Daily updates

In one of my most boneheaded moves ever, I lost my wonderful Fuji X100s camera at the Canadian Political Science Association conference. I was at a morning panel on “Natural Resources, Energy, and Climate” and because the desks were small I put it on the one behind me. At the end of the session, I […]



In the next couple of days I have a lot to wrap up. For the ENV381 course where I’m working as a TA, I need to finalize the details of my assignment grades, calculate participation grades, and grade one last batch of final exams. I am applying for three summer positions: internships with The Walrus […]


As far as weather goes, this is the nicest time of year in Toronto. The days are long and bright and the temperature mostly varies between warm enough to be comfortable in a t-shirt to cool enough to be comfortable in a light jacket. It’s easy to spend hours outside, whether undergoing physical exertion or […]

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I think I have mentioned before my revulsion for some standard practices with dead humans: embalming with toxic chemicals, burial in elaborate coffins, and efforts to isolate corpses from the outside world through concrete burial vaults and similar. All that runs fundamentally against my self-understanding as one animal in all the multitude of nature. When […]


Here’s the converse of having fairly clear expectations of the future: suddenly having to start thinking about all sorts of long-term choices with no confidence about where in the world I will be after a certain date. It may be that I will be leaving the PhD program and, in that case, I really don’t […]


I bought a couple of used books today, fixed the earphone jack on my iPod, and went for a long aimless walk. Ending up in Trinity-Bellwoods park in the afternoon, I assigned myself a project of talking to strangers. One trick is that people are almost always cool with you speaking directly to their dog. […]

Yesterday, I attended the Political Science End of Year Party and the Rose Wolfe Seder at Massey College. Later, Pieter and I got to know our new flatmate Rad a bit. The thesis proposal remains an ongoing struggle. There is also one immediate wave of grading with another yet to come, and summer TA applications.

I spent most of today working on the theoretical framework for my forthcoming proposal, but this morning I went with my mother and some of her friends to see Toronto’s Aga Khan Museum. Also, I took a break in the evening to try yoga for the first time in Massey’s Upper Library. It was quite […]


I went into my thesis proposal presentation on Tuesday with the hope that it would meet with general approval and that I would soon be moving on to seeking ethical approval and beginning research. Things have worked out dramatically differently, and I am now engaged in an intense effort to write an entirely new proposal […]