I'm writing this down so people can help me remember and hold to to the pledge, ok?

Today I start graduate school. Someday, I will finish grad school, and I
will finish it by walking out into the wide, wide world clutching my
PhD diploma, wearing doctoral robes...

Photo of and by Madeleine Ball, cc-by-sa.
Yay, graduating! Note that different schools have slightly different
robe styles; this is Harvard's, and Purdue's will probably be a lot
less, er... red.

I'm pretty sure it was Karl Wurst who pointed out that these robes reminded him an awful lot of Star Wars and made him expect to see some lightsabers around. The other professors arrayed around the dinner table laughed and agreed.

Photo from the Official Star Wars Blog, CC-BY.

So that's the last part of my promise. Not only will I graduate with my PhD, I will ascend the stage as a Doctoral Jedi, complete with lightsaber. Yes, this involves some sort of creativity with robes; yes, I will do my best to keep the solemn spirit of the occasion, and yes, I suspect the struggle between the two will be a prime case study of constraints breeding creativity. I also suspect that the thought of graduating with a lightsaber might, at some point in the future, be the only thing that keeps me plowing through my dissertation research when I get tired of staring at the same pages of results over and over again. And I know not yet what further sort of tomfoolery is going to go into this promise, but I have a few years to make friends with more people who know how to sew, right?

By the way, I was a giant Star Wars geek in high school, so the lightsaber is actually going to be correctly made according to the various official encyclopedic diagrams of their components. It's not just going to be a bunch of stuff superglued onto a PVC pipe and spray-painted black. Nope. Doctoral lightsabers must be properly epic.

Now to hit the "post" button and make my slightly older self regret this several years from now. :-)