SSP = Science Slumber Party | Ryan D.

The driving force of this blog seems to be defining the SSP experience- what’s makes SSP unique. Almost therapeutically, we reflected on our days, maybe even a  month at this point. For some reason, it seems like if we can define SSP- put in on our shelf with a nice shiny label- it would bring us ease. I’ve grappled with this idea since the first week and I think I finally have an answer.

SSP is a childhood sleepover. 

After pleading with your mother for weeks on end, she finally lets you go to your first sleepover the next day. You run into your room, overflowing with excitement marred with a twinge of fear. Yet, on the car ride the next day, you jitter in the seat, as if you could beat the car there. You run over to your friend to do the little handshake you prepared during recess and turn back to you Mother before leading you on this brand new experience. 

You know how the rest goes. The nervousness fades as you play video games on the basement floor; the sound of the flicking controls beating the drum into battle. The messy couch transforming into the palace you’ve only dreamed of. Finally when their parents finally get fed up and turn the lights off, you can’t help but smile and snicker whenever you hear your friends breath coming from the overwhelming darkness (that you are still a bit afraid of). 

This is SSP- the mix of excitement, fear, and most importantly happiness. I’m gonna be quite frank here: there are quite few times in my life I can pinpoint true happiness. Yet, at SSP, it is second nature. 

As much as the TAs tell me to go to bed, I will never want to (sorry!) I am still that child at that sleepover who wants to keep laughing with his friend, because he knows in the morning that he will have to go home. The SSP experience isn’t forever So, not to steal from Thoreau, I plan to suck the marrow out of SSP. 

While eventually the calendar brings an end to the SSP experience, the memories will last forever (no matter how cliche that sounds). To quote another famous, lasting, inspiring, and celebrated philosopher Taylor Swift – “Hold onto the memories and they will hold onto you.” 

Here are some of my favorite memories. As unimportant as some of these may seem, nothing is insignificant when you are with amazing people. SSP is truly full with the most kind, interesting, supportive people I have ever met.

– Orchestrating a wedding (don’t ask me how we got here) 

– Killing the Ender Dragon on the SSP SMP

– Watching the sun rise after an all-nighter which included watching lectures at 3am, crashing an astro karaoke at 4, then ending it all with a well rested 7 am run. 

– Going through the 36 Questions to Fall in Love

– Post TA Block Trauma Dumping 

– Class Activity 13 and using the entire groups brain cells to distinguish serine and cysteine 

– Honestly, almost any conversation I had

SSP is truly an amazing experience. I’m not normally the sentimental type, but it has brought me back to the state of childlike wonder and joy. My biggest hope for the next year is that I will be lucky enough to get closer with everyone I’ve talked to so far, and hopefully see some in person.