May 17, 2014

The Agonies of Digital Media

The Agonies of Digital Media

For those of you with not a bit of digital data in any form, I envy you. You must be out there, somewhere, perhaps as part of some primitive tribe living deep within an impenetrable jungle, though no doubt even now the barons of our digital age are plotting ways to get you, and your children, posting selfies on Facebook and Twitter. A smartphone helicopter drop, perhaps? (more…)

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January 19, 2014

On the Leacock Trail

On the Leacock Trail

Hiking the Leacock Trail this morning, I found myself contemplating the viability and/or wisdom of selectively removing unpleasant memories from our minds. This is apparently a new avenue of research in the various behavioral sciences, as a possible means of cutting-edge treatment for people suffering from things like PTSD (more…)

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January 13, 2014

Skiing’s Man-Made Future

Skiing's Man-Made Future

As I contemplate the reality of what appears to be the worst Sierra winter any of us have ever seen, I find myself thinking about the obvious importance snowmaking is going to have for the survival of many ski areas. We’re back from a week in Flagstaff, skiing the Arizona Snowbowl, which has recently installed (after endless legal battles) a working snowmaking system (more…)

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November 3, 2013

Blind to the Bishop

Blind to the Bishop

Over the years I’ve become increasingly fascinated with the discrepancy between Reality and my perception of it. If you’ve never contemplated this divide, discovering it is like finding a bottomless rabbit hole—unsettling, to say the least. If you’re dead certain that the heater is gray, for example, or if you like to leave yourself notes, watch out (more…)

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July 11, 2013

The West’s Fiery Future

The West's Fiery Future

If you want a canary in the coalmine for climate change in the western U.S., try Northern Arizona’s Coconino National Forest. The forest features the world’s largest contiguous stand of Ponderosa Pines, all growing in a region whose sparse rainfall (about 22″ annually in Flagstaff) is far more typical of a high desert rather than evergreen landscape (more…)

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December 15, 2012

The Sun Rises…

The Sun Rises...

Over a world both familiar and strange.

Los Angeles, California, December 15, 2012.

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November 21, 2012

The Invisible Note

The Invisible Note

I’ve been dutifully changing diapers for a long, long time, but also of course working towards getting my kids out of diapers, and though I think I can at last declare success, I can also safely say I won’t be writing any how-to-potty-train books. My last, desperate potty training tactic, after I gave up on everything else, was to simply use Behavioral Psychology methods to try to de-anxiefy the whole process (more…)

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October 31, 2012

My Halloween Visitor

My Halloween Visitor

It’s not the Giant Spider hanging outside my window yesterday which makes me nervous. It’s the Giant Spider which was hanging outside my window yesterday but which today has gone conspicuously missing which makes me nervous. Where did he go??? Happy Halloween everyone!

Posted in Musings | 2 Comments

October 29, 2012

Shifting Baselines

Shifting Baselines

I’ve been scanning some of my dad’s old Kodachrome slides of the Grand Canyon, and this shot in particular caught my eye. Here we see the south rim, as seen from Bright Angel Point on the north rim, taken in September 1978. Easily visible are the San Francisco Peaks, Arizona’s highest point, and Kendrik Peak, both near Flagstaff Arizona. In a straight line, Google Earth measures this distance as 64 miles (more…)

Posted in Musings | 3 Comments

August 6, 2012

Nothing Endures But Change (Bodie Edition)

Nothing Endures But Change (Bodie Edition)

From the glass towers of Chicago to the ghost town of Bodie, California, we go. Bodie, now a state historic park, is thirteen miles off Highway 395, just southeast of Bridgeport. Gold was discovered here in 1859, and within twenty years there was a booming town with a population around 10,000. The principle mine closed in 1913, though the town lingered on into the early 1940’s (more…)

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