Wednesday Hodgepodge: 25 October 2017

The Wednesday Hodgepodge appears courtesy of From This Side Of The Pond.

1. What's surprised you most about your life or life in general? 

I honestly don't know that anything has come as a surprise.  Delight, yes.   Disappointment, yes.   But surprise?   Not really.   Things happen.

2.  Sweet potato fries, sweet potato casserole, a baked sweet potato, a bowl of butternut squash soup, a caramel apple or a slice of pumpkin pie...you have to order one thing on this list right now. Which one do you go for?

Pumpkin pie, absolutely.   I love the taste of pumpkin pie.   I'm starting to acknowledge that sweet potato fries are a good food as well.

3. What's a famous book set in your home state? Have you read it? On a scale of 1-5 (5 is fantastic) how many stars does it rate?

Wow ... you got me on this question.   From some frantic web searching, it looks like the most "famous" book set in Michigan is The Virgin Suicides, but I haven't read the book or seen the movie.

4. There are 60 days until Christmas...have you started your shopping? How do you stay organized for the holidays?

By default, we've started shopping.   We try to do a little shopping year-round, so it's less frantic at the end.   Alas, the last few years have still seen plenty of frantic activity at the end.

5. October 26th is National Tennessee Day. Have you ever lived or spent any time in Tennessee? Is this a state you'd like to visit one day? The top rated tourist attractions in Tennessee are-


The Great Smoky Mountain National Park (Gatlinburg area), Elvis's Graceland (Memphis), Birth of the Music Biz (Memphis and Nashville), Dollywood (Pigeon Forge), Tennessee's Military Heritage (many battlefields), The Hermitage (Andrew Jackson's home), The Parthenon (Nashville), Oak Ridge American Museum of Science and Energy, Chattagnooa and the Tennessee Valley Railroad, Downtown Knoxville, Lookout Mountain, The Titanic Museum (Pigeon Forge), The Museum of Appalachia (Clinton), and The Lost Sea Adventure (Sweetwater)


How many on this list have you seen? Which one on the list would you most like to see?

I've visited Tennessee a few times.  My first ethics paper was published in a tiny conference in Gatlinberg, though we didn't do more than drive through some of the mountains in the area.   I have a vague memory of spending some time in Nashville when I accompanied my wife on a conference trip, though I think I spent most of my time hiding in the hotel.   SIGCSE was in Memphis in 2016, but (as usual for conferences) I didn't get out much past the conference venues.   SIGCSE was in Chattanooga in 2009, and that was a blast; I stayed in a hotel where my "room" was an old railway car.

I don't think I've been to any of the locations listed above.   Right now, the most appealing would be the Great Smoky Mountains, because ... well, geocaching :).

6.  Insert your own random thought here.

This has been a discouraging few weeks for me.   Several major efforts of mine have turned into failures (in one case, rather spectacularly).   I'm trying to focus my thoughts on the things that are going right rather than all the things that are going wrong.   But it's not working well.

(See, I'm even a failure at correcting my own moods.)

So, I do what I do.   I keep going.   Because, really, what else is there to do?

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