The conundrum of the Get Well Soon card

This week, an old friend contacted me that a mutual friend, his grandfather (whom he calls Jadek in the traditional Polish fashion) was in the hospital. His Jadek and I had only met a few times, but I loved him…as my old friend says, he never did meet a stranger in his whole life. The […]

Hostel Stories: The Love Shack and the Irishman

I have spent a good chunk of time staying in backpackers or hostels while traveling, and these stays can lead to a number of good stories. One of the most suspect hostels I ever stayed in was fondly nicknamed “The Love Shack”.  The Love Shack had a party shower* and was full of risque and […]

The Springs of Saratoga Springs

I was speaking at a conference in Saratoga Springs, NY this past weekend, and while I was there I did a little exploring. A friend of mine had been raving about the natural spring water which gave Saratoga Springs its name; supposedly, the water had healing and restorative properties. “We have to try the water,” […]

And Howe!

Howe Caverns is a natural cave system that was discovered in the early 1800s by Lester Howe.  According to the website, it the second largest natural attraction in New York state (after Niagara Falls), and the largest show cave in the northeastern United States!  I stopped in at the caverns on the way back from […]

Ode to a Squirrel, by Yousef Komunyakaa

Ode to a Squirrel Good you can’t hear The stories & jibes inside My sleepy head, as someone Jokes about squirrel pie From four decades ago Somewhere in Louisiana or Big Thicket. Tonight, on the roof Here in Princeton, you work Around the clock. Early October, back & forth With a stash of acorns. You […]

Dimorphism and sexual selection: Miss Universe

I couldn’t help myself… A while ago I wrote a post about sexual selection in nature, and how nature often produces species with dimorphic sexes, where the male tends to be brightly coloured and showy and the female tends to be cryptic and drab.  This is generally thought to be because the caretaker of the […]

4,000 plus miles for 2014

I’ve been recording my swimming, biking, and running miles since I started this blog in the autumn of 2011. In 2012, despite some very serious injuries, I logged about 2,500 miles. In 2013, I logged just over 3,000 miles. And around mid-August of last year, I glanced up and happened to notice that I had […]