Eager readers, I have returned from travels a broad.
Wait, no . . . I have returned from my travels and present to you some comments and commentary on RSA 2008 my first conference as a professional scholar. General impressions first, then specific ones follow.
- I was pleased that most of the conference had a very collegial atmosphere. Even though I understand that some of that is just politesse, it made it much easier to get into the spirit of things.
- Nice to see folks I’ve not seen in a while and to make some introductions to others. . .
- . . . but wish I’d been more assertive in making intros with other folks.
- I was sorry to hear both of Crowley’s retirement and of her Conspiracy Theories course that (not being an ASU student) I wasn’t able to participate in.
- Seattle=awesome. Far too much to see and do and far too little time to see and do them in.
- I started drinking beer this weekend; I’m not ready to start a beer blog, mind you, but I’m starting to learn what I might like and dislike. Good beers this weekend (good understood as relative and provisional): Strongbow ( cider, actually) easily my favorite; Stella Artois comfortably mild and refreshing. Also beers at Gordon Biersch (Sacramento Airport) and Serious Pie, but failed to take note of names, were okay. Did not like Imperial IPA at The Fisherman’s, though: far too bitter. Like licking an ashtray, or what I imagine that would be like.
- New foods tried: chicken vindaloo at Pabla, under the encouragement of Los Doctores Rice, and which I enjoyed immensely; crab-stuffed prawns as Fisherman’s; crepes at Mobatta, tasty if unfulfilling; and the pizzas at Serious Pie, of which I highly recommend the sausage & pepper pie, the buffalo mozz & tomato pie, and the special, which had some kind of smoked ham/salami thing on it that I never caught the name of but really liked. And no, it’s not prosciutto.
- Fisherman’s had maybe the greatest clam chowder I’ve ever had, but the fried halibut was lame. Call me a philistine, but I believe fish and ships should involve batter-dipped fish, not panko-breaded fish. Alas.
Other tasks call me away, but by this weekend I hope to share thoughts and responses to individual panels and talks.