Posted by: holdenlee | September 2, 2012

Welcome to Mental Wilderness!

Hi! I’m starting my blog again for REAL this semester. I aim to write one post every day on topics such as the educational system, books I’m reading, math I’m learning, stories I’m writing, good bits of life advice I come across, or random events in my life I find worth recording. Some of it will be serious, and some of it may be flippant. Take it with a grain of salt, or if you prefer, sugar.

As my favorite professor Patrick Winston says, communication makes you more intelligent. That means talking to people, listening to people. He also says, when you articulate an idea you gain power over it. For instance, a study found a strong positive correlation between physics test scores and students’ tendencies to ask themselves questions, articulate the steps in the problems and the places they got stuck on.
I think a blog is a great way to express my views on a variety of topics, and see what sort of response other people have. (As such, I’m not going to do the traditional math blog, although if you’re interested in math, you can just look at a subset of the posts. And for non-math people, you can ignore those.) Communication should be a two-way exchange, so click that “Leave a comment” button and tell me what you think, especially on anything that you disagree on!

Why the name “Mental Wilderness”? I believe that every person has a unique stretch of wilderness in his or her mind that only he or she can explore – and you don’t know what you’ll find until you do.

Unlike in previous attempts to restart my blog, this time I have backing me. With a friendly interface, a “streak” tracker, and a badge system, the site encourages members to write at least 750 words (3 typewriter pages) every day. I use it as a private diary and as a testing ground for bits of stories. From now on, I’ll also devote some of the words to stuff I’ll make public on my blog.

Here are just a few of my ideas for posts:

  • What I learned from working at Gliya (educational startup) this summer.
  • What is wrong with our educational system?
  • Patrick Winston’s advice on life and writing
  • What I’m learning about writing from my favorite authors (Murakami for general fiction, Jemisin for fantasy)
  • What learning math has to do with climbing mountains and the evolution of the Pokemon theme song

Etc. If you have anything you’d like me to cover in particular, let me know!

Registration day is the day after tomorrow, Tuesday, 9/4. In the next few days I will reflect over my summer and lay out a plan for my penultimate semester as a MIT undergrad.


  1. After writing this post, WordPress gives me this quote: “Writing, to me, is simply thinking through my fingers.” – Isaac Asimov.

    I like that.

  2. Hi Old Hen! I’m really excited about this blog, and will definitely be keeping track of what you write! (I’m really interested with the pokemon theme song vs learning math blog post idea).

    Hopefully you get the most outta your senior year! Life goes by too quickly…lol.

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