This one is an interesting real life story dating many years back. One of my Colleagues Stephanie Reimann (Now at Lund University) had organised a conference in Trento in Italy while I was a postdoc with Matthias Brack at the university of Regensburg in Germany. Matthias drove three of us, me, his student Christian and himself to Trento. We were to stay outside the city at a pension. However a senior researcher, Prof. Rajat Bhaduri had to cancel his visit due to a small accident, so his room at a starred hotel fell vacant. Matthias wanted to stay away from the city to keep his car safe in view of an upcoming soccer match and possible vandalism in case Italy got defeated, hence I ended up taking over the room vacated by Rajat at a starred hotel in Trento.
Day 1: I got ready, dressed in my favorite blue-green checked cotton shirt and pants and went down for breakfast. Once in the dining hall I found to my utter amazement that all the waiters/waitresses were dressed in the exact same blue-green shirts. I had a great breakfast laughing away silently to mine and the staff’s amusement.
Some embarrassments in life are unavoidable, one might as well be amused by them.
The conference was a nice one, I met Hans Hanson who introduced me to the “transgressing the boundaries” article by Alan Sokal. Had a lot of discussions on Hofstadter, logic , science and education with Vidar Gudmundsen and a nice chat with Prof. Ben Mottelson on five fold symmetry and overlapping tiles. Traveled around with Muoi Chan and Christian. An interesting connection is that Vidar had worked on Hofstadter’s butterfly and Hofstadter had been a post-doc at the University of Regensburg. There was also a Greek researcher present, who was from Crete, to whom I joyfully recounted Epinemides paradox. One does wonder if all such incidents are pure coincidences or is there more to it ? Though I don’t quite understand it (or that is one reason), this tweet on singularity does look interesting.
The conference had a lot of seafood for lunch so I often took a bus out to the city and had some nice Pizza, accompanied by curious and chatty waitresses.