Posted by: unlikelygrad | August 30, 2011

wishing I were far, far away

As I said yesterday, I’ve been at the ACS conference this week–partially for a presentation, and partially because one of the symposia went along well with the theme of my research.

Alas, the ACS conference is in Denver this fall: close enough to where I live/go to school that my advisor won’t pay for a hotel room. So there’s no convenient place to retreat to for an afternoon siesta. Plus, I get the joy of driving to (and from) downtown Denver during rush hour traffic. Yippee.

Even worse, when you “stay home” while going to a conference, you still have to put up with your normal life after 5 pm. For example, I still have to deal with picking up/dropping off my kids, which I wouldn’t do if I were at a conference in, say, Los Angeles.

And to top it all off, if I were staying at a hotel, I wouldn’t have the problem I had yesterday: I was just getting into downtown, after fighting my way through traffic for half an hour, when I realized that I’d left my registration badge at home. Of course I couldn’t go back and get it…the symposium I was speaking at was starting in fifteen minutes. So I just kinda walked into my session, and since my advisor was there (and everyone knew her) it was not a problem. No one really stopped me from going anywhere–I was not in the Convention Center where they insist that everyone have their badge on and facing the right way–but I still found myself looking over my shoulder all of the time.

And yeah, I know I could have walked over to the Convention Center to get a replacement badge. But I was too lazy to do so, because it was several blocks away, and I had too many presentations I wanted to see in the meantime. Plus, it seemed wasteful to get a new one when the old one was sitting on my couch, ~15 miles away. Alas. Anyway, this would not have been a problem if I were at a conference far from home: then it would have just been in a hotel room not far from the conference, and I would have only had to take an elevator up a few floors to retrieve it.

On the plus side, I did remember to bring my badge today.

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