Category Archives: Update

So Many Things

The Farm To Fork team - all smiles after the big funding announcement at the Big Show.
The Farm To Fork team – all smiles after the big funding announcement at the Big Show.

I can’t believe the coming week marks the end of classes for the winter 2014 semester. I won’t lie, I’m actually pretty excited to see it come to an end. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve had a blast this semester, however, it has been far busier than I was initially expecting and I know that I’m definitely ready for a break.

The last two weeks have been particularly busy, but they’ve also been absolutely fantastic for a number of reasons.

On the 17th I was invited to speak to students in the Masters of Public Health program at the University of Guelph. My talk was on social media, and how – in my opinion – it could and probably should be used as a tool for public health. It was great to speak to a new class of students, and especially fun to talk about Twitter, Facebook, and other social media in an academic setting.

Later in the week (Saturday, March 22nd) I got to play judge at CollabNow, an event put on by the Entrepreneurship Society of the University of Guelph. The event brought together business, computer science, and engineering students from both the University of Guelph and the University of Waterloo. Student teams were tasked with developing solutions to deal with the expected population growth in the City of Guelph over the next 17 years. Although they were given only about an hour or so to develop a solution, the students came up with some great ideas that were supported with real data.

Corey and Lee-Jay. Still smiling. Still laughing.
Corey and Lee-Jay. Still smiling. Still laughing.

The very next day (Sunday, March 23rd) I joined the Farm To Fork team as we ventured to Kitchener to celebrate the launch of the Farmer’s Kitchen Table website. I was invited to speak at the event – specifically on Farm To Fork and the importance of sufficient sustainable healthy food on every table, especially in the case of tables where food is often absent. While Farm To Fork has garnered attention outside the borders of Guelph (thank you social media and word of mouth), it’s always great to bring the message personally. Thanks again to Anne Marie, founder of the Farmer’s Kitchen Table, for letting us speak at the event.

Tuesday the 25th was one of my busier days. The day began with me helping to host one of Google’s engineers who was invited to the school to talk to the students. Immediately following that I got to watch as several student groups presented the mobile apps they’ve been developing – and holy hell some of them were super cool. After their presentations I had to jet to the River Run Centre to join the rest of the Farm To Fork team for the Big Show. For those not in the know, the Big Show was a showcase for the 52 ideas submitted to the Elevator Project to make Guelph an even better place to live. At the event Farm To Fork was announced as one of the top 15 ideas, and we were also awarded over $10000 in funding. While we knew before the event that we were in the top 15, we were floored when the funding announcement was made. Talk about an amazing way to end a Tuesday!

Speaking at the Farmer's Kitchen Table launch party.
Speaking at the Farmer’s Kitchen Table launch party.

And the Farm To Fork team got together again this weekend (because apparently we can’t get enough of each other). Yesterday we were in Centre Wellington for the Food For Thought event. There, Danny gave a phenomenal talk about what inspires him, and he also introduced the audience to the Farm To Fork project. To say they were excited would be an understatement. And you can only imagine how awesome that left us feeling - especially considering the high we were still on from Tuesday night’s big announcements.

Today the team gathered with some of my other students to spend the day coding our butts off. It was a long day, but a lot of fun, and I think in the end we managed to accomplish a lot. Not a bad way to spend a Sunday.

Corey and Danny and the Farm To Fork table - part of the Farmer's Kitchen Table launch event.
Corey and Danny and the Farm To Fork table – part of the Farmer’s Kitchen Table launch event.

Despite the crazy schedule, the last two weeks have been fantastic. And as tired as I am, the feedback and support that Farm To Fork has been shown has reinvigorated me; it’s reminded me of how far we’ve come, where we are, and what still needs to be done. And I know we can do it.

Fortunately, I’ve got an amazing group of people working with me, and an equally amazing group of friends supporting me. Thanks to everyone for keeping me (relatively) sane. I promise I will get some sleep – soon.

70 Down 20 To Go

Bundled up before my run.
Bundled up before my run.

Holy cow, I can’t believe 10 weeks of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge are now a part of history, and less than 3 weeks remain.

Last week was a huge improvement over the two weeks that preceded it. While it wasn’t my strongest week ever, it did see me get in three solid runs, plus a lot of stretching which I desperately needed. More than that, I actually managed to end the week with a really strong run on the treadmill. Specifically, I logged 6.49km in 30 minutes – or in other words – I managed an average pace of 4:37 per kilometre. Not too shabby at all.

At this stage in the challenge I’ve managed to complete 25% of the distance required on my quest to 1000km. Note – my quest to 1000km was not the goal for the 90 Day Fitness Challenge. I’m crazy, but I’m not that crazy.

Anyway, at the rate I’m going and if I manage to keep to my training schedule (translation – no injuries), I should hit my goal of running 1000km sometime in May or June. But I’m getting ahead of myself. For now I have the remaining days of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge to focus on.

I’ve got this.

63 Down 27 To Go

No more excuses.
No more excuses.

My life over the past few weeks has been rather stupid busy, so I didn’t get to post my regular update (which would have been aptly entitled 56 Down 34 To Go). But, given my lack of running it wouldn’t have been much of an update anyway. In fact, the last few weeks has been a rather black mark on my otherwise great start to the year.

I’m opting to look on the positive side of things and realize that sometimes one needs to allow for these breaks. Still, I feel like kicking myself in the ass for not getting out for even a few short runs.

Fortunately I did manage to get out for a run today. And there is hope for the future: the remainder of the semester – while it will be busy – shouldn’t be as stupid busy as the last two weeks.

What does this mean? Well, it means I have zero excuse to get back on track. And so that is what I intend to do. We’re in the final few weeks of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge, and I plan to embrace each day of it with as much kick-ass-ery as I can.

 

49 Down 41 To Go

Hard to believe that I'm going to be tackling the Toronto GoodLife Marathon in a little less than 10 weeks.
Hard to believe that I’m going to be tackling the Toronto GoodLife Marathon in a little less than 10 weeks.

I can’t believe the 90 Day Fitness Challenge is more than half over already. 

Despite missing my running goal by slightly more than 3km, I’m actually really happy with how this week went. The week was super busy, beginning with a presentation with my students on Tuesday, and ending with a 24 hour hackathon on campus. The hackathon – known as the Open Data Day Hackathon – officially started at 10am on Saturday, and finished by 10am Sunday. While the hours were long, the event was well worth the effort – and I even managed to sneak away to get in a 13.42km run.

By the end of week 7 I managed to log another 38.94 km, bringing my cumulative total since January 1st to 225.50km. I also managed to put in 140 minutes of yoga, and 225 minutes of mobility/strength training. All told – a rather productive and active week.

But I can’t rest on my laurels as week 8 is going to be an even bigger challenge: my running goals are taking a leap forward, and I also have to manage a rather hectic schedule at the office. Here’s hoping I stay on track, and that I manage to find some time to relax and rest. If I want to crush the Toronto GoodLife Marathon in May, I’m going to need to.

 

 

 

 

42 Down 48 To Go

Another wintry week of running.
Another wintry week of running.

Last week got away from me a little bit. I probably spent far too much time in meetings, and probably far too much time running around between meetings. Fortunately I didn’t allow this to interfere with my training schedule, and from my point of view that’s a huge win.

My goal this week was to add another 42km to my cumulative running total, spend 150 minutes doing yoga, and hit the gym for 90 minutes.

How’d I do?

Well, despite having too many meetings, presentations, and other academically related activities, I managed to log 46.58km, 130 minutes of yoga, and 120 minutes at the gym. Not too shabby if I do say so myself. Definitely an improvement over the previous two weeks.

After 6 weeks of training I’m happy to say that I’m pretty much on track for where I want to be at this point. I’ve logged 186.56km of running, 965 minutes of yoga, and 665 minutes at the gym. These values are 92.36%, 100.52%, and 116.67% of my cumulative goals respectively. W00t!

As for week 7, I’ve purposely set my goals to be the same as week 6: 42km of running, 150 minutes of yoga, and 120 minutes at the gym. Here’s hoping this week is just as strong as last.

35 Down 55 To Go

Another chilly run.
Another chilly run.

And just like that week 5 of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge is over. While I’m not quite back to where I should be in terms of my goals, week 5 was a huge improvement over week 4.

For week 5 of the challenge I had aimed to run 5 times, covering 37km and bringing my cumulative distance to 160km for the year. Since my foot1 and knee were feeling a bit wobbly on Friday I opted to forgo my run; instead using the time to rest and stretch at home. Because of that I managed 4 runs, covering 28.69km. My cumulative total is now sitting at 139.98km, which is shy of my overall goal for this time by slightly more than 20km. Week 6 is going to be all about making up some of that missing distance.

Other than running, I managed to get in a session of mobility training with Dr. Mark, while continuing to stretch at home. All told, not a bad week.

It’s hard to believe the challenge is almost half over.


1 Not to worry – this wasn’t my related to my previously injured ankle. It was my other foot that felt wobbly – but I can attribute that to trying to run through the snow on Tuesday during/after the storm. Deep snow and ice do not make for an easy run.

Relief

I’m sitting here feeling so different from even 24 hours ago.

I just got off the phone with some friends who’ve admitted to sending the envelope I received last Thursday. It was never intended to hurt me – and I know with my entire being that this is the truth, because I know how amazing and supportive and loving these friends are. The pamphlet was sent to me because they assumed it would make me laugh; that I’d see the obvious insanity behind it, and I’d shake my head at its pure stupidity.

What they didn’t know – what they couldn’t have known – was how I would respond.  They couldn’t have known how eerily similar this event was to something that happened only a few years ago. They couldn’t have known that I had received hate mail taped to the door of the very same office which their envelope was addressed, because I’d never talked about it. They couldn’t have known because I’d kept that information to myself; I’d only allowed a few people to have access to that part of me because I had felt that keeping it hidden would somehow protect me – keeping it under lock and key would ensure that no one would feel the need to put me under a microscope to figure out why it had happened in the first place.

Am I angry at them for sending me the pamphlet? No, I’m not. And to everyone who has sent me their support and encouragement, and who have offered to be my personal bodyguards and hit-men, I ask that you aren’t either. Because honestly, I know as I sit here that I’ve been in a similar situation where I’ve done something expecting a particular reaction, only to learn that what was meant to be harmless fun affected someone in a way that I never could have predicted. I’ve been the bad guy and I know how miserable and sorry I felt because I had hurt someone I loved. So no, I can’t be angry with them. It’s not helpful or productive, and it won’t lead any of us to a better place.

Honestly, as I sit here writing this I’m trying to decide who I’m angry with. Am I angry at the people who would intentionally spread hate? Am I angry at myself for letting those people get under my skin? I think the answer is yes to both of these questions. Yes I’m angry that the world seemingly is filled with people who would choose to purposefully harm others, and yes I’m angry at myself for allowing fear to take over my life. But I am not, nor will I allow myself to be, consumed by this anger.

I’m not sure where I’m going to go from here. The past week has taught me a few things about myself, and about how much the events of my past have truly shaped who I am. There are a million thoughts running through my head that I need to process; there are a million things that I could do – I just need to take some time to sort through them.

What I do know, and what I’ve said many times, is that I am a very fortunate man. This week I was reminded of this because of so many people who were willing to go to war to protect me because I thought I was being threatened. While this week has been a low one for me, I find myself humbled by your words, your actions, and your defence of me. I owe each and every one of you a hug, and I love you all for being there for me.

For now I’m heading to bed because I am exhausted in every way. But please do me a favour – please hug your kids, or your parents, or your siblings, or your partner, or your pet; tell the people you love that you love them, even if it scares you, especially if it scares you; forgive. Because these tiny acts are what keeps the darkness and anger and hatred at bay, and these tiny acts heal us. But most importantly, these tiny acts become a force of change if we want them to be.

And I want them to be.

 

 

 

Untitled II

I’ve spent the last few days feeling rather low, confused, angry, and so many other things because of the act of one or more ignorant cowards. Whatever his/her/their intention, I’ve found myself feeling apprehensive; carefully monitoring myself lest I say or do something I presumably shouldn’t, or worrying that in some unknown way I’m going to bring about the interest of someone I clearly don’t want around me.

I woke up today thinking that I wouldn’t let this person or group get to me. I would move past it like I have so many times before. But this is easier said than done.

When I got to the office I found my stomach in knots as I approached the mailroom. This scenario repeated itself today when I checked the mail at home, my mind immediately dreading what I might find. And I realized while running tonight that I was far more tense than I should have been; jumping at any noise that in previous weeks and months wouldn’t have garnered so much as a second glance.

This might seem like an extreme response to a letter I received in the mail. I won’t lie – I think it is too. But it’s a response that has been sadly etched into my psyche one word, one abusive taunt, one threat, one physical attack at a time. I’m not writing this for pity or sympathy; while all of these are things that I’d not wish on even my worst enemy, they have in ways – for better or worse – shaped me into the man I am today. They are my reality.

But I know this behaviour isn’t me. At least, it’s not the me that I want to be. It’s the me that someone else wants. And unfortunately for them I can’t – I won’t – subscribe to their vision of my life.

For those of you who know me well, you’ll know that I don’t get this upset easily. I’m a rather easy-going person; I try to laugh at my fears and face them head on; I try to enjoy life to the fullest because this world truly is an amazing place. And it can be even better if we really want it to be. We – I – have to remember that those that would try to bring us down are few, those who would work to make the world better are many.

Fortunately, I know that this checking over my shoulder behaviour isn’t going to last. I won’t allow it. Because I won’t allow some person or group to have that kind of control over my life. Yes, they may surprise me from time to time, they may sneak up on me when I’m least expecting it, but I know that I am far stronger than anything they can throw at me.

I also have something that they likely don’t; an amazing group of friends who have sent me support, and love, and so many kind words over the last few days. Countless emails, and texts, and Facebook messages, and tweets, and phone calls from people – some whom I haven’t talked to in far too long – sending me their support, and words of encouragement, and everything that makes me know that I’m not alone in this fight.

So to all of you amazing people – thank you for checking in on me; thank you for the extra tight hugs; thank you for letting me vent; thank you for taking me out for pie; thank you for playing the I’m not your mom, but I’m still a mom and I want to make sure you’re okay card; thank you, thank you, thank you.

The last few days have been long and, for someone who is normally up, quite low. But I know they won’t be this way for long. How could they be with this many people cheering me on?

28 Down 62 To Go

Snuggles - very much needed this week.
Snuggles – very much-needed this week.

Week four of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge was trying; very trying. It started off filled with good intentions and kick-ass energy, but then life decided to get in the way and that all changed.

Initially I was worried that work was going to be the main challenge – what with three major events this week. But then Thursday’s mail arrived and everything changed. I’m not going to dwell on that, but needless to say the wind was knocked from my sails and I found myself needing to spend more time at home thinking with the wee fuzzball safely snuggled up next to me.

There’s a part of me that is annoyed that I didn’t make my weekly goals (only 1 run, instead of 5), but I know that I also needed to take the time to begin to deal with everything. And because I find safety and comfort in numbers, I also know that I can easily catch up. In fact, the only goal where I’ve fallen short is running. My schedule indicates that I should have run a total of 123km by tomorrow, and I currently have 111.29km under my belt. I should be able to get back on track with one longer (and much-needed) run tomorrow.

So yes – this week sucked more than it should have. Yes – life got in the way. But I’m not going to stay down for long. Tomorrow begins week 5 and I’m ready to crush it.

 

 

21 Down 69 To Go

It's just a wee chilly outside.
It’s just a wee chilly outside.

Week three of the 90 Day Fitness Challenge has officially come to an end, and I’m happy to say that things are still going strong.

It was a tough week, however. Temperatures dipped into the realm of ridiculousness again, and then Mother Nature decided we needed more snow. Because running in frigid temperatures and knee-deep snow drifts is always a party. Fortunately the gym is only ~2km from my house, so on the colder days I was able to spend part of my time in the climate controlled goodness that is the GoodLife Fitness Centre.

By the end of the week I had managed to put in another 34.55km on my Quest To 1000km. That brings my grand total to 106.16km. Not too shabby. If I were to maintain this rate (i.e. averaging slightly more than 4km per day), I’d hit 1000km some time in early September. However, my training schedule for the 50km Ultra is far more demanding than what I’m currently putting my body through. This means that if all goes well – read, my ankle doesn’t explode - I expect to hit 1000km sometime in May.

But I shouldn’t get too far ahead of myself – there are still 893.84km between me and my prize. A lot of life is going to happen between now and then; a lot of time running in all sorts of weather (because, let’s be honest, this winter isn’t even close to being over yet), a lot of competing work and social activities, and a lot of days where I’m just not going to want to run. I have to remember to stay focused on the prize, but also allow myself the flexibility to accept that external forces are going to interfere with all of my best laid plans. And that’s okay, because they’ll all be part of my crazy adventure to run 1000km.

Week four starts tomorrow. You’ve got this Gillis.

 

The Business Of Do Goodery

The Bigger Picture Series: Bridging The Gap
The Bigger Picture Series: Bridging The Gap

On Wednesday I spoke at the Bigger Picture Series: Bridging the Gap event. The speaker series is sponsored by the Centre for Business and Social Entrepreneurship, the CMESA, Innovation Guelph, and the College of Management and Economics.

You’re probably wondering why the hell a stats-nerd who works in the School of Computer Science was invited to speak before a group of management, economic, and marketing types. 

Don’t feel bad, I wondered the same thing. As it turns out, I was asked to talk about the Farm To Fork story.

This would be the first time that I would be presenting anything to a group of people who weren’t stats-y, or computer science-y, or community-engaged-scholarship-y. As such I was a little nervous. I mean, what the hell could I say that might be useful to a bunch of entrepreneurial business types?

So before I presented I sat down and pondered what pearls of wisdom I might have that could prove useful to someone starting a business; specifically a do-good business.

After a lot of working and reworking, pulling from previous presentations, adding some statistics, and polishing up my presentation, something hit me: of all the stuff I was presenting, the biggest idea was that of doing something. 

Was it rocket science? Hells no. But the more I thought about it, the more I knew that this was what I wanted to pass along. Do-Goodery, in any of its forms (e.g. scientific, social, business) requires more than just talking about Do-Goodery. It demands doing. It’s right there in the title.

Sadly, most of us spend our days simply identifying problems. Many of us seem to have this innate ability to pinpoint all of those things that aren’t working, or those things that need to be improved, or those things that are just stupid, or those things that we’d have done differently if we were in charge. But how many of us actually take the time to do something about all of these problems we see?

Do we take action? Do we try to change things? Do we put forth our best fight, even in situations where we’re convinced we might fail? Or do we simply bitch about the problem, and leave it for someone else to solve?

If the Farm To Fork project has taught me anything, it’s that we all can make a huge difference if we just get off our asses and do something. It’s not always easy. It’s sometimes scary. But sometimes the stars and planets align and all of the right people come together, and something magical happens – if we act. Otherwise, the magic fizzles and we’re left with nothing more than what we began with – an identified problem without a viable solution.

Do-Goodery demands doing - so ask yourself this – what am I going to do today?

Better Late Than Never

A penny saved is a penny more for vacation.
A penny saved is a penny more for vacation.

So I just spent a few hours organizing my finances. While some of you might be thinking - boring - I actually enjoy doing this sort of thing. I am a numbers guy after all.

Normally this is something I do right at the beginning of the year, but have been putting off because I knew I didn’t successfully complete some of last years challenges. Most of those were related to paying off debt and growing my net worth, but there were other things like keeping my budget up to date that were complete write-offs.

Of course I should have looked sooner, because looking sooner would have had me realize that I did way better than I thought I did last year. Don’t get me wrong – I’m not suddenly independently wealthy or anything, but I’m fortunate in that I do have enough to put food on the table, a roof overhead, and save a little for rainy days or wanderlusting, adventures, and shenanigans.

Did I reach the targets I had set last year? No, not exactly. But I did move in the right direction and that’s what’s important. In fact, I moved farther in the right direction than I had thought. This is mainly because I’ve opted to pay down my mortgage at an accelerated rate. I apparently had forgotten how that might impact my net worth and debt. Silly me.

Regardless, the area in which I failed miserably was keeping my budget up to date. In any sort of financial setting – good or bad – I’d suggest that this is something that I should always do. As with most of my goals, if I continually review their status I’m more apt to attain them. So this year I’m going to be a bit more diligent in this area. I’ve also already started efforts to spend less by purchasing fewer coffees, packing lunches, and reducing the amount of money I spend at restaurants. Every penny counts, right?

Will 2014 see me a gazillionaire? Not unless I win the lottery or suddenly invent that thing that everyone on earth is willing to throw their hard-earned dollars at. But if all goes well I should again see my net worth go up as my debt goes down.

Unless of course I decide to cash it all in and move to a beach :)

 

14 Down 76 To Go

Stretching with the wee fuzzball
Stretching with the wee fuzzball

And just like that the 90 Day Fitness Challenge is 2 weeks old. They grow up so fast.

I won’t lie – this week was tough. Work and life kept trying to get in the way of my goals. Stupid work and life – why you gotta be like that?

My first hurdle came on Tuesday. I arrived home exhausted and debating internally about whether or not I should run. Fortunately I embraced the suck and hammered out slightly more than 5km of running goodness.

Wednesday, however, was a different story. I spent the day with Tim Bray - he was on campus to give a talk on security and privacy. Since I was part of the group that organized his visit, it meant that I didn’t get home until quite late and I was completely knackered. I toyed with the idea of running but decided that it wasn’t in my best interest.

The decision not to run on Wednesday meant that I had to rejig my training schedule. Basically that meant moving my Wednesday run to Friday; setting up 4 consecutive days of running. While this wasn’t the first time I’d run 4 consecutive days, it was the first time I’d done so in a long while.

And after today’s run – my body is definitely feeling it. Nothing hurts beyond the typical pain one might feel after exercise, but I am completely spent. Tonight I’m sure to sleep like a king.

Regardless, week two is complete and I’m happy to say that I’ve met my goal and then some. I had planned to run 27km, but actually ran 31.28km. This means my cumulative distance for the year now sits at a very respectable 71.61km – which is slightly more than 7% of the required kilometres on my Quest to 1000. I also managed some quality gym time with Dr. Mark, and some much-needed yoga time. All told, not a bad week.

Take that work and life trying to get in the way.

But truth be told, I’m going to enjoy my rest day tomorrow.

The Re-Schtubbed-Ubbening

Ma sinuses are schtubbed ubb, again.
Ma sinuses are schtubbed ubb, again.

I’ve been randomly looking back at some old posts – seeing if there were any shenanigans of significance that I might have found myself a part of a year ago1. Part of the reason for my walk down memory lane is known as procrastination; I know I have to run 7km today on my Quest To 1000 Kilometres, but I’m feeling a little lazy at the moment.

Beyond a case of the lazies, my sinuses haven’t forgiven me since yesterday’s run and gym adventure. I’ve been sneezing up a storm. I had originally blamed it on the dust that’s been generated at the gym on account of some remodelling that’s going on, but then I started my walk down memory lane. Now I’m not so sure.

You see, one year ago yesterday – yesterday being when the sinus stuff started – I wrote Schtubbed Ubb. My sinuses were b0rked then too. Last year I blamed travel, however, I’m not so sure that I’m buying that excuse anymore. Perhaps my sinuses contain a deeper, darker secret. Perhaps they’re plotting against me. Perhaps they don’t want me to run.

Or perhaps I’m just finding any reason to avoid lacing up and doing the work I know I have to do if I ever want to crush my goal.

We may never know for sure.


1 Sometimes I look back to see if there is an excuse to celebrate some milestone’s anniversary. Because anniversaries mean scotch. That’s a rule.

Three Year Prof-iversary

All the classy bitches drink mountain top scotch.
Mountain top scotch – it’s what profs do.

Over the weekend I spent some time organizing files, prepping notes for class, and doing whatever it is that profs do in their free time1. Of course, sitting around organizing meant that I spent much of my time exploring the past year of work. It’s weird; most days I feel as if I get nothing accomplished because I spend far too much of my time in meetings. But, as with most aspects of my life, it’s not until I sit down and actually reflect on the past that I realize how much has happened in one little year.

From a strictly academic viewpoint I managed to submit several papers, write a bunch of reports, and work on several cool (at least to me) simulation studies. The year was also filled with so many grant writing sessions that I can’t remember a time when I wasn’t writing grants. I found myself in Newfoundland and Labrador for a presentation, spoke as part of a panel of experts for a teaching innovations conference, and was invited to speak at Western University. All told, not a bad year.

I think, however, the best part of the past year had to be the Farm To Fork project. It has become a central part of my life. It is on my mind all of the time, and it’s something that continues to amaze me. I am constantly blown away by the support that it has been shown at the local level, and the interest it has garnered beyond the borders of Guelph-Wellington.

Farm To Fork has also reminded me how amazing students can be if you just give them something worthwhile to do. The amount of work they’ve put into the project continues to make me smile a crazy stupid proud smile. Getting to work with the Farm To Fork students has been a fantastic experience, and I’m not quite sure how I lucked out as I have. It’s going to be very strange around my office when they all graduate.

Anyway, it wasn’t long after thinking about all of this stuff that I realized I just passed my third year as an Assistant Professor. Crazy how time flies. So many things have changed since the day I first stepped into the halls of the School of Computer Science. My job is better than I ever could have imagined it would be. And while my days are often rammed with meetings, I do love what I do. I think the students have a lot to do with that.

Officially my contract has two years left on it. I’m pretty excited to see what those two years will bring. If they’re anything like the first three, it’s going to be a crazy ride.

For now, I’m going to celebrate my three-year anniversary with a wee dram. It’s what profs do.


1 Some academiologists2 suggest that professors spend their spare time enjoying scotch. I can neither confirm nor deny this. I can only tell you that this professor enjoys spending his spare time sampling wee drams.

2 Academiologist: a person who studies academics.