Friday, November 21, 2008

New horizons

A not so little bird mentioned that Cathy and Jenny's mister have recently landed great jobs, but this bird was in a hurry and didn't fill in the details. Please dish so we can join in your excitement!

I am giving myself some homework to get going on the blog this weekend. I have been bad about correspondence in general. On a related note, do you think it is too late to send thank yous for my graduation gifts (from May)? I have been totally lame about this but really want to do it. Will people think it's weird or do I get a year like for a wedding? Please help the etiquette challenged!

And again, congrats to the job getters!

Monday, November 17, 2008

Birthday Lumps

Upcoming in the next two weeks: the birthdays of Jennifer, Irene and Jenny. I hate lumping their birthdays together, because three such dear friends deserve their own posts, their own good wishes and not to be lumped in with the birthdays of their mothers, sisters, friends or Thanksgiving. But if I don't lump, I will forget, and that would be far worse. So. . .
Happy Birthday Irene!
Happy Birthday Jennifer!
Happy Birthday Jenny!
Take some time and celebrate.

Smoky Mountain Natl Park

Here are a few photos from my family trip to the Smokies. We drove by some people playing bluegrass at one of the historic homes, went around Cades Cove and went up to the tallest point in the Park. We actually did see a black bear cub on our last day there - it was quite exciting! Alas, it was too quick for a picture...

Sunday, November 16, 2008

"Monotremes give birth to dead young"

Yes, its test time again in my world. I had two versions of the above as a response to the difference between monotremes and placental mammals, which made me giggle, well actually guffaw.

In other class news, I have totally been busted. Once again this semester I asked my students to make a list of pressing environmental concerns. I apparently used the same phrasing that I used in the spring when I asked you for your opinions in this post. It turns out that when you google that particular phrase (top 5 and facing being part of it) the GBKD is the first thing that pops up. I'm frankly amazed. I think my student only suspected it was me until I announced the family f---- format of the future discussions, then she felt certain. Ack. I have no idea how many of them stopped by our blog, but their answers do seem to be more sensible this year.

On the list of what's disturbing me this week: I checked the population clock in preparation for my population lecture this year and learned that the current world population is 6.7 some billion. Which is not that big of a deal, except I had the exact figure from April 22 on my slide (6.6 some billion). 73 million people have been added to the planet between April 22 and Nov. 11. That's 40 times the entire population of my state in 6 months.

On the list of irrational behavior: despite the above I am still hoping to have children.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Ecology Books

Hey gorgeous biologist knitters, I have some ecology books that I want to get rid of. Is anyone interested in the following titles? If so, let me know and I'll ship them to you.

How to Identify Grasses and Grasslike Plants - Harrington
Applied Population Ecology - Akcakaya et al.
Invertebrate Surveys for Conservation - T. R. New
The Tallgrass Restoration Handbook - S. Packard and C. F. Mutel
Borror and Delong's Introduction to the Study of Insects
The Handicap Principle - A. Zahavi
Stream Ecology - J. D. Allan
The Insects - Chapman
Insect Diversity Conservation - M. J. Samways
Conservation and Biodiversity - A. P. Dobson
Principles of Population Genetics - Hartl and Clark
Perspectives on Plant Competition - Grace and Tilman
Restoration Ecology and Sustainable Development - Ubanska et al.
Principles of Insect Morphology - Snodgrass
Geographic Information Systems and Science - Longley et al.
Herbivores, Their Interactions with Secondary Plant Metabolites - Rosenthal and Berenbaum
Insects on Plants - Community patterns and mechanisms - Strong, Lawton, Southwood
Chance in Biology - Denny and Gaines
Ornithology - Gill

Thursday, November 6, 2008

GBDK Mini-Retreat in March

I just learned I will be in Lawrence March 30 for a Board Deal for that fellowship. Without diminishing the need for a full-scale retreat some other time, I was wondering who'd be interested in getting together the weekend of March 28-29 somewhere near Lawrence. I'm asking now so that 1) we can plan to get a cabin or something so that everybody can "get away" (I'm sure that we could get together at Sal Sis' or Jennifer's place and have a great time, but that wouldn't be quite the same) 2) we put it on our calendars so that it is a done deal and 3) I start telling my colleagues that I won't be around for the State Academy of Science meeting, which we are hosting here that day (eek-- probably shouldn't miss them, but would far rather be spending time with some of you).

Let us know.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Happy Election Day

Election Day totally makes me miss knitting. I'm tense and excited and very very hopeful that we wouldn't need something like Tim proposing to Jenny to cheer us up.

I voted early and its not really very exciting here (all the local elections were only contested in the primaries, so there were very few decisions to be made), but I'm still nervous and giddy because I love the process. Miss you all. Don't forget to vote.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

November! Ack!

How is already November?!? I'm currently posting as a procrastination technique (my annual report is due tomorrow), but I've found that this semester is flying by at a high rate of speed. On my end, life is good but way too busy.

We had our annual Joshoween this weekend and it was lots of fun. We transform our house into a haunted house (on the first floor and the basement). It's lots of fun but it has killed my weekend with clean-up all day yesterday. And now today I don't want to grade or work on this report. sigh.

My class on Tuesday got canceled because of the rally. There are supposed to be lots of people downtown so all classes starting after 3 pm are canceled. I have to say that I'm not all that unhappy but it really isn't the best time in the semester to miss a week.

Anyway, I'm going to get back to work but I was thinking of everyone and wanted to say hi. How's everyone else doing?