Friday, May 3, 2013

Post-Dinner Rumination

Tonight was the first dinner I attended for the ILC, at Town Hall in SF.  In attendance was the whole Brown cohort, subsequent parents, the ILC dignitaries, and a veritable cornucopia of interesting people.  To my surprise, I was chosen as a speaker at the dinner, along with Alicia.

Speaking.  I stressed over it.  My over-thinking brain loves to get its hands on these kinds of opportunities.  But, I thought about what I wanted to say, collected said thoughts, made some notes, and practiced what I was going to say.  That process really helped me remain calm as I went up to talk.  But, when I got up there, after starting by thanking everyone like I had planned, I promptly abandoned my plan and winged it.  I decided to forgo all that preparation and just go with the flow.  Could've been worse.  That isn't to say I didn't say any of those things I had prepared, I just didn't say them in the way I had prepared.  It feels more natural to just talk than to try to remember a certain pattern or structure, and that seemed to be received well, as I got multiple compliments at dinner and in other peoples' posts.  Thanks guys!

Anyways, enough about my speech!  The dinner was great!  I have pictures of my main course, the chicken, which was absolutely delicious, and the dessert, which was to die for.  Incredibly rich, but irresistible.  I really liked the setting too, Town Hall has a really friendly atmosphere, although the room we were in does tend to get a bit loud, making it hard to hear all of the interesting things the people at my table had to say!  I sat, along with Julia Shebek and Johnny Ko, with two Brown alums, one from the class of 2012 and one from 1984; they were both really interesting.  The '84 grad, Hunter, played on the San Jose Earthquakes, an MLS soccer team, for a few years after college.  That's crazy!  Soccer wasn't as affluent in America at that point and the professional teams weren't really respected in the soccer community at that point, but it is still quite an achievement.  And now he's the head of a labor union!  This led to interesting discussions about lobbying, money in politics, clean and renewable energy, soccer, personal drive, and all sorts of other things.  The '12 grad had just spent half a year in Brazil, as she majored in Brazilian and Portugese studies, and she had great stories about Rio.  She also went to ECHS; it's nice to meet fellow Gauchos.

Also at my table was Nate Enfield, a teacher at De Anza, and my chaperone!  He is chaperoning the first Brown group (that would include me), and he seemed like a really cool guy.  I like him!  We talked about what it's like at De Anza, and seeing as he is the Econ teacher there, I think he could definitely be of some help in my macro class.  He was interested in even helping out in class, which I would be all for, but I'm not sure how the professor would feel about that.  We'll see!  He was really interested in exploring the area around Providence and seeing lots of colleges while there, an interest which I can strongly support.  I really want to get to see as much of that college area as I can, as there are so many good schools there.

All in all, I had fun tonight, it was nice seeing people who go to my school and also meeting new and interesting people, and I hope the latter will be a recurring theme throughout this program!

-Duncan

p.s. - Here are the sweet pics of the food:



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