Radium, Dinosaurs and Ridiculous Cakes

I’ve had two articles go up since I last posted.

Part 4 of the Science and the Fantastic series about Edgar Rice Burroughs and Theodosius Dobzhansky. This one’s theme was mutation and I got to write a bit about the radium craze that was happening after the turn of the 20th century, and Dobzhansky’s work in tying mutation to the mechanism of natural selection.

A spoilery thought experiment about what happens after the end of the latest Jurassic World movie. It was the article I never thought I needed to write about a Jurassic Park movie.

I also turned 36 a few weeks back. I celebrated by swapping out my 18 year old car for one that doesn’t spew white smoke from beneath the hood and hit me in the face with the sun visor whenever I would accelerate. I wondered if I would have feelings about giving up my car – I bought it 14 years ago when I was in grad school. No matter how tight money got and how many bills I had to float to make sure I could eat, I never missed a single car payment. That car was my sense of security and represented a kind of freedom of movement I’d never felt before. We went on a lot of adventures, me and that car. But not being hit in the face while I drive hasn’t gotten old yet.

 

I’m also on vacation for the next week. I haven’t had this much time off in a row where I get to stay home in a very long time. I’m hoping to get a head start on the next two Science and the Fantastic posts, which will hopefully free up some time in the next two months for me to finish up a draft of a space horror story I have been slowly re-outlining. Up next is gonna be an article about Olaf Stapledon, Julian Huxley, Star Maker and the Modern Synthesis. I’ve been looking forward to writing this one for a while. After that I’ll be writing about Watson, Crick, Gernsbeck and Campbell, with the birth of the magazine era and the discovery of the structure of DNA.

I am getting a little tired of writing about white dudes in these articles, but we’re finally starting to get to the time periods where diversity was increasing in both fields. I am really looking forward to what’s coming after these two, where I’m going to start writing about broader movements within SF chronologically, as well as areas of specialty in biology with their salient discoveries.

If you’re interested in the source material I’ve used so far in the articles – I have a running bibliography in this post that I’ve been keeping updated as I go.

I might attempt to make another ridiculous cake, too. I made this one for my birthday this year, and am itching to add a new ridiculous cake to my repertoire. This one looks promising. Also, PBS just started airing a fifth season of Great British Bake Off, in case you might need something kind to watch because your threshhold for horror just keeps getting crossed by current events.

Be good to yourselves and let’s look out for each other, okay?

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