Last Word

September 22-26, 2014 Erik makes the case that Donald Trump is actually a performance artist — Andy Kaufman in disguise. Ann explained how it happened that between 1993 and 2013 about 10 percent of American electricity came from the Russian nuclear program. “You don’t just propose an idea,” the man responsible for the program says, “you go do something about […]

Stepping Off the Multi-Tasking Treadmill

Yesterday in the Washington Post, I wrote about how I wanted to love my treadmill desk, but I just don’t. I had high hopes. I’ve been a standing desk user for more than 10 years, long before they were a “thing.” I’m an active, restless person who already spends more than 80 percent of my […]

The Last Word

September 8 – 12, 2014 The week began with a greatest hit from Cameron, a 2011 post that proved to be one of LWON’s most-visited—an ode to an astronomy professor who changed her mother’s life, Then came a new and no less viral post from Erik questioning the professional ethics of another academic, Henry Walton Jones, Jr., a professor of […]

13 Years Later and Still Bracing

When I realized that I was scheduled to post on the 13th anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks, I decided I should write something about the legacy of that day. I want so badly to find a kernel of hope, but current events leave me with nothing but pessimism. Violence has begotten more violence. Since September 11, 2001, […]

Last Word

September 1-5, 2014. This week, Helen discovered a late summer symphony of peal bells and cicadas. Listen!  Ann discovered an unexpected but welcome pattern in the pronouns that the astronomers are using to describe their colleagues — “she.”  Richard introduced a new occasional LWON series — the Bad Science Poet. (Motto: “It’s not the science that’s bad—it’s […]

Lessons Not Learned

The dog emerged from the aspen grove with straw on her face. At least, that’s what my husband Dave first thought when he saw Molly reappear on the trail he was running with a couple of friends. But it turned out that those weren’t threads of straw. They were porcupine quills, protruding from her lips […]

Snark Week: Moose are dopey and dangerous!

They look so docile, but don’t be fooled. “Assume every moose is a serial killer standing in the middle of the trail with a loaded gun,” says Alaska wildlife biologist Jessy Coltrane. They may be cute in a dopey sort of way, but moose are also huge and powerful. Females weigh between 700 and 1,100 […]

The Case for Tracking Outcomes

Earlier this year, I installed a little program on my computer that tracks how I spend my time. At the end of the day, it can tell me how many minutes I spent editing a specific document, how long it took me to write a blog post and how much time I spent surfing the internet or […]