Science is the Celebration of Constructive Ignorance

I have a theory* that there are three kinds of ignorance. The first kind is what I’d call neutral ignorance. The gentle, perfectly understandable kind that arises due to a simple lack of knowledge: Ignorance: lack of knowledge, education, or awareness (Merriam Webster) There is no shame in not knowing something, and there’s no shame in not having access to the education or experience that would provide that knowledge. This kind of ignorance is much…

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Allergy-Friendly Rhubarb Crumble

We are the caretakers of a very unusual bequest – the Tech Support family rhubarb plant. The original was planted over a hundred years ago, and cuttings have followed his family all over the United States and Canada. Our particular bush was started from a cutting Tech Support’s dad sent us through regular mail. Seven days in a dark box later, we stuck it in the ground and walked away. It’s the lowest maintenance, hardest…

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Happy Independence Day!

It has just occurred to me that, now that I’m required to carry two passports and file taxes in two countries, I should also be entitled to twice as many holidays. Since I have thus far managed to work both Canada Day and American Independence Day, I seem to be failing both of my citizenships. It may be time to knock off for the day…. Fellow North Americans, how have you been celebrating? The post…

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Big Pharma is Not Suppressing the Cure for Cancer

Lately my Facebook feed has filled up with memes and videos about miracle cures for cancer that THEY don’t want you to know about. I’ve avoided commenting on them, because I don’t want to offend my friends, but every time I see one of these things, I spontaneously combust. Look, I get it. I lost my mother to cancer in 2009, two days before her 56th birthday. I have lived the rollercoaster of pain and…

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Solstice But Not Summer

It’s summer solstice today, but apparently not summer, at least not in Nova Scotia. The most hours of daylight of the year doesn’t actually help if the sun’s not shining. It’s been cool and rainy for weeks and let’s just say I’d trade this for the heat wave in Arizona any day. Wearing a sweater and slippers – indoors – on the first day of summer just plain feels wrong to me. But my rhododendrons…

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Brick and Mortar Magic: How to Have a Great Book Signing

After I got my PhD, I went to work at a bookstore. This was partly because my brain was fried and I wanted to relax with the pretty books. It was also because, as I writer, I wanted to understand how the retail end of the book business actually functioned – and how real humans behave when choosing new books. It was revelatory – and now I share those revelations with you. How To Have…

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Wonder Woman: I Laughed, I Cried, I Felt All the Feels

Tech Support took me to see Wonder Woman yesterday.* It restored my faith in superhero movies. This is a superhero movie that’s actually about something – something much more than good versus evil. This is a movie about right and wrong, which is a much more complex and difficult question. Especially when there’s more than one right, but you can only pick one of them to fight for at any given moment. And if the potential…

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How Mary Shelley’s Frankenstein Saved Lives

One of the coolest things about fiction (especially science fiction) is how it inspires scientific discovery in real life. Cell phones – inspired by Star Trek communicators – are a classic example. Edmond Locard is another. Locard was a huge fan of Sherlock Holmes novels, in which the great detective solves crimes using the tiniest of clues. The books were one of the reasons that Locard became a forensic scientist. He not only pioneered the field…

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What is Up With Daredevil Season 2?

Before life happened, I wrote about Netflix’s Daredevil and some of the reasons his character makes me slightly uncomfortable. I’ve been watching Season 2 though, mostly because I just found out about The Defenders, and I harbour a deep and abiding love for Jessica Jones, so I want to be caught up. Now Daredevil is making me uncomfortable for totally different reasons, though. Am I the only one that feels like they didn’t actually know where the…

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