Saturday, March 28, 2009

Welcome Home

To the crew of STS-119, welcome back to Earth and congrats on a safe and successful mission. While there were several mission objective, the most highlighted of the trip was the installation of the last set of solar arrays on the ISS. It takes true endurance to make the round trip to the ISS and back and those that do it are amazing people. American society has seemingly gotten away from paying tribute to the astronauts that make these trips, but I believe that they deserve hero status.

Visit NASA's webpage to read more about the Space Shuttle and the International Space Station along with every mission sponsored by NASA.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Whizzing Past

I simply cannot believe it. Starting Monday I enter into my third term at graduate school! Did I not just begin!? While the goings on of my second term were not really reported I hope to keep the public informed about the status of this next one. Ahead of me are two classes: Galatic Dynamics and General Relativity, along with my teaching assistantship. As with last term, I will again be aiding with the laboratory work of P14, which is the second term of the University Physics at Dartmouth. Topics include: electricity and magnetism, DC/AC circuits, and special relativity. I wrapped e&m waves in with e&m, which means they also get into light and so forth (obviously)!

Before classes begin on Monday I do need to wrap up reducing my data from MDM back in February. I need to double check some aspects of what I have done thus far. That will likely be completed tomorrow before and after I set up tea and attend colloquium. This weeks tea is apparently extremely important since 17 prospective grad. students will be visiting. It will be interesting to see how many new grad. students the department takes on next year, considering the budget cuts due to our thriving economy.

Anyhow, I will lay out what I hope to accomplish in the next few days. I will hopefully tell you about: My research, my classes, and other stuff. Do keep checking in!

Also, if you have not perused the IYA '09 website, please do! This year is the international year of astronomy, 400 years since the advent of the telescope! There is a great gift/toy on the website called a Galileoscope. It is a nifty little telescope that is highly affordable. I have purchased one of my own and donated one as well! I urge you to do the same!

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


I write tonight with a heavy heart. Today, around 4pm, my pup Sammy took his last breath and entered into the realm of infinite biscuits. I will never forget St. Patricks Day 2009; it will live forever inside me, as will the memory of a pup that touched the lives of everyone he met. With a simple wag of the tail he commanded a room and won the hearts of each and every person he decided should pet him. It was with great sorrow that we had to make the decision to ease him into the next world, but it was the correct one. It would have been cruel for us to keep him in this world longer than he could handle. But, I believe that is the ironic part. His body was going to hell, to be blunt. Standing up after a good nap was a difficult chore and going to the bathroom was no longer a concious decision and yet his heart was pumping as strong as ever. His doctor was amazed at how healthy and strong it was for his frail condition. Sammy loved life. He loved running circles around the yard waiting to find something to bark, and snoofing around the woodpile, searching hopelessly to find a critter to chase, and who could forget all the chores he could do to get food! Sammy loved his food... he loved everything... he was the happiest being on the planet

Sammy... you are missed dearly... I love you.
[June 15, 1994 - March 17, 2009]

Monday, March 16, 2009

Told You

See, here's the thing... I wasn't going to say it, but I feel as if I should; so I will. I told you so. I knew in the depths of my heart that keeping up with the blog would be difficult for me. I don't know what it is. I enjoy posting my thoughts and informative pieces about whatever I choose, but the whole idea of regularly doing it just doesn't bode well with me. I have plenty to say at times, but just do not feel like sitting down at the computer and typing away. Call me lazy (I sure do), but outside of that, I do not know what it is. I am going to attempt, once again to keep up with this regularly.

Things to look forward to: Recap of this past terms classes, introduction to my area of research, some details of the research, and other general astronomy stuff. Oh, and who can forget hockey. I think I'll begin with that.

If you follow sports news at all, then you should know that Martin Brodeur has tied Patrick Roy's record of 551 career wins. This is huge! As a Roy fan I am saddened to watch as the record WILL fall this year, probably this very week, but at the same time it's fantastic to see such a greater goaltender enter into the record books. I may not be the biggest Marty Brodeur fan, but his talent is undeniable. He is unquestionably one of the top 5 goaltenders (where and how you rank goalies has always been a matter of debate). I most certainly think he is the best goaltender to ever play the sport, but I'll also put up a good argument for Patrick. To all who care about hockey: hockey history is being made this week, you'd be wise to pay attention.