Guest Post: Death’s Eternal Logistics

I spent several hours on Sunday afternoon in what has to be the most charming cemetery in New York City. If I didn’t know what I was looking for, I would have missed its arched iron gate, tucked into 2nd Avenue just north of East 2nd Street, where the East Village meets the Lower East Side. Once through, […]

The Last Word

10 – 14 December Turbulent week here at LWON HQ. We started with a crushing loss: our Ginny decamped to National Geographic. We wish her, obviously, every success and all the happiness there — and we’re so proud that she was poached by a place with such an impeccable pedigree. But wow, will we miss […]

On the Road

Some sad-yet-happy news: I’m leaving the people of LWON. Next week I’m launching my own blog at a new network hosted by National Geographic. I’ll be sharing a web neighborhood with some amazing writers (and they’ll post their own announcements soon). My blog, called Only Human, will be all about people — our genes, cells, brains, behaviors, […]

The Last Word, Turkey Day edition

November 19 – 23 I hope you nice people in the States had a lovely Thanksgiving. This week, Ginny introduced us to the sleep molecule. Jessa explained the 21st century superbear. It’s a hybrid between a polar bear and a grizzly, and it’s straight out of the anthropocene. Christie considered a status symbol shared by […]

Re-Awakenings

Anna Sumner’s craving for sleep began when she was an 18-year-old high school senior. She thought nothing of it. When it followed her to college, she blamed it on stress. She was working so hard, she told herself, her body just needed the extra rest. But it was more than that. She would choose naps […]

Conan’s Umwelt: How a Dog Sniffs

This is my puppy, Conan, and the reason I’ve been buying a lot of dog books. For those of you who’ve never had the pleasure, dog books are for skimming, not reading. They’re hokey, repetitive, poorly written and peppered with pseudoscience. But Friday I found an exception: Inside of a Dog, a fascinating, science-rich story of how dogs […]

The Last Word

5- 9 November In the most heartwarming post of the week, Cassie considered post-election bitterness and wondered what would happen if we treated politics less as a competitive sport, and more as an expedition. Ginny wrote an amazing examination of the fundamental mismatch between stories and science. Cameron noted that owls are trending. Michelle pondered whether the $300,000 […]

Jonah Lehrer, Scientists, and the Nature of Truth

Last week the journalism world was buzzing about — guess who? — Jonah Lehrer. Yes, again. We knew about the science writer’s self-plagiarism and Bob-Dylan-quote fabrication. Last week a New York Magazine exposé by Boris Kachka claimed that Lehrer also deliberately misrepresented other people’s ideas. Kachka’s piece led to some fascinating discussions about whether it’s possible to […]