It’s Time to Evolve. Yes, You Too.

A few years ago, I was driving back exhausted from a rock climbing trip in the mountains. My buddy Bryan Fong, was bored and feeling a little punchy. When he gets like this, he tends to bring up politically sensitive topics and starts looking for buttons to press. In this case, he honed in on […]

A Bookseller And His Well

In the May issue of the Rotarian Magazine next month – for those of you who can find it – you will be able to read the full version of a story I did last year on toxic mine runoff in highland Bolivia. It’s a nice story of a tiny valley high in the mountains […]

This Is a Story About Dancing Monkeys. Really.

What do you do if you are trapped in a room with a chimpanzee, a macaque, and a sea lion? The answer, apparently, is pump the tunes and get the party started. This week at the annual conference of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (basically the US version of the Royal Society) scientists […]

Can’t We All Just … ?

Recently, based on the well-established if-Netflix-made-it-then-it-must-be-awesome principle, I have been watching the show Lillehammer. (This principle is firmly based in the orange-is-the-new-black correlate, the house-of-cards theorem, and the Derek postulate). Like all the Netflix shows, it’s pretty good. But unlike some, it’s only pretty good. It’s about a New York wise guy who ends up […]

Think Like an Elephant Seal

Welcome to the New Year! The champagne is popped, the drunken kisses made and regretted. The only thing left to do is to go back to work and see what 2014 is all about. Oh, except that one little thing: The resolutions. That’s right, sober or not, last night you made a few promises and […]

Holiday Review: An Open Letter to Yosemite National Park

Dear Yosemite: I am a long-time user of your fantastic park, stunning natural resources, and free public bathrooms. As a recreational rock climber, I have frequented your grounds (and used your clean and welcoming bathrooms) many times over the past 20 years, often dodging payment by coming in late at night and sleeping in odd […]

Growing the Science Writing Pie

Several weeks ago I was invited to sit in on a fascinating workshop on journalism. Hosted by the Mexican Society for Science and Technology Communication (SOMEDICYT), it was a collection of science writers from Mexico and abroad gathered together to discuss the definition of science journalism. It was the kind of philosophical dialogue that you don’t […]