Dallas

Apparently Perth has been called ‘Dallas by the sea’. I can see where that’s coming from, though I’d say it as ‘Dallas is Perth without the amazing beaches’. That is to say, it’s pleasant enough, it seems like it would be an ok place to live if you had friends there, it’s also rather sprawling and not busy at all.

I was there for 6 days for a conference. Timewise, the number 1 place I went to was the convention centre, number 2 was my hotel bed, and number 3 was hanging out with other physics people, mostly in restaurants and bars. Including a bar with a taxidermied animal head wearing a hat:

It was disconcerting sitting eating a burger and drinking iced tea with that guy next to me.

Of course, one of the things Dallas is known for is the shooting of JFK. The Sixth Floor Museum is all about “the assassination and legacy of President John F. Kennedy”. I though the part about the “legacy” (ie: a bunch of people saying why they thought Kennedy was important/inspirational) would have been better served by a more in-depth look at the historical background — various themes such as the Cold War and Kennedy wanting to promote American ideals via peaceful means were mentioned, but there wasn’t much analysis. That said, it was a fun way to spend an afternoon when the thought of more physics talks was just too much.

Anyway, to finish with an amusing anecdote: Towards the end of the week, I got a cab back from a bar one night. I mentioned to the driver that I was at a conference. He said, “Oh, you’re a physician — no wait, a physicist!” I guess he’d driven a lot of conference-goers around that week.

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