Penn Drug Culture

December 7, 2012

From my time at Penn, one darker side of it’s character that I have observed is the abuse of a certain kind of drug. Amphetamine misuse is rampant, and in this case the source is dodgy prescriptions. Some students take ‘aderall’ (ritalin) by the bottle-load and ofttimes even in the open, discussed amongst general peers. It’s a sad phenomenon which is chronicled from a different perspective in this opinion piece from the DP (Daily Pennsylvanian), Penn’s student run newspaper.

Thirty minutes later, I was standing outside CVS, washing down 40 milligrams of Vyvanse — an ADHD treatment — with chocolate milk. I was eager to do something — anything — to get my life together.

I found the article most insightful, especially as I try to avoid involving myself with that sort of culture and so am mostly oblivious as to the internal struggles that people on such drugs face.



Friday – Day 77

October 15, 2012

The dreaded lurgy hath returned! I’m currently quite sick and so don’t have the same amount of energy to put into blogging that I normally do. Lest to say, Friday was tiring. Evidently having a drink or two, working for a few hours and then sleeping for two more isn’t a wise strategy for good health. I barely survived Friday’s classes and then rehearsal from four to six nearly killed me.

Following that it was a quick performance with the PGC for International Ivy League students before swallowing a quick Shabbat dinner and going to meet Jonathan who was still struggling with the project. Due to Shabbat I couldn’t really code anything and so I helped him to find bugs in our code that was due at 10PM. Needless to say it was a bit of a failure and we ended up submitting a half baked project. Fingers crosses we still do ok.

After that we and a few other students went up to my apartment to drink a little of the Australian wine I had bought for my birthday and then after a glass each, all returned to get some sleep.

Wednesday – Day 75

October 12, 2012

My midterm was a disaster. Probably a combination of not understanding one of the questions correctly combined with having no idea what-so-ever on how to do another of them. At least now I know where I’m very weak. Electromagnetism is hard.

My algorithms class was nothing exciting, same for Ruby. Though I feel I’m slipping behind in that one simply because I have no time to study for it amongst everything else. Penn was recently ranked the worlds second most stressful institution and I’m certainly feeling it now.

There was the usual five to seven PGC rehearsal and I went for a lovely interview with Andrew, the baritone section leader, after, before getting back on to work on the operating systems project with Jonothan. Far too many hours had been spent on it with far too little progress and the due date was fast creeping up on us. Due to his illness we weren’t able to progress as quickly as we would’ve liked with me taking the brunt of the work for the first two weeks of the assignment period.

This heavy assignment work meant that doing anything for my birthday around that time was pretty much out of the question and the clock passed midnight with me hardly noticing. Thankfully a bit later Sarah notified me that I was in fact twenty one, else I might not have noticed. Then she presented me with the best possible birthday present, a video of many of the people I love and am closest to from around the world, recorded on YouTube  each sending me a personal message. Another highlight was skyping with another close friend from Melbourne who along with a friend had sent me a few delightful presents. Quickly unwrapped to much joy were:

A Disney Song Book

a Binary Tie

and a fantastic tshirt!

These two events conspired to turn an otherwise unhappy evening into something rather nice.

Though, I was still up till far to late at night and had an early wakeup the next day.

© 2012-2024 Shaanan Cohney