Total Drek

Or, the thoughts of several frustrated intellectuals on Sociology, Gaming, Science, Politics, Science Fiction, Religion, and whatever the hell else strikes their fancy. There is absolutely no reason why you should read this blog. None. Seriously. Go hit your back button. It's up in the upper left-hand corner of your browser... it says "Back." Don't say we didn't warn you.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

ASA Impressions: Day One.

A while back the fair Tina suggested that I live-blog the ASAs. I was skeptical of the wisdom of this, and nothing has changed. I do, however, think that providing daily impressions is within reasonable bounds. I have, after all, done this before.

So what do I think of the ASAs so far? Well, let's see:

(1) Many of us lost luggage on our way to Montreal. This, of course, requires that we be more tolerant of people presenting in unconventional clothing. Do your best, however, not to seem too pleased about this situation. Your being in jeans doesn't make your paper any more convincing.

(2) Montreal is a nice city, but is anyone else vaguely disturbed by the ubiquity of strip clubs? Adds one of my colleagues: and the hussle outside is pretty aggressive!

(3) Along similar lines, there are interesting cabbies in this town. Mine commented that he doesn't know why women find him so difficult to deal with, all a woman has to do to keep him happy is, "Keep my stomach full, and my balls empty." Whatever his opinion of his own reasonableness, if a woman tried to kill two birds with one stone I'm betting he wouldn't be pleased. What makes this even more fascinating is that the realization that I am a sociologist is what provoked my cabbie to share this tidbit.

(4) Powerpoint is an amazing technology well-suited to punching up presentations. Given this, is there some reason for all of the pure white backgrounds and huge swathes of text? Next time, try adding at least two primary colors to each slide. The truly adventurous should, perhaps, try applying a theme.

(5) A monotone is not the appropriate type of voice control for presenting a scientific paper.

(6) What's with the themes at our conferences? "Transgressing boundaries?" What the hell does that even mean? Why do we even have these? Do physicists have themes at conferences? You know, like, "Transgressing Pulsars?"

(7) As it turns out, in Montreal, if you try to buy a dress shirt at a cosmetics counter, the saleswoman gets pissed at you. Also: profanity in French is still recognizable as profanity.

(8) Has anyone else noticed that some of the presentation rooms are freakishly long?

(9) Why is there no goddamn water at this confernece? And why does a coke cost $2.50?!

And that's where we are so far. I'll keep you posted.


Blogger jeremy said...

I've gone from using themes to using solid backgrounds to using all white backgrounds, although I still like using colors for text.

Saturday, August 12, 2006 6:23:00 PM  

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