The Personal Blog of Stephen Sekula

Munschausen by Proxy was Funny When I Was a Kid…

After the treat of a moon over New York City, I found myself comfortable
and cheery at my childhood home in Killingworth, CT. I had the pleasure of
Saturday and Sunday night with my parents, catching up on all the
political gossip with mom and watching the monster of the Milky Way
devour whole suns with my father. I just don’t get to see my parents all
that much anymore, largely due to geographic reasons. Skype and e-mail
are great, but never the same as beer and pizza with the folks.

To my delight and disappointment, I got to spend an extra day in Killngworth.
It was delightful because it was 24 more hours with my parents, and it was
dissapointing because I spent it tired and nauseous. I managed to catch
a small case of food poisoning, which kept me nauseous and verging on
vomiting and diarrhea from 9 pm Sunday night until 5:30 am Monday morning.
A cup of ginger ale finally made the nausea subside, enough to catch
a few hours of sleep. I ribbed my mom that it was her cooking, joking
that “Munschausen by proxy was funny when I was a kid, but . . . “

I had two days at MIT to catch up on work with one of our students. At
lunchtime on both days I was treated to some fun. The first day I
delivered a short seminar on the implications of B factory research
for physics at the Large Hadron Collider and International Linear
Collider.Great pizza accompanied great questions, and conversation with
some old friends from the Institute. The next day, I was invited to fill
an empty slot at the Pappalardo Fellows lunch, a weekly affair that draws
Fellows together with young and old faculty for an hour of excellent
fare and great conversation. We chatted about the changing face of
NSF funcding for astronomy, the biological origins of religion, and
the hope for a new simple idea that might explain all of the emergent
phenomena that appear in our universe.

Today I left Boston, had a quick cup of coffee and a bite to eat in
Hartford with my old pal Eric, and headed for Newark. I got lost in
Danbury, thinking I’d missed the exit for 684, and wound up on 7
heading to Norwalk where I could catch I-95. I managed to get to the
Tappan Zee Bridge, down the Garden State Parkway, only to flub my
last few turns within sight of the car rental place. I still made it
with a few hours to spare, but considering I left at 8:30 am it was
a long, long day. To boot, my flight will be an hour and a half
late into San Jose, robbing me of desperately needed sleep ahead of
the arrival of Jodi’s family tomorrow.

Let the two-body problem continue!