Guess what I'm not doing?
The First Law of StatMech: You can't increase your GPA by taking StatMech. The Second Law of StatMech: You can't retain the same GPA when doing so. The Third Law of StatMech: You have to pass StatMech.
Not very good, but meh
Neither fun nor easy. Taken by PhysicsMajors (and the occasional brave ChemMajor) in the fall, usually junior year but sometimes senior year--about 20 people take it any given year. One of those infamous HardClasses, it combines the assy parts of ProbStat?, FroshChem, BabyQuantum, and probably some other stuff as well.
SaetaClaus?: And what do you want for Christmas? SeemaPatel: I want an A in StatMech! *SaetaClaus? laughs hysterically* SeemaPatel: Okay, then how about a D in StatMech?
Seen on a whiteboard at (the erstwhile) FroshCloneSuite:
Some people are taking StatMech. Julie went to bed at 4.
Ludwig Boltzmann, who spent much of his life studying statistical mechanics, died in 1906, by his own hand. Paul Ehrenfest, carrying on the work, died similarly in 1933. Now it is our turn to study statistical mechanics. Perhaps it will be wise to approach the subject cautiously. --David L. Goodstein, in the introduction to States of Matter.
''Thermodynamics is a funny subject. The first time you go through it, you don't understand it at all. The second time you go through it, you think you understand it, except for one or two small points. The third time you go through it, you know you don't understand it, but by that time you are so used to it, it doesn't bother you anymore.'' -- Arnold Sommerfeld, when asked why he had never written a book on the subject (c.1950)
"The partition function has to be clear to you. . . like honey has to be clear. Or maple syrup. It will work much better if you think of it as maple syrup." --Prof. G. Benedek (ProfessorEsin's first Statistical Mechanics instructor)