Three Years

Three years ago, I made this blog post.
Now, I’m making this one.

Six years ago, I was twelve.
Now, I am eighteen.

Now I am twenty-one.

Six years ago, I did not know I. Grabski, A. Lin, L. Chen, J. Yuan, S. Johnson, D. Philipson, S. Rubinstein-Salzedo, B. Chen, B. Ray Avalani, S. Ye, or D. Rowlands.
Almost everyone that I have been glad to be acquainted with I first got to know in the last six years, most I have heard of significantly before I met them in real life, and some I haven’t even met in real life yet.

There’s only one person on that list I haven’t met now. And there’s a whole lot more people I’ve met in real life that I’m really glad to have met, both a lot that I’ve heard of before and a lot that I’ve never heard of before.

Six years ago, I have been to eight states of the USA.
Now, I have been to fourteen.

Now, I have been to seventeen.

Six years ago, I have been to three countries.
Now, I…have still only been to three countries.

I’ve still only been to three countries, and still haven’t set foot on the entire Eurafrasian landmass.

Six years ago, I haven’t yet watched Lord of the Rings.
I first watched Lord of the Rings in May 2012. I loved it.

I haven’t yet gotten to watching it a second time though.

Six years ago, I haven’t read a single Harry Potter book or watched a single Harry Potter movie.
In Spring 2010, I watched part of a Harry Potter movie. I still haven’t read any Harry Potter books.

And still. Watched a whole lot of other movies, though.

Six years ago, I could name all sovereign countries and their capitals of the world.
Now I still can, but I also know their flags.

Not much has changed here.

Six years ago, I could name all the elements of the periodic table.
Now I can’t, because I didn’t bother to learn all the names of the newly named ones. Whoops.

I still can’t name all of them because of the reason stated above.

Six years ago, I was nearing the end of chess being in my life. I have not yet started destroying my chess trophies at the time, though.
Over the span of time from November 2011 to June 2012, I have demolished all chess trophies I have won after 2003. I am still today proud that I am no longer a chessplayer.

Although I still very unhappy about the chess episode of my life, and still am happy I went and destroyed all of my chess trophies, I’d willing to go softer on this feeling now and not explicitly be proud of just not being a chessplayer anymore.

Six years ago, I was not on Facebook.
I first joined Facebook in January 2010. My first account that I used for more than a year was made in October 2010.

Two months after that blog post, I quit Facebook. I have been off Facebook since, and am very happy about this.

Six years ago, I haven’t had a GMail account that I used for more than a month.
I first decided to take a persistent stab at my father’s forbidding me to use GMail in January 2010.

I now use GMail a tremendous amount.

Six years ago, I didn’t know what Art of Problem Solving was.
I first joined Art of Problem Solving in October 2008. I have now made over 5000 posts on Art of Problem Solving, and I have hosted over 20 forum games, which over 150 users have participated in.

I absolutely do not care about having been in the Art of Problem Solving community now, really. I’m still glad it was a great opportunity to meet a lot of what would become my best friends online.

Six years ago, I didn’t know what Sporcle was.
I joined Sporcle in December 2010. My quizzes have over 8000 plays.

I left Sporcle, and then went back, and then left again. I sporadically revisit. I still find Sporcle to be a community beyond my threshold of excessive conservativeness.

Six years ago, I didn’t know what Kongregate was.
I joined Kongregate in March 2012. I now have over 9000 Kongregate points.

I’m Level 50, with over 17000 points now.

Six years ago, I didn’t know what WordPress was.
I joined WordPress in August 2011. My blogs, in total, have over 35000 views from over 90 countries, Hong Kong, Puerto Rico, French Polynesia, Isle of Man, and the Turks and Caicos Islands.

I now have over 130000 views from over 140 countries.

Six years ago, I knew no programming languages.
In the autumn of 2007, I learned TI-BASIC, but the first legitimate programming language I learned was Python, which I started learning in May 2012.

I totally thought I knew Python then. I totally didn’t. And now I know Javascript!

Six years ago, I only listened to classical music.
Rhapsody of Fire’s “Black Dragon” was the first power metal song I listened to, in early 2010. I still love power metal. Classical and power metal music will probably resonate through my blood for a very long time.

I continue to be very much into power metal. But at the time of the quoted blog post, Nightwish, my now-favorite band, was only starting to emerge within the set of bands I listened to.

Six years ago, I was a hurricane freak.
I still am, but not as much.

I’m still in not-as-much mode. But I have also gotten way more into weather in general! And have for two years in a row been the best-performing undergraduate member of the MIT weather team in the WxChallenge forecasting competition.

Six years ago, I was atheist.
Now, I am agnostic.

I’m still agnostic.

Six years ago, I was an annoying brat.
Now, I wonder what I would think of myself six years from now, but I know I’m not the  ridiculous person I was when I was twelve.

Yeah, me from three years ago, I find you an annoying brat too. Not as annoying as nine years ago, but oh boy you’re someone I sometimes cringe about having been the same person as still.

Six years ago, I was in a junior high school I slightly liked.
I later went a high school I completely disliked. I now go to a college I love with all my heart.

Funny, that was a time when I found life sucky but didn’t attribute any of it to The Institvte. I still love this place; it’s just, there’s definitely many things that could be better.

More things:

I’ve now learned LaTeX.
I’ve now learned Java.
I’ve now learned Javascript.
I’ve now been an Emerson Fellow.
I started streaming on Twitch.
I’ve now been on a winning team of the MIT Mystery Hunt.

I wrote Could’ve, Two Fires, Hooklet, The Embassy of Sadness, and A Sign. Could’ve remains the poem in which I find my most successful self-expression.

Three years ago, I’ve been to Next House, New House, MacGregor House, McCormick Hall, and Simmons Hall substantially, to Maseeh Hall, Baker House, and Random Hall a few times. All other dorms I’ve visited at most once.
I’ve now been to every dorm on MIT’s campus except Tang Hall, and have been to every undergraduate dorm except Bexley Hall more than once.

Three years ago, I was well progressing through shedding fear of the East Side.
Now, I love the East Side. This is the side that’s my home. More home than anywhere else I’ve ever been my entire life.

Three years ago, -c dzaefn was my zephyr personal class.
It’s not anymore.

Three years ago, I was still scared of SIPB.
I’m now a SIPB member, and SIPB is the student organization I most identify with.

Three years ago, I’ve been to 55 MIT buildings, many of which I just briefly walked through.
http://web.mit.edu/~dzaefn/Public/dzaefn_building_stats

Three years ago, I’ve qualified for the Integration Bee finals once.
Now, I’ve qualified for the Integration Bee finals four times, twice making it to the Top 8.

Three years ago, I used the QWERTY keyboard layout.
I don’t anymore.

Three years ago, I used Windows.
Since then, I’ve switched to Linux.

Three years ago, I used Notepad++.
Now, I use vim. I also went and learned emacs, but I prefer vim.

Three years ago, I didn’t know how to use Git.
I since then learned Git, then hated it, then later learned Mercurial, and loved that, and use Mercurial instead of Git whenever I can now.

Three years ago, I’ve taught for ESP for 320 minutes.
Now, I’ve taught for ESP for 10260 minutes.

Three years ago, I did not know how to make a Moira list.
Now, I do.

Three years ago, my shell knowledge consisted of cd, ls, and ssh.
That is very much not the case anymore.

Three years ago, I just finished my freshman year at MIT.
I have now graduated from MIT.

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