Why are there so many ESSAYS?

<li>Im looking at some applications and they have so many mini personal statements. They are like 5-10 lines long and they look like a pain in the neck. Whats the deal with these? Should i treat them like the essay and spend alot of time on them?</li>
<li>On some activites, they ask me to indicate a starting date and finished date. If im still doing it now, what should i put? The online app wont allow for anything besides numbers.</li>

Thanks so much

<p>Hey, I like essays</p>

<p>Essays Give Me So Much Joy :-d</p>

<p>heck, they are annoying, but you can bet that they are pretty damn important. I wouldn't goof around on those.</p>

<p>They take some work, but give you an opportunity to show different sides of your personality, so you should learn to like them.</p>