Two Almost Physicists With Almost Something To Say

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Paul & Babe & Us

It’s the holiday season, so Merry Christmas, Chappy Chanukkah, Happy New Year, and so on!

People are pretty down on 2016, with good reason. Personally though, it was a pretty good year for me, and hopefully for many others. I got married (was my co-blogger a groomsman? of course he was!), and many people I care for got engaged, married, had children, and/or any other variety of personal milestones–which is great!

Among the fun things was visiting my wife’s home of Minnesota (a state you are only allowed to enter following marriage to a current or former resident). I wrote about visiting Prince already but when we were up in the northern part of that state we got a photo op with a local hero (inspired by my new brother-in-law & his fiance), and it is one of my favorite photos. I only wish that I had known to wear blue pants! So I’m going to post it as a way of bragging that I had a pretty good 2016.


Happy 2017!


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What We Leave Behind


Pictures of David & Ryan, within hours of their defenses. The psychological toll is evident. Photo credit (left to right): Ryan, Dave. (Posted without Dave’s permission.)

As I bragged about in the post I wrote two days after my doctoral defense, one of the things that I was proudest of was slipping a bunch of jokes past my thesis committee. Sure, it was gratifying to receive the acclimation of accomplished physicists on the culmination of 5 years of research and over a decade of scientific training. But sometimes, at a moment like that, what matters the most is getting some solid goofs preserved in perpetuity upon a dusty shelf in the corner of the esteemed library of my and Dave’s elite Rhode-Island-based university that Aitchbar refuses to mention by name for some reason.

Despite this, my dissertation, with the catchy name Quality-Selected Lensing Analysis of Galaxy Clusters in Subaru Telescope Fields hasn’t gotten the kind of internet heat I would have expected. So I felt like I ought to come up with a primer to point interested parties to the comedy gold. You, dear reader, can be assured that these things are funny, because they have been approved of by astrophysicists in terms of their scientific content. As much humor writing is.

So here’s a rundown for someone who might want to skip all the way more interesting astrophysics parts. This is the link to that dusty library’s online pdf. Here’s the rundown:

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