Backreacting Asymptotically

(Random title constructed to reply to Bee’s post called Asymptotic Backreaction.)

You know, I’ve made some great online friends here on this blog. It’s all the result of that community I’m trying to keep going (and expand) here with contributions to the conversation from many of you in the comments, and even sometimes in guest posts. I’ve been lucky enough to meet some of these new friends since everyone likes to pass through Los Angeles sooner or later. In the past six months, four familiar Asymptotia contributors have passed through Los Angeles and I’ve been lucky and delighted to meet them: – Amara (November; on her way to a conference, and she gave us a talk – I’m trying to get her to do a guest post on her “Watering the Earth” topic one day), Candace (January; on her way to a conference here -she did a guest post) by the way, Athena (two weeks ago, on the way to a conference), and this week I finally met Bee (also giving a talk, and on her travels -she’s also done a guest post by the way) who turns out to have just that same excellent eye for observation, and quietly sharp sense of humour, as her blog posts. (She’s the main blogger behind the excellent Backreaction, and she’s done a post there which briefly mentions her visit to Disney Concert Hall with me.)

Anyway, in the photo below is Bee (click for larger), at Grand Central Market (inserted into a photo taken near one you saw earlier. See also this post.):

Sabine Hossenfelder at Grand Central Market

Tameem, a student of mine, has teased me a bit about my showing visitors around, as I end up taking them to see interesting things that are also some of my favourite things (pretty much anywhere in LA really) – which also turn out to be things you read about on this blog. Apparently it’s the “Asymptotia Tour”. It can include (and is not limited to) Downtown LA (e.g., Disney Concert Hall, Grand Central, Bradbury Building, The Standard Bar, The Broadway Bar, Union Station), the USC Campus, Hollywood Farmer’s Market, the LA Times Book Festival, a hike in Griffith Park, The Griffith Observatory, The Museum of Jurassic Technology, The Arclight, The Vista, and so forth. Perhaps I should just print up a brochure. I’ve noticed that it’s getting to the point where we approach something and people go “Oh, I saw that on Asymptotia!” before I can say what it is. That’s actually rather nice.


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10 Responses to Backreacting Asymptotically

  1. candace says:

    Very cool! I had a great time but didn’t get the grand tour. An excuse to come back someday! And I am very jealous that you got to meet the enigmatic Bee — I love reading her site.

  2. Clifford says:

    On the other hand, we hung out in the Standard Bar! That a big tour highlight!

    Guess you’ll just have to come on back for another conference…


  3. Bee says:

    Thanks 🙂 I DO look like my own grandmother. Btw, just to give you an impression how messed up the computer generation is. When I saw the market above I had this strange feeling of deja vu and I said it looks like something out of a computer game I played a long time ago. When Clifford showed me the Bradbury building next corner (or so) I realized it must have been that Bladerunner video game (I am not a very persistent player so I never made it through). Its kind of funny, I wasn’t really aware its set in LA. I can’t even exactly recall what the movie is about (though I remember where I saw it and who was sitting next to me). Best, B.

  4. F. says:

    Wow B., your grandma must look great,

  5. Athena says:

    Thanks for the mention! I enjoyed my Asymptotia Tour very much, so thank you, Clifford! You’re a gracious and wonderful guide. I see that I missed a few items on the Clifford express, so it looks like I will just have to visit again. Repeat visits to pleasant stops would be fine too. Great to hear that you’re such a hit with all the visiting scientists! : )

    I also thought it was pretty cool when I recognized pix from your blog. A testament to your photography skills perhaps, or to your ability to weave an interesting and memorable text throughout your posts. Very nice indeed!

  6. Francis Caestecker says:

    Hi! Nice read, I just got referred here from Bee’s blog, and a feed has been added ;).

  7. Clifford says:

    That’s good to hear, Francis. Welcome! Enjoy!


  8. spyder says:

    Tour recommendation:
    Disney Concert Hall this Saturday night (and i do mean night as in early morning) May 26th 10pm.
    On Saturday, May 26, from 10 p.m. – 3 a.m., a line-up of DJs, VJs, artists and musicians converge at Walt Disney Concert Hall for PRAVDA – a progressive exploration of the sounds, sights, and philosophies of the Stalin era.
    Amon Tobin, Cut Chemist, DJ Spooky, J-Rocc, Peanut Butter Wolf, and Mumbles with special guests dublab soundsystem, collaborate to remix the music of Shostakovich, Prokofiev, and Mosolov, complemented by improvised visuals from iconic Russian films, painting live onstage by Norton Wisdom, and mobile video projection produced by MC This.
    Film footage from Battleship Potemkin, Alexander Nevsky, The Cranes are Flying, and Soy Cuba, as well as rare clips from Russian documentaries, interviews, and propaganda films give a historical reference point against modern interpretations of Russian culture.

    At midnight, Christoph Bull gives a special dramatic organ performance, and for the first time since Leon Theremin conducted the original ten Theremin Orchestra at Carnegie Hall in 1932, the concert is recreated with ten theremin players on the stage at Walt Disney Concert Hall. In celebration of the birthdate of the late Robert Moog, pioneer of this electronic instrument, the evening also features a special tribute to Moog, whose company is the leading manufacturer of theremins today.

    Pravda also invites guests to experience Russian culture from different perspectives throughout Walt Disney Concert Hall. Lobby walls and white spaces display custom-created images; music is broadcast outside the main auditorium; and BP Hall becomes a multimedia discoteka for non-stop dancing into the late hours of the night.

    For a more complete listing of the event and artists, please visit:

  9. Clifford says:

    spyder:- It sounds fantastic! I’m very tempted to go along, especially for the non-stop dancing in the multimedia discoteka… It’s not clear that the Disney Concert Hall and I would respect each other in the morning after that though….



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