Wednesday, December 17, 2003

The Bug House welcomes Rebecca Golden, who has finally inspired me to update my links. For those who don't know Rebecca, she's a writer for a Toledo-area independent newspaper, a founding member of T.R.A.S.H., the owner of an amazing library of hilarious films, the baker of the world's best apple pies, and a fun person with whom to take an 11-hour road trip.

For hymenopteran-genetics enthusiasts: If you follow this link and search on "Stahlhut", you'll find another link to my first full-length journal article (Stahlhut, J.K. and Cowan, D.P., Heredity in press). The link to the Stahlhut&Cowan paper is temporary and will be moved to the appropriate table of contents once the paper is in print, which will be some time in early 2004. If you follow the link from an institution with an online subscription to Heredity, you can read or download the whole article. Otherwise, you can read the abstract. If you're not a hymenopteran-genetics enthusiast, you probably won't care to read either. Instead, go to Rebecca's blog and subscribe to her columns. They're great, and, to reassure the squeamish: To date, and to the best of my knowledge, they've been wasp-sex-free.

Tuesday, December 16, 2003

I could probably increase my readership by listing kitchen hints for the spouses and other family members of people on allergy rotation diets. To clarify: The rotation diet that has been handed to Rick is reasonably clear. The occasional leftovers, forbidden on both rotation diets and mold-allergy diets, represent a problem. Since many of the permitted foods are expensive, time-consuming to prepare, or both, we really don't want to throw the stuff out, so I plan to eat as many of the leftovers as possible.

So, based on my first lunchtime-leftover experiment:

* Leftover cooked buckwheat makes a really nice addition to cream of mushroom soup. Sprinkle a bit of tarragon in there if you have it. (Long ago, I used to make cream of mushroom soup from scratch, but since Rick is supposed to avoid both mushrooms and milk, I just opened up a can of Progresso's finest.) My bet is that it would go well with a bit of sour cream on top, but I didn't have any on hand.

* The above goes really well with the canned smoked mussels that you bought for your spouse before you found out that, although he is allowed to eat both mussels and the cottonseed oil they're packed in, he is not supposed to have both on the same day.

Sunday, December 14, 2003

The capture of Saddam Hussein should lead to a fairly predictable fork in the road. If, as often claimed in print, the surreptitious attacks on U.S. and allied troops in Iraq are perpetrated by Hussein supporters (if not masterminded by the old bastard himself), they should diminish. If they are a response by ordinary but angry Iraqis to what seems to be an indefinite occupation by foreigners, they will probably not subside at all.

On a more personal note: As of today, I've had a Ph.D. for exactly one year. I'm celebrating by turning in my grades for what I hope will be my last teaching assignment for a few years. I'm also looking forward to my upcoming "mini-postdoc" at Michigan State next semester. After that -- well, personally as well as globally, it's a matter of living in interesting times.