Where am I ?

It seems that ever since returning home, I’ve been away from home (as I write this from a hotel room in Denver, Colorado). I’ve been to Mississippi, Oregon, Maryland/DC, and Denver.

Lately, I find myself a bit confused in the mornings as I try to figure out where, exactly, I am (especially since the prior month was spent in all manner of accommodations in India). Especially weird is waking up from a nap on a plane wondering where exactly I am going and looking at the boarding pass to find out.

There’s one more trip to go next weekend (New Orleans) and then I’m home for a solid six weeks with no interruptions, appointments, trips, or classes. I am going to lock myself in my office and write the first three chapters of my dissertation. Really. It’s my window of opportunity. It will happen.

What else is going on? Joel is happily playing Super Mario World at home (guess what we bought) while I travel around. The dogs (Halley especially) are getting into trouble while Joel is at work. Halley first ate a loaf of bread off the counter and then, yesterday, Joel found her behind the gate (6-inch gap) in the cat’s litter box (don’t ask).

There’s a new project in the works, but I can’t really even talk about it, and it will take several months to negotiate the details, so it’s not really in the works yet … just mysteriously out there to ponder about. Actually, even once it’s officially “in the works” I still can’t talk about it. Hmmm … now I feel like I’ve got a job working for the NSA.

I spent several days rebuilding my other website Teaching College Math (merged the blog and the site into one easy-to-navigate site) using WordPress. It’s not as easy to use, and the mobile version really sucks big time, but maybe I can clean that up over time. At least, the name of the site is easier to remember than the old blog name (an important reason for the move).

And, for those of you not in the Facebook loop, the rumor that I bought a new pair of Doc Marten boots is true (I am wisely spending my first royalty check):


Speaking of Facebook, I found myself caught up in a whirlwind of old friends and met with five old friends from my high school youth group in person when I was in the DC area. It was great fun to see them again and we were all a little sheepish that it took Facebook to reunite us.

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Voodoo Doughnut

When I told Leah I was going to Portland, she suggested Voodoo Dooughnut as a must-see destination. So, once the sun came out I went in search of Leah’s mecca.

Ironically, since I’ve recently been traveling in India, the public transportation system here in Portland was a bit baffling. One of the trolley lines is under construction, so you had to take a bus to the next working trolley stop, take the trolley to the metro line, and then the metro line to a stop near my destination. Later I realized that I could’ve just walked from my hotel and it would’ve taken about 20 minutes.

How do you know when you’ve arrived at Voodoo Doughnut? Look for the line!

The menu inside is a bit baffling. When you order a “Blood filled Voodoo Doughnut” what on earth are you going to get? (answer later … discuss amongst yourselves)

There is also a showcase of all manner of bizarre dooughnuts:

Including the maple bar with bacon?

And, because I don’t want you to be in suspense for too long, here’s the Blood filled Voodoo Doughnut. It is raspberry-filled, and there’s a pretzel stake driven through it’s heart.

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Another Monument Walk in DC

On Thursday I discovered the FDR Memorial (I didn’t even know it existed) AND I made the trek all the way to the Jefferson Memorial. Here are the pictures!

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Technology Trip to Hope College

Last week our new Computing & Technology Club (plus a couple faculty) went on a field trip to Hope College to see some of their coolest technology.

We saw lasers, their cluster supercomputers, their 3-D projector, and the particle accelerator. I think the technology that was easiest for the students to understand was the supercomputer and projector. Brent Krueger, Paul Van Allsburg, and Graham Peaslee were our great [Read more...]

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Field Trip to Wolfram Research

October was a busy month (I was out of town 3 out of 4 weekends), so now I’m catching up. One of my trips was to the Mathematica User Conference in Champaign, Illinois. While I was there I got a tour of Wolfram Research. Like other tech companies I’ve visited, they also have a “creativity” room – this one included comfy chairs, a wooden periodic [Read more...]

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