Henceforth, D-DAY

November 3, 2010 § 3 Comments

So, tomorrow is D-DAY. I have to say, I’m a lot further in my knowledge of SQL than I ever thought possible in 6 weeks… I’m fairly certain I have an entirely new brain now. Or at the very least, a sizeabley large SQL tumor.

But unfortunately, even my most unexpectedly amazing SQL skills, will not save me from the very real possibility that tomorrow will SUCK. For not even the best of SQL tumors will help decipher what can only be described as mind-numbingly TERRIBLE use of the English language…

….which, it turns-out, is THE most frustrating, unproductive and … really, ONLY, downfall to studying abroad, even when you think you’re here to study in your own friggin language. … Let alone, of course, studying at an advanced masters graduate program level in a brand new field.  –  where, you may not understand, but you also don’t get to ask questions – ‘This is the real world Miss’  they say… to which I have not yet found a good enough answer back, other than perhaps… ‘please learn to write.’  or at least don’t penalize me for your own misguided instructions. The way it works out, is very similar to what happens when you enter a paragraph into Google Translate… somewhere between the first and second line, you’re no longer reading English… and if then you decided to plug that English translation back into to Google Translate and come out with third language, well… then all you’re left with is an international version of broken telephone.


Let’s test this:

Goolge Translate:

Step 1 – English Input: I really really want to do well on this test, henceforth I will.

Step 2 – Dutch Output: Ik wil heel graag goed doen op deze test, voortaan zal ik doen.

Step 3 – Russian Output from Dutch: Я очень хочу, чтобы преуспеть на этом тесте, теперь я буду.

Step 4 – French Output from Russian: Je veux vraiment réussir ce test, je vais maintenant.

Step 5 – English Output from French: I really want to pass this test, I will now.

Step 6 – SQL Output from English: … results in a completely different set of criteria, tables, and calculations and an entirely different answer.


Well done, You. … Just about the most brilliant idea you’ve had since french toast – possibly as awesome as that one time you decided to spend a year and a half applying to the Peace Corp only to not go, or that other time you almost got married but didn’t… i gotta hand it to you though, at least this time you actually made it here. Bravo. I know we all had our doubts…  – the rest I suppose are just details.

But honestly, now that I’m actually rather well prepared for this first test, the idea that I might fail solely due to not understanding their … *ahem* … misuse of my own dear language, is actually going to sting a bit more than if I was just totally lost. And if this was my country, well then I would just march right in there and say… you don’t say display when you mean compute, or substitute and for or, willynilly – it’s not the same thing!… and the word, henceforth… god forbid you should even use it, actually means… hence forth – and does NOT in fact equate to arbitrary linguistic glue. God help me tomorrow to see the world through the vocabulary of a fourth grader… do you know, I actually made a cheat sheet for common word misuses in hopes of deciphering the instructions? yes, it is indeed not looking good. Ah, but the irony of it all… I might actually know SQL better than they know English. Ha.

Wish me luck… : /


MADE for my brain.

October 6, 2010 § 1 Comment

While I’m certainly in no position to comment on anything regarding programming languages YET…  I had to pull myself away from one of the assignments I was in the middle of doing to report on this

Even when it takes 30 minutes to find the flaw in your string of arguments, or even worse – just one line – at which you focus on repeatedly trying to interpret or understand the best approach and/or problem –  it is such amazing fun, I can’t even tell you!

Seriously, this type of thing was literally made for my ridiculously, near asperger brain – the kind that can focus so closely in on something that i literally forget everything else (no wonder time disappears – I sometimes forget to acknowledge it exists). There were times of course where this happened to me at work, but not for a while and not for anything work related enough… certainly not like this!

The logic in here is brilliant… it’s just like a detective novel (which god knows I don’t read – and for good reason – I can’t imagine what that would do to my already overly pre-occupied brain). But, I swear, learning all of these language rules and regulations to then try and neatly translate messy sentences into perfectly linked together, logical commands for execution is just BRILLIANT. And getting it right is like a party and getting wrong is like an investigation… a LONG one.


*FUN: the act of chasing something that you can’t wait to catch.


There are all these connections you have to make and things you have to keep in mind, tricks you’re trying to implement so as to create databases that are so smart… so good… so amazing that with just a few word choices, cammas and semi-colons you can find out… THAT!… yes, and that too!

It’s like word searches online (the stalker kind I’m so good at) , but for grown ups and a million times more fun. It reminds me of the only math class (other than Stats in College) that I friggin looooved in high school  – Geometry. And it’s not that I even remember anything about angels, but what I do remember is loving those proofs!!!  IF THEN logic = candy! …it was the first time in my life that I remember considering doing Law.

Um, I know Geometry to Law, not the most logical jump – but somehow it seemed to make sense.

Oh, but good lord – this is so much better!

Of course learning this stuff is going to be so hard, with tiny bursts of victories… but USING it will be omg soooo much F.U.N.

Who could have thought that I would ever find myself, sick, doing homework on a Wednesday afternoon, after class, awaken from a SQL assignment with no solution found (and I say awaken because the last time I checked it was like 2 hours ago) and feel more energized than ever before… like I had just watched a great movie or listened to a favorite CD.

Tomorrow will surely be hard…. but today can’t be a fluke, and yesterday couldn’t have been either.

Dat is goed.

Blogging to improve memory function …

October 4, 2010 § Leave a comment

I’m writing this mainly for me… so that I don’t forget. In SAS an IN operator functions as an or…. in SQL an IN condition functions as an and.

argh.  memorize brain, memorize.

…at which point will I have two schemata for all of this (i.e. the day I stop myself after reading every sentences wondering which book this is – umm, wait, is this SAS or SQL??!), instead of one (i.e. when I’ll read this in the distant features and scoff at myself, good lord you really knew nothing didn’t you! ) ???

grow synapses, grow… split schemata, split…

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