(Please tell me it will be sunny. The midwest has been brutally cold this winter.)
I’m super excited to attend the Biophysical Society Annual Meeting for the first time, and even more excited to write for the BPS blog – many thanks to Ellen Mackall for the invitation to do so. This meeting will be packed with fascinating science, and I’m glad that I get to contribute to it. I’m also quite honored to share this forum with so many interesting science writers. I am a relative neophyte to this endeavor and I’m greatly looking forward to interacting with and learning from all of my peers here.
In the lead-up to this meeting, I’ve been getting my presentation ready for the platform talk I’m giving on Monday. I’ve presented several public seminars here at Purdue; nevertheless, the room has usually been filled with people whom I know, so there is a
sense for what to anticipate (there’s the added comfort of home field advantage or, if you will, falling out of bed into the seminar room). This time, I go on the road, and get to experience presenting to a room full of people I don’t know, at least personally; I have been reading their papers and publications for many years now, and I finally get to connect words to faces. (I suppose I can still fall out of bed into the seminar room, given the proximity of my hotel.)
Anyway, as something of a warm-up exercise, I participated in the annual poster competition organized by Sigma Xi on Wednesday night here at Purdue. It is essentially the same presentation I’ll be giving at BPS, except condensed into three minutes instead of fifteen. The audience is also broad, including competitors from engineering and the humanities, so it’s a chance to step back and think about the bigger picture: a nice change of pace for someone who spends his day staring at EPR spectra and crystal structures. At the least, a chance to warm up the windpipes! (Which need warming up; did I mention it’s been really cold here?)
Besides the meeting, I’m also looking forward to sampling some of the local cuisine. Although I’ve visited San Francisco a few times, I’ve not quite gotten beyond the usual touristy sites and visiting friends and relatives, so this trip offers an opportunity to do something else. I’d love suggestions for good local restaurants to try – I’m a big fan of anything South or Southeast Asian. The Slanted Door sounds interesting; any others I should give a try?
I can’t wait to post again soon about the meeting!