AIP summary of Dover Decision

The recent “139-page ruling by Judge Jones”:http://www.pamd.uscourts.gov/kitzmiller/kitzmiller_342.pdf in the case *Kitzmiller vs. the Dover School Board of Education* was remarkable. Not just broad, this was a deep ruling which every scientist and lawyer should read. The American Institute of Physics (“http://www.aip.org”:http://www.aip.org) has printed, in its most recent FYI bulletin, “a summary of the ruling with key highlights on ID and its role as religion, its mockery as science, its place in the classroom, and about the ruling itself”:http://www.aip.org/fyi/2005/177.html.

My favorite quote in this brief was the one the Judge made about himself, and the attitude he expected from supporters of ID as science:

“Those who disagree with our holding will likely mark it as the product of an activist judge. If so, they will have erred as this is manifestly not an activist Court. Rather, this case came to us as the result of the activism of an ill-informed faction on a school board, aided by a national public interest law firm eager to find a constitutional test case on ID, who in combination drove the Board to adopt an imprudent and ultimately unconstitutional policy” (p. 137).

Time Stands Still at the Ironhorse Music Hall

Jodi and I are in Connecticut with my parents now, getting ready for the new year. We went to Northampton, MA last night with my good pal Eric and several of his friends. We had the pleasure of a fine dinner and great music at the “Iron Horse Music Hall”:http://www.iheg.com/iron_horse_main.asp, where “Jesse Malin”:http://www.jessemalin.com/ performed. I’ve only heard a very few of his songs until last night, but both his acoustic and his full band performances were fantastic. He did an uproarious version of “Hotel Columbia”, which was the one song I’d heard the most, wherein he stepped into the crowd (nearly fell, actually), and proceeded to ramble on for several minutes.

Madtown

The vacation is half over. Christmas is done, and now Jodi and I are getting ready to leave Wisconsin and head to Connecticut. Today, we decided to divert to Madison to relax for one night. This is a great chance to just hit some of our old haunts, spend some family-free time together, and enjoy our old graduate home.

Tomorrow, we head to Chicago and then on to Connecticut!

How the Packers Stole Christmas

This was just about the strangest Chistmas ever. We didn’t open presents, or have a nice sitdown dinner as a family. Nope. Instead, we awoke rather late for Christmas, pastor’s Eve-service message still ringing in our ears, and piled in the car to drive to Green Bay. That’s right – we spent Christmas with the Packers at Lambeau field.

You see, a few weeks back my mother-in-law won two tickets to the Packer’s game at her work Christmas party. We were all really excited. Jodi and I were going to tailgate while mom and dad enjoyed the game in their skybox. All-in-all, not a bad way to spend Christmas. Then Jodi and I got sick, and tailgating stopped looking like fun and more a way to cultivate pneumonia. Instead, we did a little grilling on a portable grill my sister got us for our wedding, bid farewell to everybody with tickets, and walked the short distance to a buffalo wings venue near Lambeau. We enjoyed the game in comfort over plates of hot wings, pina coladas, and a few pints of beer. It’s no ham and stuffing, but it was a darn fine way to spend a holiday.

This was, for me, a quintessential Wisconsin Christmas. Brats, snow, the Packers, family, and the most friendly total strangers in all the world. Too bad the Packers lost to “da Bears”…