Tuesday, August 31, 2004

The Sun’s Not Yellow, It’s Chicken

An afternoon’s chance to blog from New Haven, Connecticut. It’s been a good trip thus far, from Saint Charles to Greenwich Village to Yale. Katie and Dad didn’t get into any spats on the car trip, so I guess I owe her a cookie. The NYU campus is a little awe-inspiring, although the awe wore off around the time we carried Katie’s stuff up to the fourth floor of her Fifth Avenue dorm. She seems to be doing better now than at first; the preponderance of East Coast pretty party people was a culture shock to the Midwestern theatre girl.

Sunday Mass was a relief to this overprotective Catholic Nerd brother. The local parish has incense every week, a soup kitchen in the basement, Dominican priests and in particular a pastor who once taught theology and philosophy. He knows and trusts the Church, and it shows; any fears of wackiness were dispelled early in his very good, erudite homily. He preaches the way I imagine I would were I called to the priesthood, except more humbly and eloquently by far.

Then we left Katie to her orientation, set Mom on her plane home, and Dad and I started on my graduate school tour. Today he’s working, giving a training session for U.S. Surgical in Norwalk, and I’ve been traversing the campus of Yale.

After talking with some graduate students and the head of the Yale math department, I’ve pretty much decided that the school isn’t for me. They have some serious problems with department size and the breadth of research, and the funding system has been precarious since the VIGRE grant was lost. Furthermore, the grad students chose the school for a specific area of math or by default; I got the impression that as friendly as the department is, many of the grad students wish they were elsewhere.

Pity that there’s such a gorgeous church across the street from the math department. Again run by the Dominicans, Saint Mary’s has stained glass, ornate old confession booths, an altar rail, and the back of the church has prominent booklets for Eucharistic Adoration, daily rosaries and an invitation to a novena supporting life.

I heard "King of Pain" on the radio yesterday and laughed. I hope they have it for karaoke in the Shoreland; the only way to top The Police in Latin would be to cover the Beatles in Klingon.

Next up is Harvard tomorrow.

I miss Alice.

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