Saving the environment… one hummer at a time

February 28th, 2006

A story caught my interest today basically because the heroes would rather starve than support Hummer. The thesis is that starving artists, in this case musicians, aren’t willing to sell out their music to a gas guzzling, environment un-friendly corporate car company. It’s nice to know there are still a few people out there willing to stick to their morals even in the face of thousands of dollars of extra income and the increased exposure that licensing a song for an advertising campaign would bring. I wonder if the ad gurus for Toyota’s Prius are keeping their eyes open for the opportunities that Hummer misses.

Friends are where the heart is

February 27th, 2006

I came home last night from a long weekend in Los Angeles visiting some very good friends, and I have to say that LA miight truly be the city of angels just because they are there. It is envigorating to visit people who love you and believe in you. Although I did not get much sleep during the four days that we were down south, I do feel more energized than I did before the trip. Strange what conversations can do for you when they are with the right people.

Now I hope that I can keep that energy with me for a while as I get back to work on my dissertation.

Piling higher and deeper

February 22nd, 2006

My home office is a disaster. Somehow in the past 5 months of bi-coastal existence, I managed to totally destroy any system of organization I may have previously had. The piles of papers are teetering, the bills threaten to attack. My Ph.D couldn’t seem further away.

I’ve been trying to make bits of progress on cleaning up the space in the past few days since I’ve been home. Maybe it’s the dread of actually having to get work done that holds me back. I don’t know. The bill collectors might be the force that inspires me to get the place back in ship-shape first.

I start back on the research on Monday. Maybe I should call my advisors to let them know that I was gone for another month and a half… that maybe they shouldn’t expect the dissertation chapter drafts anytime soon. The research will be the easy part, tedious, but easy. It’s the analysis and writing that has me worried. For some reason, I am petrified of putting my ideas about my research down on paper. I’ve been working toward this point for 6 years. I should be excited to be so close to finishing. Instead, it just has me scared.

Swallow the fears, my dear, and just get it done. One thing at a time. The desk first.

Back again

February 20th, 2006

I find myself back in Davis again. The past 5 weeks somehow slipped past, and New York City is again something of a dream thatI think I might have had. That said I do remember very clearly the 100 year record-breaking blizzard that I witnessed firsthand from my friend’s loft apartment near SOHO. I awoke to see the city a white wonderland, and people playing in the streets as if we were in a vacation area in the wilderness… at least until the street cleaners came through and cleared the streets of snow. I also got to witness the record amounts of snow melt and disappear in mere days.

I can’t tell you the number of times that I heard people blame the entire week on global warming. It seems that if any of the science establishments media drives has actually gotten through to the populus general, it’s global warming. Even with the onslaught of naysayers like Michael Crichton, the public has latched on to the idea of the heating of the earth, and the changes that it might cause for our weather patterns.

Now, I personally am still on the fence with regards to what is actually causing said warming because the evidence for natural warming versus human causes still seems weak in either direction. However, the evidence does seem to point to one general trend at the moment. The amount of CO2 in the atmosphere is increasing, the oceans and atmosphere are warming, and the glaciers are melting, hence it seems that global warming is occurring.

One of my minions sent a link last week that was originally from the Wall Street Journal with a really interesting article about the current debate about global warming that’s going on within the normally closeknit community of hurricane researchers. Really a fascinating read with some insight into how much the issue of who or what is to blame for the current state of the atmosphere is affecting the world of scientific research.