The Hat

Here’s a strong clue that I’m supposed to be working on writing slides for an important presentation:

Albert Einstein in Aretha Franklin s Inauguration Hat

Yes. I’ve been playing with photoshop. What’s the story? Well, I noticed that there is a facebook page for Aretha Franklin’s wonderful Inauguration hat. You know the one. The page has a huge number of fans already, growing at a rate of something like 200 every ten minutes (when I last looked). People are adding photos of themselves, their pets, and other objects, all wearing the hat. It’s great!

So I, rather than settling down to design those slides I’ve been meaning to get to for the last few hours, thought I’d join in the facebook fun! I could not resist sneaking science into the mix somewhere and so combined an iconic image that to many represents science (that Einstein photograph) with the hat, since the latter is fast becoming a symbol of the day’s excellence and promise. And of course, my caption/comment had to be the following extract from Obama’s speech:

“…We will restore science to its rightful place, and wield technology’s wonders to raise health care’s quality and lower its cost. We will harness the sun and the winds and the soil to fuel our cars and run our factories. And we will transform our schools and colleges and universities to meet the demands of a new age. All this we can do. All this we will do. …”

Of course it had to be.


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14 Responses to The Hat

  1. Ruthie says:

    Aha! Now we know why you were granted tenure 😉

  2. Yvette says:

    I think there’s a more important question here- since when are you on Facebook, and why are you not friends with me yet?! 😉

  3. Jude says:

    It’s a good look for Einstein. Speaking of education, I read on Queercents (of all places) that ASU in Arizona has been hit so hard that they’re considering closing a campus. The library has dropped databases and isn’t adding any more books. Ack!

  4. Kortney says:

    That is very funny!
    All scientists should have such a fun hat!
    I bet Albert is still laughing on the other side, for your playful use of his image in creative artwork.
    A+ for ingenuity !

  5. Laura says:

    That is very, very funny. I will call you master of photoshop, professor! 🙂

  6. Note to self: don’t take a sip of anything when Asymptotia is loading. One look at Albert in Aretha’s hat and Diet Pepsi almost came out my nose.

  7. Michelle says:

    What Yvette said.

  8. Elliot says:


    It does not appear that your facebook profile allows people to “friend” you. I don’t know if this is intentional or not but it was a bit surprising.


  9. Clifford says:

    I guess I have it set that way, although I did not do it intentionally. But I like it that way. I prefer to have someone contact me using the messaging system, and then -if we’re going to- we do the friending thing from there, rather than have random friend requests from people I may or may not know. I’m old-fashioned that way I suppose!


  10. Athena says:

    I echo the above questions such as — since when are you on Facebook and why have you not “friended” me yet? I could be deeply offended, but this can be offset by your “friending” me tout de suite. : ) I will, of course, send a proper message. And I will refrain from sending you virtual drinks and all that stuff. Unless you wish to be virtually intoxicated.

  11. Clifford says:

    Ok, everyone. So in summary, I’m a bad facebook user! Not sure what to say here.



  12. robert says:

    Slightly more seriously, I was in two minds when watching Arethra. She is the goddess who transformed a mysogynist whine (what you need, baby I got it) into an anthem of liberation, and helped even the most earthbound of us to fly. And yet, she didn’t move me like she used to. Politics and soul, like aspiration and exultation, just don’t mix. Then again, ZZ Top didn’t exactly lift the roof when Dubya got the gig, either.

  13. Clifford says:

    Well, I think you’re forgetting one major thing, Robert. She was singing in far from ideal conditions, and managed to hold it together. That gets my respect, especially when learning that certain other “serious” musicians pre-recorded their piece and faked their performance. I’m a bit miffed about that*. That and the gas-guzzling limos** taking Obama, etc., down the mall to the white house strike me as very poor symbolic acts with which to start an administration that is supposed to be all about change – especially when the world is watching.


    *I know that there were issues of weather conditions, but I’m not convinced it was handled the right way…Should we really hear about it afterwards? How about having them play live indoors where it was warmer and simply do a live feed to a screen (most people were watching on screens anyway)…

    ** Yes, I know it is basically a tank made to look like a limo… but I think it would be nice and meaningful symbolism if we have an electric version next time…whoever is president.

  14. Kortney says:

    Ideally the electric (tank) version will be developed when the new administration puts emphasis on the American auto industry, to focus their interest on mass producing electric automobiles.
    I drive a Toyota Camry Hybrid, which, though an excellent car, solid, comfortable, 40 mpg average per tank, it does have some difficulty pulling the weight of the car when accelerating uphill. Certainly the future advancements in technology will improve on the power vs. weight factor when considering the immense weight necessary to protect the President from angry irrational people.
    Perhaps science will provide a lighter form of bullet proof material with which to surround Presidential transport.
    The future holds great promise for rapid advancements of all kind.
    May we all do our part to facilitate the process, as you so eloquently stated previously.