Monday, May 02, 2005

Drinking From the Firehose, or, Completely Different III

I had a meeting about the plans for this summer in Baltimore, which are starting to really take shape. I am very excited about them, because the phrase that came to mind in the meeting was "drinking from the firehose" just because there are so many things that I am hearing and bookmarking to learn about later, just letting things wash over me and learning by osmosis as they say. This is always a very exciting feeling and in th past it has always worked out well in the end, so that is a good sign.

As I was thinking about that, however, it occurred to me that some of my concerns/ideas/worries/impulses that have gotten me to start thinking about taking the year off next year are related to this whole idea of drinking from the firehose. There are SO many things that I see all the time that I want to do something about, that I am earmarking for later exploration. While I know and am upset that going somewhere with Engineers Without Borders would only be focusing on a few specific things and completely ignore others, in another sense it is the epitome of drinking from the firehose and totally immersing yourself in a problem or issue.

On a related note, devoted readers (all three of you) will notice that the title has changed. After contemplating this for a while, and considering "What About Everything" as another possible title to reflect what I'm talking about, I went with "Citing the Text," since I feel that is such an integral part of blogging and, well, everything else.

On an unrelated note, Laura is doing a great job at the Frist Filibuster; I'm watching via webcam. And I think that Shellenberger (see previous post on The Economist for who this is) just asked me to watch his laptop for him for a second while he went to the bathroom. I'm blogging from the panel discussion which is about to start with Shellenberger, Nordhaus, Oppenheimer, and Peter Singer: way cool, I might even "liveblog" it as they say.


  1. Is "drinking from the firehose" an Ohio expression, or am I just out of the loop? I don't think I've ever heard it before.

  2. I first heard it in reference to the undergraduate experience at MIT; supposedly there is so much stuff to take in, particularly freshman year, that it feels like you can only grab a few bits and pieces of the whole thing on the way by. While I think MIT is probably the most "famous" use of the phrase, I have heard it on other campuses. But no, I don't think that it is a uniquely Ohio expression, or even a MidWest expression.

  3. laura9:24 PM

    your blog title SUCKS.