Today this blog moves to the new Scientopia.org blog network, at http://scientopia.org/blogs/thusspakezuska !
Ha! I told you you’d see!
I apologize for making you follow my wanderings all over the internet and truly hope you will stick with me through this move. But if you’ll come on over to Scientopia, I think you’ll find lots of interesting stuff going on there, and I hope you’ll agree it’s worth the effort to redirect your browsers, RSS feeds, bookmarks, etc. I think this move will be good for me as a blogger, and good for you as a reader, too. I am very, very happy that the clever folks who came up with the idea for Scientopia wanted me to come play in their new internet sandbox.
Unlike my departure from Scienceblogs, this is move to something good. I just can’t tell you how excited I am. Come see the shiny new blog and network goodness! First fifteen commenters (Scientopia bloggers excluded) at the new site who say they arrived from this WordPress site will be entered in a random drawing for a bit of schwagy Thus Spake Zuska schwag!
Yay! You found your way over here to the new-ish digs of TSZ. I haven’t got the place all set up yet. Posts from the old ScienceBlogs site are imported but there may be some broken links and some doubling of some posts. Haven’t had a chance to clean the place up yet and decorate properly. But welcome anyway.
Stay tuned for some posts and maybe some other announcements.
So the word on the street is that Greg Laden is taking his eponymous blog and moving on over to the Discover network blogs. He must have had a major, major falling out with PZ because I didn’t think he would ever leave SciBlogs as long as PZ is here. Seeing as how Ed Yong recently decamped for Discover, could this mean that GL is now Ed Yong’s fanboi????
Tomorrow morning Rebecca Skloot will be on WHYY‘s Radio Times with Marty Moss-Coane. She will, of course, be talking about The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. You can tune in and listen on the web here. Radio Times starts at 10 a.m. EST but Skloot is scheduled for the second hour of the show, at 11 a.m.
She will also be at the Wistar Institute in Philadelphia tomorrow evening and I am planning to go.
Of course, it is supposed to start snowing again this evening and throughout tomorrow. Oh, I know, not anything like what we’ve had in the past week. Just a few inches. Just enough to make venturing out miserable and possibly hazardous. Sigh.
Maybe it will all be cleared away by 7 p.m., and the trains will be running on time!
Be sure to catch Fresh Air whenever it airs in your local market to day, or catch the podcast. Rebecca Skloot is on today, talking about her book, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks, which, as I hope you know, is released today. And I hope you pre-ordered your copy already. Fresh Air is on at 3 pm and again at 7 pm in Philly – can’t wait!
UPDATE: Terry Gross may just be the perfect person to interview Rebecca Skloot, who is wonderfully telling the story of Henrietta Lacks, and of how she came to tell the story of Henrietta Lacks. If you don’t get to listen to Fresh Air on the radio, listen to it on the web. And then go donate some money to your local public radio station. And then go buy Rebecca’s book, if you haven’t already.
Earlier this month, while I was distracted managing mom’s transition from assisted living to hospital stay to rehab and preparing to escape for my annual beachy vacation, a new star was added to the Scibling firmament. And she’s a shiny one. I’m talking about Sharon Astyk, writer of Casaubon’s Book. I like pretty much every single thing she’s written over there so far, but I really love this entry. Here’s a sample:
A lot of people are dismissive of personal choices and personal actions, and as I argue in _Depletion and Abundance_ it isn’t an accident that all the things we decide are unimportant personal choices happened to be traditionally associated with women – they are measures of our contempt for women’s traditional work (consider the attention still given to the individual vote, in comparison, which also doesn’t matter, except all the times that it does). Perhaps more importantly it is enormously profitable for industry to pretend that individual choices are unimportant. After all, if they are unimportant, there’s no reason to constrain them, no reason not to stop at Wendy’s on your way to the climate change demonstration, no link at all between all those cows and global warming…
Thus we put “agricultural emissions” in the category of *big important issues” and say we can’t do anything about it personally – of course “industry” doesn’t acually eat. In fact, I’m pretty sure that 100% of all meals are eaten by individuals ;-).
Which is all a really long way of saying that I’m definitely going to keep posting recipes, even if, as one of my prior critics claimed, he feared he’d wandered over to Lady’s Home Journal, rather than an energy blog. As I’ve argued before, we can’t change our agriculture, or improve our health without changing the way we eat – and we do that by teaching people to cook again, to make good use fo the food they do have, and by helping them make ethical food choices. And that requires small and homely things like recipes, which have their place even in SCIENCE!.
Of course, Casaubon’s Book is written by someone Known To Be A Girl, and a theist, and furthermore she is just telling me stuff I like to hear, which PZ Myers would never do, and on top of all that, she has posted recipes. So I am pretty sure that means she must be wrong or stoopid or non-scientific or maybe even a creationist so I can’t wait till the New Atheists get her straightened out.
I like Casaubon’s Book because it deals with cheery stuff like how our lives as we know them just can’t continue and how the change is coming faster than we want to admit and how peak oil has long since been reached even though no one will say it out loud. It’s all good times over there! If I hadn’t just come back from my planet-killing beach vacation, reading this blog would be a real downer.
Sharon has written three books with all sorts of handy advice on how to survive in the coming world post-peak oil. You can find links to them on her blog, and I recommend taking a look, they all seem very interesting and useful. Unfortunately, I did not see anything in any of them to indicate that she has included even one chapter on “easy-peasy painless suicide methods when the resource wars wash up on YOUR doorstep!” or “how to take yourself out in one simple step when your gas tank is empty and the running-car-in-locked-garage method just isn’t an option anymore” or even a side chapter in that preserving food book on “let one batch go bad and keep it on hand for the REALLY bad times!”
I fear she is not completely rational. Because, she outlines a future where the oceans will rise and peoples’ water supplies will be compromised and much of our agricultural production will be jacked and subtropical infectious diseases will be rampaging all over the place – and yet she also seems to think many of us will still be blithely out on some farm somewhere, raising our goats and chickens, planting our heirloom seeds, putting up preserves in the late summer and fall, and rediscovering the joys of hanging out laundry on the line. While not being gunned down by the survivalists who have been hoarding ammo for years on end and who have suddenly showed up to take our food and wimmin. Say, now, THERE’S a suicide strategy – “I’ll just take these clothes outside to hang on the line – no, no, I don’t need any bullet-proof vest! la la la la la la la!”
I guess that’s why I love that crazy chick. She has looked right square in the face of the coming apocalypse, and said “fuck you. I’m planting veggies, milking goats, hanging laundry, and nurturing my kids.” I might still lean towards the viewpoint of a friend of mine, who wonders whether getting through the coming crisis is even something to be desired, and suggests saving that 5 gallon drum of gasoline to do yourself in when the time comes – don’t be pressured to use it for a vacation, or one last run to the grocery store for supplies! But I’m glad that outlandish optimists like Sharon exist.
Announced on the WMST-L listserv:
Women & Science/Technology Policy Seminar in Washington, DC
The Public Leadership Education Network (PLEN) will be holding its Women & Science/Technology Policy Seminar January 4-8, 2010 for women science majors who want to explore what life is like as a science advisor.
This is a one-of-a-kind opportunity for women students to discover a different way to professionally apply their scientific and technological knowledge – in a career developing public policy. The seminar teachers are women scientists in diverse areas of government and the private sector, including: White House science advisors, legislative staff in Congress, Institute directors at NIH, corporate lobbyists and scientists, and nonprofit advocates. These women immerse the students in the major issues of the day, guide them through the realities of policy making, and help them discover if they want to become part of the process.
Seminar registration DEADLINE is November 20, 2009. Visit this site for more information and on-line registration. This seminar is underwritten by Abbott, which makes $200 scholarships available to a limited number of students.