The low point of the conference was when a prominent sociologist whom I hadn't before met mistook me in front of many people for a prominent health economist who is in at least his mid-fifties. This low point was compounded when later someone invoked the same health economist in talking about the distinction between the near-elderly and actual elderly. It was compounded yet again by someone else bringing it up in order to say earnestly that, once he thought about it, the health economist and I did sort of look like one another.
One nice thing about how the conference is organized is that they give you three hours off in the afternoon, and it was a beautiful day for hiking or walking here in Aspen. I spent the three hours sitting in my hotel room trying to re-download and re-install Acrobat on my Tablet PC so that I could do some last-minute checking of articles before submitting a paper for a deadline today. Acrobat still doesn't work properly, and to submit the paper I ended up having to e-mail the paper to someone else and have him convert it to pdf so I could submit it.* Given that this was easily the most frustrating block of time I've had wrestling with a computer in awhile, I'm not sure what it says about me that I identify being mistaken for someone 20+ years older than me as the conference low point instead.
The conference itself has been great. My own presentation went ok. One of my fellow-fellows at Harvard, a sociologist who does qualitative (ethnographic) research, gave an absolutely impressive talk today, one that made me effervescent with sociology pride.
* I do adore the tablet, except the configuration is so slow and buggy and I can't figure out whether it's just aspects of the set-up or something more endemic to the Tablet OS. I'll feel bad if it's the latter, as I think my enthusiastic endorsement and ostentatious notetaking might have convinced two other fellows to buy Tablets.