Survey Says

On a scale of 1 to 10, 1 being “not at all” and 10 being “very much”, how much has the very sight of this question already made you die a little inside? Surveys are dull, they’re dreadful; often badly-worded, usually tedious, always demanding more of your time than they deserve, yet they’re a pillar […]

The Best Science to Write About and the Worst

As of yesterday, May 20, LWON has been alive for five years. LWON is a little surprised at this and pretty pleased with itself.  In celebration, two of our brilliant alumni wrote guest posts listing the Top Five Things They Wanted to List the Top Five Of.  Today, Five People of LWON announce the best […]

The trolley and the psychopath

Stop me if you’ve heard this one. A trolley carrying five school children is headed for a cliff. You happen to be standing at the switch, and you could save their lives by diverting the trolley to another track. But there he is – an innocent fat man, picking daisies on that second track, oblivious […]

Plan UVB

You may have read last week that you should start wearing sunscreen at night. This was bad news for me: I’m already a hopeless victim of sunscreen marketing, slathering the stuff in rain or shine, in London fog, at dusk. I just can’t stop, despite mounting evidence that regular sunscreen may be less protective than […]

Do you speak English?

“The problem with France is that there’s no French word for entrepreneur.” It’s tragic that George W. Bush didn’t actually say this, because it perfectly illuminates the stealth with which languages insinuate themselves into each other. If you speak English, you probably know that when you say sans and en vogue you’re using import words. […]

Redux Post: The thin white line

This first ran 12/17/2012. The subject is timely and so is the take-home: don’t be too ready to hand over the keys. It was hardly the first time a ref had gotten it wrong. But the error at the 2010 World Cup was the last straw. Germany (the machine) was only beating England (the perpetual […]

Redux: The Knowledge

 This first ran on Nov. 18, 2011, before Sally took indefinite leave.  We just know you’re missing her so here’s the next best, the redux Sally. A transatlantic phone call ended badly the other day. “You can just turn left at the next light,” I heard my friend tell the New York cab driver over […]