My First Go At This (Post #1)
The past four years of my high-school career: 4.0 GPA
The past year: 88 books
The past two months: 3 online courses..
My entire life up to the present moment: An insatiable hunger for knowledge.
That is a list of things that I have either completed or achieved, as of recently.
My intellectual curiosity has guided me through paths of discovery, creation, and academic excellence. In fact, it is also what drove me to start this blog. I spend most of my time soaking up knowledge through the various avenues that I find enjoyable (mostly books & online classes as I’ve found that high school is the perfect way to stifle any enjoyment for learning that one may have). This has resulted in a sort of melting pot of knowledge and analysis pathways cooking up inside my brain. And so, I think it’s time that I sifted those ingredients out and put them to work through some creative expression in my own little cubby corner of the internet.
Who am I, really?
My name is Luke Jones. I’m 17 years old. Young, right? What’s a kid doing on the internet with a blog? He must be a supernerd, there’s no other rational explanation. Well, you might be right. But even so, I still hope you’ll keep reading. I will be a freshman in college this upcoming Fall 2020 semester at Baylor University pursuing a Neuroscience major and a Pre-Medical tract. I’ve got a lot to say about my scientific passions and future aspirations in the medical field, but I’ll set those aside for now. I go to a relatively small public high school in upstate New York. I was raised by two loving parents in a loving household that has remained as such to this day. I wrestled for a couple of years and was fairly competitive on the state level as an 8th grader on varsity. My physical pursuits have now shifted primarily to weight training, however, as I am on a journey to maximize the hypertrophic response of my body day in and day out. That translates to 5 days per week of weight training at volumes that are sufficient to elicit a series of robust adaptations in the form of muscle growth. With that said, I also have Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis. I, by no means, have an extreme form of the condition, but it still means that I traverse through my days with higher-than-average baseline levels of pain inside my joints and connective tissues. Depressing stuff if you resonate on it for too long, so let’s move past that and into the juicy stuff.
I am a book nerd.
I love books on the brain, I love books on philosophy, I love fantasy fiction novels-- I love just about anything from which I can extract meaningful knowledge that is applicable, in some sense, to my everyday life. I mean, I’m talking elven romance here people-- it doesn’t get much more useful than that! Neuroplasticity, stoicism, and the origins of human consciousness kinda take a back seat.
I am also a productivity nerd.
I have spent hours upon hours researching how the processes of memory and learning work. I have hefted my shovel of inquisitiveness and dug through the internet, youtube channels, and books to uncover how our brain goes about remembering things and storing them into long term memory. So that means when I sit down to study or dedicate myself to learning something, it will be in the most optimal way possible. No fancy highlighter colors or caligraphy? (Sorry to any of the Starbucks-crazed, snapchat-obsessed teenage girls that may happen to be reading this right now, but that stuff doesn’t quite cut it.)
Lastly, I like to think deep about life.
What is virtue? Why do my friends like McDonald’s french fries over Wendy’s french fries? By what means do we determine how much value we attach to various, relatively meaningless, corporeal objects in our everyday lives? Is Dwight Schrute the best fictional television show character of all time? How do the concepts of free will and consciousness intersect, overlap, and determine our life trajectories?
I know, pretty important stuff. And for all of the reading and digging and deliberation that I’ve done on these subjects, I still haven’t even cracked the surface of understanding. I am not alone, I don’t think, as most scientists with any degree of humility won’t hesitate to admit.
So there’s my background with a few jumbled tangents thrown into the mix. Hopefully this has primed you for my other blog posts to come (or if, by the time you’re reading this, I’m famous, have published hundreds of other posts, and am sipping a strawberry daiquiri on some remote desert island right now, thanks for reading my ground zero).
Catch you for the next one!