Monday, May 28, 2007

Day 0 at the 210th AAS: Honolulu!!

I flew in yesterday afternoon via Chicago on American Airlines. It was a 9 hour flight, and yet they didn't have any food resembling a meal back in steerage class, just things like overpriced chips and overpriced cookies and sodas. I guess I've been spoiled by the only four hours longer trans-Pacific flights where they have two real meals, as well as snacks. So when I arrived at the hotel yesterday afternoon, I didn't know if I was more hungry or more tired.

I've never been to Hawaii. It's 7 a.m. here, six hours behind the east coast of the continental US. This kind of jet lag isn't so bad, as I can both sleep for a long time (still recovering from a cold) and feel like I'm getting ujp early. From my hotel room (which comes with a nice balcony!), I can see two moutains with either really thick fog or rain between them. From what I've seen so far (airport, mall, convention center), this is a really indoor-outdoor place; I like it. I like how I can not realize that I'm outside until the ceiling above me disappears.

Last night there was a small reception on the roof of the convention center. This is another way of saying, there was a small amount of food, but enough to make me not want to go foraging for a real meal. I only keep mentioning the food because I really haven't eaten since like Saturday, but I'm not a breakfast person, so I still don't feel like eating now. Anyhow, I met a group of people from the University of Texas, a girl who plans on conquering the infamous eigenvector 1. In the increasing darkness over dumplings and fresh fruit, we discussed said eigenvector and other AGNy things like the broad-line region, FeII, FeVII, and NeV, with Greg Shields and Richard Green. I sometimes wonder what's going through people's minds when they ask me the simple question of what I work on, and I stammer a little, explaining that I am presenting here on variable stars at the Galactic center,
but now I'm working on the Lyman-α forest. Do I seem well-rounded, or indecisive and noncommittal?

Today is the first day of talks and posters. The posters will be up in two batches; the first batch today and tomorrow, and the second batch Wednesday and Thursday. Mine is in the second batch. There are several simultaneous talks I know I will want to go to, and I haven't decided which I'll actually go to yet. One thing people always complain about with the AAS meetings is that they are so big; talks are limited to 5 minutes each (and, of course, people routinely go over, which mostly serves to annoy the audience and the moderators). The irony is that since the meetings are so big, no one comes. They say it's good for undergrads and graduate students (and, to an extent, postdocs) to go and meet people, but if no one who "matters" goes, then who is there to schmooze with?

A much more relevant question, though, is whether I give this post an EST or an HST timestamp.

1 comment:

Oliver said...

You can always just go for broke and use SLT.