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Johnny Ren


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Opinions

Ren '23: The power of saying “I don’t know”

I am guilty of it — giving opinions on things I know little about. Most of the time, the stakes are low. I argue with friends about sports teams that I never watch, music that I rarely listen to and shows that I have only ever seen once. My limited knowledge does little to prevent me from crafting ...

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STEM

Ren '23: Why not take a math class?

I was chatting with a friend the other day when I accidentally unearthed a source of deep psychological trauma — I asked her how math class was going. All the joy left her face in an instant, replaced with a curious mix of fear, panic and anger. Though this story is anecdotal, it reflects a rather ...

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Opinions

Ren '23: No more New Year’s resolutions for me

For the past few years, I have made New Year’s resolutions. For the past few years, I have also failed my New Year’s resolutions. This pattern is unsurprising. As someone who enjoys reading self-help books without actually doing any self-helping, I have always had a penchant for fruitless proclamations ...

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Opinions

Ren '23: The kids are alright

Growing up, I would often hear complaints, usually from adults much older than myself, about the sorry state of modern songwriting. As a young, impressionable kid, I sometimes felt like they had a point. New songs were trite and uninspired. Surely, they could never match the poetic beauty of Leonard ...

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Opinions

Ren '23: On feeling cold

I am your California stereotype: a warm-weather weakling who cannot handle any temperature under 50 degrees Fahrenheit. I shiver at the slightest breeze. A beanie is perpetually glued to my head. The winter jacket I bought before coming to Brown has already become a staple in my wardrobe. Or rather, ...

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Opinions

Ren '23: Ask more stupid questions

The other day during a math lecture, I raised my hand, and I asked a question — a stupid one. It was one of those questions that you regretted as soon as the words came out of your mouth. In that moment, I wished for a real-life rewind button or a spell for amnesia that I could quickly cast on the ...

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Opinions

Ren ’23: The persistent problem of college rankings

With college application season in full bloom across the country, many university applicants will come into contact with college rankings. US News, Forbes and the Wall Street Journal publish some of the more well-known lists, though many more exist. Each operates in a similar fashion: quantifying the ...

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Opinions

Ren ’23: We should all go see a show

On the fourth floor of Emery-Woolley Hall, I have met a great number of artists, whose sheer abundance seems to defy the limited space of the narrow residential hallways. A glance into the floor lounge may not reveal it. There, you may only find a group of students in conversation or hard at work on ...

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