Ahmed Alsharif

When Groups and Rings dance with Chopin

The assignments are due tomorrow for Linear Algebra, but I still haven’t even seen the problems, yet I know they’re gonna mention rings, and sets of matrices over them.

I spent the whole day studying groups, and by extension rings. After hours of not being able to fully grasp the canonical projection, I had to force myself to move forward with the class material, for this was more of a detour on my side. A pleasant one none the less.

The first session went on from 09 and until 17. The second started only at 21 with Bach and ended at 01 with Frédéric Chopin. When Youtube’s auto-play decided to play his Nocturne no. 1 in B flat minor, I felt a sudden rush of emotions, that rendered my body and mind completely unmovable, static. All of a sudden, it seemed as if the objects I’ve spent the whole day studying stared back at me, as if to study me just like I studied them.

After a couple of seconds, the objects went back to the papers, and to the books, as if only one of us can move at a time. I closed the books, hid the notes, and took the music with me to the dark kitchen.

I stood in front of the window, closed my eyes, and started to dance. I thought maybe.. maybe if they would see me moving with my eyes closed, they’d move again. Maybe they’d try and understand me, just like I tried to understand them.

I’ll never know if my dance was observed by them that night, but if it was, then I hope I gave them something to ponder, just like they gave me.