Daily updates

My brother Mica was recently on the radio in New Zealand, describing his teaching experience and plans to live and teach in Aukland for at least two years.

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Toronto350.org asked me to photograph their action outside the Toronto Dominion (TD) bank shareholder meeting downtown this morning, protesting continuing investment in fossil fuel projects. The electrical system on my 5D3 flickered and died, despite fresh batteries. This is the first time I’ve ever really had to use the backup body, and my 5D2 rose […]

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April

2019-04-01

in Daily updates, PhD thesis

I have one last blast of grading for my current TA contract: then I have dedicated the summer to completing my dissertation, getting chapters to committee members, implementing their proposed changes, and getting it defended as soon as possible. I’ll be trying to write every day at home, starting with the completion of data analysis.

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Photos by Julie Smitka It was wonderful to see old friends tonight, including some being awarded their dictionaries for doctorates and law school completion. I’m so fortunate to have been part of the Massey community. The PhD so far would have been nowhere near as worthwhile and enriching without the fellowship, stimulation, and camaraderie.

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If the plan to finish the PhD by the end of August holds — along with the pattern of never getting a summer TA position — this batch of second year political science papers will be the last undergraduate essay grading I ever do. That would be most welcome. While there is a nurturing sort […]

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I’m now halfway through Ali Soufan’s Anatomy of Terror: From the Death of Bin Laden to the Rise of the Islamic State. Like his earlier Black Banners it’s both informative and accessible, going into considerable detail on the motivations and internal deliberations and conflicts of jihadi terror groups. While Black Banners was much more about […]

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Photo by Joe Santu

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One virtue of anxiety is sometimes you do come up with a new approach to solving a problem the 1000th time you think it over, even if you haven’t learned any pertinent information in the interim. The new approach is probably bad, but at least the rate of new ideas never falls to zero and […]

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This feels overall like it has been an unsatisfying month. I’ve been sick the whole time and reading week was neither relaxing nor productive. Now another blast of grading is beginning. Hopefully I can finally get over this cold and back to productive PhD work.

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When I lived at Massey College between September 2012 and spring 2015, I was grateful and often struck by the oddness of mostly surviving on U of T’s ungenerous funding while living a block from St George subway station, surrounded by million dollar condos. I’m still grateful to be living near campus, letting me perform […]

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