Essays

Get comfortable while I pontificate.

Ecology is a fascinating subject, and those friends of mine who are interested (or who can feign interest convincingly) have posed quite a few interesting questions over the past few years. I’ve been apologizing for giving incomplete (or distracted) answers for ages now, and I owe them (and everyone else, I suppose) better than that. The following essays will first cover the questions I receive most frequently and which I’m most qualified to answer. Unfortunately, that means that the pace of additions to this area of the blog may slow drastically after I leave my knowledge comfort zone. Deal.

A few quick answers to things I get asked far too often (insert your own relevant question before each answer for an instant and pain-free response).

  1. Forest Fires are much worse for home-owners than for habitats that are adapted for them. Decades of fire-suppression has left quite a bit of the southwest a very literal powder-keg just waiting for an errant bolt of lightning or careless camper to set it off.
  2. Invasive Species are serious business.  However, while all invasive species are exotic, not all exotics are invasive, and not all invasive species are (in my limited opinion) truly noxious. Smart people disagree on the topic.
  3. Yes you should go outside, you glow-in-the-dark troglodyte! When was the last time you saw the sun? What would your mother say?
  4. I know nothing about geo-fracking, I’m trying to remedy that but I’m having trouble finding non-obviously-biased sources. I’ll get back to you.
  5. Yes the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone Park was amazing. Yes, I think they should be reintroduced to the Adirondacks. However, I don’t have to live there, and while wolf attacks on livestock and people are rare beyond belief, many-thousand years of evolution have ensured that humans will never rest easily in the hunting grounds of apex predators.
  6. No I didn’t get stitches. Yes it bled quite a bit. I’m not showing it to you, its covered now. I used all the band-aids we had, sorry. I just put ice on it. Its cool, I didn’t need to sleep. Its not infected. Its not broken. Its fine, I swear. It barely hurt. I didn’t even notice. Its just a bee-sting. Its just poison oak. I’m pretty sure those left-overs are good to eat. Yes, I’ll call more often. If you kiss it I’m sure it will get better. I ate earlier. We’re out of gauze. Rub some dirt in it. Its not bleeding, its not broken. Ibuprofen counts as a food group. No, I’m not limping.

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