Once again, traveling to NJ for Thanksgiving with my family. This time sans Mrs. Spew, who is guarding the homefront and taking care of aging dog. This trip is also unusual in that we (Spew Jr. and myself) spent the Turkey Eve at my sister's place on the Upper East Side. We went to the balloon inflation--huge crowds, but very interesting. Capped off night with cupcakes! This morning, we will mosey to NJ and the rest of the family after watching the Macy's Thanksgiving Parade from inside the M&M store (it pays to have relatives in high places).
So, here is the season ritual--giving thanks:
- Thanks to friends and family for tolerating my whining and my incessant facebook commenting/snarkiness.
- I am very grateful that my teenage daughter is still a heap of fun, with a great sense of humor and a spirit of adventure (she sought out sushi last night!).
- Thanks to the undergrads of McGill. Both of my classes this fall have been heaps of fun to teach. I tried some new things in both the big intro class and the smaller upper division class to varying degrees of success. They have more than tolerated my distractions, my failed experiments, my limited access (due to heaps of travel).
- Thanks to the grad students of McGill for doing my work, mostly as TAs these days. I am very grateful that one of my students just accepted a tenure track position and a second has had four interviews (an amazing outcome for those who do not understand the academic job market).
- I am pretty thankful that I have a pretty good job in this nasty economy. And a job I love and that suits me perfectly.
- I am extremely thankful for my current project on NATO and Afghanistan. It has remained tremendously interesting; it has required heaps of fun travel (this year: Australia, New Zealand, Denmark); it has produced some success (ISQ pub due out in 2012); it has led to multiple chances to present and get interesting feedback (Northwestern, Mt. Holyoke, Laval, Konstanz---all from Oct to Dec); and we are making progress on the book.
- I am very, very thankful to my co-authors for providing much of the thinking and hard work on my various projects. Sure, some of my colleagues give you guys way too much credit, but I wouldn't have gotten this far and learned this much without some terrific partners.
- I am grateful to all of my ultimate teammates for continuing to make me look good when I throw swill, for the spirit they bring to the game, and for occasionally throwing the disk at the end of my reach so that I can lay out for it.
- I am grateful that folks have read my blog and pushed me with their comments to think a bit more about some of the stuff about which I blather.
- I am grateful for the other bloggers and twitter-ers out there whose ideas I steal/borrow/build upon. I get heaps of links from facebook friends as well.
- I am grateful for the internet, which has been both boon and bane for my productivity as a scholar but has consistently provided me with much edutainment.