in a perfect world of yancies: Friends, Family, and Conferences

02 May 2006

Friends, Family, and Conferences

On Wednesday morning (26 April), Emily and I set out for Illinois, on our way to see family, attend conferences, and visit with friends.

We arrived at my mom's place that evening, and began fixing a fabulous dinner: filet mignon, accompanied by a risotto made with shallots, fresh asparagus, and some of the great rice Merrica brought from Japan. Tasty.

Emily and my mom, watching over the risotto while I take a photo.

The next morning, Emily dropped my off at the train station and headed down to Bloomington-Normal for the Midwest Archives Conference (or MAC if you're nasty). She saw some excellent presentations, and got to compare notes with archivists from around the midwest.

Bloomington-Normal is, among other things, the proud home of State Farm.

Emily's conference roommate and fellow KU Museum Studies grad Audrey, with a gentleman whose name I do not at present recall (apologies).

Meanwhile, I rode the train into Chicago for the American Philosophical Association's Central Division meeting, a huge conference involving hundreds of philosophy paper presentations, a book fair, and the chance to interview with schools for teaching positions.

The meeting was held downtown, at the uber-swanky Palmer House Hilton (lobby pictured).
I dropped off some copies of my CV that morning, chatted with some fellow job-seekers, and took off for the suburbs again. Once there, my mom and I went out to enjoy the nice weather by way of a hike at the recently opened Pleasant Valley Conservation Area, located just outside of Woodstock, IL.

My mom on the trail.

Friday morning, I took the 7:30 train (!) into the city, and found out I had been invited to do three job interviews! I interviewed for a one-year position at Augustana College in Rock Island, IL (quad-cities, if that means anything to you, reader). I also interviewed for a tenure-track position at Washtenaw Community College in Ann Arbor, Michigan: a community college isn't ideal, but they pay, and Ann Arbor is supposed to be a hip ville. The gentleman I spoke with, Charles Johnson, was very friendly, and the interview seemed to go well. . . .

Lastly (actually, it was the first one I did, but whatever), I interviewed for a one-year spot at Carleton College in Northfield, MN. Now that one would be just awesome. The interview went very well, as far as I could tell--the woman I spoke with, Angela Curran, was very nice, and does work in Ancient Philosophy, so we had a great time discussing Plato together. I found out later that there may be an inside candidate, but it was a great experience either way.

Later on, I participated in a focus group for a publishing company: they asked around 15 or so Intro to Phil teachers from around the country to talk for a couple of hours about teaching approaches and about textbooks. It was actually very interesting to hear how other professors teach their Intro classes, and the publishing company paid me to be there (!). That evening, I joined some philosophy friends (well, two of them were professors who served on my dissertation committee, but I think I'll call them friends now) for dinner at the restaurant Russian Tea Time, a pretty fun place downtown (generally downtown doesn't please me much, but we did have vodka for an aperitif, so that's cool).

Afterwards, I met up with the fabulous Chris Lee in Wrigleyville. We had some drinks, talked until very late, and Chris and his wonderful fiancée Carrie let me crash on their couch. At this point, the photos are not my own, alas.

Chris (top left) and his Improv Olympic team, the Cougars.

The lovely Carrie Barrett, who also is on an iO team, Little Room.

The next morning (Saturday), I woke up early enough to make a nine am paper I was interested in (on Wittgenstein and Kripke, if you're wondering), but decided to skip it . . . so I went back to sleep. I did hear a couple of good papers on Aristotle that afternoon, then Emily met me and we had dinner with Chris. We ate at a place up north of Uptown called Ethiopian Diamond--delicious. Delicious. We then talked with Chris and--as a special, unexpected bonus--Carrie. We ended the night with a trip to Bucktown to see Dave and Diana, who rock. Sadly, we had too much fun talking to take any photos. . . .

After driving back to McHenry (we got in at like 2 am), we awoke Sunday, enjoyed talking with my mom over breakfast, and drove home--by way of Springfield, IL, where we stopped to see Eric and Christy. Again, too much fun to take my own pics:

Their house in Springfield. Eric is just finishing his first year on the faculty at MacMurray College, and seems to be doing very well there, which is awesome.

Eric with his KU PhD diploma.

It was, in all, a great trip; we really enjoyed the conferences, and the chance to see so many excellent people.

On a totally unrelated note, if you missed Stephen Colbert at the White House Correspondents' Dinner, you should really check it out; why not watch it at the Truth Will Out blog?


  1. Lonnie and Barb would have loved to see you if they'd known you were in Springfield, but in fact they were here with me this weekend, visiting D.C. for the first time since before I was born.

    Sorry the Economistas turned you down, but those other job opportunities all sound enticing. Carleton rejected my undergrad application, which means they MUST be a good school ... And EHD could return to her St. Olaf roots.

  2. No Diana and Dave pictures? What kind of blog is this?!?!

    Yours in good posture,

  3. You see, this photo is one of the best I've got--but it's from January '04.

    Perhaps I'll add it to the post.

    As I said, we were having too much fun last Saturday; no way a camera could've captured it. . . .

    Glad to hear, Ms Ciciarelli, the posture remains upright.

  4. good luck on the other two interviews YD.

  5. Thanks again for the delicious risotto, and for humoring me by attempting to decipher the crazy trails at Pleasant Valley. It was fun.