Earth community. Visual storyteller. Digital nomad. Natural history + current events. Raconteur. Cultural anthropology.
I hope that somewhere in here I will talk about a creator who will intrigue + inspire you.
Death Be Not Proud
He used to joke he was Ray Bradbury’s grandson. For those who knew him best, his wry sense of humour was a given. They knew he was pulling their leg, as the English say, but they knew too that he meant well. An older man who had lived life, he always said he had come to writing late in life — and Vocal was his outlet to creativity.
- Top Story - September 2021
Upside-down Rhinos, Men with Beards and Cockroaches on Submarines: These Are the 2021 Ig Nobel Prizes.Top Story - September 2021
In case you haven’t heard of them before — and if you haven’t, shame on you! — the Ig Nobel Prize is a part parody, partly satirical prize handed out yearly since 1991 in recognition of 10 achievements in scientific research from the past year. The research is real, conducted by real academics and real technicians at real research labs, except when it isn’t.
Racial Abuse at World Cup Qualifier Points to Deeper Societal Problems
Nobody likes a rerun, but this rerun was particularly hard to watch. Racism is the last refuge of witless morons — and sociopaths — but there was something especially disheartening about witnessing black players for England’s national team being booed, jeered and having monkey chants directed at them in last week’s World Cup qualifying game in Budapest, Hungary. The thrown bottles came later, as did the live fireworks tossed onto the pitch during one England goal celebration.
Oh, the Humanity! On Climate Change & Ancient Egypt
Oh, the frogs! The gnats! Signs and marvels, visited on the Pharaoh — that loser — in answer to his taunt that He did not know Yahweh. Oh, the flies! The pestilence visited upon the beasts of the field — the horses and donkeys and camels, "and on their cattle and sheep and goats." The thunderstorms of hail and fire! The dead fish in the Nile! Beware, lest we face the full force of Nature’s plagues. Be it known that Yahweh was a storm-and-weather deity who led the heavenly army against Israel’s enemies.
On Frozen Pond
She was just a child when it happened, but for the rest of her life she would remember the silent scream, the sadness in the eyes of the emergency medical technicians that cold winter day as they braced themselves against the bitter wind, a thin screen of blown snow creating ghostly shapes in the low winter sun as they buckled under the sudden dead weight of a slight, slender teenage girl who had drowned saving her baby sister, an imaginary princess immersed in an imaginary fairy tale, beyond thinking, in a fairytale wonderland of happiness ever after.
- Top Story - August 2021
The Life and Times of Romelu LukakuTop Story - August 2021
Romelu Menama Lukaku Bolingoli, aka Romelu Lukaku, was born in 1993 in Antwerp, Belgium to parents of Congolese descent, and when he played his first game for a senior club for Anderlecht at age 16 in the Belgian Pro League there was little sign that he would one day move to Chelsea Football Club in Kensington, London for a club-record £97.5 million ($135m USD).
Life Imitating Art: From ‘The Killing Fields’ to Afghanistan
There’s an oddly prescient moment, early in the remarkable, harrowing 1984 film The Killing Fields, about journalists working in Cambodia during the Khmer Rouge takeover, where a cynical war photographer for the New York Times, played by John Malkovich, looks doubtfully at the occupying Khmer Rouge guerrillas, many of them 14- and 15-year-old conscripts, some of them with yellow peace flowers sticking out from the barrels of their AK-47 assault rifles, and remarks to Times war correspondent Sydney Schanberg, played by Sam Waterston: “I wonder if these guys are for real.”
Elephants Are Afraid of Mice! And Other ‘Eek!’ Misconceptions.
Elephants have no knee joints, so if they fall down they can’t get up again. So … to avoid falling, elephants lean against a tree while they sleep. To capture an elephant, a hunter can cut part way through a tree ahead of time; when the elephant leans against it, the tree will break and the elephant will fall. Unable to rise, the beast cries out, and a large elephant tries to lift it up, but fails. In some accounts, twelve elephants next attempt to lift it, and also fail. Finally a small elephant comes and succeeds in raising the fallen one.