Site menu:

Currently Reading

Various books for potential dissertation topics **************** Trekonomics: The Economics of Star Trek by Manu Saadia ***************** The World According to Star Wars by Cass R. Sunstein

My PhD: Summer 2016

Researching dissertation topics

My book


October 2016
« Sep    

Site search



This is a Flickr badge showing public photos from mkahoo. Make your own badge here.


My Flying Time

110.4 hours



Locations of visitors to this page


Copyright Notice

All material on this site (words and images) are copyright. ©2007-2016 Melissa Aho. No reproduction without permission.

Happy International Archaeology Day!

In my previous life I was as an archaeologist. I went to school to study archaeology, visited archaeological sites, did laboratory work (cleaning and processing artifacts), went on digs as a student, volunteer, intern, and even for a short time a paid archaeologist. I even have my own trowel (no its not sonic)! In honor of International Archaeology Day here are a few photos from my archaeologist phase of life:

Dinner and The Librarians

I had dinner at Nevanka and Lal’s house tonight. Nevanka cooked Sri Lankan and everything was wonderful, but a bit spicy. Well spicy for this Minnesotan palate (I had emailed her earlier in the week reminding her that spicy will kill me and she did not cook anything spicy!). It was also wonderful to see Polly and Susan and catch up. Its always a great time when you get a bunch of librarians together!

Big Boreas Booya!

This afternoon was the Big Boreas Booya! I have been working on the Boreas Leadership Certificate for the past few years and today was the start of their 2016-2017 events.

What is a booya you ask? Well “the name comes from an upper-Midwest tradition of community stews. “Booya” refers to both the stew and the event. As the days shorten into fall, in Minnesota, Wisconsin, and Michigan you’ll start seeing signs advertising booyas. Sometimes the smell of savory stew wafts across a fire department or church parking lot. At Boreas, we’ve started our own annual booya tradition, where we cook and serve booya right on campus. We keep the idea going through the year with our weekly booyas, where we do the community, but not the stew, part of booyas. Boreas was intentional about choosing booyas as the organizing idea for our community- and network-building events” (

So today started off with a panel discussion and then group discussion on “What kind of leadership does it take to make progress on environment and sustainability challenges?” and then ended up with the eating of the booya – which was wonderful! Great food, great discussion, and great music from the Broken Heartland String Band.

Environmental innovators panel 4 – 5:15 p.m.
Valery Forbes – Dean of the College of Biological Sciences
Eric Schwartz – Dean of the Humphrey School of Public Affairs
Scott Lanyon ­– Dean of the Graduate School


I flew today! It was the first time in over a year since I last flew (while I could fly – I never had any restrictions, I chose not to until my foot and back were feeling better. Flying is serious and expensive and if your not feeling 100% you should not be flying). It was a beautiful Minnesota fall day with calm winds. While is was not my favorite airplane (that’s the Sundowner), the Cessna 172 was fun to fly.

New publication

New publication: Aho, Melissa. “Minnesota Chapter.” 99 News: The Official Magazine of the International Organization of Women Pilots 42, No. 5, (September/October 2016): 31.

New publications!

A few new publications with the publication of the new Waypoint, but some of them I would have rather not written, as the Minnesota 99s lost some wonderful people this past spring:

“Minnesota Chapter News.” Waypoint: North Central Section, The Ninety-Nines, Inc. Vol. 7, Issue 1, (Summer 2016): 21-22.

“New Horizons: Elizabeth Betty ‘Liz’ Wall Strohfus, WASP.” Waypoint: North Central Section, The Ninety-Nines, Inc. Vol. 7, Issue 1, (Summer 2016): 39.

“New Horizons: George Sugden, 49½.” Waypoint: North Central Section, The Ninety-Nines, Inc. Vol. 7, Issue 1, (Summer 2016): 40.

“New Horizons: Glen Morrow, 49½.” Waypoint: North Central Section, The Ninety-Nines, Inc. Vol. 7, Issue 1, (Summer 2016): 41.

Watson and Holmes Volume 2

I am officially in a comic book (aka graphic novel)! In print!!!

A few years ago I backed a Kickstarter campaign to be in a new Sherlock Holmes and John Watson comic book “Watson and Holmes” created by Brandon Perlow and Paul Mendoza. They re-envision Watson and Holmes as African-Americans living in today’s New York City’s Harlem district. They were unable to get me into Volume 1, so I was added into Volume 2 and the wait was totally worth it. Volume 2, Chapter 4 was written by Lyndsay Faye (plot), Karl Bollers (script), N. Steven Harris (artist), and Jay David Ramos (colors) and I am in a scene with Irene Adler (aka ‘The Woman’) or Irene Adlero as she is called in the comic. To be in the comic book, I had to send in some photos and in some of them I am wearing my favorite airplane necklace. So you can now see me seated in The New Ritz in Harlem at 10:37pm wearing my airplane necklace listening to Irene Adler sing. Awesome!

Watson and Holmes Volumes 1 and 2 are beautifully created comic books/graphic novels and I would say that even if I was not in the them or had backed them as a Kickstarter. As a Sherlock Holmes fan (yes, the Game), I believe that the comic books show that even after 100+ years, Holmes and Watson are still relevant. You can pick up your copy here: and here

Riddle Room, part 2

Second try at the Riddle Room today. Sadly the Starship: Sabotage exploded and we died, but we were soo close to solving it (we only had one puzzle to solve and almost had it and some red buttons to hit).

The farm

My Mom and I visited Cloquet today to see my Grandparents house and hopefully see some fall color. But sadly even as far as Cloquet/Duluth the leaves are only starting to turn, so too much green. But we had a great visit and dinner with my cousin and his wife who are doing a wonderful job of remodeling my Grandparents house.

Big Foot footprints!

Virtual Reality

I tried the new Virtual Reality lab in the library today. It was amazing. I figured it would be like some hokey video game, but it was so lifelike. In one game/simulation or whatever they are called, I was in the mountains and looking over the edge of a cliff and was told to walk off. Even though I knew I was in the library and that there was ground below me, I just could not walk over the cliff. Apparently very few people walk over the cliff. The human sense of self preservation is apparently very strong, even in the VR world. Besides the mountains with the cliff, I was also able to see the rover on Mars, visit an English country church, walk the mountains of Nepal, and visit a few other ones.