Odds & Ends & Lent.

Happy Ash Wednesday, aka start of Lent, aka 40 days of no dessert.  Or Nutella.  Crap.

 
But before I get to that, let me share my experiences from the past week.
 
Charles Best:
 
This guy’s last name represents him well.  Have any of you heard of DonorsChoose.org?  If not, I suggest you take a look at this wonderful site.  Teachers from public schools across America are able to post a project on the site that they need funded.  It can be anything-supplies, money for a field trip, books, etc.  Then, anyone can go onto the site and donate money towards the project.  Once the project is funded, each donor gets a thank you letter from the teacher, and donors over $50 get handwritten letters from students in the class.  It’s a really neat concept, especially considering many schools lack the funds for basic supplies.  My physics teacher junior year actually went through this site so we could get an iPod touch to use for physics apps!
 
Last Thursday I had the opportunity to meet Charles, the founder and CEO of this site.  Two girls from my DeVito Scholars class, Laura and Kelsey, and I got the opportunity to meet him  in person prior to the presentation he was giving on campus.  It was seriously the coolest thing ever!  We were in a really nice conference room, and it was just the three of us, our adviser, and another education person.  We got to sit and chat with him for a solid hour!  He told us about how he started the website about 13 years ago when he was a first-year history teacher in the Bronx, and there was s huge need for basic supplies in the classroom.  He got the idea for the site after that, and now, 13 years later, it’s incredibly successful!  We just got to ask him a bunch of questions during that time, and he was one of the nicest people ever!  You would think that success would go to his head, but he was so humble and kind.  He even asked us questions about things and wanted to know about us!  It was just really awesome, and I can’t rave enough about him.
 
After this chat, he did his presentation in Fowler Hall, a relatively small auditorium.  Kelsey and Laura weren’t able to go, so I sat with my adviser, Janet, and we watched his presentation.  Again, he was very kind and humble and even promoted sites similar to his while he was speaking.  He even tailored the presentation to West Lafayette by looking up people in the area whose projects had been funded.  He was so funny and such a good speaker.  He even admitted some of his biggest mistakes to us too, which really says something about him in my opinion.  
 
Could I be any more in love with him?  Uhh, YES!  After his presentation, he had a bunch of cards passed out to us.  He told us that Purdue had offered him a speaker’s fee, probably for food or something like that.  Instead, he used that fee to print off these $25 “gift cards” that we could use to fund a project on the site!  Eeeek!  I told the girls that I want to be related to him because he’s so cool.  And by related, I mean married.  Wait, what?  Who said that?  Sorry, it’s these Valentine’s Day love bugs floating around.  Don’t mind me.
 
Anyways, so after his presentation, I decided I wanted to get a picture with him since I had forgotten to ask when we originally met him.  Well the only camera I had was my phone, because I’m sooo prepared.  I stood in a line and waited to talk to him.  When I made it to the front, I asked if I could get a picture with him.  I asked a kid near me to take the picture.  Except right then, my phone decided to be stupid.  It froze.  
 
Nooooo!!!
 
I messed around with it a bit, and apologized profusely.  Then I said sorry, but it’s not working.  And he said, let me ask one of the guys I travel with to take a picture on his phone. And I said oh my gosh, thank you!  And some other lady said oh, I have a nice camera.  So she pulled it out and was trying to work the flash on it.  Then another lady from the Purdue School of Management took a pic on her phone and emailed it to me.  I was so embarrassed, but it was worth it.  Even if he does look a tad creepy in the picture.
 
Later, I found a project to fund on the website.  He told us to pick a project that spoke to us, and this one did.  It was a high-poverty school in San Francisco (which I loved when I went there a few summers ago with my family) for a second grade classroom of Hispanic students (yayy little kids and Spanish!).  They were promoting literacy and writing skills and the importance of bilingualism, so they were asking for basic supplies like white boards and folders and pencil sharpeners so they could practice their writing in both languages (uhh, hello!  I love writing and reading and such!).  This project was so perfect, so I put my $25 towards it, and it was funded a few days later.  It was really cool!
 
Charles Best presentation

 

The picture I was FINALLY able to get with him!  Yayy!
 
 
Frat Party:
 
Yes, you read that right.  No, it does not say “Fat Party” (although I would totally attend one of those, because it probably involves food), and it does not say “Cat Party” (although that would be equally awesome).  Frat.  As in Fraternity.  As in those big houses full of boys that are arrogant and full of themselves who party and drink and try to get girls, all in the name of “brotherhood.”
 
Well, ladies and gentlemen, I went to a frat party last Friday night.
 
Those of you who have read my blog since the beginning of the semester: you thought I had given up, right?  WRONG!  Kasey Kaisershot does not give up.  And it’s a good thing she doesn’t.  Because otherwise she wouldn’t have had the fun experience she did last Friday.  Also, why is she talking in third person right now?  Stop that.
 
I had asked Christian a few weeks ago if he’d take me and some friends to a party so we could dance, because I had found a posse that would go with me and who doesn’t drink.  He told me that that Friday, he was going to his friend’s apartment, and it was small and not really good for dancing.  I was like boooooo.  Because I really wanted to dance that night.  So I texted my friend Alyssa since she’s in a sorority and asked if she could get us on a list to a party that night.  She did, bless her soul.  So, at about 11, Laura and I trekked to Wiley to meet Kristen and Becca, and headed over to D Chi so we could get our dance on.  Except that none of us had really been to a frat party before.  So are you ready for this awkwardness?
 
We get to the front doors, and there are a bunch of guys sitting at a table with lists of names.
 
What list are you on?
Uhh…I’m not sure…
Okay, well who put you on the list?
Uh…my friend Alyssa from AZD.
Umm, okay well you’re probably on that list over there….
 
So far, so weird.  We’re such amateurs.  
 
But lo and behold, we were on the list, and we got our first real live Xs on our hands.  We made it in.  Boo-ya.
 
We huddled in the front for a little while, trying to get the lay of the land.  Where was everyone going?  Where was the music?  Where was the alcohol, so we could stay away from it?
 
Once we answered these questions, we realized we needed to make our way down to the basement.  So we did.  The temperature increased a good 20 degrees from so many bodies packed down there.  But we found the room with the music, wedged our way in, and tried to make the best of it.
 
And you know what?  I actually enjoyed myself!  (Except for the one time when a guy and his friend came up to us.  “One of you should dance with  my friend here,” said the cute one, who was apparently a marine or something.  Friend looks like a big lumberjack, complete with beard and flannel shirt.  Eww.  “Uhh, we’re just dancing together right now, but you can join us if you’d like,” we said.  Well we learned very quickly that “dancing with us” does not mean joining our dance circle.  Rather, it means they think they can dance with us.  And somehow I ended up with the lumberjack and Laura got the marine.  Whyyyyy??? I tried making conversation with him so I didn’t really have to dance with him.  I’m sure he was nice, but I’m not really into Paul Bunyan-lookin’ guys.  I could tell Laura was uncomfortable too.  Finally, I told them that we were just gonna dance with the girls, aka SHOO!!  And shoo they did.  Pheww).  So yes, except for that one time, I really enjoyed myself.  A bunch of people kept coming up and talking to us, so it was cool to meet new people, even if they wouldn’t remember our conversation the next day.  And, since it was a Mardi Gras themed party, we got some beads!  Woo-hoo!  (Don’t worry, tops stayed on!)
 
We left a little after an hour, because Kristen and Becca were just not having it, and also because people started leaving.  I decided why I enjoyed this party much better than my experience as described in my October 12th, post, “So It’s Been Awhile.”  At that party, I went with several girls who I would consider “party experienced” whereas I was not.  I was very shy then and nervous and  made them take me under their wing.  However, at D Chi, the other 3 I was with expected me to know what I was doing!  I certainly didn’t, but I think this forced position of leadership pushed me out of my comfort zone.  It was good for me in the end.  I was a lot more outgoing with the people I met and just enjoyed myself much more.  And yes, it is something I would do again.  But no, I still won’t drink.
 
Lent:
 
As stated above, it is Ash Wednesday, marking the first day of Lent and my Lenten sacrifice of giving up sweets and desserts.  I do it every year, mainly because it’s one of the most difficult things for me to give up, and also just because it’s a healthier lifestyle choice.  I’m wondering if it will be more difficult in college since I’m constantly surrounded by ice cream and desserts in the dining courts, or if it will be easier since I have a bigger support system.  We shall see, and I will keep you posted.
 
However, you should probably know about my binge I went on last night.  In preparation for 40 days without, I made up for it by eating a crap-ton of junk food last night.  We had brownies at our Life Guide meeting, and some of us ordered Insomnia Cookies.  Then Christian and I made some cupcakes for SAD (Singles Awareness Day) which is tomorrow, so I ate one of those.  We also made the last batch of chocolate smoothies my mom brought us.  So yes, I ate a lot of dessert last night.  Don’t judge.  It’s going to be a long 40 days.
 
Me and Kelsey and Katie and our Insomnia Cookies!

 

Christian snapped this pic of me because I got cupcake batter all up in my hair and I was trying to get it off.

 

Errrmerrrgerrrrsh, kerrrpkerrrks!!

 

 
 
Random:
 
Here is some other random stuff.
 
I’ve been obsessed with the Lumineers this week.  I think I might buy their album.  We shall see.
 
They have fortune cookies at Earhart dining court, but sometimes their fortunes suck.  So I open the cookies until I find a fortune I like.  Some people say that’s bad luck.  I say oh well.
 
 
 
Alyssa’s boy from back home, Morgan, is coming up to visit her from Georgia this weekend!  I’m really excited to meet him, because I’ve Skyped him and such when Alyssa does, and he’s really nice and funny.
 
Finally, there is a nation-wide craze happening right now that you may or may not have heard of.  It’s called the Harlem Shake. Basically, it’s a bunch of people who get together and make a video to the 30 second clip of the song “Harlem Shake.”  The first videos I’m putting up are just some of my favorite ones of seen.  The last three are brought to you by some of my fellow Boilermakers.  Enjoy!
 
WARNING: There is a lot, and I mean A LOT of pelvic thrusting and general strangeness during these videos.  Prepare yourself.
 
This is the Norwegian Army!
A swim team from a school that I don’t remember.
 
At some college that I also don’t remember.
Some of the guys that live in Cary Quad.
At the Engineering Fountain
The Boiler Gold Rush Supervisors.
 
 

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