Archive for the ‘Pondering’ Category

Being Tall Does Not Lead To Airline Comfort

January 8, 2011

A short little bit about a 6′-7″ passenger on an airline flight being uncomfortable.  The author does not feel bad for the passenger; being 6′-2″ tall, I do.

E-mail Salutations

January 6, 2011

The Wall Street Journal’s preemptive obituary.  I agree with the article, business e-mail can be terribly impersonal.

Happy Holidays!

December 25, 2010

Way back in the last millennium, I was a mere freshman at Purdue, around the holidays I put together a “Twelve Days of Purdue,” set to the tune of “Twelve Days of Christmas.”  It’s not a perfect fit, but it does make me laugh thinking back.  So enjoy.  Merry Christmas.

On the first day of Purdue, my true love gave to me:

A walk through the fountain
Two long walks
Three hour labs
Four hours of sleep
Five big exams
Six hours of homework
Seven classes waitin
Eight TAs babling
Nine different projects
Ten profs a grumbling
Eleven days of grilled cheese
Twelve migranes drumming

The Other Air Travel List

December 18, 2010

The government has a list of people it will not allow to board airplanes.  It’s a “no board” list separate from the “no fly” list.  USA Today reports there are thirty two people on it, and all have tuberculosis.  Reading this, I couldn’t help but think these people are being singled out for their membership in a class of people (those with tuberculosis), and I wondered if there was any sort of due process notice and hearing for the people.  That’s law school for you!

What Next for the Big Ten?

December 14, 2010

The Big Ten has new division names and branding.  I’ll be honest, I just don’t know about this.  Legends and Leaders.  Wow.  I’ve been turning over in my mind, over and over again.  Every time I start to come around and think, “This really isn’t so horrible,” I snap back thinking, “Yes it is.”  Maybe they’re the sort of thing that needs to be grown in to.  They’re definitely different, maybe cutting edge, and maybe in a few years we’ll all look back and think how innovative and cutting edge the name are.  Right now it feels like the idea that the Big Ten is a group of college athletic teams that compete against each other, or event that it’s a collection of academic institutions educating and doing research has been lost in the idea of the Big Ten as… something.  Something about legends and leaders. 

The logo bugs me too.  When I look at it, I feel like I’m looking at one of those squinty eye pictures where it’s supposed to be three dimensional. Except I could never get those to work right.  I know what’s trying to be done with it, but I just don’t see it very well.  I liked the old logo. 

I’ve read some comments that the G/0 looks like a 6, which makes me wonder if this is some master plan for the logo to still be valid if the conference grows to 16 teams.

With each new step and announcement, I’ve started regretting how the addition of Nebraska to the Big Ten is being handled.  I have no problem with Nebraska being added.  I liked the division makeup originally, but I have started to sour on it.  The division names have lost me.  More and more I’m wishing there was just an east division with Indiana, Ohio State, Michigan, Michigan State, Penn State, and Purdue, and a west division with Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Nebraska, Northwestern, and Wisconsin.  Sure, the east would have three of the strongest traditional teams in Ohio State, Michigan, and Penn State, and the west would only have one in Nebraska.  But I really think that would have worked out in the end.

Thought Better of It

December 8, 2010

As I understand it, thirty years ago today, John Lennon died.  Last year, at lunch from work, an accountant from New York City was explaining how she’d shown her niece around the city.  She showed her The Dakota and explained it was where John Lennon had been shot.  She was surprised that her niece was rather indifferent to that part of the tour.  I decided to not mention that John Lennon had been shot a month after I was born.  It was probably best.

“You Kids Get Off My Lawn”

November 23, 2010

Tonight, an annual tradition continues as students will be jumping into Mirror Lake ahead of the Michigan game.  Last summer, I thought, “Of course I’m going to do that!  How could I miss it?” 

I still remember going through the fountain at Purdue.  I was a freshman, and I think it was probably the weekend before classes even started.  So I understand the importance of campus tradition.

But it’s cold out.  Cold and wet usually don’t mix well.  And it’s late.  And way back on campus.  Then I’d have to get back to my place, all wet.  The water’s awfully murky.  Something about jumping into shallow bodies of what that you can’t see the bottom of doesn’t seem safe to me.  Not to mention the layer of leaves that sort of shows up through the murk.  I’m sure those are awfully slippery.  Especially when the lake is full of students.  Students who may well have taken certain precautions to fight of the cold.  Which leads to concerns about ammonia spikes in the water.  And why there might need to be student reps to lead people back to dorms.

Yes, I am now old.

Thinking Back

November 17, 2010

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth.

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same.

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

— Robert Frost

Four years ago today, former Ohio State assistant and Michigan head football coach Bo Schembechler died.  That means four years ago it was also the eve of #1 Ohio State and #2 Michigan’s titanic game.  The winner would be a lock for the national championship, the loser left wondering what might have been.  The next day, Ohio State would take one path and Michigan another, and for the four years since then, they have continued on these diverging paths.

Thinking back four years ago for myself, I had no inkling I would have the opportunities to live and work in London and Utah.  Or that I would travel all over Europe, and a fair bit of the west.  My interest in photography was still in its infancy.  I was fencing then, but never imagined I would learn to ski or run a half marathon.  Law school was an abstract possibility… someday… maybe.

“…And The Clocks Were Striking Thirteen”

November 16, 2010

Last weekend I joined Twitter.  Not to post anything, but to be able to follow the news feeds that come through it.  It was instantly addictive.  News headlines with the slide of a finger on my phone!  Would could be better?

Well, today I got an e-mail that my university is now following me on Twitter.  “Why?” was my first thought.  I find it a bit creepy.  Why does an organization with authority over me need to monitor any tweets I might make?  (This is in the hypothetical as I’m in receive only mode right now.)

“In Flanders Fields”

November 11, 2010

In Flanders fields the poppies blow
Between the crosses, row on row
     That mark our place; and in the sky
     The larks, still bravely singing, fly
Scarce heard amid the guns below.

We are the Dead.  Short days ago
We lived, felt dawn, saw sunset glow,
     Loved and were loved, and now we lie
          In Flanders field

Take up our quarrel with the foe:
To you from failing hands we throw
     The torch; be yours to hold it high
     If ye break faith with us who die
We shall not sleep, though poppies grow
          In Flanders fields.

— John McCrae, died 1918