21b Homework
We love matrices.

Like every other Sunday night, you haven’t started your math pset that’s due tomorrow morning. And so, with a great sense of urgency, you brave the Math Question Center—with your pset buddies by your side, of course—and discover that there’s no better place to people-watch than MQC. If you’ve ever been to this institution of math help, you’ve met all of these people.

The Aggressive Section Kid

It should be a crime to take MQC as seriously as this person. In fact, everything about their presence should be illegal. Between loitering at the CA’s tables and harassing classmates for answers, they are always vandalizing chalkboards with proofs. (Math 55 doesn’t even go to MQC. Please relax.)

The Most Valuable Player

Despite possessing infinitely more wisdom than the aggressive section kid, you won’t find this person flexing on their peers. Instead, the MVP naturally swaggers into MQC to carry the incredible weight of their friends. The true or false section? Finished. The Mathematica portion? Ready to share on Google Docs. Unsurprisingly, the MVP beat Oliver Knill on Boss Mode.

The Bum

You can identify this person either by their famous words, “Wait, what pset are we on again?” or by their complete isolation—let it be known that literally no one wants to pset with them. Whatever the assignment, the bum is at least three lectures behind.

The "Collaborator"

Even by Harvard standards, this person is the ultimate opportunist. Often under the guise of verifying answers, this parasite will seek out new hosts for the freshest answers. Careful! They are even known to ask for pictures of your pset before you can make a clean escape.

The Course Assistant

When the CAs enter the room, clouds part and angels sing. They are the wind beneath your wings, the reason why you finished the pset in spite of their vocal opposition to checking answers. “She is the mother I never had, she is the sister everybody would want. She is the friend that everybody deserves. I don't know a better person.”—Oprah (We’re fairly convinced she was talking about a CA.)

As any STEM student can tell you, MQC strengthens and unites Harvard. And incidentally, attending MQC is much like enlisting in the army. Only through the rigorous training and shared trauma do you come out with lasting relationships. In twisted sort of way, you’ll find that MQC becomes a part of you.