Birthday Reflections: 2021

Hi everyone! As always, thank you for the birthday wishes and the donations to the National Math and Science Initiative! I cherish all of your friendships and our experiences throughout the years, even the ones where we end up cursing at each other in the end. Thanks for sticking with me through this strange adventure that has led me from Baltimore, to rural Japan, Hawaii, and now Chicago: the city of wind, physics, donuts, coffee, and pizza.As you can imagine, my 37th year on the planet was an unpredictable ride, from the ever-looming challenges of covid to the riots and mass protests just down the street, the election, the canceled weddings and lost year of Burning Man, the missed holidays with family, and even the occasional road trips. My grandma passed away from the virus, but she had an incredibly long and fulfilling life and many grandchildren and I’m grateful I got to know her. Thankfully, the rest of the family managed to stay mostly healthy.At work on MicroBooNE, I became “run coordinator”, which meant being on call 24/7 for months at a time, though luckily things were relatively quiet due to covid-related safe mode operations. Our team at IIT also put out a paper — thanks to massive help from folks at UTA in Texas and my boss who helped get it into shape. Writing wise, I had a couple of stories published, and far more rejected, but that’s all part of the experience; I’m working on a new book and some of you are helping read and edit my previous one, so thanks for your input! Overall I’m grateful for last year and the constant companionship of Gina and Jiffy at the house, and the rest of you via Zoom, facebook, instagram, or random phonecalls. Let’s keep in touch and make 2021 a year to remember for all the right reasons.

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