles. It was a great time.

Another first-time thing for me this trip was shotgun shooting. We spent two days shooting clay pigeons over a cliff in the Arizona desert. It was awesome! And it turns out I'm actually not too bad at shooting shotguns.

Red shorts and shotguns.

One thing that didn't go so hot for me this trip? Gambling. Our first night in Mesquite we played at a $3 blackjack table. I ended up breaking even the first night, but the next two nights I lost $20 a night at the exact same table. Ending up forty bucks down at the end of the trip didn't make me too happy, but it was fun to play cards with my friends and meet new people.

Overall, the trip was pretty good. Felt great to get away for a while. I'm not used to being on campus just yet, but I'll be okay. Let's hope.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Waiting for Spring Break

Hey everyone!

Alright, this is one of the hardest weeks of school by far. Next week is Spring Break, and all I can think about it no classes for an entire week! Everyone on campus is talking about where they're going and what they'll be doing for the break. Does this make paying attention in class and studying for an exam difficult? Very.

Luckily, this week isn't too packed for me. Okay, actually, it kind of is. I've already completed a Physics assignment, had a physics quiz, also a biochemistry quiz. I need to complete two biochemistry lab reports, then do a biochemistry lab on Thursday. Also, to top it all off, I have a genetics exam on Thursday morning. What a joy! But... if I just busy through this week and fight through the pain... I can relax all of next week.

Speaking of next week... it's going to be fun. Next week I'll be traveling down to St. George, Utah; Mesquite, Nevada; and Las Vegas! I'll be traveling with four of my good friends that are in my fraternity: Max Parker Dahl, Jake Frisby, Brian Isom, and Ben Wilson. Basically the entire week will be filled with BBQ'ing, coyote hunting, gambling in Vegas/Mesquite, and watching some March Madness.

That's Kyisean Reed. The dude is a BEAST!

Before I talk about March Madness... just take a look at that picture of Kyisean Reed on senior night. Get out of his way! He had too many awesome dunks to count this season in the Spectrum. I expect him to throw down some monster jams in the WAC tournament.

The men's basketball team won both their last two road games to finish off the season! We won at San Jose State and won a clutch 61-60 victory at Hawaii. It's not easy to win at Hawaii, let alone on their senior night. We ended the regular season at 17-14 (8-6 in the WAC). This puts us as the 4 seed in the WAC tournament coming up later this week. It kills me that I won't be there. Sigh... I just hope that we can make a good run in the tournament. We play La Tech for our first game. If we win the tournament (like we did last year), we'll punch our ticket to the NCAA tournament! The big dance! But, there are some great teams in the WAC this year. Nevada and New Mexico State are the powerhouses (fitting, they're our rivals). Also, Idaho has been great, too. So, really, this tournament is anyone's for the taking. After the WAC tournament, it's then all about March Madness. I know I'll blog about that later.

Another awesome thing to note... our women's basketball team this year has been amazing! They finished the regular season at 20-8 (11-3 in the WAC). It is the best record our women have ever had (with the 20 wins)! They basically killed it all season. They're a 2 seed in the tournament and will play Nevada. I believe our girls can win the tournament!

Well, I guess it's time for me to get some sleep so I can get all my work done tomorrow. Only a few more days until I'm enjoying the 75 degree weather down south.

Until next time!

Monday, February 27, 2012

No more home games...

Ugh... sigh.

That's the only way I can describe my feelings right now. This last weekend, we had our last home basketball game of the season. GAH! I'm still upset about it. I live for home basketball games! But, sadly, the home games are over for the season. We still have two away games at San Jose St and Hawaii. So, I'll just have to enjoy those games in spirit. After that, it's off to the WAC tourney for the Aggies.

And to make matters worse, I can't go to the WAC tournament this year. Kills me! I love traveling with my Aggies and watching them play. Nothing feels better than storming the court in Las Vegas. At least, that's what I got to do last year. But, I won't be there this year to see how it all unfolds. Sigh... oh well.

However, this season has really been one to remember. I'm not going to get into all the details about it. But, it really has been fun. Sure, it hasn't been our best year. But, it's been an adventure.

The last home game on Friday against Idaho was amazing. It was senior night and we sent out our three seniors Morgan Grim, Brockeith Pane, and Brady Jardine in style! And with a 67-50 win. That felt really good. But really, that night was absolutely insane. The crowd was completely filled. 4,000 students came out to support our Aggies on our last night in the Spectrum for the season.  Everything from the "I believe that we will win" chant to the "Winning Team, Losing Team" chant at the end, the game was awesome.

Snap shot during "I Believe."
I just had to rock my Red Sox hat and gold chain.

We were down by 15 points at the half, but then our player Preston Medlin went absolutely bananas in the second half. He scored 27 points in the second half while Idaho's entire team only scored 21 points. If you watch ESPN, then you know about Jeremy Lin and "Linsanity." Well, that night, something new was born... MEDLINSANITY!!! The Spectrum got so loud that night in the second half that my ears rang the rest of the weekend. And Preston sure as heck helped attribute to that. He dropped 3 after 3 after 3. The roof almost came off. It was insane. MEDLINSANE!


That's our man Pre-Med. The master of Medlinsanity.

So, even though the season is over, we ended the home season right. Oh, and I forgot to mention... that win on Friday night was the 500th men's basketball win in the Spectrum. Yeah, great timing, I know.

Remember how I was kind of depressed at the beginning of this blog? Well, I'm not anymore. This season had its ups and downs. But, in the end, I'm smiling.

Aggie basketball always has me smiling in the end.

Monday, February 13, 2012

A Much-needed Weekend

I can honestly say that I worship weekends. I mean, everyone loves the weekend. Duh. But, ever since I got to college, they have literally become my saving grace.  With assignments, exams, projects, and everything else that comes with school, the weekend is your gateway to sanity and freedom. I don't know what I'd do without them!

This weekend was especially good. On Friday, I left for Bear Lake to have a retreat with my fellow coworkers on the A-Team. If you don't know what the A-Team is at USU... we're the ones that run new student orientation during the summer. It's a killer job. Great people to work with, great job, and great times that are had all the time. Anyways, we got to the USU Bear Lake Training Center on Friday afternoon and spent the day and night hanging out and getting to know each other. We also had a dance party. I'm sure our boss appreciated the music into the wee hours of the morning.

Morning view from the Training Center

The next morning we came home just in time for the basketball game against our rival New Mexico State. ESPN was in the house, and the Spectrum was crazy. Unfortunately, we lost the game... I don't want to talk about it!

That night, USU held one of its massive parties. MARDI GRAS! It was awesome. There was a magician, oxygen bar, dance party, acrobatics, jazz bands, a full casino (fake money, haha), and more! It was awesome. Tons of people showed up and the place was crazy all night long. I ended up filming the event for MyFriends, so that footage should be coming out soon.

Then on Sunday, I was able to drive to Salt Lake City to have dinner for my dad's birthday. It was nice to see my family and relax a bit before school on Monday.

Basically, this weekend saved me. I really needed it. After having tons of things to do for school during the recent weekdays, this weekend kept me from imploding. And imploding would not be good. Is that even possible?


Anyways, enough about imploding. Even though I need to get back to my physics homework.

Peace!

Monday, February 6, 2012

#aggielife + #beastmode = #aggiemode

Hey everyone. Alright, first off, sorry about the title. I, myself, am fully against using hashtags in anything but Twitter. However, my title is an exact tweet I had a while back during finals week. It described my life perfectly. Let me explain.

#aggielife - anything that has to do with Utah State and the lives that we as Aggies live.

#beastmode - this has many meanings, but it basically means that you reach a level beyond human capacity. Whether that's in sports, school, etc.

#aggiemode - this is me during finals week or any time of intense academic performance.

Well, last week, I was in #aggiemode from Sunday night til Friday evening. The entire week. It felt like finals week, but it was only my first week of exams. It was madness. And it's the reason why I didn't blog at all last week. (My apologies)

Here's how the week went down. Sunday night I had to read for my Genetics class. Monday I had class from 9:30am - 2:20pm, then had to finish revising my resume for English. Then that night, I realized I had to get started on my 5-page essay for my English class. So, what did I do? I wrote my entire 5-page essay that night. Don't worry, it was only a first draft. Then, after that, I read for Genetics.  Then Tuesday rolled around. I had class, had to finish a Physics assignment, and then cram for my Physics exam which was the next day. Not much sleep happened that night. Wednesday came. I took my Physics exam and went to the rest of my classes (which go til 6:30pm on Wednesday's). After that, I had things going on with my fraternity until about 10:00pm. After that, I went straight home and crammed for my Genetics exam which was the next morning at 9:30am. Yeah, not fun, haha! But, I studied hard (crammed hard?) and ended up getting a 92%. So that was cool. Then that night, I crammed as much as I could for my Biochemistry exam I had on Friday afternoon at 1:30pm. Friday rolled around, I woke up early, went to the library and studied amino acids, nucleic acids, equilibrium constants, and more for a few hours before my exam.  Took the test and then I was free for the weekend!

Not.

I ended up having to leave my friends on Friday night and finish a Genetics assignment and turn in my essay for English online. Once that was all done. I was free.

For the weekend, I spent most of my time down in Salt Lake City for my best friend's wedding. I was a best man at the wedding. It was awesome.  The weekend before, we all went paintballing for part of his bachelor party. Good times were had by all. That's me with the thumbs on, on the right.

Nothing proves friendship quite like shooting each other
...and then leaving with welts for souvenirs...

All-in-all, it was a crazy week and weekend. But totally worth it. Nothing feels better than accomplishing a lot. Even if it stresses you out to your breaking point. But, once you see those good test scores come in, it makes it all worth it. I pray I don't have any more weeks like this until finals week, but if it happens... I'll tackle that challenge when it comes... in #aggiemode and all its glory.

By the way, right at the end of writing this, I felt like kicking someone in the chest into a bottomless pit like in the movie "300" and yelling "THIS IS UTAH STATE!"

But, I'm in the library. So I didn't.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

We must build the ARC!

Okay, you're probably looking at this title, thinking to yourself, "What the heck...?" But, let me explain.

Utah State, at this moment, is in the workings to build two monumental projects right in the middle of campus. The first is the Aggie Legacy Fields. These will be new, awesome, turf fields placed right where the HPER fields currently are. Here's what they will look like.

Pretty sweet, huh? If all goes as planned, these fields will start to be constructed here in the next two months and be completed by the fall. I'm stoked! Some students are a little bugged that when the fields are finished, there will be a $30 increase in students fees to help pay. But, really, in my opinion, $30 is nothing compared to how much the students will benefit from these fields.

The second project, which won't be started for another few years, is called the Aggie Recreation Center (the ARC! See I told you I would explain).  The plan is to build a gigantic, new student recreation center on the corner of Aggie Bull-evard and 8th East, right next to the new Legacy Fields. Here's what it will look like.

And yes, that is a rock climbing wall on the outside of the building (there will be one inside, too). This new center will have everything! Basketball courts, swimming pools, weight rooms, cycling rooms, yoga rooms, game rooms, a new cafe, etc, etc, etc. Seriously, this place would make Utah State's campus just that much better. When this building is open in 2015, the increased student fee that was $30 will move up to $75. Again, in my opinion, this is very minor compared to what students, and future Aggies, will benefit from this new building. Oh, and remember, I said it was for students. Yup, students only. An amazing building and new fields paid for by students, for students. Okay, the administration is paying about half of the costs, along with generous donations from people with big pockets, but really, it's only for students.

If any current USU student is reading this blog, I would seriously encourage you, and everyone you know, to vote yes (bold, underlined, and italicized... for added emphasis) on the new students fees to cover these new additions to our campus.

Sorry, had to put in a plug for the voting haha. But, really, I'm really excited for these new projects. I hope the students pass the fees to get the ball rolling. The Legacy Fields and ARC would make Utah State's campus, and just USU as a whole, that much better.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

New Year. New Semester. How neat is that?

Well, hey everyone. It's a new year. And it's a new semester. So, "allow me to reintroduce myself..." Okay, just kidding, those are Jay-Z lyrics. Moving on.

I can't tell you how awesome it feels to have begun a new year a few days ago! 2012! How neat is that?* I'm really excited to see what this year has in store for me. Every new year, I'm always telling myself how I'm going to make great changes in my life and all that. Usually doesn't happen. Does anyone really follow through with their resolutions? Doubt it. But, I'm going to try really hard to stick with mine! And what is it, you ask? I'm giving up soda. GASP! For me, this is huge. During last semester, I was drinking about five 32oz Dr. Peppers a week. That's 160oz a week. Uuummmm...yeah, I know, way unhealthy. I decided that giving up soda would be a great way for me to stay a bit healthier during the school year. And for the entire year for that matter. I'm optimistic that I can stick with this plan, because during my freshman year, I decided to get rid of eating fast food. And in that time, I've only faltered four times. So, I'm thinking I can kick my habit of drinking Dr. Pepper. But, you will be missed old friend...
May you rest in peace.
Sigh...

Not only is it a new year, it's also a new semester! I'm really excited for my classes. Here's my course list.

Biology 3060 (Genetics)
Physics 2120
Chemistry 3700 (Biochemistry)
English 2010
A-Team training class

This all adds up to 17 credits. Pretty full schedule, but luckily it's going to be fun. I am going to really enjoy all my classes. And even though I've only been to two days of school so far this semester, I know these classes are going to be fun and really beneficial to me. Will they be hard? Duh. But, that's college for you. And this is my sixth semester in college. Man, I feel kind of old...

All-in-all, things are looking good for this semester. I'm excited for my classes, the events on campus, making new friends, and enduring the wrath of another Logan Winter. Should be a good time.

Until next time! I'm out.

* When I said "How neat is that?" up above, this is the video I got it from. Definitely worth the watch, hahaha!