Daniel Pauley, a fisheries scientist, coined the term “shifting baselines” in 1995 to describe how depleted fish populations came to be considered “normal” by generations that had never experienced the teeming abundance their grandparents had known. The concept is now a fundamental one in conservation. As ecosystems change and as human memory dims, former states […]
When I first met Brian Fisher, I was still a young science writer cutting my teeth in the Bay Area. I desperately wanted to write a feature about him but could never sell the story. So, finally, I wrote about him here on LWON and again in a sequel, here. Sigh. I could have done […]
A few weeks ago, I introduced the readers of LWON to my favorite ant scientist, Brian Fisher. We learned that, while he may not look like much at first glance, Fisher is more badass than you will ever be, even if you become a Krav Maga master and invent an actual light saber. But amazing […]
Many years ago, before I was a science writer, but after I tried being a scientist, I spent some time in the outdoor industry. It’s a weird phrase, I know, but it covers anything related to activities like skiing, backpacking, kayaking and generally avoiding getting a real job. We did a lot of guiding and working at summer camps while […]
Thursday, July 16, 2015. Interior of a Brooklyn apartment. Deadlines loom. Distractions distract. Timestamps are approximate because time is a flat circle. 4:54 p.m. Go to the kitchen. Open cabinets. Close cabinets. What did you come in here for? Make tea. 4:55 p.m. As the water boils, notice ants on the wall, the one across […]
One year ago today, the People of LWON published their first post. It was by Josie Glausiusz, it was on flesh-eating algae, and we thank her for setting that tone. Writing LWON — that is, writing what we want to and in the way we want to write it — turns out to be a […]
Ants’ most anthropomorphous characteristic is the facility with which they go to war with their neighbors.