Themes for today and tomorrow

It’s funny how your perspective gets warped when you work at a University and it’s that time of year – the big push before the big publication deadline for the big SIGGRAPH conference.

I came into the lab today already feeling a little punchy from the last few days of working nonstop on our paper submissions – all of which are due tomorrow, January 20. I could see right away that the grad students all had that same slightly dazed look – everyone is trying to get their paper out by 5pm tomorrow.

I ran into one of the grad students in the hall, and rather than ask him how his paper was going, which I was afraid might just make him more tense and nervous, I said “Happy Martin Luther King Day!” He smiled a big broad smile, and replied “And what are you doing to celebrate Martin Luther King Day today?”

Which kind of threw me back in the moment. With total honesty, I said “I’m trying to finish my SIGGRAPH paper.” He asked me why trying to finish a SIGGRAPH paper was celebrating Martin Luther King Day.

And that’s when I suddenly saw the connection. “Because,” I told him, “I have a dream!”

OK, so it may not be the right dream, but it sure helped lighten the mood.

The funny thing about this is that later in the day I was relating this conversation to another grad student, and he told me that he had told his wife earlier in the day that we really had a shot at getting this paper finished on time, in spite of all the work left to do.

Whereupon his wife had shouted out in support “Yes we can!”

One Response to “Themes for today and tomorrow”

  1. And I hope to be in the same dream-team (if you know what I mean :-))
    Those deadlines are always few days too early 😉
    Anyway, I thought you should rather be a reviewer (with all this awards, experience) ?

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