"But I am very poorly today and very stupid and hate everybody and everything." – Charles Darwin 

Dear Students, 

I don't know about you, but every once in a while the world seems to all come crashing down at once. Just last week, I was experiencing a discouraging string of events, the culmination of which was my kids' rabbits turning on me and giving me a couple of fairly deep gashes in my hand as I was trying to let them out to hop around the yard. I was done. 

Despite trying to do good things, the universe wasn't making it easy. And then a friend sent me an article about Charles Darwin in which he talked about hating everyone and everything – two years after publishing On the Origin of Species. It gave me the perspective I needed: even world-changing scientists have days when they feel dumb and powerless. 

This is to say that we all have bad days, weeks, or semesters – and that's okay. Lean on your friends. Talk to your advisor. Perform an act of kindness for someone else. Whatever you do, hang in there and hold your head high. 

Next week is spring break so you can relax a little, reenergize, and come back with new conviction. I hope you have a restorative, nice break. 

Dr. Vanden Bout

P.S. This Thursday is Pi Day (3/14) so treat yourself to some math humor and some pie to celebrate.

Joke: The worst part about getting hit in the face with pi is that it never ends.