An Anthropologist on the Farm

Aaron Swartz has been blogging his experiences going through Stanford’s freshman orientation. His observations so far are both painful and comfortingly familiar to me — I have to wonder if I would have had the same right-brained analytical discomfort had I gotten into Stanford as a freshman instead of going all of 10 minutes from home to Georgia Tech for two years. (The only mention of school spirit in Stanford’s grad-student orientation, by the way, is along the lines of “those are called undergrads — they’ll occasionally talk about this place called Cal, so don’t look bewildered if it comes up when you’re TAing them…”)

All this trip down memory lane makes me glad I was able to re-do orientation as an almost-20-year-old transfer student. Two years perspective can make a hell of a difference.