Difference between revisions of "Skills"

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Math nerds know the Greek alphabet.
Math nerds know the Greek alphabet.
So do Classics majors.

Revision as of 15:55, November 7, 2005

Don't be shy. Can you do something that other people find useful, entertaining, or impressive? Don't hide it under a bushel! Instead, post here. Put your proficiency in parentheses. Add new categories and skills as appropriate.


Automotive Skills

Drive Stick Shift

Evan Miller (maniacally)

Daniel Rooney (erotically)

Brendan Dougherty (smooth as shit out of a duck's ass)

Joe Shoer '06 (that's what she said)

Katie Montgomery (could drive anything from a '82 Toyota Tercel to a forklift, or so she believes)

Jessica Chung (She learned in a week.)

Samantha Peterson (automatics are for women)

Janey Waney Lee (She doesn't even need to say anything.)

Leah Joy Weintraub (In her other life, she actually is a race car driver.) (So she has problems making right turns.)

Lucy Cox-Chapman(Better than her brother)

Jay Cox-Chapman(Worse than his sister)

Helena Harnik (I have two driving licenses, one for each side of the road. Yeah that's right- I can use either hand to shift. That makes me 2x more stick-savvy than everyone else)

Ronit Bhattacharyya '07 (Only ever driven stick shift; now I just wish I could drive on the right side of the road)

Anne Royston '08 (can shift from both driver's and passenger's seat; working on backseat)

Matthew Earle '07 (Double-clutch downshifts saves wear on synchros, but may have caused the expensive timing chain misalignment he just had fixed)

Travis Vachon (Including sketchy old truck clutches)

Clara Hard (West Coast style)

Nick Colella (Has to watch out for moose)

Drive Really Fast In Reverse

Danny Fischler once pulled a k-turn, maxing at around 20mph, across the width of a freeway entrance. With Becky frickin' Burditt in the back seat. Ca-raaaaaazy.

Sweet Jumps

David Rodriguez likes to go as fast as he can when he sees speed bumps and likes to think he gets an inch or two of air in his 2-ton SUV every time.

Change a Tire

David Rodriguez '06 has changed more than his fair share of tires and learned that salt+rust will effectively glue a wheel onto the axle. Solution? Wedge the flat edge of your hubcap-removal tool into the jammed area and whack the crap out of it with a hammer. Eventually, if you're lucky, that wheel will pop right off.

Jumpstart a Car

David Rodriguez '06 has also had his fair share of car jumpstarts and knows not to connect the black plug to red and red plug to black. If you do, you will blow the battery fuse in your fusebox and burn out some expensive component in your car. Through his learning processes, he found just how costly it is to replace the stock amp that powers your stereo.

Jonathan Landsman (who's been zapped)

Leah Joy Weintraub (but only if you ask nicely)

Travis Vachon

Parallel Park

Jonathan Landsman, native New Yorker, has parked in spots so tight that getting in and out depended on using room provided by nudging cars parked in front and behind, counting on the flexibility of their shocks. His record in Williamstown was set when moving into his Morgan East room for the Summer of 2004, when he parked at the top of Spring Street, leaving enough room on either end of the car to fit one finger, but not two.

David Rodriguez is also a native New Yorker and often takes it upon himself to giggle at the non-city folk that have such a tough time parking in huge spots on Spring Street.

Get Parking Tickets

Chris St.Cyr (5 tickets and the infamous car boot to the front tire in first two months here as a freshman)

Evan Miller (6 in as many days)

Jonathan Landsman '05 two in three days in Queens, NYC. Both while at the vehicle, one while inside it.

David Rodriguez accidentally left car parked illegally outside of Mission for days to find 4 tickets upon his return.

Get Speeding Tickets

David Rodriguez (2 tickets, 88 in a 55 in Virginia and 91 in a 65 in New Jersey--cut down to 84 by the nice state trooper--within a month)

Oral Skills

I can blow free-floating saliva bubbles

Brendan Dougherty (Mr. Bubbles)

Evan Miller (I can catch it, too)

Travis Vachon

Sara Carian

James DiCosmo

I can curl my tongue into a W

Evan Miller

David Rodriguez

Leah Shoer

Jessie Kerr

I can touch my tongue to my nose

Brendan Dougherty

Lucy Cox-Chapman

Jake Manley

Hazen Parsons (Without even having to strain.)

Amanda Van Rhyn

Jessie Kerr

I can tie a cherry stem into a knot in my mouth

David Rodriguez

Evan Miller (gimme 40 seconds)

Julianne Shelby

Liz Macek, '07

I can turn my tongue so it's vertical instead of horizontal

Diana Davis '07

Julianne Shelby '06

Jessie Kerr '06

I can turn my tongue past vertical, until it's upside down

Brendan Dougherty

Manual Skills

I can snap my fingers by flipping my wrist

Evan Miller (right hand only)

Ronit Bhattacharyya (both hands)

Jonathan Dahlberg - amazingly well

Travis Vachon

I can snap without my thumb.

Hazen Parsons (right hand more audible...my ticket to fame.)

I can pull my fingers back to touch the back of my hand

John Chatlos can.

Amanda Van Rhyn can pull her thumb back to touch her forearm, which is almost as good.

Other body skills

Face Tricks

Some people can hang a spoon from their nose.

Liz macek can hang 4 spoons on her face simultaneously

Jessie can make her nose crack

Ear Tricks

Katie Montgomery can move her ears independently of one another.

Margit Sande-Kerback '05 can wiggle her ears.

David Rodriguez can wiggle his ears, but he can only move his left ear independent of his right, not vice-versa.

Amanda Van Rhyn can wiggle her left ear. Just her left ear.

Andrew Meador can wiggle his ears separately or together.

I can dislocate my...

Bonnie O'Keefe can dislocate her right hip.

Amanda Van Rhyn can dislocate her right shoulder. (Also, judging by the number of stupid body tricks she's signed up for, she might be a circus freak.)

I Can Get a Cool/Rare/Weird Disease

Seth Brown '01 (scurvy)

Jesse Dill (amoebic dysentery, pleurisy)

Computer Languages

Assembly Language

Travis Vachon (kind of...)

Paul N. Stansifer '07 (my claim to masculinity)


Steve Winslow '04

Brent Yorgey '04


Travis Vachon

Brent Yorgey '04

Rahul Shah


Brent Yorgey '04 (the most beautiful language ever -- don't give me this Ruby crap)


Daniel Rooney (disgusting)

Evan Miller (shamefully well)

Brent Yorgey '04 (I frickin' TEACH this language)

Jessica Chung (not bad either.)


Evan Miller (just a pinch)


Joe Shoer '06 (though he's ashamed to admit he knows such a stupid language)


Daniel Klein (too good for word processing)

Evan Miller (too poor for Word)

Diana Davis '07 (infinitely superior to anything else)


(cons 'Brent Yorgey (cons '04 (cons 'Jessica Chung '07)))


Daniel Klein (is too a real language)

Joe Shoer '06 (it's my thesis, and I can do more with it than the math nerds can)

Laura Effinger-Dean '06 (I make pretty pictures for my thesis!)

Nick Yates '06 (Pretty spirals! Ooh!)

Diana Davis '07 (I'll isoperimeterize you!)


Nick Yates '06 (For a number theoretic software called PARI; similar to C)


Kai Steverson (competent)

Evan Miller (wizardly)

Jing Cao (kind of)

Brent Yorgey '04 (JAPH)


Young Hahn (godly)

Katherine Huang (sort of)


Travis Vachon (the scripting language of choice)


Daniel Klein (it makes statistics fun!)

Evan Miller (needs to learn how to put his skills on his own line but is probably very capable at R)


Evan Miller (the scripting language of choice)

Ronit Bhattacharyya (the most beautiful language ever)

WC237 Microcode

Travis Vachon (well, at one point at least...)


Ronit Bhattacharyya (hey, at least I'm not claiming CSS & HTML to be languages)



Jessica Chung (Don't make me clipware you.)

Hazen Parsons


Jonathan Landsman '05 (godly)


Jonathan Landsman '05 (fears no page/margin/line spacing/font size requirement)

Human Languages


Aroop Mukharji

Auyon Mukharji

Ronit Bhattacharyya

Rowena Ahsan


David Rodriguez (learned a little bit while abroad in Barcelona)

Chinese (Cantonese, Hakka, Mandarin, Shanghainese, Taiwanese, Hokkien, Teochew...)

Lauren Johnson

Lars Enwereuzor Kana Ojukwu '07


David Rodriguez (He used to be much better, but he now inserts random Catalán words in French conversation.)

Diana Davis '07 is still pretty good at French.

Samantha Peterson is majoring in it, so she probably knows a few phrases.



Hazen (As in I can write in it and tell you how to pronounce the letters of their alphabet. I didn't write this.)

Math nerds know the Greek alphabet.

So do Classics majors.


Robert Streicker '07

Zachary Ulman '06

Danny Fischler '06

Davida Kutscher '03

Elissa Brown '09


Ananda V. Burra '07

Sandy Nandagopal

Ronit Bhattacharyya

Rahul Shah

Nikhar Gaikwad


Lucy Cox-Chapman '06 spent a semester in Italy


Amanda Van Rhyn now knows how to say "my husband got drunk and hit me."

Diana Davis '07 frequently mutters small phrases in Japanese. People think she is mumbling, becuase they don't understand Japanese. In addition to randomly speaking in Japanese, she also randomly speaks English with an excellent Japanese accent.

Leah Weintraub '06 spent a semester in Japan. Ergo, she probably speaks Japanese.

Charlotte White rocks at Japanese, and is easily distracted by pretty things from Japan. She also says "WTF Japan" rather often. As should we all.


Pig Latin

Seth Brown taught a course on Pig Latin during Winter Study 1997.


Alden Robinson '06 whopat dopo yopou thopink opof thopat?


Jonathan Landsman '05 can say "What's up, sweetheart?"



Michael Gallagher

Emily Button can say "I've seen more women than you've seen sparrows!"

Ilya Khodosh does an excellent drunk old Russian man impression.


David Rodriguez (speaks Dominican Spanish--impossible to comprehend for most other spanish speakers because it sounds more like really fast Italian than anything else)

Jonathan Landsman '05 (budding bachatero)

Alan Cordova '06

Bernard Yaros

Sofia Torres (but apparently she speaks Mexican, a variation of Spanish)

Paulette Rodriguez can speak Spanish without consonants (also known as Puerto Rican--similar to Dominican)

Other Languages

Caveman Talk

Chris St.Cyr


Dog Bark

Danny Fischler '06 barks at cars, beeping alarms, and squirrels with nice legs.

Cat Meow

Alexa Herlach and she does it often.

Julianne Shelby '06 is probably just actually a cat

Cow Moo

Bear Growl

Despite failing to get the dancing, trained circus bear part of "Gorky" in her high school's production of "The Cave Dwellers," Katie Montgomery was lauded for her ability to sound sort of like a bear.


Samantha Peterson can burp the alphabet. Backwards.

Circus Arts & other amazing feats

I can ride a unicycle!

Alex Ambros (the 1 in 2000 girl)

Elissa Brown (in the same entry as Alex - what's the probability of that?)

Abby McBride can too!

Bryan Dragon can but doesn't want anybody to know about it.

I can slackline

Elissa Brown (shakily)

Alex Ambros

Dave Kleinschmidt (if I'm lucky)

Evan Bick

Sean McKenzie

I can juggle (balls, clubs, knives, flaming torches, etc.)

Alex Ambros (working on passing clubs)

Elissa Brown (see above. We'll get it eventually)

Ben Brooks (I can do everything listed in the title except "etc." Whatever that is...)

Jason Ren (I can do everything listed AND Etc. I know what it is)

Robin Stewart (He's the master)

Jacob Eisler '04 says his one of his two major accomplishments in high school was learning to juggle.


Margaret Pigman can read and write braille, and has a braille typewriter! And, and, and! Margaret takes class notes in Braille.

Diana Davis '07 can write holding a pencil with her toes.

Jonathan Landsman '05 is the fastest two-finger typist there is, and can do so blindly.


Joseph Gangestad '06 can do an uncanny Gollum (Andy Serkis)


Lisetta Shah can find 4-leaf clovers pretty much just by looking down at the ground for a couple seconds, and sometimes without even that much effort.