Thursday, June 2, 2011

The Defending of the Thesis

In case you were wondering, I defended my thesis on May 2, and passed!  Plenty of things went wrong, since this was, after all, me defending.  I had only gotten two hours of sleep, I was dopey from benedryl (my spring/summer allergies have been HORRIBLE), and I forgot my adapter for the presentation and had to use someone else's laptop, which meant that my slideshow animations didn't work on the inferior PowerPoint (Keynote is SO MUCH better) and a few of my slides got warped or deleted.

Because my topic has not been written on (at least, not published about), I was commended for a thesis that discussed an exciting, unknown topic in the field of WWII espionage history.  My committee members all enjoyed reading it, and they said that it was excellent work.  So, I guess the nervous breakdowns and sleepless nights were all worth it!

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"Passage—immediate passage! the blood burns in my veins! Away, O soul! hoist instantly the anchor!
Cut the hawsers—haul out—shake out every sail!
Have we not stood here like trees in the ground long enough?
Have we not grovell’d here long enough, eating and drinking like mere brutes?
Have we not darken’d and dazed ourselves with books long enough?

Sail forth! steer for the deep waters only!
Reckless, O soul, exploring, I with thee, and thou with me;
For we are bound where mariner has not yet dared to go, And we will risk the ship, ourselves and all.

O my brave soul!
O farther, farther sail!
O daring joy, but safe! Are they not all the seas of God?
O farther, farther, farther sail!"

~Walt Whitman, "Passage to India"