Just coming back from a week in New Haven, where I still have a desk in my old office. Met a bunch of colleagues and friends, but the most random encounter happened in the ingenious forestry department building. Its design is so appealing and welcoming that people from all disciplines go there for group meetings, for studying or, like me and Jordan, for lunch. Sitting there in the corner were Lars, the Swedish child psychologist, and his girlfriend Suzanne, also psychologist but instead of spending her research time on autistic children she rather pursuits the question whether people really do hate the rich when they say they do (apparently they don’t). After some very random philosophical debate about the esthetics of a Big Rip versus a Big Crunch I left them analyzing each other’s motivation for why they are researching what they’re researching. Research = me-search. (Apparently I’m obsessed with eating that’s why I’m trying to measure the weight of the Milky Way…)
The City welcomes me with the usual mix of oddness and craziness. A girl throwing up into a trash bin in Grand Central, a guy with cowboy boots, a top hat and 5 cm long fingernails in the shuttle to Times Square, and a homeless dude talking for endless minutes with a vacant subway seat on my way uptown. In this city you’re facing so many weirdos within a few minutes, in my hometown Cologne you would have to ride the subway the whole weekend long to collect that many of them.