latest from Culture Clutch

This is not a boat accident. It’s a space station.

Following a petition that reached the White House’s We The People threshold for response, the Obama administration issued the following to a request that the U.S. government build a Death Star. Enjoy! This Isn’t the Petition Response You’re Looking For By Paul Shawcross The Administration shares your desire for job creation and a strong

Ravi Shankar: a short journey and a music sampler

One of the most influential musicians of the 20th Century has left us. RIP, Ravi Shankar. In the summer of 2001, my husband and I escaped to India for ten-day journey that included visits to Delhi, Dharamsala and Shimla. One of the things that made traveling in India different than traveling elsewhere, is that

Exciting news from Mars! Nothing ‘Earth-shaking’!

(Playing The Martian Guessing Game – Addendum #2) The American Geophysical Union 2012 Annual Meeting, a San Francisco December tradition, is one of the premier settings for presenting the latest in planetary science.  The first day was no exception.  Heard today, in order of scientific importance: 1)  Mars Science Laboratory Curiosity landed safely four

The election over? Not hardly…

I’ve been discouraged, if not surprised, to see so many postings expressing relief that “the election is finally over.” Because it’s not really over– the struggle embodied by the election is certainly nowhere near over. Oh, it was scary indeed, the menace of the Republicans. Writing in Harper’s magazine before the election (10/12), Kevin

No ‘Little Green Men’ on Monday (?)

(Playing The Martian Guessing Game – Addendum #1) Now this is unusual: NASA has taken the extraordinary step of issuing a 2nd strong denial in a formal press release Thursday afternoon (11/29/12) and tamped down expectation of any major news announcements at Monday’s American Geophysical Union (AGU) meeting in San Francsco. In an unequivocal

Playing the Martian guessing game

The Martian Guessing Game is in full swing.  Triggered by an interview with Mars Curiosity Rover P.I. John Grotzinger, NPR’s Joe Palca reported on Tuesday (11/20/2012) that a very exciting result has been returned from the Sample Analysis at Mars instruments (SAM), the onboard miniature chemistry laboratory.  With such loaded teasers as “the analysis

Save the ‘tree lobsters’ hiding on Ball’s Pyramid!

I have hopes that the better angels of our nature as a species will prevail. On a strange island, a fantastic, isolated rock in the remote South Pacific, under a single bush, a few years ago certain curious-looking giant insects were found, of a kind thought to have been exterminated 80 years ago, but

The 2nd Presidential Debate: Obama and Romney Cut a Very Red Rug

The two Presidential candidates danced around in front of an audience this Tuesday last on an extremely red carpet at New York’s Hofstra University. In High Definition television that carpet really wasn’t too easy on the eyeballs, now, was it? Literally, they danced around, all but circling one another, walking towards and away from

Phoning it in: Obama-Romney-Crowley debate boring as f*ck

I grew up in Los Angeles. So, I’m going to do a “company town” thing on you. Tonight’s much-anticipated presidential debate was THIS: …meets THIS: I’m hard-pressed to recall a more lazy, impotent and disingenuous exchange on the problems confronting our country and our world today. I felt like I was watching a high

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