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Showing posts from June, 2016

I'm an uncle

Last month my sister and her husband had a daughter.  This last weekend I went home for her naming.  I had a great time.  It was fun seeing family and the few friends I was able to say hello to during the 48 hours I was in town.

I have turned 30!

On Saturday, May 14th, Jack and I celebrated our 30th birthday.  Leading up, we'd had a few discussions about what we wanted from the party.

I meant to post about the party after the actual party, but May was a busy month.  I'll cut to the chase: it was the best birthday party I've ever had.

I try not to fall into the trap of assigning too much significance to birthdays.  Our lives are not lived for one regularly-spaced day every year, and it makes no sense to judge our live by the events of such a day.  That said, birthdays tend to be times of reflection and self-assessment, and having a bunch of awesome people party their asses off makes for a very positive self-assessment.

The planning inspired a rare disagreement between Jack and myself.  He wanted to keep it casual and easy-going.  I wanted a spectacle, and I wanted the party to effect a mature impression.  I don't want red solo cups when I'm turning 30.  I don't want a party that looks like an attempt to …

Jack is leaving Grad School, by way of Japan

This was a tumultuous month.  Jack's been preparing for a trip to Japan to conduct research for the summer.  In advance, however, his adviser explained to him that she doesn't see a path for him to finish his PhD in her lab.  This didn't preclude his completing his PhD in another lab, but Jack concluded that he'd tried several advisers and it seemed clear that grad school was not a productive environment for him.  He's still going to Japan, though.

It's a situation I'm familiar with.  I left grad school at the insistence of my guidance committee two years ago.  It is a lot like a breakup.  Often, it is for the best, but that doesn't change the fact that it requires a major change in lifestyle and a period of uncertainty.  In my case, I can say from experience that it was definitely for the best.  I feel far more productive and positioned for long-term success in my current job.  I hope Jack finds the same outcome.

In the meantime, he's going to Japa…