wanting nothing but a cool glass of lemonade and some sunshine

When I get famous as a writer, I can just see the reviews of my blog:

“While most of the entries are entertainingly self-sufficient, intelligent, and written in a style that no one alive or dead could ever hope to imitate, the occasional descension into apparent self-loathing and despair takes away from the author that we truly know and love. If you can deal with the personal side of this literary mogul and its lack of writing ability, you will find nothing but joy in his blog.”

Of course, when I get famous as a musician, the reviews will be different:

“Where are the lyrics? Where are the motivations? Why does he hold back and not bare his soul to the world more often, instead of reviewing news and views held by other people? When an artist such as this chooses to represent himself in a blog, should he not be as emotionally captivating as he is on stage? He apparently doesn’t think so.”

Maybe fame as a geologist?:

“If you have interest in people and the randomness of life, this blog will keep you somewhat entertained, but if you visit the site in order to hear the ideas of tomorrow given first form, you will be saly disappointed, as science is rarely the topic and geology less so.”

And, of course, psychologists would have little use for me, no matter how famous I end up in other fields:

“It is sad to say that such a great figure in modern history, culture and spirituality has so little formal schooling in modern psychology that he disbelieves, on principal, everything that Freud ever said.”

ENN: Environmental News Network [[Affiliate News 813]]

Coral sex! Yeah!

“VIRGINIA KEY, Fla. — In the Florida Keys, the August full moon represents a unique and precious event: annual coral spawning for some of the most threatened corals in the world.

This year, like many others, researchers from the University of Miami Rosenstiel School and University of North Carolina Wilmington will spend the latter part of August and early September studying the phenomenon in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary to understand how humans can improve the plight of elkhorn, staghorn, boulder star and other species of corals.”

Full story:

Conservationist, continued

“It is not restoration to introduce animals that were never here,” says University of Washington anthropologist Donald K. Grayson.

“Lions would be a harder sell, particularly to the elk herds that already live there.
‘Lions eat people,’ Mr. Donlan, the Cornell graduate student, says. ‘There has to be a pretty serious attitude shift on how you view predators.’ “

Lions on the plains would alter order of the food chain�-�Nation/Politics�-�The Washington Times, America’s Newspaper

USATODAY.com – Beasts of both worlds: Scientists propose ‘rewilding’

USATODAY.com – Beasts of both worlds: Scientists propose ‘rewilding’:

“What North America needs is a few good saber-toothed tigers and a couple of mastodons and mammoths — like in the good (very) old days.”

Interesting. What’s to keep people from hunting them back to extinction, and how will they affect the ecosystem as it exists now?

Bush Remarks Roil Debate on Teaching of Evolution – New York Times

 “Mr. Bush was pressed as to whether he accepted the view that intelligent design was an alternative to evolution, but he did not directly answer. ‘I think that part of education is to expose people to different schools of thought,’ he said, adding that ‘you’re asking me whether or not people ought to be exposed to different ideas, and the answer is yes.'”

Bush Remarks Roil Debate on Teaching of Evolution – New York Times

ummm, no.

[EDIT: To clarify, I agree that people should be exposed to different ideas, and open to changing their opinions.  The problem, however, is that intelligent design theories are arguments by authority, and not based on “the scientific method.” 2014-02-05]

YoungFemaleScientist [another good point]

And another thing:

“I’m wondering if this is the real reason people do 9-year postdocs: how else do you learn whether to market yourself as a pharmacogeneticist or not? Or is that what they’re doing for the last 6 years of postdoc- making themselves ridiculously qualified for positions nobody could possibly be qualified for? Where are all these people? I’m thinking most of them must be MDs, because I have yet to meet any postdocs who work in the fields I’m seeing advertisements for now. “


YoungFemaleScientist [Favorite blog of the day]

“I really do think that every lab should have a couch, if not several, a kitchen and a living room for breaks. There should be a television so we can watch the news- I have horror stories about people who went to work on 9/11 not knowing what happened because they never turn on a radio or tv, nevermind reading a newspaper. “


Favorite blog of the day.



[EDIT: Read through this before you accuse me of anything.  I’m not as serious about “eugenics” as all that.  2014-02-06]

Eugenics could be a powerful tool if used properly, and there is no need for anybody to die, or become sterilized, or be restricted from mating. If you breed for desireable traits and act lassez fair towards what everyone else is doing, it may take longer, but those desireable traits should come through. Or at least that’s how I understand it.

Before you decide to hate me forever for suggesting such a thing, I just want to note that my interest in such an experimental program was first piqued by reading Heinlein, where everyone has the option (given enough money) to live as long as they wish through rejuvenation (and an ample supply of replacement parts from a personal, non-thinking clone). These aspects are most entertainingly approached in “The cat who walked through walls,” which has little social commentary that I am aware of besides the fact that it allows a small group of people to travel through time willy-nilly, albeit for the purposes of ‘good.’ But most of the book is good rip-roaring fun–and humorous as much as it contains action. I would highly recommend it. The one Heinlein I absolutely hate is “Stranger in a strange land,” called by some the best science-fiction novel ever written, but in my opinion does not ask the right questions about how to form the sort of Utopian society that Heinlein repeatedly advocates.

Back to my point on Eugenics. Positive eugenics would work by the repeated breeding of humans with genetic traits deemed desireable by whoever was running the experiment–in Heinlein the most important factor was originally longevity, as dictated by a group which was prepared to offer good money to members of the ‘families’ to marry and reproduce within a certain (extended) group of people whose ancestors had been long-lived.

Sadly, I doubt such an experiment would work in the real world, mostly because people are people, they often object to experiments such as this, love finds a way, and the important fact that such a long-term project would be inconceivable to most sources of funding.

I edited this post because I realized I was linked to (albeit incorrectly, sorry Rob) by Rob Loftis’ blog, and I decided he would not want me to write such a thing as I stated in the first paragraph without explaining my intentions further, so that there would be no chance of negative misunderstanding.

Articles on Eugenics and Darwinism, by the way, can be found in Steven Jay Gould’s book “Dinosaur in a Haystack”


and closing again

Something I am sure Jenny would appreciate:

“The rest of the 200 features don’t fall into any one visionary category; they’re an assortment of tweaks and upgrades that pile up like something out of Gilbert and Sullivan:

The Safari browser now subscribes to R.S.S. news feeds,
And its “private browsing” mode conceals the tracks of online deeds.
There are archives now, and log files, when you send or get a fax;
You can make the pointer bigger on those Jumbotron-screened Macs.
You can start a full-screen slide show from some photos on demand;
And the voice that reads the screen aloud can lend the blind a hand.
There’s a password-phrase suggestor meant to make yours more secure,
And the Grapher module draws equations simple and obscure.
Then the Automator program is a geeky software clerk –
You just choose the steps you want performed, and it does all the work.
There’s a lot of miscellany, lots of spit-and-polish stuff,
But it works and doesn’t slow you down – and these days, that’s enough.”

(from http://www.wilmingtonstar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20050428/ZNYT05/504280397/1002/BUSINESS)