Whereas the Microbe

An important decision faces Oregon’s lawmakers this week. It concerns a $2.4 billion industry, an organism that’s important in genetics and other research, and a ritual that boosts the happiness of the multitudes, starting around 5 o’clock in the afternoon. I know, I know. I could have just said that Oregon is considering making brewer’s […]

Brewing Up a Very Good Time

It started two Christmases ago.  That’s when I learned that beer is the new wine.  My nephew, a film student, came home from McGill expounding on the finer points of Belgian Gueuze and German Dunkelweizen.  And since then, foodie-friends have all but abandoned the pleasures of the grape for the more arcane delight of hops.  […]

Secret Satans: Physics

For the holiday season we here at LWON are giving ourselves the gift of confronting our fears. We are choosing our own most daunting science-related subjects and writing about why they scare us. Oh, physics. It’s flummoxed both Cassie and me.  First, you’ll see Cassie’s delightful video about a not-so-delightful experience that soured her on the […]

Partying, Drinking Beer, and Siring Civilization

Did the prehistoric equivalent of a great big, beery, boozy party give rise to some of the world’s earliest civilizations? That sounds about as likely as Sarah Palin rolling up her sleeves and deciphering the Dead Sea Scrolls. And yet, that idea–beer as one of the original jet fuels of civilization–is gathering momentum among archaeologists, […]