Saturday, July 01, 2006

The Dish

Spent the last week out at Stanford, for the IHS "Social Change" workshop.

Best ever (I have done the workshop several times, though all previous incarnations have been at UVA-Charlottesville).

Wonderful time. If you are a grad student, sign up next year when the app comes up on the web site.

The highlight: for me, it was a four mile hike with David Schmidz, the best philosopher of classical liberalism we have in the world today. We hiked up around "the Dish" on a fantastic blue-sky-with-breeze-so-can-see-the-bay-and-the-coastal-range-with-fog-and-birds-everywhere. I learned things from David, I saw things, it was great. (He knows a lot about birds, in addition to CL).

(One downside: the dorms at Stanford are the worst place I have stayed in at least 25 years. Incredibly smelly, a unique cocktail of complex noisomeness. It smelled bad, but when they cleaned the thing midweek it appeared to disturb the ghosts of bathrooms past, and then it was much worse. It was offal. Reminds me of a Stanford friend I did NOT see this time. Buy me a beer sometime, and I'll tell you the story of AR and "the bathtub, the cow, and the chainsaw.")

I DID get to see a bunch of other friends. A partial list (if I left you off, I'm sorry!): Clark Durant (Clark showed me the Dish hike first, bless his heart), Chris Nelson, John Nye, Mary Shirley, John Tomasi, Barry Weingast, Terrence Watson, Will Wilkinson, and Paul Zak. And, of course, the inexplicable Nigel Ashford, one of my favorite people. And made a bunch of new friends. (In particular: Courtney, you are a crazy person. I hope the poop soup in the backyard was receded to manageable levels, and that your manly Indiana guy Radley figured out how to get Isabel and Harper walked even in the rain).

Wonderful all around. IHS is doing a great job with this program.