The Tech - Online EditionMIT's oldest and largest
newspaper & the first
newspaper published
on the web
Boston Weather: 42.0°F | Partly Cloudy
Article Tools

Ask A TA

Dear TAs,

I think I like this girl in my discussion section. What should I do?

—Recitation Romantic

Dear Recitation Romantic,

You should try and impress her by showing up on time for your section and answering questions when the TA asks them. You should also impress her by attending lecture rather than relying on your TA to regurgitate all of the material to you, by not asking questions in section about what is going to be on the midterm, and by not asking for more points on your graded problem sets and/or tests. That will definitely impress her.

—TA James “Graham” Ruby G

Dear TAs,

I never want to grow up, is grad school really the only option?

—Forever Young

Dear Forever Young,

As the saying goes, “grad school is the snooze button on life.” So yeah, grad school is pretty much your only ticket to Never Never Land (aside from fairy dust). Now there are lots of other options that may seem to put you in a state of arrested development: pediatrics, teaching little kids, puppy wrangling, etc … But don’t be deceived. These professions actually make you feel older! Nothing makes you feel more ancient than towering over a bunch of little tots at play. Seriously, ever been back to your old childhood playground? You look like Gigantor. This is why grad school reigns supreme. In grad school, you can horseplay with people your age who are just as developmentally stunted. As long as your teacher (advisor) is out, recess is on!

—TA Charles Lin G

Dear Forever Young,

For this question I’ve consulted a friend of mine named Peter, who is currently a biology doctoral candidate at Never Never University, specializing in Ticking Crocodiles. Peter tells me, “unfortunately, it’s true. Graduate school is the only long-term solution available to you.” He suggests that clapping your hands will not in the long run stave off growing up. He also cautions that living in your parents’ basement post-graduation, while generally thought to be a fool-proof strategy for slowing the onset of adulthood, in fact speeds the process.

—TA Noah Spies G

Ask a TA: Real TAs tackling life problems they’re unqualified to handle. Got a question? E-mail AskaTA@tech.mit.edu. Serious inquiries need not inquire.