10 o’clock list: 5 Tiny Things in Academia

david

A tiny thing in academia? No comment.

Kenyon is a small place where people think big thoughts. If you’re a first year, Kenyon may still seem like a big place where you’re panicked, because omigodliterallyeverybodyisthinkingbigthoughtsbutme. But what about the little things we think about in academia everyday? Certainly the tiny guy is important too. Here are a few mini items of monumental power:

1. A Lemma-  Executive Editor Jack Quigley ’16 tells us, “A lemma is a small proof–it usually will either be a minor adjustment or addition to an existing proof, or it will be a small proof to serve as a building block for a much larger proof.” Psh. Knew it. But why did the math lords have to call it a lemma? Because now I have an image of Scrappy Doo punching the air at a math villain, yelling “lemma at it!” I feel like my big thoughts are getting smaller. 

2. Water Bears (Tardigrades)-You need a microscope to see these guys; hence the “tiny things in academia” theme. Think of the tiniest bear you can possibly imagine, with four claws on each of its eight legs. Water bears can endure extreme temperatures and live in space. So they sound great for cuddling, right? Totally. That is, if you’re in to the whole microscopic, nasty-ass transparent caterpillar scene.

3. 6 word stories- Short stories, big impact. Read on.

4. Microfilm-Small film, big hassle. Microfilm constitutes the most trouble that you will go through in your academic career to read a newspaper the size of your pinky nail. The continued usage of microfilm has only prolonged academic inquiry into the much debated question of, “Does size really matter?”

5. Craquelure-You might be thinking “Kraken”, but I’m thinking of how you just can’t look away when someone’s butt crack is out to party! Get it craque-lure? Right. I mean, that’s what I think of when I’m not thinking, “miniature cracks in older paintings!” Because that’s what craquelure actually is. Obviously. When it’s not being manipulated into poorly-executed puns, craquelure can be used to date and repatriate paintings.

 

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