A New Year, A New “State” of Mind

Gophers A Go-Go

This past weekend I was in Minneapolis, Minnesota for a Doctorate interview. I’ve been getting a lot of positive feedback from my applications, which is nice, because it gives me a renewed sense of pride in myself (and in humanity, for that matter). I went in to the weekend expecting it would be fun, and nerve-wracking, and got a bit of both, but I actually came back surprised at how much I enjoyed my trip.

I arrived on Thursday. I was picked up with a group of other recruits at the airport (which after transferring at LaGuardia, was a beautiful and spacious sight to behold) by a current Ph.D. student. In typical Brian fashion, I was the first to arrive and therefore was nervously chatting with the student about her experiences in Minneapolis and the University for that matter, and if she had ever been to Montreal.


la société de transport de Montréal

A Beacon of Transportation in an Urban Jungle

Living in N.D.G, a borough to the west of Montréal’s downtown area, has many perks. The beautiful parks, the hip music scene, some great cafés on Sherbrooke, one of the best used book stores I’ve ever encountered, but mostly for me the largest perk is getting to benefit from Montreal’s fantastic public transportation system. It makes getting around easy, and inexpensive, and one definitely gets to take in some of the most interesting people watching there is out there.

One of the things that got me hooked on public transportation in Montreal was a youtube video that I was shown early last year of a commercial for the metro system filmed while it was just freshly built. You can watch it here…


Meeting, Overcoming, and Exceeding Expectations

climbing my own personal mountain: photo credit Matt Hintsa

Hey Brian, imagine running into you here!

Unlike anything before in my life, graduate school has been a challenge and exercise in personal growth, an uphill journey. I entered grad school thinking that “I love school, I love to learn, so grad school will be as good as my undergrad! It will be a piece of cake, just a crown atop the head of my undergraduate career. Right?” At particular moments, it has left me feeling like the king of the world, but there have definitely been some large challenges, work-related and personal, that I have had to overcome.


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