May. 20th, 2011

terriko: (Default)
I was in North Carolina for my friends Matt and Jen's wedding last weekend, and it was really lovely. In fact, I think that they've really raised the bar in my mind for what makes an awesome wedding. My favourite part of it all was that they encouraged a bunch of folk to bring games and play in the hotel the day before... so by the time the wedding happened we had all these new friends and were good to play a few more games and chat on the patio. Very fun!




Kernersville and the surrounding area was beautiful and lush and green -- very exciting since when I left Ottawa, barely any of our trees had leaves out. It was like stepping off the plane into summer. The weather held perfectly for the outdoor ceremony, although we had a slightly rainy few days overall. Still, it was a nice excuse to play indoor tourist and enjoy things like bakeries and museums, as well as time spent playing games and hanging out with people.

I've uploaded a few photos from the wedding, for the curious. As you can tell, weddings are serious business. ;)




What was less fun was the plane ride home. My flight was delayed, which meant I'd miss my connection, so I was told I'd be stuck in Chicago overnight waiting for the first flight to Ottawa at 8:30am. No hotel provided either, since it was weather related. We all spent 3 hours waiting in Greensboro with 10 minute updates telling us the plane hadn't taken off. Everything closed at 8pm so there was no way for us to get food for several hours before the plane finally arrived around 10pm. I was glad for my penchant for packing snacks and plenty of entertainment! United didn't so much as offer us an extra drink on the plane for our troubles, sadly -- at least Air Canada often gives me a cookie!

When we got into Chicago, I decided on a whim to check the board and see how badly I'd missed my flight. Whereupon I realized the Chicago-Ottawa flight had also been delayed. And then I realized it was delayed so much that they hadn't left. And then I realized it was at the gate I'd just left... it turns out that the second leg of my flight was on the same plane! So a quick check with the gate agent and I just got back on. Sure, I didn't get actually home 'till closer to 4am... but I didn't have to sleep in O'Hare airport!

I'm not sure how I feel about having jet lag despite staying in the same time zone, but there's no time to recuperate: I need to prep a job talk for next week, and there's still thesis to finish! Wish me luck!
terriko: (Default)
I'm prepping a job talk for next week, and wanted to share some quotes from the articles I read. They're not really all related to giving a great talk.

“Anyone can think of a hundred reasons why something will fail. I want that rare individual who can think of the creative one way in which it will succeed”
- Leo Kim (from Tooling Up: Job Talk Jitters)

"Always end your talk by saying “Thank you.” It is not pretentious—you are doing the audience a favor. If you do not cue the audience so they know when to applaud, they will be confused and irritated. Like most social rituals, the thanks-applause sequence comforts everyone. Do not ask for questions until you complete it."
- Jonathan Shewchuk in Giving an Academic Talk

"The lecture room was about two-thirds
full when we arrived, with more empty
seats towards the front than in the back.
Richard had been prepared for this.
Undergraduates, he told us on the way
there, have a highly developed fear of
fire and always want to be close to the
exits, just in case."
- Owen O'Shea (quoted in FOCUS on Students: The Job Talk)

I also read "Half a Minute: Predicting Teacher Evaluations from Thin Slices of Nonverbal Behaviour and Physical Attractiveness" which was pretty interesting. Short version: people viewing short clips of video (without audio) of a teacher can estimate their end-of-term reviews from students with startling accuracy. Those are some useful first impressions!

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