Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Conference Pictures

As promised, some pictures from the conference.

First, I walked an awful lot, especially the first few days of the conference, but I also had to construct some signs for people who didn't realize they needed a sign until the day of the conference, or a substitute sign for one that didn't come in for whatever reason. So this is a picture of me designing a sign.

I know that I made a few minor mistakes/typos (we found one case where we had an extra comma, and another case of a missing parenthesis), but let me tell you how glad I am that I did not make the following banner:
In case you're having trouble reading it, the first sentence reads
In this dual, your data is Bulletproof, lightening fast and reliable.
Ouch! That sentence alone contains at least three errors. To go all Evil Editor on them,
In this dual [what about the primal?], your data is Bulletproof [while your signs are not proofread], lightening fast [since when does any hair coloring product work quickly?!?!] and reliable [unlike the copy editor's skillz].
They took the sign down on Saturday, and replaced it with the following:
and I no longer involuntarily shuddered every time I walked under their sign.

Because we were in Austin, the conference had a music initiative. As part of the music initiative, people could sign up to sing and/or play in the music room. I was conned into playing the violin:
That is not my violin; they rented one just for me from a local music store. I hadn't prepared for this occasion so I just played stream-of-consciousness; I started with Amazing Grace (which I always play for my grandma) and went wherever the thought train took me.

Each year at this conference we have a special Thursday night event. Last year in Reno we saw the Blue Man Group; this year, we went to a ranch outside of town and experienced the three cultures of Texas (cowboy, Native American, and Mexican). The event was pretty fun except that it was too crowded and it was really cold; a lot of people were underdressed for the weather and froze their butts off. Anyhow, they had some Native American Fancy-Dancers:

and a real mariachi band!
From what I understand, what makes them a mariachi band (unlike Los Cientificos Locos) is the presence of the big guitar (guitarrĂ³n) in the center of this photo.

They were great and we stood there and listened to them for a long time. At one point they played La Bamba and it morphed into Twist and Shout. I hadn't put it together until then that those songs are basically identical, or at least follow the exact same chord progression.

Anyhow, we had a great time at the conference and are looking forward to it again next year. I'm so crazy that I agreed to sign up as signage chair for next year. I figured, I know exactly what to do now, so why not exploit that knowledge? Now I just have to recruit someone to help me.


EcoGeoFemme said...

The music theme sounds cool.

I heard a piece on NPR a while back that explained Twist and Shout is the base for a whole bunch of songs. I can't remember any examples, but it was incredible when they played them and they were all basically the same.

ScienceGirl said...

I can't believe I missed the first version of that sign - that is too funny :)