Saturday, May 9, 2009

De Breeze's First Theorem of Kalamazoo

Sometime early Friday morning, I had a vision. As I struggled to open my eyes enough to turn off my alarm clock, the following appeared to me in symbols of flame:

x=(b-p)/d

My head was throbbing, and if I didn't get out of bed soon, I was going to be late to the blogger breakfast meetup, so I didn't think much about these symbols. In the middle of the 10:00 session on Friday, as I began to feel a little better, understanding dawned on me. I immediately realized that this equation was an attempt to predict and quantify the most appropriate way to enjoy oneself at Kalamazoo, represented by x, where:

b = the total number of alcoholic beverages consumed,

p = the total number of papers attended (probably only valid for papers during which you do not fall asleep), and

d = the total number of days spent at the conference.

Ideally, x should fall somewhere between -1 and 1. A number higher than one reveals questionable moral fiber. If, for example, you attend six papers on day one but then consume eight beers that evening, x would be equal to 2.0, outside the acceptable range. A negative number suggests admirable restraint but questionable joie de vivre (it is also interesting that numbers less than -2 are exceedingly rare among medievalists).

When I went to bed Thursday evening, my x was floating (literally) right around 10. I had only been at the conference for half of one day, arriving too late to attend any sessions, but then I had about five drinks before finally getting to sleep sometime around 1:00am (i.e., (5-0)/0.5=10). At present, my x is slightly below zero, since, in an attempt at recovery, I did not really go out last night (though I did hit the wine hour--not sure how the watery stuff they serve there counts). Unfortunately, I have dinner plans tonight with a bunch of grad school colleagues. I fully expect, then, the value of b to soar by the end of the evening. To make matters worse, my flight out of Kalamazoo is at 5:45am on Sunday, so I can't really count Sunday as a day at the conference. All of this means, of course, that I need to get off my ass and go to the afternoon sessions. Hopefully Mary Kate Hurley's paper on time in the Old English Orosius will have an ameliorative effect.

I'll give a full account, complete with the final value of x (assuming I can...umm...recall all of the values accurately) once I'm back home.

46 comments:

Mary Kate Hurley said...

Prof. de Breeze -- I look forward to hearing if the paper was healing or not (and any other comments you have)! And of course, I do hope that you're feeling restored, post-Kzoo.

Big LP said...
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Big LP said...
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Big LP said...
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台中 said...

給你一個鼓勵 ..................................................

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People throw stones only at trees with fruit on them.......................................................

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ShilaL_Kappler said...

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宗伊旺博 said...

噴泉的高度,不會超過它的源頭。一個人的事業也是如此,它的成就絕不會超過自己的信念。..................................................

tgibson said...

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婉婷 said...

知識可以傳授,智慧卻不行。每個人必須成為他自己。......................................................................

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佳宣佳宣 said...

所有的資產,在不被諒解時,都成了負債............................................................

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婷珊 said...

Poverty is stranger to industry.............................................................

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快樂不需要理由-及時行樂..................................................................

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我是天山,等待一輪明月。............................................................

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Quietude is the crown of life.............................................................

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一棵樹除非在春天開了花,否則難望在秋天結果。..................................................

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生命所經歷的折磨愈多,其所產生的奮鬥力愈大。............................................................

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Riches serve a wise man but command a fool.............................................................

文吳云 said...

Say not all that you know, believe not all that you hear.............................................................

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喜歡自己的另一層意義是「接納自己」。..................................................

凱v胡倫 said...

Lets cross the bridge when we come to it............................................................

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愛情是盲目的,但婚姻恢復了它的視力。......................................................................

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陳嘉容 said...

我來湊熱鬧的~~^^ 要平安快樂哦..................................................