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25 December 2007 @ 05:51 pm

DSC_2459.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

We took my god son to play paintball for Christmas. On a paintball field, I am essentially a large, slow moving target. This is called fun!

24 October 2007 @ 11:58 am
Oct. 24, 2007

Dear students, faculty and staff,

The Florida Department of Law Enforcement forwarded late last week its
review of the University of Florida Police Department's actions in the
arrest of student Andrew Meyer.

The report is more than 300 pages and includes many hours of taped
interviews of witnesses. A full review of the document to remove
information protected by privacy laws may take another week or more.

However, because I believe it is important for you to at least know the
findings, we are releasing the report's 17-page executive summary today.
In short, the FDLE determined that our officers acted well within state

The two officers, who were placed on paid administrative leave pending the
outcome of the investigation, were reinstated by the University Police
Department this morning and are back on normal duty. I have full
confidence in the police department, which has a solid record and remains
focused on keeping our campus safe. While I am pleased that the FDLE
review is complete, we still have work to do on a separate front. As an
academic institution, it is our responsibility to continually review - and
improve - how we foster an open environment that is also safe for our
ever-changing campus community. I have faith in the student-faculty Ad Hoc
Committee on a Civil, Safe and Open Environment to determine how our
existing event management rules can be improved. These policies guide not
only the actions of law enforcement but also event organizers and audience
guests. The committee's goal is to develop recommendations that best
ensure our campus venues are safe and secure for those attending UF-hosted
events and at the same time supportive of a free exchange of ideas, no
matter how controversial. You can read the FDLE executive summary at
www.president.ufl.edu or www.police.ufl.edu.

I appreciate your patience and support as this process takes its course.


Bernie Machen
University of Florida
21 September 2007 @ 05:40 pm

DSC_1770.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

Summer is almost over. My niece (12) is starting to leave childhood behind.

19 August 2007 @ 08:36 am

DSC_1404.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

11 April 2007 @ 05:02 pm
I feel like I've done some quality bitching in my little corner of LiveJournal, and that it is time I shared some good news. I have a shiny new job. The new job is with AIAA (http://aiaa.org), a nonprofit aerospace society. So I'm going from archaeology to rocket science; from earth and water to air and fire. I will miss the great people I've been working with over the last four years. I will miss working outside on beautiful days, and getting to see all of the great open spaces that are disappearing too fast from around Washington, D.C. I will not miss working outside in the snow when it is 20 degrees and the wind is blowing. I will not miss the poison ivy, the yellow jackets, or rupturing cans of pepper spray in my car. I'm looking forward to contributing to the scientific community in a new way. I won't be the scientist anymore, but I will be working to help other scientists get their research to the community faster and make it more accessible. I will be in a much bigger pond, making a more significant contribution. The icing on the cake is that I will be making a lot more money plus benefits and all the normal office things that most people take for granted. Things that are missing in my current job (coffee maker, refrigerator, etc.).

One of the things I'm going to have to do is figure out a way to tell people what my new job is. Most people have some idea what an archaeologist is, even if they do think we look for dinosaurs. But what is an 'Applications Specialist?' I guess I could just say I'm in aerospace publishing, but that dead-ends the conversation.

Here is how I think about my new job. In the BBC show "The Day the Universe Changed" by James Burke, there was an episode where he talked about indexes and how cross-referencing sped up the pace of change. You could take one idea, use the index to connect it to another idea, and come up with a new idea. My job is helping to make an index of aerospace publications on the web so that cross-references can be made instantly. If you read any scientific literature, imagine seeing a reference, and being able to click on it and see the original article instantly. Imagine how much that would speed up your research. That is what I'll be working on.
15 February 2007 @ 10:44 pm

Murder-House.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

A farmer in Winchester Virginia told me this story about something that happened here.
In the 1920s a man lived in the house here whose wife was running around on him. Of course, everyone knew what was going on, but he didn't know what to do about it. One night he went out and started drinking whiskey, and got himself good and liquored up. Finally he decided to head on home.
When he got home, he looked through his bedroom window and saw two people in bed, under the covers, fooling around. He was drunk and angry and felt like a fool, so he decided to finally put an end to it. He got his shotgun and shot the figures in bed through the window.
Then he walked around to the front of the house and went through the front door to find his wife sitting at the kitchen table with her lover eating oyster stew. He realized that it wasn't his wife in bed with another man, but his daughter and her boyfriend. He was so upset, he killed the man in his kitchen on the spot. From then on, the house was known as the "Murder House."
Now, all that remains of the "Murder House" is a cellar hole and a small family cemetery with a few weathered fieldstone grave markers.
06 February 2007 @ 01:22 am

DSC_0882.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

A cold front moves in from the mountains while we are doing fieldwork near Winchester, Virginia.

07 January 2007 @ 06:05 pm

Fond.jpg, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

Fond wishes for 2007. Happy New Year!

12 December 2006 @ 03:47 am
I just finished my comprehensive exams for my Masters degree, and I'm fried. I think it was originally written to be a three day exam, but I asked to take it in eight hours. I finished in a mere 17 hours, but taking time out for meals, and a brief nap. Now it's three AM, and all the bars are closed. That's ok, I just want to get some sleep. If my writing on this simple thing is this bad, think how bad it was on my last question. It was really a one hour, low wattage question, but it took me over two hours because I couldn't concentrate. Fuck, I didn't spell check anything, and I'm a crappy speller under normal conditions. What the hell, its only pass-fail with graduation on the line. Must sleep. Brains.

Greetings to ecks-ecks-ecks-ecks.
31 October 2006 @ 06:44 am

Michael_0371.JPG, originally uploaded by McGinnes.

Happy Halloween!

PS: Yes, that is the Washington Monument in the background.