John Pazmino
 NYSkies Astronomy Inc
 2013 March 4
    This year I was once again a judge for the New York City Science 
and Engineering Fair on Sunday 3 March 2013. I forget but it may be my 
seventh return to the Fair as a judge. Colleague Steve Kaye, earth 
science teacher at James Madison High School in Brooklyn, and I 
planned to do the normal routine with his students. We discussed the 
Fair on the way home from the NYSkies Seminar on March 1st. 
    The Fair is for high school students, both public and private, to 
show their work on a science project, usually done in the preceding 
months. Many worked during the previous summer at a lab or institute 
while others conferred regularly with a scientist as mentor. 
    The Fair was at City College of New York, Hamilton Heights, 
Manhattan in its Shepard Hall. It is run by the City's Department of 
Education and the CIty University of New York, with support from 
sci/tech corporations. 
Smooth start 
    The students, seven of them from Steve's classes this year, had to 
assemble at the Kings Highway station on the Brighton line at, gulp!, 
7AM on that Sunday the 3rd of March. This station is near Madison High 
School and a yeshiva that also fielded a couple entries for Steve. 
    I took a one-seat ride by bus from downtown Flatlands, about a 
kilometer walk from my house, directly to the front gate of the train 
station. I left my house at 6AM to be sure of timely arrival, since 
there is no telling when the bus comes with the longer headways so 
early on Sunday. 
    The bus actually scudded into its stop just as I turned base to 
approach it! I jogged to the bus, rapped on its side panels, and 
boarded. The ride was quick, with good exchange of riders along the 
way. I got to Kings Highway station at about 6:40AM. 
    I took a quick breakfast at a nearby coffee counter, one of 
several already open for business. Then I walked back to the station 
to see Mr Kaye pacing around. 
    He, too, arrived a little early but apparently did not grab a 
bite. He had in hand a list of phone numbers for his kids, in case 
some were not on hand by liftoff time. 
Quick assembly
    Almost on the dot of 7AM the students poured into the forebay of 
the station! They came separately and just chanced to arrive at once, 
within a couple minutes. They were hot to go with their project boards 
and props. 
    Steve counted noses and checked the students for having all their 
work. A couple missed certain items which would be good to have at 
ready during the judging. One left his prime data papers in the school 
locker, well out of reach now. An other skipped bringing relevant 
journal articles to show with his exhibit. 
    Otherwise we were ready to rumble. 
Fares, please!
    Today the 3rd was the first day of the adjusted transit fares. 
They were announced for several weeks but most people just didn't pay 
much attention. Because this Fair is outside normal school hours, the 
school-issued farecards, MetroCards, were not valid. Students had to 
travel on their own nickel. 
    When Kaye and I advised the students to add money to their 
MetroCards, we reminded that the fare is now $2.50, not the old $2.25. 
We also noted that a brand-new card may cost an extra $1.00 in the 
stead of filling an existing one. 
    It took a few minutes at the farecard dispensers for the kids to 
fill up but this process went smoothly. 
Why so many trains? 
    While waiting for the kids to arrive Kaye and I heard many trains 
shoot thru the station. On Sunday only local service runs, the express 
being off-duty until Monday morning. Yet trains flowed thru every 
eight or so minutes. Given that the street under the station (it's on 
a trestle) was still sleepy with only certain shops open and light 
foot traffic, why were there so many trains? 
    They were needed farther along the line, closer to Manhattan, 
where the traffic gets dense, Even on Sunday. It so happened that on 
the previous day, Saturday the 2nd, I attended a tour of the Coney 
Island subway repair shops. 
    One feature of the shop operation, as explained by my tour host, 
was that it take time for a train to reach points of heavy traffic. It 
may have to traverse light-traffic districts to get there. In the case 
of the Brighton line, which is handled from the Coney Island yards, 
there had to be enough trains in Brooklyn Downtown and Manhattan by 
7:30AM, else the stations there will be swamped with riders. Trains 
must leave Coney Island at around 6:30AM, one every few minutes. They 
will be empty for many stops in outer Brooklyn before getting to 
Downtown. Then they fill up quickly. 
Smooth ride to the City 
    Steve and I, after a final rollcall, herded the students onto the 
next Manhattan-bound train. There were enough seats for all of us. The 
kids joked and played around, normal for high schoolers. Mr Kaye 
coached a couple of them for their presentation at the Fair, reminding 
them of a this or that incident in the project work. 
    By the time we got to the outer edge of Downtown, all seats were 
taken and new riders had to stand. When crossing East River to 
Manhattan the train was loosely crowded. If there were too few trains, 
we would have been crushed into the cars. Even on this Sunday morning.
    The design we had was the standard one. We ride to Herald Square 
and change trains to the train that goes recta menta to City College. 
The Brighton line ends in Midtown with certain trains turning east 
into Queens. We bailed out at Herald Square, took count, and walked to 
the other platform. 
No trains here!
    At the stairs leading to the next platform were signs all over: 
'No D trans running at this station'. The D route is the one we need! 
Other routes here do not go to City College. 
    Kaye and I huddled and worked out an alternate route. We go back 
to the Brighton platform, take the next train -- any one -- to the 
next stop Times Square. There we change to the 1 train, which also 
goes to City College. The downer is that this route is local, doing 
all stops. Expresses at Times Square miss City College. 
    We gathered the students and steered them back to the Brighton 
platform. We got them onto the next train and shoved them off at Times 
Square. We then herded them to the Seventh Av side of the station and 
waited for the uptown 1 train. 
    This is normally a fast route with trains every couple minutes, 
even on weekends. For some unknown cause the train info board said the 
next train comes in, erm, 17 minutes. Why? No announcement about this 
but there were several for other service disruptions. We waited. The 
kids got restless and started to goof off. 
    Finally the train pulled in. It was filled to the gills! Not 
daring to pass up the train for a second long wait, we squeezed in. No 
seats but we gathered at one end of the car.
History from the air 
    Once the train got going it did gallop along. This route is a 
sprint that jumps stop to stop and allows only a few seconds to 
exchange riders. We made good time. Steve and I told stories of how we 
as students went to City College on this train and the D train. 
    The line is underground except for one station in Manhattan 
Valley. The ground dips down in a silted-in geological fault. Along 
this fault in 125th Street, which is why on a street map this street 
makes a bend at its western end. It follows the fault line. 
    We pointed out that the tracks were really level, judging by the 
line of windows on adjacent buildings. It's the street that drops down 
and then rises up again a kilometer farther uptown. 
    I pointed out the old Heat Transfer Research Facility. It was 
established in about 1950 to become the world's most capable and 
expert lab for thermal testing of industrial and scientific devices. 
It was a 'club house' for me with colleagues who worked there until it 
closed about ten years ago. It's owned by Columbia University, who 
rebuilt the building for an art school! 
    I also pointed out the Manhattan Project building. This factory-
like structure was the initial lab for making the atom bomb! It was 
called the 'Manhattan project' for its birthplace on Manhattan. The 
works got too big for the facility and there was concern about spying 
in so open and accessible a location. The project moved to University 
of Chicago, where the first controlled nuclear fission reactions were 
    An other, not really visible, but obvious from the topography, is 
the Croton siphon. This was part of the original 1840s water main that 
crosses Harlem River on High Bridge but had to get under Manhattan 
Valley. The pipe has a 'U' shape, like the trap under a kitchen sink. 
When filled with water, the pressure in both arms are off-balance to 
push the water farther downtown. 
Hidden history 
    Steve explained that near the Hudson River end of 125 St were 
remains of the Manhattan streetcar tracks on the famous three-rail 
system. The third, middle, rail was a trench covering the power bar 
under the street. A shoe under the streetcar reached into the trench 
to press on to the bar to collect electric. 
    This system, one of only two in the United States, was mandated by 
the Blizzard of 1888. That storm pulled down electric wires, causing 
deaths and injuries to humans and horses. The City, then consisting 
only of Manhattan and southern Bronx, banned exposed electric wire, 
like for regular trolleys. 
    He also explained about the nation's only inner-city nuclear power 
plant! It was built in the 1970s inside the cliffs of Morningside 
Park. It's fully complete but then was denied approval for operation! 
No nuclear reactions ever occurred there and it sits entombed forever. 
    Both of these he could not show because they were hidden beyond 
nearby landscape. 
At City College
    After the peek-a-boo rise into sunlight the route enters subway 
again to hit the next station, 137 St-City College. Compared to the 
other stations on this line, City College station is a disaster of 
renovation. The original tile and stone decor was redone in the 1970s 
into a 'bathroom' motif with garish lighting. Thankfully one, and only 
one!, original name tablet was preserved, all out of context. It has 
the City College three-faced emblem in lavender colors. 
    We got off and walked up 137th or 138th (I already forget which!) 
Street to the College. We were far from the Alexander Hamilton house, 
a waypoint that Steve shows off to his students at previous Fairs. 
    Kaye went to City College in the 1970s, after the 'fun' days of my 
own 1960s. Things were calmed down by his day. For me at the College 
in the 1960s, I pointed out that I, with other students coming from 
the subway, often had to crouch down along the parked cars. Why? 
Rioters on the rooftops were throwing on us bricks and hunks of 
    The 1960s were an, erm, awesome period in American history. It was 
the confluence of the urban riots, anti-Vietnam, women's, civil 
rights, black awareness, Communist, education reform, sexual release, 
maybe other, movements. These all clashed against each other on 
college campi and City College was no exception. 
    Turning base on the campus, some of Steve students were awed! This 
is a college in New York?!?! The core campus is by now about thoroly 
restored to its turn-of-the-20th-century splendor. The red schist and 
gneiss radiated and the whitestone trim glistened in the bright 
sunlight. They also saw the ugly, like UGLY!, new building where the 
judges will take their instruction and breakfast. 
    In addition to the cosmetic restoration, the internal utilities 
were upgraded and better fire and safety controls were put in. One 
feature the College had to keep was its own steam system. The Con 
Edison street steam grid doesn't reach City College so the school 
built its own steam facility. It runs well, pumping steam hissing and 
knocking into radiators thruout the campus. 
Brother and sister
    We trooped into Shepard Hall, joined by throngs of other 
contestants, parents, teachers. In the first floor corridor we 
mustered up the kids. Steve was thrilled to see that one of his own 
previous Fair winners was now a Fair crew! I forget the name but he 
was the brother of one of the female students now with us for the 
Fair! We let brother register sister! 
    We missed the Lincoln statue, tucked into a darker corner of the 
registration hall. This is a head & shoulders of Abraham Lincoln. As 
students ourselfs, Steve and I would rub Lincoln's nose for good luck 
on tests, grades, contests. This is apparently still done by current 
students because the nose is worn shiny and smooth. 
    After registration we climbed to the second floor, into Great 
Hall. This is the central cathedral auditorium of Shepard Hall. The 
core campus of City College consists of this gigantic cathedral of 
higher learning plus several smaller peripheral halls. 
    In Great Hall we ran into Mr Barry Harvey, a science teacher and 
associate for Mr Kaye. He sometimes comes to the Fair with Steve and 
me with his students. This year he went separately. We from time to 
time during the Fair and at lunch chatted together. 
Bring in the judges!
    This year seemed to me to host the largest delegation of judges in 
my service as judge. Steve, I, other judges walked over to the 'ugly' 
house to sign in. According to the sign-in clerk we were today some 
425 judges! Yet there was no jam or kinks in processing my and Steve's 
sign-in. The clerk had our folders ready with all the proper papers in 
them. I was assigned to 'earth and planetary science'. I'm qualified 
for this, also engineering and physics. 
    I overheard a few judges being asked to consider categories other 
than their specialties from excess entries in certain ones. There were 
no major glitches here. The sign-in went smoothly and quickly. 
    We then went into the faculty dining room of the 'ugly' building. 
(It's real name is North Academic Building.) We were packed chair 
back-to-chair back and shoved against scores of tables. It was tricky 
threading the way among the chairs and tables. 
    I looked and looked and looked for the 'earth and planetary 
science' table and just didn't find it. Each table had a sign on it, 
but none were for 'earth and planetary sciences'. In prior Fairs the 
tables were more or less set out alphabeticly on the floor. This year 
they were all scattered around. 
    I had to ask a Fair usher. She steered me to a far corner, which I 
didn't notice before, and there was my table. I exchanged greetings 
with the other four already at the table. Then Steve came along to sit 
at my table! This year he, too, got 'earth and planetary science' for 
his assignment. He was the most senior of the judges at the table. 
Massive screwup 
    With so many judges there must be a huge number of entries. Steve 
clued us to a massive screwup with the entries this year. Students 
applied thru the Fair's website and filled out assorted forms thru 
that site. The entry forms were computer-screened for completion. Of 
the 600 or so applicants, fully 200 were rejected! This was an immense 
portion, caused by a computer breakdown that chewed up many 
applications, ruining certain of their forms. It then tossed out those 
applications for lacking the lost forms. 
    It seems that most students just took the Fair's word and didn't 
challenge the rejection. Many others appealed and produced copies of 
their application as proof of completion. The Fair owned up to the 
computer error and manually reviewed these applications. But maybe 150 
or more simply lost out.
    The weird result is that for this year we had just as many judges 
as contestants! Goodie! Each judge inspects just one project. 
Clear instructions
    No, each judge inspects four to eight projects and each project is 
seen by four judges. The judges folder had forms to enter the scores. 
We also had barcode ID stickers to affix to the score sheets. 
    Instruction was by a slideshow with details of the score sheets, 
judging criteria, procedure for turning in the judging package. 
    Ushers circulated among the tables, as best as they could with the 
tight packing of tables and chairs, to give us packs of projects. We 
divided up the projects to give each of us six with no duplicates. 
    Ideally the pack had four copies of each project since each 
project needed four inspections. I didn't try to check on this but I 
did notice, while splitting out the project sheets, there were 
duplicates of at least some. The sorting out became a game of Hearts! 
Breaking fast 
    This year we were well fed. The breakfast service was well managed 
with good selection of hot and cold items. There was lots of scrambled 
egg, chipped potatos, bacon, sausage, hotcakes, turkey patties, French 
toast, muffins, jellies, butter, tea, juice, coffee, milk, pastries, 
fools, bagels, cream cheese. The food was properly cooked and served 
with no bombouts. 
    Judging began at 11AM but the instructions ended early, leaving us 
time to relax and finish breakfast. We routinely scooted back for 
seconds, which there was plenty of with continual refill of the 
serving bins and trays. I must have packed in three normal breakfasts! 
    I grabbed up a few pastries, being sealed in plastic wrap, to 
munch on during the Fair. I didn't have to take the pastries. In Great 
Hall the Fair set up a table with snacks and bottled water! All during 
the Fair every one, students and judges, circulated to this table. 
    We were released to Shepard Hall where we got busy with the 
judging. A couple of Steve's kids had laptops in their displays. He 
warned them to take the units with them when ever leaving the display 
vacant. Papers, folders, pictures, takeaways can be left at the 
    Steve and I stashed our coats and bags under one student's exhibit 
to lighten our burden during the Fair. We retrieved them after the 
public viewing when the exhibits were knocked down. 
    The rules for the displays seemed looser than in prior years. The 
backboards were of varied sizes, altho they still had to fit within 
the width of the slot for them on the tables. This was about a half 
meter wide and a quarter in depth. Some displays had flying or crown 
headsigns. Props were allowed, notably laptops to show pictures and 
animations related to the project. 
    This year the build and craft of the boards were more mature than 
before. Almost all had neatly lettered and printed text, clear and 
well-organized visuals. It is just so much easier and simpler to do 
the boards as collages of computer-generated printouts than to fiddle 
with stencils and felttip. One poor feature was that some displays had 
text on 'wallpaper' background, making the words harder to read. 
    The exhibits were set up on rows and tiers of tables across Great 
Hall. With fewer contestants this year, the aisles were roomy and the 
noise level was moderated.
    The exhibits were grouped by category, color-coded on a map in the 
judges folder. The tablecloths were all white. In some previous Fairs 
the cloths were colored to match the category. Each row and tier was 
clearly marked by large letters and the projects had clear letters on 
the table in front of them. It was easy for me to find my projects, 
apart from they all being in the 'earth and planetary science' area. 
    The trend toward more and more 'nontraditional' students 
continues. There were few 'regular American' names among the students. 
I did overhear that some students were actually new Americans, 
arriving in the United States only a couple years ago. They began 
American education in the high school they now represent in the Fair! 
    It seems that foreign students are stamped with a deep and intense 
ethic for education. This may come from the lack of opportunities in 
their home lands, where school may be reserved for privileged classes. 
    In spite of their new arrival on our shores, the topics chosen by 
the students for their projects were right up there in American 
concern and interest. Many topics were likely unknown or disregarded 
in their home lands. 
    Projects could be either individual with a single student running 
it or a team of up to three students. For a team project, the entire 
crew was supposed to be on hand for the judging. Since I didn't know 
how many were in the team I couldn't tell if it was compliant. Every 
team project I judged had a crew of two to explain it. 
    According to remarks made during the judges instruction, some 64% 
of contestants this year are female, continuation a trend noticed 
since the late 2-thous. 
    I found over the years that fifteen minutes per project was 
sufficient to let the contestant explain the display and answer 
questions. Then I take five minutes to mark the scoring sheet. With 
this pace I finished my six projects in quite two hours, about right 
on time for the lunch break. 
    When a project was occupied by an other judge I skipped it for a 
later return. Judges went singly, not as a group. In one year we were 
linked into groups to inspect the projects. In recent years we were 
sent off on our own. There was no comparison of scores among judges. 
We were not supposed to discuss the projects between inspections, like 
off to one side while marking the score cards. 
    When finished a project the judge initialed a card taped to the 
display board. This let the student keep track of the count of 
inspections before he can leave the table. 
    The ambient din was moderate enough for easy listen and discourse. 
Once in a while I asked for a repeat fo a phrase or word. 
    I forgot to bring my pocket torch to read the shadowed parts of 
the displays. I felt there was enough material in the better lighting 
to understand the project. 
    The scoring sheet had several categories of score. In each were 
several subcategories. Ideally we should assess each point, about 16 
in all, separately. I found that for simplicity sake and to be just as 
fair to the student, I ranked the student for the main group and 
marked that same score in all the subgroups within it.
    I did take a break from time to time to cruise the snack table in 
the back, near the entrance, of Great Hall. It had a variety of snacks 
and small bottles of water. The table was always occupied by several 
people from students to judges to Fair crew. I took a couple extra 
snack bags to nibble on during the ride home. 
    It is very disconsiderate and disrespectful to eat or drink while 
inspecting a project! I laid down my snack before stepping up to a 
project and retrieved it after leaving.
The projects
    For what ever reason this year we were allowed to keep the student 
description pages of the scoring sheets for our projects. This let me 
discuss the projects here. I take up each in alphabetic order. 
THROUGH MEASURING SKY GLOW?  The project had special concern for home 
astronomers, making me excited to have it for judging. The student 
photographed the night sky from the roof of her house to see how the 
number of stars varied with sky glow in her district. She showed 
charts of exposure and aperture but seemed fuzzy on camera functions. 
She also seemed to neglect the effect of the Moon, which was captured 
in some of her displayed photos. Overall she was trying to find the 
best camera settings to get the most stars under the light pollution 
was over her house. She did mention that in her area new streetlamps 
were better aimed at the ground and some stores do turn off some of 
their signs after closing for the night. She didn't know about GLOBE 
at Night, which I explained and suggested she explore on its and 
NYSkies's website. 
    PREDICTING VOLCANIC ERUPTIONS. This project correlated early 
earthquakes around Mount St Helens before its eruption. The student 
tried to see what characteristics of the earthquakes may foretell the 
eruption. He found that the quakes gradually increased in frequency 
and strength prior to the explosion but could make no general 
conclusion. He used only the Mount St Helens example altho he verbally 
discussed other volcanos. He had no data relating to later smaller St 
Helens eruptions, Using earthquakes as a forecaster of impending 
volcanos is an old strategy yet this project offered nothing really 
new about this method. 
BETWEEN NASA AND NOAA DATA.The student tried to show that existing 
data methods to measure ground temperature for global warming were too 
scattered. She collected data from NASA and NOAA satellites that used 
LIDAR, radar, and thermometry but she blended them into one dataset. 
She ignored distinct causes of scatter for each method. She seemed 
unclear how NASA and NOAA actually compared but showed only that there 
was a spread in temperature values taken from various reports using 
these data. She explained that the two agencies do cooperate and that 
NASA launches NOAA's satellites. 
CREEK QUARRY, SAN SALVADOR, BAHAMAS. This was a team project with two 
crew. The two women studied the geological change in sea level by 
tracking certain coral and shells in sedimentary layers in the 
Bahamas. This location is protected from other geological motion by 
sitting far away from the edges of the North American tectonic plate. 
The layers of the animal remains, dated by ESR, in the sediment mark 
the sea level. The team used only certain animals that lived near the 
surface of the ocean so that the layer they sit in represents the sea 
level during their life. The team found that sea level varied in 
timescale of thousands of years and that the level now is about the 
highest ever. 
project of two crew to simulate the theory that iron and sulfur under 
heat and lack of oxygen in volcanos promoted formation of proteins. 
The team heated glycine on a chip of pyrite in oxygen and argon 
chambers. Temperatures in the hundreds of Celsius degrees were used, 
until the pyrite decomposed, like those near volcanos. The argon test 
allowed glycine to live off of iron and sulfur within the pyrite. The 
oxygen test failed because the pyrite corroded, ruining its life-
supporting properties. 
VARIOUS COLORED ROOFING MATERIALS. This was a team project with two 
crew to find which color of roof cover reflects sunlight best and 
lowers building temperature. The team measured radiation influx and 
reflection by aiming thermometric devices, pyranometers, up and down 
at assorted possible roofing. They tried concrete, regular shingle, 
grass. They found that green color, from grass, seems best. They 
neglected the severe physical differences in the material, and the 
likely interaction of some with water and air. It discussed the higher 
temperature regime of Camden NJ, with concrete and shingle, versus 
surrounding countryside, with grass. 
All done
    After finishing my projects and then meeting up with Mr Kaye after 
he wrapped up his we went to a side room to hand in our scoring 
sheets. On the cover page we entered the project numbers, which is 
probably why the Fair didn't ask for the description sheets. The 
project numbers on the cover page linked each judge to their projects 
in case of followup. 
    We got for thank-you a metal thermos bottle and, surprise!, a 
four-way USB expansion unit. This is a cluster of USB sockets to 
attach to one such socket on the computer. It connects up to four USB 
devices, altho I'm not sure if they can be used simultaneously. If 
not, the unit saves the constant plug-unplug when only one USB socket 
is available. 
Last big drink?
    We also got a ticket for lunch, served in the 'Ugly' house, North 
Academic Building. We skipped over to there, waited on a fast-moving 
line, and got a full entree, one dessert, and one drink. I took the 
grilled chicken, which turned ot to be rather tasty and filling. 
    The drink cups were the usual large one, holding almost a liter. We 
filled them with soda or juice, then went to our table, Mr Harvey and 
an other associate of Mr Kaye sat with us. We bantered about science 
    One of us, not me, mentioned that this weekend was the final one 
before the ban on large drinks kicks in. The City last year passed a 
law against single servings of sweet or sugared drinks greater than 
'16 ounces', about 450cc, almost a ha'liter. 
    This is part of the overall effort to induce healthier eating, 
along with other no-nos of food services. According to the City the 
campaign over the last several years works because, believe it or not, 
lifespan in New York is the highest in any large town in the country. 
Babies born in 2012 can expect to live to, yikes!, 83 years old. 
    Then we all notice our drink cups. All of them were the liter 
size!! Immediately we all took turns taking pictures of the cups to 
mark the last chance most of us will have to get them again! 
    There is substantial misinformation about the large-drink rule. 
You can drink more than half a liter of sweet stuff but in separate 
cups obtained in separate trips, like a refill or second purchase. It 
is hoped that the nuisance to do this will curb taking at a given meal 
such huge quantities of sugared drink. 
    The rule apparently applies only to places that serve food to eat 
on premises or as takeaway preparations. It doesn't, as far as I 
understand, apply to store that sell food generally, like groceries 
and markets. Thus, it seems that you may still get the 2-liter bottles 
of soda from the supermarket. You can also get packs of small bottles 
that add to more than half a liter, like a case of canned soda. 
    Anyway, we joked about the new regulations and took a bunch of 
pictures. Other tables around us overheard us and started also to 
remember their large cups with their own pictures! 
Not quite done
    Well, we weren't completely done. Most judges left for home but we 
had to stay for the public viewing to collect Steve's kids and bring 
them home. After the lunch, the exhibits were open for the public to 
examine and the kids had to crew them. This segment of the Fair lasted 
until 4PM. 
    When we went back to Shepard Hall we ran into one student who was 
all packed and was on his way home. It happened to be the one with our 
coats under his table! Steve was annoyed as hall and gave the kid a 
good dressing down. He made the student stay with him while we went to 
get our coats and also to let Steve take pictures of his and the other 
displays. In a couple cases the student already took down his boards. 
Steve made them set up again for the photos. 
    He also wanted some pictures of his kids at the stage in front of 
Great Hall because this is where so many famous people, such as 
Einstein, gave lectures and speeches over the decades.
    All this done, we gathered the kids and headed home.
Homeward ho!
    One student was taken home by his mother, who drove to the College 
to pick him up after the Fair. The rest of us went by train. The ride 
home was smooth with no surprises. We took the 1 train to Times Square 
and the Q train from there to Kings Highway. 
    When the 1 train crossed 125 St Steve I again pointed out the 
Manhattan Project and thermal lab buildings. Then after we joked and 
chatted all the way home. 
    I got my bus from the Q train and arrived home at 6PM. This is the 
normal length of time for me to work the Fair, quite 12 full hours