Cale Byers

Update on Life

I have finally learned the 1st movement of Moonlight Sonata. I'm learning the 2nd movement, and it's going quite well. In about 1-2 months, I should have it fairly polished, though far from perfect. I'm making progress with Für Elise, La Valse de Amelie, and digging into other accompaniments. I've memorized Burgmüller's Arabesque, Op 100 No. 2. It's a short, fast piece, and I've begun studying Bach's prelude in C minor for the lute. The piece is also short and built around different chords. Would be good piece for analysis.

I've gotten a lot better at doing some basic web-design. I'm going to be doing marketing, photography, and web help for The Barberry and 1882 Grille, two restaurants in town where I also work as a server assistant. I'm too busy and distracted to do any quality journalism, so The LFP hasn't been updated in a while, and nobody was interested in being paid to write articles. However, I'm trying to arrange for The Linfield Review to hire me to fix their site as they look towards a web-dominated platform next year, focusing on magazines and other lower-frequency, but higher-quality print pieces. This will save everyone a lot of time, because the layout process takes many hours.

Linfield frustrates me to no end, yet I keep feeling hopeful for its future and wanting to make it better. I have a weird relationship with this place. I feel like I could make it all better, but that I don't have the support I need from key people in power, or among groups of students. There are some pretty easy things that could result in huge changes to campus culture and happiness, and I just need people to listen long enough and think for themselves to consider that I could be right. It seems that people aren't interested in devoting any focus to an idea, and they don't get on board until some authority, either of power of popularity, decides that it's a Good Idea. Then, everyone is on board, because they don't have to think for themselves, and the people they trust have done the thinking for them. That's actually really fantastic, since it makes my life easier, but it works against you until you get the right people to express public support for your projects. Then, and only then, will there be a watershed moment, so to speak. But when those in power deceive the student body and invent a budget crisis, then it fucks over the professors, and nobody is willing to go against the authority and discover the truth on their own. Intellectually, this college is not very stimulating. For this reason, we really need to establish partnerships with other universities. A nice blend of socialization, academics, and professional networking would be fantastic. I'd like to study Linear algebra with students from Willamette University, then go walk around Salem and get food. Our school is small, and making these connections would help with understanding others' lives, gaining new perspectives, and finding more friends, romantic partners, or potential jobs.

I have three more math exams, then my year is done. Two finals, and one mastery quiz for Linear Algebra. I had my 3rd math test in Linear this morning, and I wasn't prepared. One of the proofs was really easy, but I didn't look it over. She even told us it would be on the exam. No excuse for that one. I think I probably got around a 65 or 70 at most. If I can get a B on the final, perhaps I'll get a C+ or B- in the class. I haven't really been a good student this semester, though I'm a lot better than I used to be last year. It's hard to get all the homework done. Math is a difficult major, because it requires extreme discipline and focus. I tried to get help with attention problems, but apparently I don't have ADHD. However, I do have issues focusing, and their test was built around math questions. As a math person, this makes it unfair. I did very well on everything, because word problems are easy for me, and the most complicated math they did was two interest cycles on a $20,000 principal. Quite simple, but it disqualifies me from having ADD or any other trendy disorder. I can focus when I want to, but I have trouble getting to that point, and I'm really unable to multitask. Starting a new thing makes me completely forget the unfinished project, and then I don't remember to call people, email people, submit forms, or take care of important business.

I need to start making some food, and I should go practice piano. I want to start a food cart asap but need to finish school first. I also think it'd be cool to start a coffee and tea club, eventually turning it into a food cart. It's been on my mind for a while, but I don't have the time just yet. I'd call it "Students for a Caffeinated Society" or SCS for short, based on "Students for a Democratic Society."