Sunday, October 10, 2010

Life after professing

I had dinner recently with my old grad school advisor.  We were at a conference, and it might well be the last time I see him because he's retiring after this year.  It was a great dinner. He is a neat guy.  I'd love to have had him as a colleague. 

All in all, I was pretty lucky having him as the person that controlled my future.  He does have his quirks, but at least he is fairly aware of them.  When you call his house, he answers the phone with "What?" Even if he told you to call!  Intimidating for most of us--especially grad students. 

He also was on a panel once when he became exasperated or simply bored with the person presenting their paper.  So he took out his fingernail clippers and started clipping his nails! Right next to the guy and right during his talk!  The guy had to ask him to stop.

At least he has a nice life set up after retirement, with great travel plans.  This is unlike several professors I've known lately, who teach until they are physically or mentally unable to do it anymore (and maybe even continuing a semester after that!).  Not much of a retirement after that!  I understand about loving your job.  But you also need a life, I think, beyond it.

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