Reality Conditions

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Back into business

The reason for the hiatus can be disclosed now: I have taken a short holiday to my family home in Buenos Aires. The main reason, or pretext, was the important family ocasion of my grandfather's 80th birthday. The ten days I spent there were a rush of seeing relatives and old friends as much and as many as possible, which led sometimes to days rather more stressful (but also more enjoyable) than a standard workday at Nottingham. I did not explain about my trip in my previous post because my visit was planned to be a surprise for almost all my friends, many of them readers of this blog.

One other thing I did in Buenos Aires last week was officially recieving my Physics diploma from the University of Buenos Aires; I finished my degree there almos two years ago, but the diploma takes all that time to go through the bureaucracy. A feature of the ceremony that may be amusing for readers from countries without this tradition is that we are required to swear an oath before recieving the diploma, saying that we will uphold the Constitution and use our knowledge for the good of society. (So, I can't build a death ray? Darn.) There are four possible oaths; in increasing degree of de-sacralization they swear: "For God and the Country, over the Holy Gospels", "For God and the Country", "For the Country", and "For your honor". The latter option is by far the most preferred one. (You can read all the four texts here.)

I had planned to include in this post photos of my family party, of the diploma ceremony, of me with my friends in the best ice-cream place in Buenos Aires, of a true Argentinian barbecue at my suspicious friend's country house (people in Britain are under the strange illusion that you can put just some burgers and sausages over a grill and call it a barbecue), and of my cynical friend beating up my suspicious friend at the samesaid country house. But some technical problems with my computer have made it impossible for the moment. Instead if you want to know more about my holiday you can for the moment go and read how my cynical friend brags about beating me in a game of Black-Jack. The bragging is a bit exaggerated considering that I lost only 6 pesos, which is barely more than £1, don't you think? (You will notice that in that post my suspicious friend and I recieve the code names Antares and Cecilio; my code name is a reference to Cecil Terwilliger, to whom I bear a proud resemblance)


  • Considering that the minimum bet was ten cents, you`ve lost lots of hands for arriving 6 pesos, dear Cecil... I`ve always understood that you don`t care about money, but did you ever heard about a thing called "honor"?

    By Blogger Mundo del Cinismo, at 5:18 AM, June 08, 2006  

  • Honor? What does sheer luck have to do with honor? Black-jack is a game of skill only if you take the trouble to count cards and estimate probabilities... and I know you are too mathematically challenged to do that, dear cynical friend. (I wasn't doing it either; it would have made the game unfair ;-). You won purely out of luck... or what is the same, you won for no reason at all. Nothing related to "honor" in that!

    By Blogger Alejandro, at 2:44 PM, June 08, 2006  

  • Ha ha ha!!! Cecil is a looser!! la ra la la la (although you ordered me not to return here, I`m back!)

    By Anonymous Tom Cruise, at 4:34 PM, June 08, 2006  

  • Rather childish behavior of you, Mr. Cruise. I really don't know why I expected better.

    By Blogger Alejandro, at 4:57 PM, June 08, 2006  

  • One usually can do nothing during a visiting in his/her hometown. I remember that I brought much stuff, which I planned to work on, back to China last summer, but I ended up with doing nothing, because there were so many relatives and friends to see, besides, I also needed to spend much time with my parents and grandparents.

    By Anonymous Yidun, at 6:25 PM, June 08, 2006  

  • Hey, pitty I wasn´t in BA... Is there any other surprise visit you are considering in the next months?

    By Blogger DrNitro, at 6:15 PM, June 10, 2006  

  • Yidun: My previous holiday before this one was really long (about six weeks). I took stuff to work with, and I managed to dedicate only two afternoons to it...

    Nitro: If I told you it wouldn't be surprise...

    By Anonymous Alejandro, at 12:09 AM, June 11, 2006  

  • I`ve noticed that you`ve lost a discution in my favorite blog,

    You`re no Top Gun

    By Anonymous Tom Cruise, at 6:05 PM, June 11, 2006  

  • Hey, Tom Cruise, you should sue Mr.RealityConditions for stealing your line from "Mission imposible" ("If I told you, it wouldn't be a surprise").

    By Anonymous Dastin Jofman, at 11:53 PM, June 12, 2006  

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