TITLE: On sabbatical AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/10/2014 02:04:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'll be quiet for a while, on a social media and blogging sabbatical thoughout 2014. If you wish to connect with me, please send a message to zuiker@gmail.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: We're selling our house in Carrboro AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/18/2014 12:52:29 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/249.jpg! *UPDATE 6/20/2014* We've taken the house off the market, for now. We'll stay put for another year. Our grand, big house in Carrboro, North Carolina is on the market. It's been a place of delight for us these last five years, and we're hoping another family -- perhaps yours! -- will jump at the idea of making it a home in which to grow up and grow older and wiser, fill with dinner parties and backyard barbecues and birthday parties, make memories fond and familiar and priceless. Where are we going? Not far, we hope: just closer into Carrboro to design a new experience for ourselves and our children. Learn more at "235legendsway.com":http://www.235legendsway.com. btw, I used the "UkKit framework":http://getuikit.com/index.html to quickly make that site. And I'm quite close to finishing the new design for mistersugar.com using the "Foundation framework":http://foundation.zurb.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Time to move to a new web host AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/05/2014 02:19:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After nearly 10 years hosting my various websites with Textdrive, it's time for me to move to a new web host -- "Textdrive will cease operations on March 14, 2014":http://discuss.textdrive.com/. I'm hurrying to transfer my files to my new host. Please be patient if there's any down time during this transfer. UPDATE: I have successfully moved the Coconut Wireless to my new host. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A retraction, stepping back, and looking forward AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/05/2014 01:59:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: For a decade, I worked passionately to build a conference, a community and an organization called ScienceOnline. This was in partnership with Bora Zivkovic, a partnership that became a friendship. Last fall, I was blindsided by the revelations of his behavior toward women. In October, November and December, I offered Bora my ear, my help and my compassion, in the hopes that he would make amends and changes. In writing my Jan. 1 blog essay, Roots and Bitters, I was attempting to juggle that compassion with my bitterness for how Bora treated women, how he had treated the community -- including Karyn and me -- and how our partnership was being pulled apart. Posting my essay was wrong for many reasons, most especially because I have come to a very different understanding of sexual harassment, professional responsibility and Bora's actions, which I do believe were wrong. I am sorry for posting my essay, but grateful for the lessons that I've learned since.  I deeply regret that my blog post, published without the knowledge of my fellow ScienceOnline board members, shook their trust in me. Scott Rosenberg, Meg Lowman and Mark Benerofe stepped up to assist ScienceOnline at a very difficult time, putting their reputations on the line in a show of support for the community and mission of ScienceOnline. I wanted to remove the post from my blog in January, but understood that anything I did or said would only distract everyone from the planning of the ScienceOnline Together 2014 conference. The board requested that I keep the post online, so that production of the conference and the interactions of the attendees who had committed their valuable dollars and time were the focus -- and not Bora. (Bora had no role or part in ScienceOnline or the planning of the conference after October 16, and from January 1 on, I severely limited my interactions with him; I continue to distance myself from him as I work through my bitterness and anger.) We needed to keep our focus so that ScienceOnline could survive in 2014 and move forward beyond that. I am sorry if this silence further confused you. Under the direction of executive director Karyn Traphagen and with the guidance and assistance from board members Mark and Scott and Meg, we acted promptly to clarify the goals of the conference (especially that Bora would not be in attendance), review the community's responses, seek third-party advice, strengthen the ScienceOnline code of conduct and harassment policies, and put in place focused programming on women in science at the start of the conference. We also added the opportunity for attendee-selected topic-driven conversations at the 90-minute Saturday lunch break. We knew that this was only a beginning. In addition to the serious human issues facing this community, the organization was now at financial risk. Compounding the normal stress of organizing a major event, the timing of the revelations in October happened just after we completed major contractual commitments but conference registration process and sponsor relations were still being finalized. We had intense worries about the financial viability of the organization. My January post, I fully admit, set us back. The stress was palpable, and required us to have a laser focus on making sure the conference was a success. Thankfully, hundreds of individuals came together last week to enjoy the conference, and confirmed that there's important work yet to be done to advance the mission of ScienceOnline -- to cultivate the ways we (organization AND community) conduct, share and communicate science on the Web. As in each of the past seven years, ScienceOnline Together 2014 was a success because of the many attendees, longstanding sponsors and new supporters, speakers, discussion moderators and volunteers who committed their time, resources, experiences, expertise, talents and willingness to learn. I am grateful to all who helped to make ScienceOnline Together 2014 a success. Karyn’s efforts were herculean. I want to thank her for her support as a co-founder, a board member and a friend. Her wisdom and leadership skills, combined with everyone who participated and collaborated at the conference, give me optimism for what ScienceOnline can accomplish in the decade to come. And now it is time for me to remove Roots and Bitters, because I can no longer stand behind those words.   Furthermore, I know this: I am burned out, and I need a break. The stress of the last six months has made it painfully clear that it's time for me to step back. This includes taking a social media sabbatical, and focusing more intently on my family, my health and my job. Several months ago, I concluded that it is time for me to make room for others to lead the organization. Prior to the conference, I informed the board of my plan to step away from ScienceOnline at the end of this month. Effective March 28, 2014, I will be resigning my position as chairman of the ScienceOnline Board of Directors, and transitioning to a new (non-voting) role -- details still to be worked out -- that will allow me to stay involved in an advisory role, and as a founder and champion of the ScienceOnline story. When I look back on the history of ScienceOnline, I am immensely proud. At the outset, I wanted to believe that individuals who connected online could come together for meaningful face-to-face conversations, and that our interactions about science would further strengthen online connections, civility, conversations and collaborations. And we have done that. Nurturing a community and building ScienceOnline over the last decade has been hard work, but I am glad to have dedicated these years to ScienceOnline. Thanks to all of you who have been so supportive in pushing ScienceOnline forward and helping us in this difficult year. I hope you will continue to do that as ScienceOnline goes on the road -- to southern California this summer with ScienceOnline Brain, and then to Atlanta next February for ScienceOnline Together 2015 -- and on into the future. I'll be off the social web for awhile. If you wish to reach me sooner, please send a message to zuiker@gmail.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Roots and bitters AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/01/2014 10:15:00 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This post has been retracted. Please read "A retraction, stepping back, and looking forward":http://mistersugar.com/2014/03/05/a-retraction-stepping-back-and-looking-forward for an update. -- Anton 3/5/2014 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Something I'd like to do in 2014 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/30/2014 02:06:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I want to write and record a song. I don't know how to write songs, but I want to learn. I like to sing, and my children sing and dance all the time around the house. We'll have to find a musician to work with us -- maybe my Uncle John, the bluegrass fan, or David Kroll, who recorded "Minister of Ether":http://mistersugar.com/2010/12/04/minister-of-ether. Or maybe there's a class or a workshop I can attend. I'm starting to take notes and outline ideas for a song. Stay tuned. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Moments and friends AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/28/2013 10:41:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Met a friend yesterday, over at his home. First time I'd been there. I went with Erin and the children, and spent a lovely morning with my friend and his wife and children. Didn't want the morning to end. My friend and his wife recommended the new Ben Stiller movie, "The Secret Life of Walter Mitty":http://www.waltermitty.com/. They suggested we see it on the huge Extreme Digital screen at the "Cinemark at Valley View":http://www.cinemark.com/theatre-detail.aspx. So we went today with the kids and cousins and my father-in-law. I enjoyed the film and its homage to film photography and magazines and imagination and adventures and making a moment last. I like Stiller's humor, and I loved the huge screen. At breakfast with another friend this morning, a discussion about the "Cedar Point":https://www.cedarpoint.com/ Chaussee, a causeway that goes out to the roller coaster-heavy amusement park an hour west of Cleveland. We wondered about the word chaussee, but of course "Wikipedia has the answer":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chaussee: bq. ... an historic term used in German-speaking countries for early, metalled, rural highways, designed by road engineers, as opposed to the hitherto, traditional, unpaved country roads. Meanwhile, I've spent the past week trying to locate another Cleveland friend, but I can't find him, and I'm getting worried. I've listened to his answering-machine message a dozen times. Hope he returns soon and allays my fears. Another friend is back home in North Carolina. I've been working on a long post about our friendship for more than a month now, and I rewrote it yet again today, hoping I can find the right message and tone and timing to share my observations. UPDATE: Found my friend. He's alive. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Footnotes AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/20/2013 02:40:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This week, I mentioned using Medium, and noted the nice way that writers, editors and readers can add comments to each paragraph, instead of comments at the bottom of a post. I've encountered footnotes in other ways this week. The jQuery plugin "Bigfoot":http://cmsauve.com/labs/bigfoot/ is a new solution for inline footnotes (inspired by the way "Marco Arment":http://www.marco.org/2013/12/15/bigfoot programmed popover notes for Instapaper and The Magazine). I was reminded of a class I took in college, on Latin American dictators in literature. (I mentioned the class in "this previous post":http://mistersugar.com/2012/07/17/colonel-aureliano-buendia-if-i-recall about One Hundred Years of Solitude). One of the books on the reading list was "I, the Supreme":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I,_the_Supreme, by Augusto Roa Bastos. It was a novel, but used extensive footnotes to tell another perspective to the fictional story. I went looking for my copy of the book, but I think I actually got rid of it this summer. The book I'm reading now, "The Telling Room - A Tale of Love, Betrayal, Revenge, and the World's Greatest Piece of Cheese":http://www.goodreads.com/book/show/16127243-the-telling-room by "Michael Paterniti":https://twitter.com/MikePaterniti, is nonfiction. Paterniti uses footnotes to add additional details and commentary to his story/travelogue/profile/food-writing. The other night, I came upon page 180, where a footnote begins, then spawns eight more footnotes within, spanning the bottoms of three pages. I think Paterniti was having a laugh on his readers, but we get the joke, because it fits his tale of a Spanish storyteller supreme. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: If I won the lottery AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/20/2013 02:11:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I would endow "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com so that the organization would continue -- far into the future -- to gather and support all those doing, sharing and promoting science on the Web. (Until then, your donations are most appreciated. *Please give $20.14 today* - "start here":http://scienceonline.com and click the Donate button.) I would fund the BlogTogether Community Service Awards, and give them every year, celebrating those individuals and groups using blogs and social media to advocate for honesty, integrity, fairness and justice, and who make our communities (online and in the world) better places to live and interact. I would help Jeff and "The Monti":http://themonti.org, and my colleagues at Duke Medicine, make Voices of Medicine a national program that gives patients, their families and their medical caregivers ways to share stories of life, healing, loss and tenderness. I would invite you all to "The Long Table":http://thelongtable.org for dinner and slivovitz and long, leisurely conversation. And I would take care of mom and dad and my brothers, and my wife and my children and my friends. And I would share the rest with those who are hungry or lonely or homeless or in need. In fact, I'd probably end up with just this dollar coin in my pocket, but I'd be satisfied. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Evolution of an online essay AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/18/2013 09:14:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm working on a very long essay now. My essay started as a "Fargo":http://fargo.io outline of ideas (after a page of scribbles in a ScienceOnline-branded "Field Notes":http://fieldnotesbrand.com/ notebook). Then I used "iA writer":http://www.iawriter.com/mac/ to expand those ideas into a first draft. Then I copied that first draft into "Draft":https://draftin.com/, and edited and rewrote a couple more versions. Then I copied the essay into "Medium":http://medium.com/. Medium has a new update, with some new formatting options. There's been a lot of discussion lately about what purpose Medium is meant to serve, for users and its investors. Read two: "Anil Dash":http://dashes.com/anil/2013/08/what-medium-is.html and "Noah Nelson":https://medium.com/nelsons-errata/c100ebe0158f. I previously posted two essays to Medium, about "dengue fever":https://medium.com/what-i-learned-today/6ae4f590174f and "Lucky the Cow":https://medium.com/life-in-words-1/ff498e07cdf4. But, I've kept my distance from Medium, for one reason I won't go into, and for another reason: I want to own and control my own content, and so I keep most of my blogging here at mistersugar.com. But I was tempted by the full-width image placement, and using the updated Medium has actually been kind of fun. It's easy to format my writing with photos and pullquotes and section heads. This reminds me of being a high school editor of the literary journal New Pennies, and learning to cut and paste galley pages. It also reminds me of learning to use Pagemaker on Macintosh computers in the back-room computer lab of the Carroll News, my college newspaper. I'd be there late at night, joined by a young English professor named "Mark Winegardner":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mark_Winegardner, who used the Macs to design posters to promote the writers he was bringing to campus -- Tim O'Brien, Robert Stone and John Edgar Widemann, among others -- while I designed pages of the newspaper or my latest Zuiker Chronicles (Anton Edition) newsletter to send to family and friends. It also reminds me of learning HTML to create Zuiker Chronicles Online and the Coconut Wireless. All of these experiences, and tools, have helped make writing easier and design fun. Yeah, I know professional designers do it better, and that in Medium we're not really designing, since the company has structured it to their design styles. But even these limited tools for text formatting and image layout give enough options to make an author feel in control of the product. Oh, and the ability to place comments alongside paragraphs, and to invite friends and colleagues to review and offer editorial advice before an essay is public, are also very nice. I hope to have this new essay in Medium ready to be public in a few days. I'm also putting the essay into a self-hosted "Ghost":http://ghost.org/ blog to see how that new blogging tool compares. I've been trying lots of online writing tools this year. See previous posts "here":http://mistersugar.com/2013/08/08/blogging-tools-update and "here":http://mistersugar.com/2013/03/10/exploring-new-blogging-tools-editors-and-trends. I've just read that the makers of iA Writer have a new, more powerful writing-and-editing tool available. It's called "Writer Pro":http://writer.pro/. I'll buy it in the morning (not available for U.S. purchase until midnight) and try it on another set of ideas that I've outlined in Fargo. btw, Om Malik's "reflections on how blogging has changed":http://gigaom.com/2013/12/16/in-12-years-of-blogging-the-more-things-change-the-more-they-stay-the-same/ over the 12 years he's been doing is quite insightful. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: How do I want to be? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/12/2013 01:51:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I had the honor and privilege of participating in a social media panel discussion -- "Academics and Unseen Publics: Approaches to Putting Yourself and Your Work Online":http://blogs.library.duke.edu/blog/2013/11/15/social-media-panel-discussion/ -- at Duke University earlier this month. As the room filled and people ate their free lunch, I chatted with my longtime blogger-friends *Cara Rousseau*, *Jeff Cohen* and *Jean Ferguson*, and briefly glanced at the monitor in the side room to see that the World Cup 2014 draw was taking place. (I learned later that the U.S.A. drew the Group of Death. Go Netherlands!) When it was time to start, and since I was seated at the end of the table, I got to speak first, introducing myself and sharing a few minutes of "my online story":http://mistersugar.com/staging/2013/about.html. But the best part was listening to the other panelists: *Gary Bennett*, *Kieran Healey*, *Caitlin Margaret Kelly*, *Robin Kirk*, *Ava Lowrey* and moderator *Paolo Mangiafico*. Each has been online for a long time, and each has used blogs and images and social media tools to do good: Kelly featured photos of "women living with HIV":http://caitlinmargaretkelly.com/womenlivingwithhiv/, Lowrey as a 15-year-old in Alabama created the "Peace Takes Courage":PeaceTakesCourage.com website for her 120+ videos about the war in Iraq, Healy "found Paul Revere":http://kieranhealy.org/blog/archives/2013/06/09/using-metadata-to-find-paul-revere/, Kirk "advocates for human rights":http://robinkirk.com/about-robin-kirk/, Bennett explores and expands our "understanding of obesity":http://gary.bennettlab.org/, and Mangiafico encourages "open-access publishing":https://twitter.com/paoloman. Listening to their stories and experiences was humbling. As Paolo and others in the room asked their questions, and we panelists answered with more reflections, our comments kept touching on issues of identity and online persona, and of juggling professional, academic and personal interests. I had been taking notes throughout the discussion, and I started to jot an outline of something to say about online codes of conduct (yes, as usual, I was going to mention the points in my 2006 essay, "When blogging, face the conversation":http://mistersugar.com/2006/10/22/when-blogging-face-the-conversation.) But then I found myself thinking -- Who do I want to be? and How do I want to be? -- and I realized that, from my earliest days blogging, my approach to those two questions has been the heartbeat of my online activities. So I mentioned that to the room, trying to explain that I've consistently wanted to represent the fullness of my self and interests and experiences (the Who), and that it is the second question (the How) that is the one I most focus on, because I want all my words and actions, online or off, to make me a person of honesty, integrity, fairness and justice. This goal, I said, is reflected in my version of the golden rule: I want to blog about others as I would like others to blog about me. (On a long phone call the other night, a colleague and I got to talking about a single word that, to me, is so hard to define but that beautifully describes a life lived in honesty and integrity and fairness and justice: grace.) (My focus on honesty and integrity and fairness and justice predates my online activity, because those values have been the foundational values of my entire existence, instilled in me by my parents and grandparents, my pastors and coaches, my friends and my spouse. And these values, and a life of grace, are what I hope I'm teaching my own children.) After I shared my thoughts, I sat back and continued listening to my co-panelists. Still, part of me kept processing the idea of integrity through words and actions. (Nelson Mandela, who died at age 95 the day before, was on a lot of our minds.) Still further, a part of me for the last couple of months has been grappling with the question of how silence and inaction might undermine integrity, because, as I explained in my "spoken This I Believe essay":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/01/this-is-why-i-believe-in-blogging, my online voice has been shaken by the travails of my friend Bora and an ensuing discussion about the trials of women in science -- and, really, women in general -- who are not treated with honesty or integrity or fairness or justice. To be honest, I want my actions -- including and especially my interactions with women, minorities, those in need or persons who get missed -- to speak louder than any words I might utter or write. Not that I don't know the power of words. When I was in high school, twin cousins of mine, who were a year ahead of me and explosive wrestlers, joked that I might not be as physical and fearsome as they were, but I did have the ability to "hit 'em with a verb." Since before high school, though, I've strived be a pacifist, in word and deed. As I've written before (in my essay about "wanting to be a priest and a father":http://mistersugar.com/2006/03/18/a-family-orientation), I wanted to use my voice to teach and tell stories. When Erin and I got married, the gospel reading at our wedding mass was "Matthew 25:31-46":http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew+25:31-46&version=NIV ("I was hungry, and you gave me something to eat...I was a stranger and you invited me in..."). Words to live by. But the Christian gospels are also filled with examples of doubt. Naturally, I ask myself, often, Am I doing enough? Anyway, a woman in the room had asked about strategies for dealing with online comments and abuse, and Ava Lowrey was telling about the sexist comments and death threats she got as a teenage blogger, and I was writing at the top of my notes: "women online, society - injustice - must fight this." Then, Kieran Healy was adding that a strategy of thick skin and ignoring the trolls can work for some, but for others dealing with hostile online commentary can have a real personal cost. I recognized the anodyne life I've lived online, yet I also understood immediately and intuitively that Kieran and Ava and the other panelists were highlighting (for me) a challenge to act on the opportunities to stand up, speak out and make way for others. And at that point, I realized that what I had told the room at the very beginning -- that what I do and say online is intended to get people having face-to-face conversations that build stronger and more peaceful communities -- is a way of being that I must continue. And through this, and the people I meet, I shall strive to find the words to advocate for justice and fairness, and the actions that help others to find grace that "makes beauty out of ugly things":http://www.macphisto.net/u2lyrics/Grace.html. *Afterword* At one point during this panel, Robin Kirk mentioned that she goes offline each Friday evening and Saturday for an internet sabbath. Last month, "I'd urged something similar":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/22/respecting-my-community, at least for the day after Thanksgiving. On that day -- the National Day of Listening -- I went to the cafe with my father so that I could listen to him tell me more about his life and the lessons he's learned. The next day, he and Dot (they were married soon after they visited me and Erin in Vanuatu) watched our children so Erin and I could go across the Triangle for a night away at the luxurious "Umstead Hotel and Spa":http://www.theumstead.com/. Erin challenged me to unplug, and I must say, being offline -- and dripping in the steam room -- was very nice. An internet sabbath seems like a very good ritual. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Completed: Department of Medicine annual report AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/07/2013 12:13:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At work, I've (finally) completed an "annual report publication":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/12/all-in-department-of-medicine-annual-report-2013/ for the "Duke Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu. The report features numerous examples of collaboration and scientific partnerships that drive much of the Department's success, and yet only scratches the surface of daily activities there. I feel so lucky to work at Duke, and I am grateful for the opportunity to work as communications director for the Department of Medicine, serving Dr. Mary Klotman and the 1250 other physicians, researchers, medical residents and fellows who care for patients and explore and extend biomedical science. I thanked Dr. Klotman for my job at the start of my May 2013 "Voices of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/06/listen-to-stories-music-from-the-humanities-in-medicine-show/ story, about malaria and acute dystonic reactions and reading all of the fine print of the medication insert. Listen below. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: We're going that way AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/24/2013 11:03:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: I didn't get to read much of today's Sunday NYTimes, but I did finish the intriguing essay by Paul Salopek about his "Stroll around the world":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/23/opinion/sunday/a-stroll-around-the-world.html, comparing the walking life with the the automobile culture -- "car brain" he calls it. Salopek's descriptions of the human interactions and mesmerizing vistas he's experiencing during his walks made me remember walking on Paama, especially the idyllic stretch of road between Lironessa Village and Tavie Village where I'd grasp Erin's hand and repeat the refrain of our time in Vanuatu, "We're Peace Corps Volunteers in the South Pacific." (I talked about that, along with malaria and acute dystonic reactions and reading the fine print of the medication insert, in my "Voices of Medicine story in March 2013":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/06/listen-to-stories-music-from-the-humanities-in-medicine-show/.) I also remembered, fondly, the way our Ni-Vanuatu friends talked with us as they guided us along one of the many footpaths through the forest and up and down the hills and valleys of Paama. "Where are we going?" I would ask in Bislama. "Yumi go longwe," they would answer. We're going that way. "Oh, how far is that?" "Hemia longwe smol nomo, mo hemia no longwe tumas." It's only a little far, but not too far. I think it took a few weeks of that for me to get out of my car brain and realize that our destination was going to be where our destination was, no closer and no further. And so I concentrated on listening to my guides and to observing the hillside gardens, or the different plants and trees along the path -- cacao and coconut and mango and pandanus and bamboo and nangai ("cannarium nuts":http://www.aglinks.net/content/cannarium-nuts-vanuatu-and-solomon-islands) -- or the way the South Pacific Ocean spread so far into the distance, or the closer places where battles had been fought or the tabu spots where I should remember not to wander by myself. Even now, as I reminisce about those walks, I can remember the feeling of my body moving on that island, and I feel good. I've been walking more here in North Carolina, too, enjoying the "natural, limbic connections that reach back to the basement of time," as Salonek writes. I've extended my daily walk across the Duke campus and into the Duke Gardens, and taken my children out on the greenway beyond our neighborhood. And one afternoon each week I've been meeting a friend to stroll along the country roads for an hour and a half. There's no expansive blue ocean to gaze upon, but the autumn colors and sunsets have been splendid, and the fresh air and natural pace help me understand that walking is what I'm meant to being doing. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: About my new About page AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/23/2013 08:46:03 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last month, I nuked my "About page":http://mistersugar.com/about (explained in "my spoken essay":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/01/this-is-why-i-believe-in-blogging). I've been working on a new design for mistersugar.com, slowly and with nothing to show, for too many years ("explained in this post":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/15/mistersugar-needs-a-new-design). And even though I wrote back in January that I realized I needed professional help, I've kept tinkering with code and design, working in the "Foundation front-end framework":http://foundation.zurb.com/ (when I wasn't exploring the "Fargo outliner":http://fargo.io as a blogging tool; see "my.storyblogging.org":http://my.storyblogging.org/). Finally, though, I have something to show: "my new About page":http://mistersugar.com/staging/2013/about.html. It's in my staging folder until I get the rest of the site redesign finished, which, with the release of Foundation 5 this week, I hope to accomplish in the next few weeks (with the help of my friend, Gabriel). You may notice that I don't have an active commenting system on mistersugar. I received very few comments over my 13 years of blogging -- but those that I did receive I appreciated very much! I'm still thinking about if and how to add commenting back to this blog. But that doesn't mean I'm not interested in what my family and friends and readers want to share with me. As my post yesterday makes clear, "I believe in listening":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/22/respecting-my-community. I sincerely hope you will feel comfortable contacting me directly if you have questions or concerns or comments about anything I write here. Send me a message, to zuiker@gmail.com. As always, I am grateful for the valuable time you invest in scanning my About page, listening to my essays, reading my posts or contacting me with your thoughts. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Respecting my community AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/21/2013 10:24:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: To my ScienceOnline and BlogTogether friends, colleagues and connections, These past weeks have embroiled us in controversy and dissension, and challenged our trust in each other. I know many of you are feeling angry, or uncomfortable, or disgusted, or concerned, or confused, or desperate for the right words, or impatient for justice, or fed up, or focused on the future. I've felt all of that myself. But as one who has talked about us as a community more than perhaps any other single person, I know we can get through this together. I know this because I have watched you for more than 10 years. I have seen how much you have enjoyed the company and conversation of each other. You have shown me the value of connecting online, meeting each other for face-to-face conversations, and spreading the message of science and collaboration to the far reaches of the World Wide Web. I have seen the way the world has reacted to your enthusiasm and exuberance, and clamored to join in the fun and empowering experiences, and the constant online dialogue, we have together. I have watched you be kind to each other, teach each other, care for each other, support each other. But our community, like any community, is made up of human beings. And humans are imperfect. We make mistakes, we act in ways that harm the people closest to us, we say things that can be mean, we react without thinking or waiting for all the facts. Societies and cultures and faith traditions develop systems to address the complexities of humanity and to function for a greater good. Our community is young and still developing, but from the beginning we agreed to listen to each other. I believe that it's this shared value of listening that can help us regain our trust in each other, and our faith in our community, and our dedication to communicating science through online tools. At each and every one of the BlogTogether and ScienceOnline conferences, I have stood before you and asked just one thing from you: respect. I asked that you respect yourselves and your talents. I asked that you respect each other, me and my co-organizers. I asked that you respect the "principles of our community":http://scienceonline.com/community-guidelines/. And that's why now I'm asking us return to that shared respect. Let us once again respect the promise of our community and the capacity we have within us, individually and collectively, to work together to advance science, communicate the wonders of the world, and bring others to an understanding of this amazing existence. I'm immensely proud of Karyn Traphagen and the ways she is leading and shepherding the ScienceOnline organization. She has worked tirelessly and conscientiously this year to find creative and responsive ways to improve on the ScienceOnline conference model, so that each person who attends can feel that much more welcome and comfortable and ready to learn. "ScienceOnline Together 2014":http://together.scienceonline.com/ promises to be another intense and satisfying gathering, and we are delighted so many of you have shown your eagerness to come to Raleigh in February to listen and learn. But I ask you to join me in listening and learning even before then. I invite you to join me in participating in the "StoryCorps National Day of Listening":http://nationaldayoflistening.org/ on Friday, November 29. Find a friend or a co-worker, sit down with a visiting family member, or walk to a retirement home and find a lonely senior. Ask that person to share a story, and listen. (And if you have children, take them along -- one of the defining moments in my life was when my parents took me and my brothers on a Christmas day to a nursing home, and "we helped defeat loneliness in one person's life":http://mistersugar.com/2002/03/22/i-was-lonely-and-you-visited-me.) And here's an added challenge: stay offline that day, and don't rush to share your interaction with the world. Instead, learn from the person's story, and find a way to make yourself act better tomorrow than you did today. You may not get the satisfaction of sharing your experience immediately with the wide online world, but, trust me, your effort to change will be noticed. Because if there's something that a community of science communicators is good at, it's observing and connecting and understanding. Thank you for being my community. Thank you for letting me be a part of your community. ... If you haven't listened to "my spoken essay from last month":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/01/this-is-why-i-believe-in-blogging, please take seven minutes to listen now. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/240.jpg!:http://scienceonline.com ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Getting ready for ScienceOnline Together 2014 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/09/2013 02:59:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's almost here! Registration for "ScienceOnline Together 2014":http://together.scienceonline.com -- the eighth annual ScienceOnline signature conference -- opens this coming Thursday (November 14) at 3 p.m. EST. ("Start here.":http://together.scienceonline.com/registration/) !(ScienceOnline Together 2014)http://mistersugar.com/images/237.png! ScienceOnline Together 2014 will take place in Raleigh, NC from Feb. 27 to March 1. The preliminary "program, agenda and session":http://together.scienceonline.com/sessions/ list is up, and many other details are falling into place. It's sure to be another grand time. It's been a year of changes and growth for ScienceOnline, and a lot of new faces and voices have joined our community. I can't wait to watch registration fill up, and then for us to gather together in February for more enlightening conversations about science and science communication. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Good morning. Will you look me in the eye? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/02/2013 10:59:30 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Yesterday, walking through the hospital concourse on my way back to my office, I saw a man studying a paper map, and as I'm accustomed to do (save for the past couple of weeks where it was hard for me to meet the gaze of anyone -- "listen to my spoken essay":http://mistersugar.com/2013/11/01/this-is-why-i-believe-in-blogging to understand why), I offered to walk him to the part of the hospital where he needed to be. We talked along the way, and I learned that he had served in the Army, with tours in Iraq, and that he'd been stationed in a place I once lived. When we reached the spot for him to turn off, I wished his family well, and I reached out and shook his hand, something I never do in the hospital (although elsewhere "I like to shake hands":http://mistersugar.com/2012/02/18/i-want-to-hold-your-hand). This morning, I was up early. I dressed, put the suitcase in the car, and drove in the dark to Duke to retrieve my jacket, which I need for the "Association of American Medical Colleges":https://www.aamc.org/ conference in Philadelphia. Got to the airport, opted for the pat down instead of the energy blast, boarded the plane and promptly fell asleep. At the Philadelphia airport, I was on the train platform studying the system map when a man in a jacket and tie walked up to me and asked a question about the train fare. For the next hour, we talked, because it turned out this man was headed to the same conference, and he had a most amazing life story. He also served in the Army, but that was just one part of his life and work and ambition, beautifully shining through in the way he's pivoted his career over the the last few years. Now's not the time for me to share his story. I think there's a very good chance that he and I will continue our conversation into the future -- the short chat this morning already has enriched my life, and I want to learn more from this man. At "Medicine Grand Rounds":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/?cat=225 yesterday, we were all learning from another accomplished man. Mike Krzyzewski -- "Coach K":http://coachk.com/ -- talked about coaching and recruiting and inspiring winning teams (he holds the record). He recounted a time when he challenged a player to look him in the eye and become the leader the team needed, and how that teaching moment and phrase revolved back to him a few years later when that player, now one of the very best at play, repeated the phrase to Coach K to indicate the lesson had been learned. Coach K also explained that at each practice of his teams, he makes a point to talk individually to three of four players, asking about their families or their contracts or their other projects. Leadership is knowing people, and inspiring them to greatness. My daughter, Anna, and I regularly talk about her experiences in middle school, and how to find friends in the sea of kids there. We have an ongoing experiment to see what will happen if, every day as she walks into school, she looks at three to five other students and says 'Hello' or 'Good morning.' On Halloween, Anna and the rest of the family were out in the neighborhood. I sat on the front porch handing out candy. As a group of costumed middle-school girls walked up toward our house, I heard one of them say, "This is where Anna lives." Later, I told Anna, explaining that the kids she greets in the morning might not reply to her, but they are listening, and they know who she is. --- _This post was written in "Steep and Grind":http://www.steapandgrind.com/, a delightful tea-and-coffee house in the Fishtown neighborhood of Philadelphia. I saw this mentioned in the NYTimes travel section a few weeks back, so I came here straight from the airport to sit at a long table, sip tea, write thank-you notes and think about my interactions with the people above._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: This is why I believe in blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/31/2013 10:31:26 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Thank you for listening to my spoken essay. (On a mobile device, you can also "listen over here":https://www.strongspace.com/mistersugar/public/storian/zuiker-believe-blogging-final.mp3.) ... To learn more about This I Believe, and to listen to thousands of individuals sharing the core values that guide their daily lives, visit "thisibelieve.org":http://thisibelieve.org. To learn more about ScienceOnline, visit "scienceonline.com":http://scienceonline.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Voices in the night AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/14/2013 09:14:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last night, as I was falling asleep, I heard a soft, distant voice calling a name of someone not in the house. A couple of hours later, I woke, thinking I had heard knocking at the door. I got out of bed, wandered downstairs and through the house, peered out the window in the front door, looked out back. I returned to bed, quickly fell asleep. Another hour, and this time Erin had woken, nudging me to ask if I heard someone talking downstairs. Silence, and slumber once more. Later, I dreamt about coyotes (I swear I've been hearing coyotes for real in the woods beyond the neighborhood) and wolves running around the house, stalking something, someone. Just a crazy Sunday night of sleeping and dreaming, after a weekend of strong slivovitz with a friend, an early Halloween party (greeted by dolls' heads on sticks and my daughter dressed as a vampire), tension in my community and work deadlines looming or past. Earlier this summer, I recorded the coyotes out back, yelping and howling: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Oceans away AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/11/2013 07:27:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "ScienceOnline Oceans":http://oceans.scienceonline.com started today down in Miami. From the tweets coming through with #scioOCEANS, it looks like it's off to a great start. I'm not there, staying back in North Carolina for work and family. But I know Karyn Traphagen and David Shiffman have put in hundreds of hours preparing for this conference, and it's sure to be another ScienceOnline success. Still, I really wish I were there. Oceans and I go together. When I was 13, I moved to the Caribbean. When I was 22, I moved to Hawaii. When I was 27, I moved to the South Pacific. My memories of St. Croix and Waikiki and Vanuatu are all through my blog, chronicling my fun in the surf and long days on the beach, of sea turtles and nurse sharks and needlefish and snorkeling above the coral reefs in three different seas. I miss the smell of ripe seagrapes and trying not to miss the green flash as the sun disappears below the horizon, the refreshing feel of a cold Heineken being handed to me. I recall lying beside a giant leatherback turtle laying her eggs in the sand, and swimming amidst dusky dolphins in the frigid New Zealand waters. Great memories, punctuated by the scary: my mother and brother getting terrible infections from the sewage pumped into the bay at midnight, the shock of tumbling beneath a wave as my lungs screamed for air, the howling winds of hurricanes. I miss the ocean. So I dug into my Peace Corps journal to find another memory of the ocean. Here are two entries, about troca shells and the dugong in Lamen Bay of Epi Island. This was midway in our service, Erin was back in Ohio for a holiday visit, and I was spending a month as a trainer for the next class of volunteers to come to Vanuatu. bq.. *December 19, 1998* Saturday afternoon before a nap, a rest I've worked for! This week I was busy with my sessions -- lots of talk and discussion. Great classes. And today, I tired myself out. After class got out at 11:00 a.m., I came [back to the hut] for lunch, then walked along the beach for nearly a mile, to where William and 20 others were gathered in their canoes for harvesting troca shells from the reef. The tabu on the shells was recently lifted, and at 350 vatu per kilo, these villagers will rake in the money. I walked past the group on the beach having lunch -- I wanted to go to the point where I could see Paama. Paama, and Lopevi (which has grumbled a bit today), were faintly visible in the haze. I continued down the beach, alone and with my fantasies of Erin. It's amazingly peaceful and erotic and exotic at the beach there: lorikeets squawking, a gentle breeze, lots of green bush and blue sea. Amid my daydreams, I had to squat to shit in the sand, the diarrhea pouring out of me. I pulled up my pants just as the Vanair plane flew by on its way from Epi to Ambrym! When I started walking back, I met William waiting for me at the point, concerned probably about my prolonged absence and the incoming tide that cuts off the breach route. We returned to the canoe, and paddled out to the reef, tied on to an outcrop of coral and jumped into the water. At first, I snorkeled close to the canoe, holding onto the outrigger. When I got more comfortable and bold, I swam around admiring the coral and at times diving down like William, who floated near the bottom, snagging mollusks from their cubby holes. I retrieved a troca shell from three meters down, proudly extending it into the air when I surfaced. William just said, "Put it in the canoe." We finished with me paddling us to shore, and then William brought us back to Lamen Bay, me perched at the canoe's forehead, smug and relaxed and content. Epi is beautiful, Vanuatu comfortable. *January 3, 1999* Finally, today, I swam with the dugong. I woke this morning and relaxed in bed with Outside Magazine, which features a list of 100 adventures to try in a lifetime, then went to an earlier-than-usual church service. After church, William and Api and Christina and I went to the sandy part of the bay, and there was the cowfish. Not a stunning animal, but placid and approachable. I dived down to touch its scarred, slimy back, being careful of the strong dolphin-like tail. When I tired, I climbed into a dugout canoe and paddled after the dozen kids trailing the dugong through the cool water -- this was funny to watch, as the dugong surfaced for air and with a few strong kicks propelled forward as kids and adults furiously paddled after. Amazing that a phalanx of reaching arms doesn't scare the creature off. Walking back, William handed me a warm, wet slab of banana laplap, and I hungrily ate it, thinking, Outside Magazine didn't list this, but it should: swimming with a South Pacific dugong and then walking back to your custom hut while slobbering over laplap. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cayenne sauce, Spanish omelet and muscadine granita AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/06/2013 07:11:45 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Coming home last night from a dinner fundraiser for "North Carolina Health News":http://www.northcarolinahealthnews.org/ at the home of my friend, Rose Hoban -- Rose's friend, a former chef, catered an amazing assortment of Thai, Singaporean and Vietnamese dishes -- I was reminded that I had a batch of "cayenne hot sauce":http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Hot-Sauce ready to strain and bottle. It smelled fruity and not too hot, a lot like Tabasco but fresher, of course. Today, needing a reason for a first taste of the hot sauce, I looked around the kitchen and saw a bowl of potatoes that I'd bought from Eliza of Cane Creek Farm at the Carrboro Farmers Market a couple of weeks back. I went searching in the Joy of Cooking for a recipe for roast potatoes, and instead liked the idea of a Spanish omelet, which I'd learned to make from a "volcano-loving Spaniard who showed up on Paama":http://mistersugar.com/2004/09/17/survivor-vanuatu one day (I still have the piece of notebook paper on which Erin wrote out Jose's recipes for gazpacho, paella and the omelet). So, for dinner here in Carrboro, spanish omelet with a dash of the fresh hot sauce. Very tasty and satisfying. Dessert was muscadine granita, inspired by the scuppernong granita that topped off the 2007 food blogging dinner at the Durham restaurant Piedmont. ("Here's what Dean McCord wrote":http://varmintbites.com/tag/scuppernong/ back then; I went to Dean's birthday party last week, and blogged it "here":http://my.storyblogging.org/2013/09/29/inTheSpicelight.) I made my granita through the day, this morning juicing the muscadine grapes that Oliver and I bought at the farmers market yesterday, preparing simple syrup this afternoon, and then mixing grape juice and sweet syrup and putting it in the freezer while I prepared the omelet. When I served the fragrant, deeply purple slushy to the family, Oliver was the first to say, "This is good. I like this." The pungent grape flavor took me back to St. Croix and the frozen fruit juices in Solo cups that "refreshed me along the dusty road":http://mistersugar.com/2005/02/09/freeze-frame. The other day, searching the Joy of Cooking for a recipe of another sort, I happened upon a page describing various tropical fruits, and there was the genip ("Melicoccus bijugatus":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mamoncillo, also called mamoncillo), a grape-sized fruit with a pit surrounded by tart orange pulp that is another of the memorable tastes of my youth in the U.S. Virgin Islands. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Back to the BloggerCon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/05/2013 02:35:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: scienceonline ----- BODY: Dave Winer is marking the 10-year anniversary of the first BloggerCon, which took place at Harvard University. I wasn't there. I was in grad school in Chapel Hill, studying the epidemiology of infectious diseases and struggling through Media Law, expecting our second child, enjoying a coffee discussion with Francis Collins. But I was a blogger, and I was already gathering other bloggers for meetups. We called ourselves the *Tar Heel Bloggers*. I'm sure I heard about BloggerCon at the time and followed the posts coming out of that gathering. As an early blogger, I searched for anything I could learn about how people were using the web to write and reflect their lives. And since I was just recently finished with my Peace Corps service in the Republic of Vanuatu, where the village chief would bang a tamtam to gather the community under the nakamal for village discussions, I loved the idea of a gathering of bloggers. So, the more I read from Dave and others about the bloggercon, the more I wanted to partner with my friends in the Tar Heel Bloggers to organize one of our own. About a year later, in February 2005, we convened the Triangle Bloggers Conference. Dave drove down to join us, and others came from Vermont and Atlanta and California. Dave blogged the day, said it was lovely but that we broke the rules, but he also organized a brunch the next day. I went to learn about outliners, although it took me until the World Outliner (seven years later) and Fargo to truly get it. I'm writing this post in an outliner! At the brunch, Dave urged me to bootstrap our community, and during the conference others encouraged us to keep up the conversation (which we would do in monthly meetups in Chapel Hill and Raleigh). I met Bora Zivkovic that day, and we were soon collaborating on a bloggercon dedicated to science. That annual event grew into a global community and a nonprofit organization called ScienceOnline. !http://scienceonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/test_logo_06.jpg!:http://scienceonline.com My post A decade of blogging tells more about how we came together, who my partners were, and why we named the effort BlogTogether. I have loved being a blogger, and I have so many friends because of blogging. Like Dave through his Scripting News blog, they have enlightened me and inspired me and entertained me and challenged me. I've read Kottke for more than a decade, too. His post this week about Stephen Hawking's party for time travellers made me chuckle. Honestly, if I could travel in time, I'd first visit Cambridge, Mass. for BloggerCon, then Cambridge, UK to say hello to Professor Hawking. Cheers to Dave and everyone else who made BloggerCon possible. *Help us continue the conversation* Please support science and ScienceOnline - donate to our $20.14 from 2,014 before 2014 campaign. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Lemongrass AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/21/2013 12:51:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: At the Carrboro Farmers Market this morning, Oliver and I purchased our customary cinnamon rolls and ate them on the bench next to the playground. Walking along the path from stall to stall, we ran into Rose Hoban and chatted about the "copperhead snake she axed in half":https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=10151839088232528&set=a.77693852527.77154.514972527&type=1, then a few steps later we met a neighbor holding a bunch of lemongrass leaves. I followed his lead, found the farmer, and paid $3 for a bunch of my own. Back home, I've chopped the leaves and steeped them in boiling water. (The stalks I've put aside for making "Thai red curry paste":http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Thai-Red-Curry-Paste.) The lemongrass water is fragrant and tasty, and reminds me of days on Paama when I'd use the machete to cut a few leaves from our garden out back, then boil water on te smokeless stove to make the hot but refreshing drink. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Good things to those who wait AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/19/2013 10:23:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Flowers CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: In our back garden, and in the front garden, we've grown a variety of flowers this summer, including black-eyed susans, roses, lilies and hydrangea. The dogwood tree beneath our front porch bloomed in the spring, and the gardenia bushes that the girls gave me for my birthday a few years back were bursting with a hundred flowers. Last year, our attempt to grow daisies didn't work, but this spring Erin planted bunches of plants that Joanne brought down from Cleveland. Erin also put in potted plants from the garden center, thinking they were a variety of daisy. One went up front, one out back. But all summer, the plants just stayed green. Not so bad, of course, as the green growth and crinkly leaves gave color and texture to the yard. But, no flower buds. We'd given up hope that these were ever going to flower, and Erin pulled the one in the back garden to give the black-eyed susans more space to grow. (The white ginger rhizome from that last year gave us fragrant flowers didn't survive the wet spring.) The plant up front stayed, because we were distracted by a project to put rocks between our house and the neighbor's house, to fix the muddy mess caused by all the rain running down from the hill behind our houses. And, then, that plant up front flowered. It's a daisy after all. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/236.jpg! It's been more than a few years since we last wrote to our host family on Paama. This spring, Erin put together a carton of hats -- a friend was going home to Niger to visit his family, and Erin had asked at her office if anyone had unused hats (it's sunny and hot in Saharan Niger!), and in one day she'd collected more than a hundred caps -- some photos of the kids, and a note from us with our best wishes. This week, a letter arrived from Paama, written by Enna - she's spelling her name with an ending h now (read "Naming rights":http://mistersugar.com/2003/06/13/naming-rights for context). bq. Hallo ol famliy Dady Anton/Mamy Erin mo sista mo brata. Mifala i wantem talem bigfala Thank you long pasel wei yufala i bin sendem. I kam, mifala i glad tumas taem mifala i recivem. Mifala i glad tu wei yufala stap tinabaot mifala everi famliy long house even everi famliy long Liro mifala i glad tumas. And she shared news about each of the family members: Terry is 25 years old and had gone to New Zealand to pick apples. Mereva is 15 and in the 10th grade at Vaum Junior Secondary School. And Enna is 21 and working in the Liro Health Center (where Erin had spent most of her time during our time as Peace Corps Volunteers in Vanuatu) as a student nurse. If seeing the daisy bloom was the highlight of the summer, then getting that letter from Paama was the highlight of the year. Good things. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The cafe life AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/16/2013 11:02:23 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's a Monday and my brother, Nick, is visiting (Joel came down for the weekend, too, but left early this morning). We dropped Oliver at the daycare, and came here to "Cocoa Cinnamon":http://www.cocoacinnamon.com/ to sip delicious cocoa and work (me) and study -- Nick is in his probationary period as firefighter in Austin, Texas. I'm thoroughly enjoying the outdoor patio, the street noise as delivery trucks rumble by, the rising heat and the conversations around us (one table discussing last night's episode of Breaking Bad). This is a nice way to start the week. Nick flies out tonight. Erin has trips to Baton Rouge and Charlotte this week, and I'm off to Washington next week to attend the Sackler Colloquium on the science of science communication. So, before the week gets wild, I'm enjoying the pace of this day. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: And so it goes AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/14/2013 12:17:27 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Film CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just watched "Life of Pi":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0454876/ and loved it. So glad the story, about the power of stories, was made into a film. I read the book "10 years ago":http://mistersugar.com/2003/03/16/a-tigers-tale, while on "vacation in Costa Rica":http://mistersugar.com/2003/03/18/tico-talking. A few years later, I heard Yann Martel speak in the barn at Fearrington Village. Robert Redford is in a new film, "All is Lost":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2017038/, also about a man floating at sea. I miss the ocean, so full of wonder. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cheers to a Great Lakes milestone AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/06/2013 07:50:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Great Lakes Brewing Company":http://www.greatlakesbrewing.com/home is celebrating its 25th birthday right now with a block party on Cleveland's West 25th Street. So wish I could have been there to raise a glass in salute. The first time I went to Great Lakes was summer 1990, when I went with my fellow John Carroll University RAs after a day of team-building exercises. I wasn't 21 yet, so I didn't drink a beer that night. But it felt good to be there amid the excitement of an establishment paying homage to Cleveland history, and trying to make Cleveland history. I graduated from JCU, moved to Hawaii, then returned to Cleveland in 1994. I'd go to Great Lakes with Erin and her family, or Joe Cimperman, or my other friends. The beer was really good, and I loved going to gritty Ohio City where Great Lakes and the West Side Market and a good Cambodian restaurant and coffeeshops and a wine bar and more were coming in. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/233.jpg! As editor of Northern Ohio Live, I found a way to feature the breweries of the region with a spread we ran in the Gourmet Guide. I can still recall the delight and surprise that came upon me when I tasted the oatmeal stout at Lift Bridge Brewery in Ashtabula. My friend Paul had picked me up one Saturday, and on a lark we drove east to Ashtabula to visit this new brewery. We found it in an old garage, and the brewer was finishing up the day's cleaning, the spent grain still steaming in a pile on the floor. He gave us the nickel tour, talked about his plans for the brewery, and then poured us glasses of the delicious stout. Alas, Lift Bridge is no more, but the memory of that brew is still with me. My dad hosted a rehearsal dinner upstairs in August 1996, adorning Erin and me and most of the other family and guests with leis he brought from Honolulu. Kegs of Great Lakes beer fueled the dancing in the wedding tent, in the Shaughnessy front yard, the next night. When we moved to North Carolina, I found that Chapel Hill had two good brewpubs, and so I frequented Carolina Brewery and Top of the Hill. Now North Carolina has dozens and dozens of new breweries. Winn Bassett gave a great talk at Ignite Raleigh 3 last year: Good beer all around me, but I missed Great Lakes brews, especially the award-winning Dortmunder Gold. So when we visited Cleveland, I always brought back a six pack or two to enjoy in Carrboro or Durham. And when our good friend Harold McCarty visited, he brought the variety twelve pack -- and a six pack of Dortmunder Gold. Then, in February 2012, Great Lakes came to North Carolina. Now I can find my favorite brew at the Weaver Street Market in Carroboro and Sam's Quik Shop near Durham, and on tap at various bars and restaurants. A moment ago, I popped the top on a bottle of a Great Lakes The Wright Pils, adorned with an illustration of the Wright Brothers Flyer: a Cleveland beer commemorating the Ohio-North Carolina connection. What better way to toast to the success of Great Lakes Brewing Company. Cheers! *Extra:* Last month when I was in Washington drinking in the Capitol City Brewing Company, I noticed this picture and caption on the wall: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/234.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/235.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Chronicles of the day AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/31/2013 09:40:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sitting down for the first time today. It's 9:09 p.m. Woke this morning to the smell of buttermilk pancakes. Another reason I love Erin: letting me sleep in, and making delicious flapjacks. Spent the next two hours helping Erin put Oliver's new bed together, arranging his room, and shifting other furniture through the house. Erin had found headboards at the Habitat Re-use store, painted them blue, bought new side rails, and took Oliver to Target to pick out a new set of sheets and a blanket. He was delighted by his new bed. Another reason I love Erin: she's an attentive and creative mother. Then I was off to the Carrboro Farmers Market. It's a holiday weekend, and today was hot, so at 11 a.m. the crowd was light and the stalls thin on produce (early birds got the goods, clearly). At one stand, I overheard a farmer lamenting her debt and her need to sell her farm. But she was hopeful she'd find a place to rent so she could continue. From her I bought potatoes, and elsewhere a loaf of dark rye with caraway seeds, a cantaloupe and a cinnamon roll. Next, over to the Harris Teeter supermarket at Hope Valley Commons, where Scott the produce manager had just received another shipment of prune plums. I bought nine pounds, and other items, and this evening, I made three more batches of DIY slivovitz, in half-gallon mason jars I bought at Weaver Street Market yesterday when I was watching Oliver (Erin had to put in a rare Friday morning there, which stretched into the afternoon). When I returned home, the family was ready to go to the swimming pool, so we packed up and drove to the Farm Club. We swam, and Oliver and Anna I played a bit of tennis. As we were leaving the pool, a pair of six-year-old twins was having an epic and loud meltdown. I think many of the parents at the pool could relate to the harried mother, but when she retreated to the showers, no one got up to help her. Until my daughters and Erin went in to assist. Another reason I love Erin: she is observant, and empathetic. Back home, I walked right into the kitchen to prepare the slivovitz, make "piperies Gemistes me feta":http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Peppers-Stuffed-with-Feta-Piperies-Gemistes-Me-Feta, and mix Erin a "mojito a la Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com/2013/07/friday-cocktail-hour-the-mojito-revisited/. Erin took the kids -- and half a dozen of the neighbors kids -- outside to make s'mores, and I cleaned up the kitchen. Now that I've chronicled the day, I'm going to take a shower, make a pot of tea, and settle in with the new issue of Modern Farmer magazine. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Fortune smiles: more DIY slivovitz AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/24/2013 10:00:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Last year's batch of DIY slivovitz":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/21/diy-slivovitz-done-good was so tasty that I've been rationing the bottle in the fridge, stealing a small sip once a month, drinking the Serbian commercial slivo in between. I'd promised Bora and Karyn that I would make a triple batch this year, and so for months I've been searching for a supply of Italian prune plums. I called orchards in six states, begged on Twitter for help, and prowled the produce sections of all the supermarkets near my home and when I was on the road. This week, thinking I'd already passed the season, I started to call produce managers directly. Yesterday, the Heinen's in Rocky River, Ohio -- where my mother-in-law is a loyal and treasured customer -- had just received a carton of the prune plums I wanted. But they were 500 miles away, I wasn't sure how shipping them would work and I couldn't schedule an impromptu road trip, so I decided to sleep on how I might get them. Instead, this morning I called around again to the supermarkets in Chapel Hill and Durham. Bingo! The Harris Teeter at Hope Valley Commons had six pounds, and Erin just happened to be nearby. She stopped in and cleaned them out. Which meant that tonight, after the neighborhood back-to-school ice cream social down at the park, and after the dishes were washed and the kitchen cleaned, I prepared five pounds of plums with two liters of Polish vodka in six quart Mason jars. In 100 days, this double batch will be ready to be poured into the maple syrup bottles I've been saving for a year, and I'll be toasting once again to the continued success of ScienceOnline with my friends. I celebrated my luck -- the availability of prunes, friendship with Bora and Karyn, a fabulous ScienceOnline community -- with a full shot of the slivo in the fridge. I'll be looking for more prune plums over the next week or two, to make another batch or two of slivo, maybe a plum tart tatin, and something from "Mrs. Wheelbarrow's Kitchen":http://www.mrswheelbarrow.com/2011/08/plum-perfect-four-or-more-preserving-projects/ (it's Cathy's slivo recipe I follow). !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/230.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/231.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/232.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Going to ScienceOnline Climate next week AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/07/2013 09:30:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Over on the ScienceOnline blog, I posted a "short podcast message":http://scienceonline.com/2013/08/06/sun-and-sea-climate-and-oceans/ about the next two ScienceOnline events: Climate next week in D.C. and Oceans in October in Miami. Kinda excited about these two conferences, and what they represent for the growth of our organization. Have you donated to the ScienceOnline "2,014/$20.14/2014":http://scienceonline.com/we-need-your-support/ campaign yet? Please do -- your support helps ScienceOnline build new activities and events to help us all be better science communicators. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Blogging tools update AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/07/2013 08:47:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Since I first posted my "list of new blogging tools":http://mistersugar.com/2013/03/10/exploring-new-blogging-tools-editors-and-trends back in March, I've been adding new items as I encounter them. I've also gotten invites to use a few of these. On Medium a couple of months back, I posted two essays. I wanted to test the export feature, and sure enough, it's easy to do. I've put my two Medium posts on my own S3 archive site: "Lucky, for dinner":http://static.storyblogging.org/medium/Lucky.html and "Bitten by the research bug":http://static.storyblogging.org/medium/Bitten.html. My Twitter archives, by the way, are also mirrored on my S3 space "here":http://static.storyblogging.org/mistersugar/index.html. I'm now using "Editorially":https://editorially.com and "Draft":https://draftin.com/. Both provide clean ways to compose and edit. I contributed to the Kickstarter campaign of "Ghost":http://tryghost.org/. An email update last night suggests we'll be able to use it in about a month. I continue to use Fargo to blog, including a few items this past weekend on our family trip to Rhode Island. One item was a response to the actor Tom Hanks, who wrote in the NYTimes about his collection of manual typewriters. See "my.storyblogging.org":http://my.storyblogging.org/. Earlier tonight, Dave Winer asked me if I use Evernote. Actually, since I started using Fargo, I haven't opened Evernote once. But I do still use "Notational Velocity":http://notational.net/ to take notes at division chiefs meetings at work. (Haven't had a chance to check out the fork of this tool, "nvALT":http://brettterpstra.com/projects/nvalt/.) Even though I previously "swore off designing the new mistersugar.com":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/15/mistersugar-needs-a-new-design myself, I have been sneaking a few minutes here and there to play with "Foundation 4":http://foundation.zurb.com/, and I might actually have a new design for this site in the coming weeks. More updates as I learn of new tools and test them. Shift: keys on old typewriter. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: There's more over in Fargo AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/23/2013 06:40:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As noted previously, I'm using the "Fargo outliner":http://fargo.io that's being developed by Dave Winer and Kyle Shank. See my writings at "my.storyblogging.org":http://my.storyblogging.org/ -- recent entries have been about tea, my five priorities and growing up on the Lincoln Highway. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Kitchen update AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/14/2013 04:03:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Here's what I've been making in the kitchen this weekend: * blueberry jam * nuoc cham (Vietnamese dipping sauce) * simple syrup with lime ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Staging a blog AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/07/2013 08:25:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: *1. Chronicles* I'm continuing my exploration of the new "Fargo outliner":http://fargo.io and Trex server, and I've started a new test blog over at "anton.smallpict.com":http://anton.smallpict.com. At first, and because I was in Cleveland at the time, I labeled that blog the Cleveland Chronicles, and I "wrote an essay":http://anton.smallpict.com/2013/06/19/makingArtMemories about visiting the Cleveland Museum of Art. I've owned clevelandchronicles.com for a long time, thinking it would be a great place for a writing project if I ever moved back to that city. It's a nice title for a publication about Cleveland, and it naturally ties in with the "Zuiker Chronicles":http://zuiker.com/about that is my family heritage. Since I'm using Fargo to blog about other items, and since I'm back home in North Carolina, I've stepped that blog away from Cleveland Chronicles. But Fargo is really a joy to tinker with, and it's quite easy to "write blog posts in an outline system":http://dave.smallpict.com/2013/06/29/howToWriteABlogPostWithFargo, and I'm about to embark on a project in Cleveland, so maybe we'll get to use that domain soon enough. *2. Fashionable* Friday was a "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com workday, but Karyn and I took a break from planning the "$20.14 from 2,014 donors before 2014":http://scienceonline.com/we-need-your-support/ campaign to get lunch and sit on the patio at Guglhupf. We were deep in conversation about the upcoming Climate and Oceans events when another friend stopped by the table. She introduced us to her colleague and lunch companion. "Anton writes the mistersugar blog," she said. I explained the "meaning of mistersugar":http://mistersugar.com/about, and listed the variety of posts that make it to this blog: science and travel and food and family. "I've blogged about a lot of things through the last 13 years," I said. "You've never blogged about fashion," my friend said. True enough -- I wouldn't know where to begin, or how to live down my many fashion mistakes over my lifetime. *3. Tattoo* My time as a Peace Corps Volunteer in the South Pacific was a defining experience, and it's given me many stories to share here in this blog and in my daily life. But, I realized sometime in the last few weeks that I'm a bit tired of talking about Vanuatu. Or, more accurately, I'm concerned that most of my writing and storytelling relies on that experience as a canvas. Yet, over the last year, I've been contemplating getting the mistersugar pig or the "tamtam illustration":http://www.mistersugar.com/2013/04/26/my-new-avatar-is-a-tamtam-from-ambrym tattooed somewhere on my arm, a mark to remember the Peace Corps experience and a prompt to tell others about what it allowed me to become. I'm at this interesting adolescence: growing out of one stage in my blogging life, maturing into another. What kind of blogger I'll become in this next, I don't know. But I'm ready. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Date nights in Carrboro, or, I slow for roadkill AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/06/2013 08:18:40 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On a date the other night, at "Glasshalfull":http://www.glasshalfullcarrboro.com/ in Carrboro -- we thought about going to the new "Steel String Craft Brewery":http://steelstringbrewery.com/ next door, but opted for wine instead -- Erin invited me to slide into the booth next to her. We sat, and talked, and drank our wine, sharing a piece of chocolate pecan pie with whipped cream. I ordered a second glass of "Badenhorst Secateurs chenin blanc":http://aabadenhorst.com/our-wines/, and felt really good. Last night was a double date, with Erin's sister Katherine and husband Tom ("she's an artist":http://doegirl.com/ and "he's manager of Marfa Public Radio":http://marfapublicradio.org/). We were back in Carrboro, enjoying the delicious North Carolina sea scallops over pureed cauliflower and shiitake mushrooms at "Acme Food & Beverage Co.":http://acmecarrboro.com/home/ and the heirloom tomatoes on mozzarella with pesto. Then, over to the "Arts Center":http://www.artscenterlive.org/ for the "10 by 10 in the Triangle":http://www.artscenterlive.org/event/performance/2397 -- 10 plays, 10 minutes, 10 actors, 10 directors. The plays were quite enjoyable. A Gun on the Table, by Margy Ragsdale, was really good: a English couple, knitting and reading the paper, discussing a revolver that has appeared on the table between them. Clever and funny, and quotable on the way home. What You Don't Know, by Mora Harris, was also good: two highway workers scraping roadkill off the road, debating the species of animal and, when they discover a tag with a phone number, what to tell the owner of the now-dead pet. A play about roadkill? Timely, I told our group. Just that day I'd seen a black vulture pecking at a possum, an orange kitten, the stripes of a hawk feathers sticking straight up, a huge snapping turtle, a deer and a few squirrels. Occasionally I see a dead fox, once I saw a beaver and recently I thought I saw a coyote withering on the side of the freeway. I slow down when passing roadkill, to identify the animal and regret the impact of cars and nature. Today, maybe the farmers market, and the swimming pool again. (Over on my Fargo test blog, I wrote about the copperhead snake that was killed near the pool last weekend: "Swimming, sharks, snakes and sea stars":http://anton.smallpict.com/clevelandChronicles/swimmingSharksSnakesAndSeaStars.) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Timeless moments AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/23/2013 10:44:34 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: There was a lull in the activity yesterday. 2 p.m.: The Shaughnessy yard was set with a large tent, tables and chairs, the beer and wine on ice, and siblings and cousins and other family yet to arrive for the late-afternoon mass and dinner to celebrate Dan and Joanne and their 50 years together. I was sitting under the tent enjoying the quiet. It was a hot day in Cleveland, with an occasional breeze, and I was mesmerized by "Transatlantic":http://colummccann.com/, the splendid new novel by Colum McCann. When the lull had given way to family embraces, champagne toasts and a long and delightful slideshow, I was telling anyone who'd listen about the book. It's so good, and I read the final pages soon after I arrived home in North Carolina after my solo 550-mile drive. I'm sitting in this silent home now. Thinking of that Cleveland yard. The family filled it yesterday. Friday, too. We had filled a yellow school bus that morning, and went on a tour of some of the places Dan and Joanne had lived (down the road) and played (at the beach), with a family photo at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame and Museum and a visit to the Cleveland Museum of Art. Once back at the house, we inhabited the yard. The adults sat in the shade and talked. We drank beer. The kids ran and played. We ate pizza and watermelon. We talked some more. I keep thinking of the photos in the food magazines I read, the photos of families in yards sharing meals and memories. Timeless photos. Timeless moments. The last few days were just that. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cherry pie, pits and all AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/17/2013 10:33:42 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: School's out in Carrboro, and Dan and Joanne Shaughnessy are about to celebrate their 50th anniversary, so the kids and I loaded up the car yesterday and headed north to Cleveland. Our first stop: "Levering Orchard":http://www.leveringorchard.com/ in Ararat, Virginia, where we climbed ladders into the cherry trees to pick sour cherries. (I'd read about this orchard in Andrea Reusing's cookbook a few weeks ago when I was preparing the "Mother's Day meal to remember":http://mistersugar.com/2013/05/12/mother-s-day-meal-to-remember, and cherry season nicely corresponded with the family vacation.) It was a humid afternoon, and there was a throng of people in the trees, but we managed to fill a bucket with about four pounds of the small cherries before Oliver was tired and the rest of us were hot and thirsty. Still, not a bad way to spend Father's Day. From Ararat, up the mountain to the Blue Ridge Parkway, then north to West Virginia to "Camp Creek State Park":http://www.campcreekstatepark.com/. We pitched the tents, got a fire going, heated the hot dogs and roasted marshmallows. Just as we assembled the s'mores, the rain started. The rain got heavier, the tents started to leak, and thunder and lightning ended our hopes of sleeping outdoors, so I gathered up the soggy tents and we drove north to Charleston and a cheap motel. In the morning, still the road north. But we were in Cleveland by 1pm, with grandma and grandpa waiting with lunch when we pulled in. Malia quickly begged grandma to show us how to make a cherry pie, so we were pitting the cherries and then Malia and Anna were learning how to roll pie crust and prepare the pie filling -- Malia thought it was funny that Joanne kept adding ingredients "not called for" in the cookbook recipe, but the extra vanilla and nutmeg would make for a tasty pie. Dinner was on the deck overlooking the Rocky River valley (Cleveland Metroparks), and then the cherry pie was before us. It was blue-ribbon quality, delicious. Just perfect, from ladder stretching to last bite. Some photos from the process: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/227.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/226.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/225.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/224.jpg! !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/223.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Farm to fork AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/09/2013 08:36:28 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: In the line at Whole Foods yesterday -- getting ingredients so Anna and Malia and I could make chocolate financiers from the Bouchon Bakery Cookbook -- I picked up issue 01 of "Modern Farmer":http://modernfarmer.com/, a new quarterly focused on agriculture. It looked both interesting and beautiful, so I bought the magazine. At home, I sat on the front porch swing with a glass of iced lemonade, enjoying the afternoon warmth (tropical-storm rains had drenched North Carolina the day before) and reading about wild pigs and hardware stores in France and mangoes in Malawi and recommendations from the "Drunken Botanist":http://drunkenbotanist.com/ on which herbs to grow for unique cocktails. There's architecture, travel, reading, fashion, and, yes, even farming in this publication -- see the "table of contents":http://modernfarmer.com/magazine/issue-01-spring-2013/. It's a lot like my favorite food magazine Saveur, but without recipes. I paid for a two-year subscription, and am looking forward to more great porch reading in the years to come. !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/222.jpg! This afternoon, I drove 16 miles up Old NC 86, through Hillsborough and out to Hurdle Mills, to park in a field and join hundreds of other foodies for the annual "Farm to Fork Picnic":http://www.farmtoforknc.com/, which I'd last attended this in 2007 ("reported in this post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4366/catch-up-blogging). It was bright and hot afternoon, and I was sweating in the Aloha shirt my dad had given me for my birthday back in April, but I made the rounds of the small tents where three dozen restaurants, each paired with a North Carolina farm, presented a delicious morsel of food. While the "Ayr Mountaineers":http://theayrmountaineers.com/ played on the stage in the big tent, I tasted "Big Spoon Roasters":http://bigspoonroasters.com/ peanut butter with sorghum molasses, and "Escazu":http://www.escazuchocolates.com/ iced chocolate following the very first published recipe from Spain, then grabbed a cup of "Fullsteam":http://www.fullsteam.ag/ Fearrington summer ale, and later a cup of "Mystery Brewing Company":http://www.mysterybrewing.com/ Queen Anne's Revenge Carolinian Dark IPA. At a tent with the new Raleigh Korean restaurant "Kimpap":http://kimbapcafe.com/ and "Lucky 3 Farm":http://www.lucky3farm.com/, I took a plate of Bo Ssam, the pulled pork in a lettuce wrap that I often "make at home":https://twitter.com/mistersugar/statuses/199269042723364864?tw_i=199269042723364864&tw_e=permalink&tw_p=archive. Kimbap's was fantastic, and I would return there for seconds. And then thirds. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/221.jpg(Bo Ssam)! Back under the big tent, remembering the "article about seed banks":http://modernfarmer.com/2013/04/the-seed-economy/ I'd read earlier in the day in Modern Farmer, I took a packet of Hopi Yellow watermelon seeds from the "NC Cooperative Extension":http://www.ces.ncsu.edu/ table. I poured a cup of ice wild bergamot tea from "Waterdog Farms":http://waterdogfarms.com/, and sat for a while in the camp chair I'd set up in the middle of the field. Now, "Michael Holland":https://www.facebook.com/pages/Michael-Holland-and-the-Occoneechee-String-Band/158235089190 was singing a cover of Louis Collins, which I thought was the version by Josh Ritter but which Holland said was by "Mississippi John Hurt":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mississippi_John_Hurt. Later, a long conversation with Bill Rice of the "Walking Fish Cooperative":http://www.walking-fish.org/ in the tent where chef "Amy Tornquist":http://sageandswift.com/amy.html had presented smoked North Carolina bluefish with dill potato salad and pickled onions. My grandfather, "Frank the Beachcomber":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html would surely have enjoyed this. He regularly fished the outer banks for the blues. I walked again tent to tent to tent, marveling at the richness of this region's farms and talents of our chefs. I'll be back next year, with my family along for the experience. *Notes* I used the new "Vesper":http://vesperapp.co/ app to take notes during my tasting. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Where's Miracle Max when I need him? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/09/2013 10:23:27 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Another midnight migraine snuck up on me, waking me in the early hours with a crushing headache. I crept downstairs to pop 600mg of ibuprofen, an effort too late, so chills and sweats and then violent vomiting. All Erin could do was leave me sleeping on the cold bathroom floor. Eventually, I crawled into the bedroom for the comfort of the carpet floor. Oliver was in the room, and he must have seen me. I heard him asking Erin about the shape on the floor. "Is he deyad?" "No, he's not dead." "Mom, is he deyad? "No, he's not dead." I mustered some energy. "Erin, he's saying 'dad.'" This morning at the family breakfast -- Erin baked Pillsbury biscuits and filled them with eggs and cheese -- we had a laugh about the sleepy exchange. "I sure felt like I was dying," I said. Erin replied, "I should have said, "He's "only mostly dead":http://princessbrideforever.com/." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: When a tornado rolls over AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/02/2013 06:41:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Lots of news about tornadoes the past couple of weeks, with Oklahoma particularly getting hammered by deadly storms, including an "EF5 twister that killed 23 people":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2013_Moore_tornado. Today we learned that an experienced "father-son stormchaser team lost their lives":http://www.thedenverchannel.com/news/local-news/colorado-storm-chaser-tim-samaras-killed-in-oklahoma-tornado-along-with-son-longtime-partner in a tornado they were following, also in Oklahoma. There's been some amazing video from stormchasers, like this one of a team in their tornado intercept vehicle, which was hit by the wedge tornado they were following in Kansas: Watching that gave me eerie memories of the time I was in a vehicle stopped on an Illinois country road as darkness enveloped the car and the sound went wild. I wrote about that in my post, "Science of observation":http://www.mistersugar.com/article/3995/science-of-observation bq. Once we could drive again, we made our way home to DeKalb, listening to the radio as we went. A news bulletin announced two tornado touchdowns – one to the west of where we been stopped, another to the east. It seemed as if a twister had skipped right over us. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: VUR and us AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/02/2013 06:20:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In 2004, "when Malia was just 8 months old":http://mistersugar.com/2004/09/08/daughter, we thought for a day that she had maple syrup urine disease, but a visit to the doctor instead uncovered a urinary tract infection and "vesicoureteral reflux":http://kidney.niddk.nih.gov/kudiseases/pubs/vesicoureteralreflux/ (VUR). With regular antibiotics, she grew out of this over the next couple of years. Last week, in a conversation with one of the "kidney docs at Duke":http://nephrology.medicine.duke.edu/, I learned of a new article about the discovery of a gene associated with VUR -- "TNXB Mutations Can Cause Vesicoureteral Reflux":http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/?term=PMID%3A+23620400. Like my observation about being part of scientific research ("Bitten by the research bug":http://mistersugar.com/2013/05/01/an-essay-about-dengue-research), this has given our family an exciting connection to science. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Gift from Alaska AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/02/2013 05:09:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My friend and colleague, "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com, took a break from her ScienceOnline duties to take a trip and cruise to Alaska last month. She wrote me a nice note from the ship, posted amazing photos to her "Google Plus profile":https://plus.google.com/116780922551677170912/posts, and brought me back a signed cookbook from the chef at the "lodge":http://withinthewild.com/ where she stayed. In the Winterlake Lodge Cookbook, this recipe sure looks good: sweet potato cinnamon rolls. Perhaps I'll make these soon and deliver them to Karyn (and her husband, Mark) to thank her for being so thoughtful and generous. She's a true friend. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Weekend report: Mango marathon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/02/2013 03:58:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Friday night, after Erin and the girls had watched another episode of "Family Ties":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0083413/ -- Anna and her friends have discovered the 80s sitcom, and Erin has nostalgically encouraged their continuous viewing -- and were asleep, Erin and I snuggled together to watch "Side Effects":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt2053463/. That was a enjoyable thriller about psychiatry, pharmaceutical marketing and, ultimately, murder. My "spring-cleaning new healthy lifestyle":http://mistersugar.com/2013/05/26/talking-story-about-old-photos inspired me to text my father and brothers that night, suggesting we meet up in Honolulu this December to run the "Honolulu Marathon":http://www.honolulumarathon.org/. It will be 20 years since dad, Nick and I ran that together (read my Cleveland Plain Dealer essay, "A Son Recalls the Run of His Life":http://www.mistersugar.com/index.php?id=729). The registration fee is $165 per person. I think it was under $20 when I signed up in 1993 as a "kama'aina":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kama'aina. Saturday morning, Anna was sleeping in (has strep throat), so Malia and Oliver and I set out to pick strawberries at "Waller Family Farm":http://www.wallerfamilyfarm.com/ in Durham County, but the patch was closed for lack of berries. No worries, I steered the car to the festive "Durham Farmers Market":http://www.durhamfarmersmarket.com/ at the aptly named "Central Park":http://www.durhamcentralpark.org/, where there were berries and cinnamon rolls and food trucks and artists and a guy playing an upright piano on wheels: Back home, I made a batch of strawberry jam.

My wife may be the primary breadwinner in our family, but I’m the strawberry jam maker. PB&J wouldn’t be the same. #partnership

— Anton Zuiker (@mistersugar) June 1, 2013
Then, Malia and I loaded the old lawn mower into the back of the van, and drove it to the hardware store in Durham, where we left it for repair. We walked across the parking lot to the "Around the World Market":http://www.aroundtheworldnc.com/durhamlocation.htm that sells a large variety of Indian and other Asian foods. We got a bag of basmati rice, a carton of Lipton Darjeeling tea (in the green box, loose leaf; I use it to "make chai":http://mistersugar.com/2006/07/17/chai-high) and a box of Marathon Ataulfo mangos, 18 for $12.99. I just ate one, and it was delicious! Back home, I crashed on the couch, and slept for a couple of hours. Later, a sitter came to watch the kids, and Erin and I went to dinner at "Acme Food & Beverage Co.":http://acmecarrboro.com/home/ in Carrboro (our fair town), where we sat on the outdoor patio beneath a delicate magnolia tree and enjoyed a delicious meal of chile relleno filled with shrimp and rice, and North Carolina sea scallops over pureed cauliflower and shiitake mushrooms and a flavorful broth. I drank the pilsner from "Foothills Brewing":http://www.foothillsbrewing.com/index.html in Winston-Salem, passing on the beer from the brand-new "Steel String Brewery":http://steelstringbrewery.com/ nearby. From Acme, we walked to the Carrboro Arts Center for the season finale of "The Monti":http://themonti.org. Our friend, Carter Kersh, told a killer of a story to end the show and the season. Jeff Polish introduced him with a reference to Carter's performance at "Talk Story":http://talk.storyblogging.org/listenToStories last July. In a few weeks, when Jeff has posted Carter's story to his podcast, I'll be sure to point to it -- although you should be listening to the "Monti podcast":http://www.themonti.org/podcast/ every week anyway. This morning, Oliver awake at 5:30, back downstairs, joined by Malia. I made another batch of strawberry jam, and peeled a mango for us. We're planning a road trip to Cleveland soon to celebrate the golden anniversary of Erin's parents, and along the way we're going to pick cherries at "Levering Orchard":http://www.leveringorchard.com/tartcherries.aspx in Virginia and camp in "Camp Creek State Park":http://www.campcreekstatepark.com/ in West Virginia. Malia and Oliver wanted to test the tents, so we pitched them in the back yard. While they lolled inside the tents, I sat on the back porch and read "Colum McCann’s Radical Empathy":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/02/magazine/colum-mccanns-radical-empathy.html, about my favorite author and his new book, "Transatlantic":http://colummccann.com/, which comes out Tuesday. Elsewhere in the NYTimes Magazine, the "Eat column by Sam Sifton":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/06/02/magazine/team-taco.html is about the family meal, which in many restaurants is the meal that staff share before service begins. It's a nice look at the important tradition, and there's tasty recipe for fish tacos to go along. And now, we're just back from the swimming pool, where I swam laps and Erin read The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver and the children played. I hear the voice of Alex P. Keaton upstairs, and Erin on the phone outside. It's been a good weekend. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: An ecology poem by Anna AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/02/2013 07:05:27 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: _My daughter, Anna, had a middle school science-class assignment to reflect the vocabulary of a lesson on ecology. She wrote the following poem, and agreed to let me share it here._ *There is ecology in my back yard!* There was once a world far, far away a world that we now live in today It had all these wonderful things that made the world that we know so sit back, relax and let it go It had things like an Ecosystem that were out our door and animals in their Habitats galore, it had Carnivores, Herbivores, Omnivores and more and animals that soar and soar Things like Abiotic factors, Biotic factors, and trees That were outside trying to say pretty please Coniferous trees were out in my yard And Detrivores were breaking down a card When winter finally came, Deciduous trees had No more leaves on them And birds went off away to try and save the day When all the Community had come back to stay The Population wanted to play And so then the animals were gone Because of the Extinction song The animals had come back home To stay and see the Biomes dome and watch the Consumers dig deep in the ground until they didn’t make a sound Many Organisms had come to produce The things that now had gotten loose And see the Photosynthesis grow Into an area where it can flow When I went outside to water plants, I saw some Decomposers, which were ants that were feeding on food on the ground and a Producer was going round and round The radio had been saying that the Endangered Species were swaying And the Food web that was usually named Ted The Species had been breeding and Nibbling on many seedlings to get ready for the long winter 
and go simmer When I went back to school the next day, I first went to the Energy Pyramid to play and then go see how much the Food Chain had gained and that is how Ecology got to be, The story that we now can see and please! -- Anna Zuiker, May 2013 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: This weekend, I read The Great Gatsby AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/26/2013 11:10:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In between gardening and cooking and a dinner party and our first trip of the season to the swimming pool, I read "The Great Gatsby":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Gatsby. It was my first time reading the novel (in my high school English classes, I got to design my own reading list, and chose other books, by Hesse, Malamud and others). Now I can go see "the movie":http://thegreatgatsby.warnerbros.com/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Talking story about old photos AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/26/2013 10:58:02 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A few weeks ago, The Story featured a fascinating "interview with Charlie Haughey":http://www.thestory.org/stories/2013-04/soldiers-eye-rediscovered-photos-vietnam, who had been an Army photographer in the Vietnam War. Dick Gordon talked with him about the 2000 photo negatives that Haughey stored away for 45 years before a friend helped him digitize the images. "When we got to 1726 photographs, I took them home, put them in my computer and put them on a 2-second delay and watched them all. And I literally didn't sleep for three days," said Haughey. Most of the images he was seeing for the first time since he'd taken the photos of his fellow soldiers. Haughey had shown a couple hundred of his images to a room full of professional photographers in Portland. They were struck by the photos, and his stories of who the soldiers were, what they were doing and what had become of them. They volunteered to help him exhibit his images. It's a really good interview, worth the 37 minutes to listen. As I listened to the interview that night in April (I was doing the dishes, but remembering my college hands in the darkroom fixer, watching an image set on the paper), I thought about my grandfather's photos, "black-and-white images of family and hunting trips and road travel across the United States":http://www.zuiker.com/FZphotos/enterzuiker.htm, which my cousin, "Jeff Nolan":http://www.nolancollaborative.com/, scanned for the launch of Zuiker Chronicles Online in July 2000. But I also thought about my "Talk Story":http://show.storyblogging.org narrative variety show. I started that about a year ago, and one of my goals of that was to invite friends on stage to tell stories about their photos: "Karyn Traphagen":http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/07/12/2195115/wheeler-spoken-word-handwritten.html, David Thomas and Mary Driebeek were some who shared images and memories. Listening to the Haughey interview, I wondered what it would be like to ask people in the community to dig into their photo albums and boxes of slides, to find an image 25 or 40 or 50 years old, one that brought back memories and stories, and to share that with the rest of us. Could make for a really good show. I was starting to plan the next Talk Story shows, for July and September, and figure out how to make that photos-of-your-past program happen. But, all the spring cleaning at home, and new discipline in my lifestyle (more rest, regular exercise and healthier diet), has me looking for ways to be more effective in my work and responsibilities. So, I'm going to scrap Talk Story. It's a good idea, and it has been a good way for me to explore "narrative in my 40s":http://mistersugar.com/2012/05/28/talk-story-reviewing-my-decade-of-narrative-so-far-and-whats-next, but I need to focus on other things. Besides, I've learned that it takes skill, hard work and lots of practice to tell good stories and help others tell theirs. I can't give Talk Story all it needs because my family, ScienceOnline, and others need my attention. That's not to say I'm giving up on storytelling. At work, I'm beginning to plan out the "Voices of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/voices-of-medicine-stories/ initiative (more about that collaboration, with Jeff Polish, soon), and I continue to attend "The Monti":http://themonti.org and listen to "The Story Collider":http://storycollider.org/ and other story podcasts. I also may dig into my own and my family's image archives to see what stories are there. I tried once to start a "Sunday evening photoblogging":http://mistersugar.com/2007/05/29/a-hockey-legacy routine. Maybe I'll start that up again. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Next in the ScienceOnline lineup: Climate, Oceans, Together, and maybe food AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/22/2013 09:52:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: UPDATE: Bora's posted a more-thorough "roundup of all the activity in the ScienceOnline community":http://scienceonline.com/2013/05/27/1392/. Registration for "ScienceOnline Oceans":http://oceans.scienceonline.com/, a three-day event in Miami in October, is close to full. It's going to be a really good event focused on ocean science and conservation, and ways to use online communications. There's still time to register -- "start here":https://scienceonline.wufoo.com/forms/x7p3x3/. And, just announced this week but happening before the Oceans event: "ScienceOnline Climate":http://climate.scienceonline.com/. This will be a two-day event in Washington, D.C. in August to explore the intersection of climate science, communication, and the web. Like the "ScienceOnline TEEN":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonlineteen-2/ event last month, these events are the ideas of members of the ScienceOnline community. Awesome! !http://scienceonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/test_logo_06.jpg!:http://scienceonline.com While you're at it, mark your calendars for the big one, our annual winter gathering here in North Carolina. We've renamed it "ScienceOnline Together":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline-together-save-the-date-for-2014/, and it will take place February 26 through March 1, 2014 in Raleigh. I've also been having conversations with various friends and contacts about a ScienceOnline event focused on food -- food science, nutrition, sustainable agriculture, food writing or something in between. Contact me if you want to get involved or have ideas for what would make this a fun -- and tasty -- event. Pretty exciting, all this. But we need to raise some funds to make sure we can make these events happen, and happen well. Please help by making a donation to our "$20.14 from 2,014 donors by the start of 2014":http://scienceonline.com/2013/04/25/we-need-your-support/ campaign. Oh, and on the ScienceOnline blog, I've asked for your stories about the impact our community has had on your life and/or career. "Please share your story with us.":http://scienceonline.com/2013/05/18/your-story-please-how-has-scienceonline-made-a-difference/ Also, the winners of the first "ScienceSeeker Awards":http://blog.scienceseeker.org/announcing-the-winners-of-the-science-seeker-awards/ have been announced! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Idaho memories AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/22/2013 08:58:37 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last week, I was back at "Cat's Cradle":http://www.catscradle.com/ to hear "Josh Ritter":http://www.joshritter.com/ again (my fourth time catching him in concert). Ritter is from Moscow, Idaho, and hearing him croon always makes me think back to my childhood in Idaho. This time, I was remembering the summer I went with my baseball team to Ketchum, where we played in a tournament and slept in our tents in an open field between the mountains and moon. Ketchum is where "Ernest Hemingway ended his life":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hemingway#Idaho_and_suicide. I think I may have known that at the time. I was just 12 years old, and hadn't yet read any Hemingway, but I knew that I wasn't going to ever play pro ball so mine would be a writing life. That's why I can't remember anything about the tournament that weekend, but I do recall the moonlight that illuminated my tent in that grassy field. Another Idaho memory came this week. This time, I was up in a tree. In the grocery store a few days ago, I had picked up half a dozen apricots, and I ate them as they ripened. Each juicy bite had me remembering the apricot tree in front of Lincoln Elementary School in Caldwell, Idaho. I could run over there while my father was playing soccer on the fields across the street, and I'd search the ground for ripe apricots that had just fallen. Some Saturdays, when I'd ridden my bike to the public library nearby, I'd pedal by the school and climb up, reach out, grab a fuzzy orange fruit. Josh Ritter's new album, The Beast in its Tracks, is about a broken marriage and a new love. I've listened to it over and over and over. It's good. There's a song on the album titled A Certain Light, and it brings back those memories of Idaho, of silver moonlight and orange apricots. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Handshake from a master chef AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/17/2013 10:26:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Readings ----- BODY: This afternoon, driving south through Chapel Hill and down 15/501 toward Pittsboro, I was remembering when *Michael Ruhlman* was here in the Triangle in November 2011, promoting his book Ruhlman's Twenty and telling a story at "The Monti":http://themonti.org. In his story (he mentions it in "Book Tour Blessings":http://ruhlman.com/2011/11/book-tour-blessing/) he told about learning to kill a rabbit from "Thomas Keller":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thomas_Keller, chef at The French Laundry, one of the best restaurants on this planet. I'd already been in awe of Chef Keller since reading about him in Michael's The Soul of a Chef, but after hearing Michael tell the rabbit story that night, I figured there was no way I'd ever have a chance to meet such a star. And besides, I thought, he's a chef, and surely he must safeguard his hands, so how could I ever shake his hand? ("I like to shake hands.":http://mistersugar.com/2012/02/18/i-want-to-hold-your-hand) But this afternoon, after standing in line for an hour and a half in the warm but shady beer garden at Fearrington Village waiting to get the sumptuous "Bouchon Bakery":http://bouchonbakery.com/book book signed, I was finally face to face with Chef Keller, and I was stunned when he reached across the table and warmly took my hand. His hand seemed large, and padded, and so gentle. I can't say it was a shake, because I had the sensation he was holding my hand -- maybe because I'd just told the "Talk Story":http://show.storyblogging.org crowd on Wednesday about how Noel would hold my hand as we walked up the road to the Lironessa co-op ("From There to Here":http://mistersugar.com/2000/03/01/from-there-to-here). Then Chef Keller was signing the book to the Zuiker Family, and pushing it over to co-author Sebastien Rouxel (he's executive pastry chef for Keller's restaurant empire). When I mentioned that Michael was a friend, and he is continuously inspiring me, Chef Keller reached out and shook my hand a second time. Michael had actually alerted him that I might be stopping by, and he relayed an endearing message that truly humbled me. I started to chat with Chef Rouxel, and my buddy Bora walked up (he'd just "tweeted a picture of a goat":https://twitter.com/BoraZ/status/335492745982529536 to show me he was walking from his home nearby to meet up with me) and suddenly I was seated between the chefs and Bora was snapping a photo. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/219.jpg! And then Chef Keller took my hand a third time, saying, "It's really nice to meet you." I walked away, happily holding the heavy, expensive cookbook, and I was thinking back to Michael's story about the rabbits, about how Chef Keller shows enormous respect to the animals and ingredients and elements that go into his cooking. His handshakes seemed to impart that same respect to me today. What a heavenly day in the garden. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Someday, the BlogTogether Awards AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/14/2013 08:13:53 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Bothered by a sore back from touching up the paint on the house over the weekend, and crushed by all the projects and work tasks I'm juggling, I went to bed a bit early, thinking I'd get a good night of sleep. I set the alarm for 5:30 a.m., and planned to spend an hour writing and sipping tea before the family's morning routine kicked in. But sometime during the night, Oliver had crawled into the bed between me and Erin. He tossed and turned and kicked me in the face. I should move him back to his bed, I thought, but didn't. When the alarm sounded, I rolled out of bed, not as rested as I wanted to be. A hot cup of tea got me going, but no writing. Still, faced with the stresses of deadlines and responsibilities, what did I focus on? Another idea. 'I wonder how I can get the *BlogTogether Awards* finally going,' I thought. I've long wanted to grow the community service award -- I "gave it to David Kroll in 2011":http://mistersugar.com/2011/02/28/the-week-in-review-brothers-bon-jovi-peace-corps, and he gave it to Karyn Traphagen in 2012 -- into a set of awards that we would give to others across the country who have bootstrapped communities, facilitated conversations and promoted the "golden rule ('blog about others as you would have others blog about you')":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation and the "four Cs of inspiration":http://mistersugar.com/2012/05/01/the-four-cs-of-inspiration-overlapping-networks-of-scienceonline. The day is rolling along. Just wanted to get that idea onto the blog. One of these days, maybe with a full night of sleep, I'll wake up and make this idea happen. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Mother's Day meal to remember AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/12/2013 04:57:30 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Meals CATEGORY: Special days ----- BODY: Not yet 5 p.m. as I begin to write this on Mother's Day 2013, and we've just finished a most delicious dinner to honor Erin. "A lovely meal," she said, finishing the last of the molten chocolate cake that I'd drizzled with the "homemade grenadine":http://mistersugar.com/2013/05/12/memories-of-molasses and topped with sliced strawberries that Oliver and I had picked after work on Friday. Earlier, we'd sent Erin away for a massage and time to shop on her own. While Oliver and Malia watched a show, and Anna rested (she was away all yesterday on a band trip to Carowinds amusement park), I sat on the back porch drinking tea and reading the delightful "Cooking in the Moment":http://www.andreareusing.com/, by "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com/ chef *Andrea Reusing*. (Andrea, an award-winning chef, had crafted a "most memorable evening":http://mistersugar.com/2011/11/06/still-savoring-the-lantern-dinner-with-andrea-reusing-and-michael-ruhlman for our Long Table dinner with "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com in November 2011.) Cooking in the Moment is filled with really nice essays on food and farmers and friends and family. I especially like the way she writes about involving her daughter and other children in the process of gathering produce and cooking and eating. As it happened, one of the reasons we'd sent Erin away was because Anna and Malia, my daughters, were going to cook with me today, following Mark Bittman's "Operation: Mother's Day":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/05/magazine/operation-mothers-day.html. Before we set to doing that, though, I followed an inspiration from Andrea and made ginger syrup. When Erin got home, I handed her a cocktail with muddled strawberries (the same fresh batch picked by Oliver), lime juice, vodka and the ginger syrup. "Oh, this is good," she said after the first sip. Soon after, we were seated around the dining room table, marveling at the deliciousness of the roasted-beet salad with goat cheese (beets and "chevre":http://www.celebritydairy.com/dairy/dairy_cheese.html purchased yesterday at the "Carrboro Farmers Market":http://www.carrborofarmersmarket.com/, and lettuce picked from our backyard garden boxes this afternoon), the braised chicken with tomatoes, olives and capers, and that molten chocolate cake (made in ramekins borrowed from a neighbor in exchange for a jar of the ginger syrup). There wasn't a single complaint from the kids. Indeed, Anna and Malia both said that each dish was tasty. I'm sure that having helped over the course of a few hours to prepare and plate this meal, they appreciated the good food in front of them. Anna and I had learned how to separate a whole chicken into eight pieces, Malia learned how to melt bittersweet chocolate into melted butter, and together we practiced separating egg yolks from their whites. For a while, at least, we also followed the 'clean as you cook' rule to keep the kitchen tidy. A quick glance over at the counter now tells me we have room to improve. Still, a fantastic cooking experience today. So, thank you, Anna and Malia, for working beside me in the kitchen, and a hearty thanks to Mark Bittman and Andrea Reusing for their inspiration and guidance. And, thank you, Erin, for being the amazing, beautiful, loving, patient and generous mother to our children. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Memories of molasses AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/12/2013 12:18:19 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: us-virgin-islands ----- BODY: For his usual Friday cocktail blogging, *Michael Ruhlman* went with another drink that uses grenadine. This one also uses key lime, gin and applejack brandy. He's calling it the "Key Sunrise":http://ruhlman.com/2013/05/friday-cocktail-hour-key-sunrise/ and in his recipe, he was nice enough to suggest using "Mister Sugar pomegranate syrup or other quality grenadine." He links over to my 2008 post, "In the mix":http://mistersugar.com/2008/12/14/in-the-mix, which I'd recently updated to include a howto paragraph about making the pomegranate syrup. And, the accompanying, awesome, photo by Donna Ruhlman features the bottle of grenadine I gave them at Christmas. In an email exchange with Michael, I explained that I use the grenadine along with Cruzan rum to make the sunburned rum runners mentioned in that earlier post. As soon as I typed that to Michael, I was recalling the smell of molasses. When I was 13 years old, I lived on the island of St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands. For the first few months there, we lived in Frederiksted, and to get to school each morning, we had to drive by a place where the "Cruzan Rum":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cruzan_Rum distillery processed molasses. The pungent smell lingered in our car. When I visited the historic "Annaberg Plantation":http://www.vinow.com/stjohn/nationalpark/annaberg_plantation.php on St. John later that year, I was sure I could smell molasses in the old sugar mill ruins. In the St. Croix airport, in the corner of the arrivals terminal, Cruzan Rum kept a welcoming pitcher of rum punch. I recall walking up to the stand with my visiting grandfather (Frank the Beachcomber) and watching him enjoy a small cup. Soon after I moved to North Carolina, I discovered that the ABC stores stock Cruzan Rum, and I always have a bottle on hand. Sometimes, I pay extra for the older single-barrel rum. I sip that neat, or with an ice cube. And when the bottle is getting low, I get a few vanilla beans, slit them, put them into a jar and cover them with the remaining rum. Four months later, I have vanilla extract, and when I use it for baking, I smell the vanilla and the rum, and I remember the smells of molasses and the Caribbean. I'm surprised I never blogged about this, but I did find this definitive tweet:

Tonight, pomegranate seeds in sugar. Tomorrow, homemade grenadine syrup. Friday night, rumrunners with grenadine and Cruzan rum.

— Anton Zuiker (@mistersugar) November 7, 2007
----- ----- -------- TITLE: What's paper got to do with Blogging 2.0? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/11/2013 11:24:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: Readings ----- BODY: Erin and I and the children have embarked on an ambitious spring cleaning of our home, and I've spent many hours sifting through sheafs of papers -- so many old bank statements and school notes and holiday cards and junk mail has accumulated, in file cabinets and boxes and piles on the floor. Feels good to discard all that crap, and the house is looking really good. I joked at one point that I'd love to have an airlock at the front door that incinerated any papers before they could enter -- and clutter -- the house. But, amidst all the worthless paper, I've found a lot of my writings and other documents worth saving. One stapled set of papers was an "article about influenza":http://mistersugar.com/2000/12/01/ready-for-the-flu that I had written for Cleveland Magazine. I'd forgotten all about that. Another paper was a draft of an essay I'd written about the television show Survivor Vanuatu. I scanned the essay, but couldn't recall where I'd published or posted it. A couple of days later, I got a cryptic email message from a Duke colleague, saying he now understood my connection to the city of Durham. He directed me to the Independent newsweekly, where I found that editor Lisa Sorg had written a fun "Illustrated Encyclopedia of Durham":http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/the-illustrated-encyclopedia-of-durham/Content?oid=3634512. For Z, she'd selected me to bring up the end of the alphabet. bq. If you follow Anton on Twitter (@mistersugar) or his blog (mistersugar.com), he'll fill your head with lots of scientific esoterica and random thoughts that add up to ... something. Zuiker (it means "sugar" in Dutch) co-founded the annual ScienceOnline Together conference. He also hosts Talk Story, a live storytelling performance similar to The Monti. Thanks, Lisa! While I was at the Indy's site, I searched for a couple of other times that I've been in the paper, and that's how I found that my "Survivor Vanuatu essay":http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/what-vanuatu-taught-us-about-surviving/Content?oid=1193817 had run there in December 2004. I have other essays and newspaper clips, as well as college term papers and poems written when I was in Hawaii, spread across boxes and binders and folders. For the longest time, my high school papers were in the attic in two yellow cardboard banana boxes that I'd gotten from the supermarket behind my house in DeKalb, Illinois. In the closet, a big plastic bin contains most of the letters that Erin and I wrote and received when we were Peace Corps volunteers in Vanuatu. And, this blog has 13 years of my thoughts and observations. What does it all add up to? I'm not sure, but a couple of months ago I "started to ponder if a redesign of this site":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/15/mistersugar-needs-a-new-design might help us all find out. Meanwhile, I'm actively using the new "Fargo outliner":http://fargo.io, and so I'm watching with interest as Dave Winer explores "Blogging 2.0":http://threads2.scripting.com/2013/may/aRenaissanceInBlogging. I imagine he and Kyle Shank will develop something important. In fact, I used Fargo this week to keep track of the news items and memories and observations that I wanted to write here on my blog. The previous, and coming, entries are some of those items. (I didn't use the "Fargo-to-Wordpress":http://smallpicture.com/fargoDocs.html#wordpress functionality because this blog uses Textpattern, but I think there's a way for me to connect it soon.) Out shopping this morning for the "Mother's Day meal":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/05/05/magazine/operation-mothers-day.html the kids and I will cook tomorrow, I picked up five more copies of the Independent. For my archives. And that's how my house gets filled with paper. But it gave me something to blog about. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Remembering a college class on terrorism AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/11/2013 10:04:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Another news report I heard this week on WUNC was that "Campbell University now has a Homeland Security degree":http://wunc.org/post/campbell-university-offer-homeland-security-degree to teach students about "domestic and international terrorist groups and delve into the background of countries where terror organizations have historically formed." More than 20 years ago, I took a class at "John Carroll University":http://sites.jcu.edu/ about the psychology of terrorism. "Thomas Evans":http://sites.jcu.edu/psychology/professor/thomas-evans-ph-d/, who had profiled terrorist groups for the CIA, taught us about the various groups and individuals -- Carlos the Jackal, Hezbollah, Osama bin Laden, Red Brigades, and others -- who were behind bombings and hijackings and killings around the world. Professor Evans is still teaching at Carroll. I'm sure his terrorism classes are as interesting, and timely, as ever. The class I took with Evans was taught in the Bohannon Science Center, an ugly building that was replaced by a parking lot when the new Dolan Science Center was built. I wrote about that in my "Northern Ohio Live innovations column":http://mistersugar.com/2002/03/01/let-there-be-light. I also "blogged about the seismograph":http://mistersugar.com/2010/02/11/earthquake-relief that was in the Bohannon foyer, the machine of one of the Jesuit priests who was an earthquake expert. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Captive no more AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/11/2013 06:55:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: Cleveland was in the news this week, with the dramatic discovery that three young women had been held in captivity for nearly 10 years. Here in our home in North Carolina, we've talked about that around our dinner table, reinforcing messages of safety and trust and how to respond in moments of danger. We've also talked about punishment. On the radio, we heard that Cuyahoga County Prosecutor "Timothy McGinty":http://prosecutor.cuyahogacounty.us/AboutProsecutor.aspx is considering the death penalty for the perpetrator of these crimes. I was thinking about McGinty recently. Back in 2000, I helped him edit an article that he submitted to a law journal. I used the money from that to buy a computer (made by Pony Computer, where I was working at the time on the PlanetKnowHow startup). I wrote the first few years of this blog on that computer, and I rebuilt it a few times with updated software, new hard drives and even a new motherboard and chipset. But it's been sitting in a box in the closet for quite a while now, so I took out the hard drive and prepared it for donation. The box has been bumping around in the back of the van, and this week I'll drop it off to to the "United Way of the Greater Triangle":http://www.unitedwaytriangle.org/t4t/donate2.php. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: An essay about dengue research AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/30/2013 11:58:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Over at Medium, I've posted an essay about having dengue fever and what I realized last week about my role in research. Have a read: "Bitten by the research bug":https://medium.com/what-i-learned-today/6ae4f590174f ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It grows in a Petri dish AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/30/2013 08:15:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Most days, after I get home from work and prepare dinner for the family or clean the kitchen, then go through the bedtime routines with the children, I sit down to the glass desk in our front office at about this time (8:17 p.m. as I write this). I go through the day's snail mail, paying the bills and tossing the crap that the banks relentlessly send, and clean a space on the desk for my laptop. But before I open that, log on and spend the next few hours reading and writing and surfing the web, I pick up this amazing gift that "Josh Witten":http://thefinchandpea.com/more-about-josh/ gave me at ScienceOnline2013 back in January: Petri dish Josh gave me that glass dish -- it's a work of art by science artist Michele Banks ("@artologica":https://twitter.com/artologica) -- to thank me for helping bootstrap the "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com community that inspired him to build his science blog into a mini network. Check it out: "The Finch and Pea":http://thefinchandpea.com/. I was stunned when Josh handed this to me. I've never had my own "Petri dish":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Petri_dish, and I love to pick it up and gently cradle it. What a thoughtful and creative and memorable gift. Some nights, I also make a pot of tea, often from a bag of green tea that "Adrienne Roehrich":http://about.me/aroehrich gave me at #scio13. And there were others who bestowed kindnesses on me at the conference: "Michael Lombardi":http://about.me/MichaelVLombardi gave me chocolate, "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com a nice bottle of wine, "Marianne Alleyne":https://twitter.com/Cotesia1 brought roasted breadfruit all the way from Jamaica, "Rachel Feltman":http://www.rachelfeltman.com/ found my favorite pens in NYC and brought them to me, and "Mindy Weisberger":https://twitter.com/laminda made a darling mini scio13 sweater, which Anna and Oliver used to dress a Barbie one day. Another ScienceOnline2013 watch party I mentioned some of these kindnesses (and there were so many more, from kind words to warm embraces to hearty handshakes and countless smiles of attendees enjoying the event) in my remarks at ScienceOnline2013: And, even now, months after the conference, I find threads back to that event. This community. These friends. Which leads me to think that this ScienceOnline Petri dish is an apt metaphor for what, together, we have cultivated over the years. Brilliant, Josh, brilliant. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A doctor's heart beats AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/29/2013 10:18:01 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: h2. What happens when the most confident and capable man you know finds out his heart is about to burst? _In the greater Cleveland area, my brother-in-law, "Michael Shaughnessy, MD":http://www.uhhospitals.org/find-a-doctor/shaughnessy-michael-9251, is the go-to eye doctor if you need cataracts removed, especially for patients with difficult cases. Once, he let me sit beside him and peer into a microscope as he carefully cut into a patient’s eyeball, take out the diseased cataract, and replace it with a synthetic lens. While Mike’s hands were steady and precise, inside him parts of his heart were slowly disintegrating. In late 2011, he learned just how dire his condition was._ _Just before Mike went under the surgeon’s knife himself, I helped him start a blog at "ShaughnessyMD.com":http://shaughnessymd.com. We thought it might be a good outlet for him to chronicle his recovery from open-heart surgery. It’s been more than a year since then, and Mike is back to operating on 13 patients a day, and running and living life to the fullest._ _I asked Mike to answer some questions about his experience as a heart patient and new blogger._ *Michael, I've admired you since I first met you (when I was dating your little sister), and it's an honor to introduce you to the readers of my blog. Will you please tell us about your career path. How did you get to where you are now, a highly regarded ophthalmologist with a specialty in cataract surgery? What's happening in your field that the rest of us should know about?* !>.http://mistersugar.com/images/218t.jpg!:http://mistersugar.com/images/218.jpg Thank you for the kind words. I have had a less than the “straight arrow” path to where I am now, but it has been well worth the sidetracks. From very early in my life, I think around sixth grade, I had envisioned myself in the medical field. My grandfather was the old-school family practice doctor. He made house calls, did surgery, delivered babies, and treated a lot of kids in the neighborhood. He was an inspiration to me. When he died, while I was in eighth grade, he left his doctor’s bag for me. Later on, my grandmother passed on his microscope as well. I started high school focused on science disciplines. I had always been pulled that way. I took all the right courses and received all the right grades. I started college at Miami University as a Microbiology major. Most Pre-med students took the path of biology, or zoology, a more direct route for the medical school admissions teams. Microbiology was a new major with exciting opportunities in molecular genetics. It allowed me a summer internship in San Diego performing genetic research for a private firm. I applied to medical school in the 1989-90 school year. It was one of the nations highest applicant years ever. After several interviews, I wasn’t accepted. Many of my friends who also suffered the same fate turned their attention to other career paths. I applied to the National Institutes of Health in Washington and got a job as a molecular biologist at the National Eye Institute. After two years of research and several papers, I reapplied to medical school, had a lot of interviews and was accepted to The Medical College of Ohio. I was considering ophthalmology, but during first year I got more focused on pediatric surgery. I was president of our pediatrics club and thought that was the direction I would go. I received excellent recommendations from some of my surgery mentors. And then I did my Ophthalmology rotation beginning of 4th year. I realized quickly that this was the career for me. It offered high-tech surgery, patient care, difficult problem solving and a fairly normal lifestyle. Patients were routinely happy after your interventions, whether it be new glasses or new vision following cataract surgery. I was hooked. I focused on getting into a good Ophthalmology residency program and started at Case Western Reserve University. I went on to complete my fellowship in Cornea, External Disease, and Refractive Surgery at the University of Texas. I started my private practice back in Cleveland in 2002 at University Ophthalmology Associates, where I remain today. I couldn’t be more happy taking care of patients and applying my skills and knowledge for the people of Cleveland. I perform about 1000 surgeries a year, mostly cataract surgery. It is an exciting time for patients with cataracts. It is one of the most common and most successful procedures performed on the human body. People can realize improvements in their vision, often better than they’ve had their entire life. If anyone has been diagnosed and is contemplating the necessity of cataract surgery, be sure to visit an ophthalmologist experienced in all the latest technological advancements in our field. *How did you learn about your heart condition and the need for a surgical intervention? How did you choose a surgeon and then figure out the best approach to fixing your condition?* When I was a first-year medical student, I was in my cardiology class listening to my heart. We were all new at this part of the physical exam. My heartbeat had a strange flutter at the end of the beat, very loud. I was diagnosing my heart murmur. I had the professor teaching the course listen to me that day. We got an echocardiogram the next morning, and I learned that I had a bicuspid aortic valve. A call to my mom revealed that a murmur had been diagnosed at an early age, but she was told I would grow out of it. The advice now was direct: get regular echocardiograms every few years and report any symptoms. From that day on, I ran, played sports, studied hard and never had a symptom. Twenty years and eight echocardiograms later, a new cardiologist looking at my old films and my latest films (October 2011) saw a worsening aortic valve and something suspicious with my ascending aorta. He sent me home with instructions to return in one year. Thankfully, his suspicions got the best of him and he called me the next day to suggest an MRI of my aorta. Not feeling his message to be urgent, I scheduled my MRI for my next day off four weeks later. It was a Friday; the test went fine. I was told results would be available in a few days. I was out for a five-mile run Sunday and came home to a voicemail from the cardiologist. I called back, and he told me not to run or do anything strenuous because I needed to see a heart surgeon right away. I began to feel disconnected with myself, and I hung up the phone and stared at my wife, Kathy. I am sure there was utter disbelief on my face as I tried to calmly deliver the words that I had a deadly aortic aneurysm beating in my chest. At almost six centimeers wide, the aneurysm was of such a size that the likelihood of dissection (tearing open) and death was close to 98% without intervention. I had never missed a day of school or work in my entire life for sickness, and now I faced the ultimate danger. !<.http://mistersugar.com/images/217t.jpg!:http://mistersugar.com/images/217.jpg I saw the recommended surgeon, "Alan Markowitz, MD":http://www.uhhospitals.org/find-a-doctor/markowitz-alan-891 at University Hospitals in Cleveland. He was kind and deliberate, and I knew he cared about his results on an individual basis. I told him I was getting an opinion from the Cleveland Clinic two days later. I feverishly researched all I could that week about options, results, mortality, etc. I contacted the quality officers of both UH and the Cleveland Clinic. My interview with the Clinic doctor and the results of my quality questions all but made the choice for me; I would have my surgery with Dr. Markowitz at University Hospitals. Dr. Markowitz performs the surgery differently than the Clinic in two critical ways. First, he essentially bypasses the heart bypass machine with a catheter through the right subclavian artery, which continuously and uninterruptedly maintains flow to the brain throughout the surgery. He and others feel that this almost eliminates the possibility of intraoperative stroke. When I asked the Cleveland Clinic surgeons why they don’t do this procedure, the response was an abrupt, “We work fast.” And, Dr. Markowitz offered me the Freestyle aortic valve, a pure porcine valve without manmade struts or attachments. It is very similar to the innate human valve. Longevity has yet to be determined, but some of Dr. Markowitz’s former patients are 14 years out from their surgeries. The Clinic offered me the St. Jude valve, a biosynthetic valve made of artificial and porcine parts, very unlike the innate human valve. It has been around for more than 30 years, and the stats show a longevity of 7-10 years. I was 43 years old. *I know you to be a creative, generous and hyper-competitive individual with a really soft spot for your friends and family. What was your strategy for recovering from open-heart surgery? Where did you find the strength to bounce back so quickly and with such determination?* I freely admit that I entered this surgery without a plan. I knew that I would fight hard for my family, but I was as scared as anything I’d ever faced. Your idea of the blog was definitely an inspirational tool going in that weekend before the Monday morning surgery. Being a doctor was probably a weakness, because I knew that even straightforward cases don’t always work out as planned. Having my family and friends around me that morning was as motivational as you can get. My strength following surgery came from those loved ones who wanted to see me succeed and from areas of my life that I didn’t expect. As soon as that first day after surgery, my wife, Kathy, an occupational therapist, had me walking the halls of the hospital’s Cardiac Care Unit. She was my Chief Operating Officer who put me to work in those first few critical weeks when failures might have gotten the best of me. *What was the lowest moment? What was the most triumphant?* I feel like I had many low moments in the process of this surgery. My lowest might have been the night before surgery. I was very worried that this would be the last time I saw my family, my children. I wrote them farewell letters just in case. These hours were the hardest of my life. I drifted in and out of sleep that night before, wondering about my future; how had I come to this. As I said goodbye to my wife and rolled down the hall to surgery, I don’t think I have ever felt more frightened and lonely and desperate. The triumphs came in all sizes. Waking up from surgery and realizing that I was alive ranks pretty high. I certainly didn’t expect to run down the hallway, but I was in a LOT of pain. Eating my first bite of food and walking without help were little victories. Stepping out of my house for a "run four weeks after surgery":http://shaughnessymd.com/2011/12/18/what-a-day-for-a-run/ was definitely a success. (It wasn’t really a run from an outsiders view, but I was racing through the winter wind in my heart). Making it to my buddies’ golf outing in Florida three months to the day after the surgery was a HUGE goal in my early recovery. I played pretty bad golf, but it was a great success anyway. In June 2012, I ran about five miles with my brother, Dan, in Hilton Head; just six months after surgery. That was a definite high point. I have run several races since my surgery, finishing in the top 10% in all of them. My running and fitness has become my most powerful motivator. *How are you living differently because of what you've been through?* As I have been alluding to, physical fitness has become by biggest change since surgery. I always enjoyed working out, playing sports, and doing whatever I wanted to do. When the surgery took all that away from me and I felt weak and fragile, running became my source of strength. A few friends kept me motivated as I increased my speed and miles. I needed no gym or trainer or special equipment. I ran for me. In the past,I ran simply to stay fit. Now I run to live. My heart was reborn on 12/5/2011 and I challenge myself daily to cherish that the big and little moments are not guaranteed. *You used a blog at "shaughnessymd.com":shaughnessymd.com to chronicle your recovery. What did you learn in the process of sharing your experience online? In what ways has this changed the way you think as a physician? How will it change the way you help patients communicate and comprehend their own experiences?* The blog was an amazing tool for sharing information to those around me, but it also was a mirror for me to discover and research those feelings of uncertainty and exhilaration on a daily basis. I have shared both my site and the idea of doing it with patients, with very positive responses. I think we all could use this tool, even if you blogged privately for yourself to chronicle the uncertain road of illness. As I wrote in one of my posts, the hardest part of recovery for me was letting go of my own control and letting others be part of the process. The blog definitely allowed me to realize that even on the loneliest of days I was never alone. *Who are some of the people - family, friends, mentors or colleagues - who have molded you, and what are some of the lessons they taught you?* This question could take a book itself to answer. How can we define who we are by a short list of people? I am often moved to change a habit or thought by someone I hardly know. My father and mother, my family, my teachers and students, so many mentors and colleagues have all contributed greatly to the doctor and man I am today. I try to live the path of challenge and intellectual curiosity, to take some risks but protect my most cherished values. I hope to learn from those around me, but question constantly those around me. I hope to never be satisfied. *What's your proudest achievement to date? What do you still hope to accomplish in the years ahead?* My proudest moment to date is to be able to tell my story with sound mind and body. There is no value to place on my life. I would surely give up all my accolades, diplomas, monies, and more to be able to embrace my wife and children. Being here for them has meant more than any other sacrifice or struggle I could have gone through. I hope to see my children succeed in their own right, to follow their own path. I hope to continue building a successful practice in the face of an uncertain health field. I plan to ride in a 100-mile bike race in August this year. I don’t think it would have entered my mind prior to surgery. I hope to see tomorrow as optimistically as I see today. *Anything else you'd like to share with my readers?* I would hope no one has to face their own mortality in such a direct and terrifying manner, but if any readers are or do in the future, my advice is to take a deep breath and dive forward. There will be no solace in feeling sorry for yourself. I realized very early on that there was nothing I could do to undo what nature had done to me. There was no place in my recovery for pity. It was very hard work and I am not looking forward to the possibility that I might have to start all over again, but I won’t feel sorry for myself. Test your limits; we may never reach them. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: My new avatar is a tamtam from Ambrym AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/26/2013 01:13:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/216.png! "In a tweet":https://twitter.com/cyrusradfar/status/327830752207187970, Cyrus Radfar asks about my new Twitter avatar, taken from the image above. It represents a *tamtam*, a stylized drum carved from a tree trunk. This one is in the style of Ambrym island in the Republic of Vanuatu. Tamtams are used to signal a village gathering or drummed during dance performances. My essay "Passing lanes":http://mistersugar.com/2004/08/26/passing-lanes mentions how Chief Louis used a tamtam to call Liro village (on Paama, where I lived as a Peace Corps volunteer) to work. This tamtam image was based on a tamtam that I purchased on Ambrym during my trip to hike the volcano (see "Sea food":http://mistersugar.com/2012/12/09/sea-food). The drawing is by Paul Bojka, a Cleveland friend. A long time ago, he drew a series of icons relating to Vanuatu that I used for VanAmerianNius.com, a now-defunct website I had to share news about Vanuatu. Later, I put up "storian.org":http://www.storian.org/home/ for my fellow PCVs in Vanuatu. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bitten by the research bug AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/26/2013 12:55:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It was early February 1998, and I was just a couple of months into my Peace Corps service in the Republic of Vanuatu. I'd already lost 18 pounds from severe diarrhea brought on by a bout of giardiasis, but I was feeling better, and satisfied with my lucky placement on tropical Paama Island here in the South Pacific. Erin, my wife and fellow volunteer, was with me, and we were settling into our life as educators and community organizers. And then I got bit. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/239.jpg! One afternoon, as the late-day sunshine filtered through the breadfruit and mango and coconut and banana trees and filled Liro Village with a green and liquid light that I swear I could just about swim through, and as the fluttering sound cue signaling the evening news report on Radio Vanuatu emanated from a dozen shortwave radios among the bamboo-and-thatch huts, a mosquito looking for its meal found me. Most likely, it was a tiger mosquito, Aedes albopictus (pictured above), or maybe Aedes aegypti. Maybe the mosquito coil I’d just lit had yet to fill our house with its distinctive scent. Maybe I figured the malaria prophylaxis I took each week would protect me. But a few days later, I was feverish and sore and very weak, and my eyes were bloodshot. The mosquito had given me the dengue virus, I suspected, and I was suffering from dengue fever. The fever ran its course, and I "recorded the experience in my daily journal":http://mistersugar.com/2005/10/26/was-it-dengue. Months later, Erin got bit, and she, too, contracted dengue. Her illness, and the rash on her palms and feet, were so severe that we flew her to the capital, Port Vila. She recovered, only to be bit by another mosquito — this one with Plasmodium vivax malaria — a year later. (A story for another time.) *Bleeding for science* “The "incidence of dengue has grown dramatically":http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs117/en/index.html around the world in recent decades,” reports the World Health Organization, with 50–100 million dengue infections, and 25,000 deaths, worldwide every year. That’s a problem. I learned that, and more infectious diseases epidemiology, as a medical journalism grad student at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. One day, I heard about a physician-scientist on campus who wanted to study dengue antibodies in the hopes that he and his lab could help develop a vaccine against dengue. I walked over to the medical center and offered my arm to a syringe. Maybe it stuck me in the same place that that mosquito had bitten me years before, or maybe not. One way or another, my donated blood would be able to confirm that I had indeed had dengue, and if so, which of the four serotypes. Erin also donated blood to the study. An email from the lab tech arrived six months later: dengue virus 2 antibodies were in my blood. I was happy for the confirmation, but now worried that if I visited Vanuatu or another country with the virus, I’d be at risk of getting secondary dengue. If infected with a different serotype, I might get dengue hemorrhagic fever. That’s more deadly. Not good. We need a vaccine. *My tiny part* So that’s why I was sitting in the Jones Building Auditorium at Duke University earlier this week attending the "Symposium on Insights and Solutions for Emerging Infectious Diseases":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/03/insights-and-solutions-for-emerging-infectious-diseases-symposium-422-232013/. This was a meeting of physicians and scientists from Duke and its sister institution Duke-NUS Graduate Medical School Singapore, and others from UNC-CH, UCLA and the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, meant to foster collaboration and inspire faster development of diagnostic tests, therapies and vaccines. I was clearly the least intelligent person in the room. These were experts in henipaviruses (Linfa Wang at Duke-NUS and Benhur Lee at UCLA), coronaviruses (Ralph Baric at UNC-CH), human immunodeficiency virus (Barton Haynes at Duke), Cryptococcus gatti (Joseph Heitman at Duke), malassezia — it’s on every one of us, and causes my tinea versicolor — (Annika Scheynius at Karolinska) and influenza (Vijaykrishna Dhanasekaran at Duke-NUS). Then Aravinda de Silva from UNC-CH got up and started explaining his research into the molecular basis of dengue virus neutralization by human antibodies, and how his lab had enrolled 80 volunteers who had experienced primary dengue infection during travel to an endemic region. “He’s talking about me,” I realized, and I had to bite my tongue in order not to interrupt him right then and there and share my excitement with the auditorium. I waited until the end of the session, and since it turned out he was sitting in the seat directly in front of me, I immediately told him how proud I was to have been part of his study. Right away, he remembered that Erin had participated, too. The next day, Dr. de Silva sent over a copy of the paper his group had published in PNAS ("Identification of human neutralizing antibodies that bind to complex epitopes on dengue virions":http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22499787), and Erin and I sat on the sofa reading the article, wondering if we were one of the select samples noted in the tables showing the antibody levels after each experiment. I got so excited talking about what it felt like to see myself in this research paper that I jumped up and down in the living room. “We are a part of the scientific process,” I said, grinning. “We are science.” That mosquito bite on a faraway island 15 years ago was a nuisance then, and a danger. Now I know it was also an opportunity to participate in a world of learning. Search "ScienceSeeker":http://scienceseeker.org to read other blog posts about dengue research. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pledge week: Please give $20.14 to ScienceOnline AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2013 09:07:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Radio ----- BODY: Turned on the radio this morning, tuned to "WUNC 91.5":http://wunc.org/, my local public radio station. Spring pledge drive has begun! Since I'm already a sustaining member of WUNC, with an automatic monthly donation, I switched over to "SiriusXMU":http://www.siriusxm.com/siriusxmu for some indie rock. As I was driving through the forested roads that take me to Duke, I remembered that I hadn't made my donation to "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com yet. Last week, Karyn sent out a newsletter with a lot of updates -- "Teen":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonlineteen-2/, "Oceans":http://oceans.scienceonline.com/, Together (2014) and even Climate! -- and a request for community support. bq.. The ScienceOnline community keeps coming up with terrific ideas for events, resources, and programs to help expand and improve the conversations about doing and communicating science on the web. We want to support the local satellites, the online community, the global outreach efforts, and to do that well, we need your help. Please consider contributing $20.14 this month to help us keep moving forward in 2014 and to sustain the infrastructure that supports all these events, online videos, resources, and opportunities to make a difference in how we all communicate science. Use this "DONATE NOW":http://scienceonline.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=be6390a50a6ea961c711f9bf5&id=92ccd06c71&e=98a00212cd link to contribute $20.14 via our PayPal system ( you do NOT need a PayPal account, you can pay with a credit card without setting up an account if you prefer). We appreciate your enthusiasm and encouragement for the ScienceOnline community and projects. Thank you for being a part p. *I just made my donation of $20.14.* Will you please join me in supporting ScienceOnline? "Add your $20.14":http://scienceonline.us1.list-manage.com/track/click?u=be6390a50a6ea961c711f9bf5&id=92ccd06c71&e=98a00212cd to the pot now and help the organization broaden its outreach into 2014 and beyond. UPDATE: Karyn's just published a "post with more details about the campaign":http://scienceonline.com/2013/04/25/we-need-your-support/. !http://scienceonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2013/04/20141.jpg!:https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=SALjvJxcPgRVxDJA02YegNm-4ixLw10B_4tOKm6EbmnsopXIqkYcXdSBIgm&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f8e263663d3faee8d96fc0752e9614158f04872d2f2ae25dc ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Friends reforming health care AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2013 08:42:43 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just sat down with the May 2013 issue of "The Atlantic":http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/ and I admit I was lamenting the slimness of the issue, recalling the thick issues that used to come to me on Paama or in Lakewood or even when I first lived in Carrboro in 2001. But then I turned to page 64 and the start of "How Not to Die":http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2013/05/how-not-to-die/309277/, a feature about Harvard physician Angelo Volandes. Hey, I know him, I thought. Back in April 2002, and then again seven years later, Angelo came to Durham with my college buddy, Elmer Abbo, to attend Double Take (now the "Full Frame Documentary Film Festival":http://www.fullframefest.org/). Both times, Angelo and Elmer and Erin and I sat and talked at length -- blogs posts "here":http://mistersugar.com/2002/04/06/documents and "here":http://mistersugar.com/2009/04/05/spring-at-5506-our-last) -- with those two brilliant docs sharing their plans and dreams to reform health care. Now Angelo is being profiled in the Atlantic for the film he's making to show what unwanted care at the end of life s really like. And Elmer was a leader in a bid to create a health insurance co-op in Illinois; his group, SimpleHx, was unsuccessful, but I know he'll be back. Health care reform is a huge issue. I'm seeing it from the inside (I work in an academic medical center), and Erin's got her perspective (as a health care attorney working within Medicare reguations). Recently, I finished the long and eye-opening article by "Steven Brill":http://qg.stor.im, which offered a detailed look in the high price of health care in America. "Bitter Pill: Why Medical Bills Are Killing Us":http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,2136864,00.html is a must read. Seriously. Get to a library and find it. But read about Angelo first. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Hearing voices AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2013 05:25:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm really excited about where the Voices of Medicine initiative is headed. Last month, we had five Duke physicians and medical students tell their stories at "Talk Story":http://show.storyblogging.org/. I've posted four of the stories on the MedicineNews blog. "Listen and enjoy.":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/voices-of-medicine-stories/ Here's an intro montage put together by my friend Jeff Polish (he's executive director of the "The Monti":http://themonti.org): Then, on May 15, we'll do another Talk Story: Voices of Medicine show, in conjunction with the "Duke Internal Medicine Residency":http://residency.medicine.duke.edu program's annual Humanities in Medicine show. "Learn more.":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/04/annual-humanities-in-medicine-event/ Jeff's going to help us put this show together, as well. And, Jeff and I are already talking about other Voices of Medicine projects. This is going to be fun. _This is an update on my "decade of narrative":http://mistersugar.com/2012/05/28/talk-story-reviewing-my-decade-of-narrative-so-far-and-whats-next activities._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Developing the perfect paragraph AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2013 04:50:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Dave Winer wrote a blog post yesterday. He writes a lot of blog posts. Nearly every one is a home run (sometimes he'll write about the Knicks, and I'm not just that interested in pro basketball -- used to be, when the Bulls were on top -- but even those posts are great to read). As the first and longest-running blogger, Dave is someone you want to be following. His post yesterday was on the technical side: "How to create an 'include' node":http://threads2.scripting.com/2013/april/howToCreateAnIncludeNode. It's about how to make one outline show up inside a second outline using the new "Fargo":http://fargo.io outliner that he and Kyle Shank are developing. I've reread the first paragraph of that post a dozen times, at least, and not just because Dave says some very nice things about me -- that I'm smart, earnest and don't give up. This public affirmation feels good. But even better than seeing that compliment is watching as he builds that paragraph to move beyond me, the individual, to make a very important point about what he and other software developers do in making products for users. Fargo is a fantastic tool. I'm using it daily. And as you can surmise from Dave's post, I'm sharing my user's experience and non-developer's feedback so that I can learn how best to use the tool, and so that my learning can help the developers make it even better. When I read Dave's post, I thought, It's that awareness and responsiveness in Dave that has attracted me to read his blog, try his products, engage in the community he's building. And, That's a pretty perfect paragraph, in my humble opinion. *Coda:* Dave says it's good that I break things. But earlier this week, in the kitchen, I brushed against the dishes drying on the counter, and one of the precious bone-white-and-silver china coffee cups that my parents received for their wedding more than 44 years ago crashed down and cracked in half. Bummer. Sorry, mom! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Switchpoint AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2013 03:07:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I missed it last year, so last Friday I made sure to be able to attend day one of the "Switchpoint":http://event.switchpointideas.com/ conference, an annual meeting that takes place in Saxapahaw, North Carolina (where I take the kids on summer Saturday evenings for live music on the hillside). Hosted by global health organization "IntraHealth":http://www.intrahealth.org/ in the "Haw River Ballroom":http://www.hawriverballroom.com/ -- a renovated textile warehouse that sits above the Haw River -- it gathers health, tech and philanthropic leaders from around the world, with a good dash of music and performance. I especially enjoyed hearing "Erik Hersman":https://twitter.com/whiteafrican celebrate the ingenuity and innovation of individuals across Africa, and watching "DJ Spooky":http://www.djspooky.com/ flip through his photos on his iPad, easily finding those that illustrated his talk. I met others from Nepal and Senegal and down the road in Cary. And, I was inspired by my lunchtime chat with "Sebastian Lindstrom":https://twitter.com/SebLindstrom of "What Took You So Long":http://whattookyousolong.org/, a team of guerrilla filmmakers finding stories around the world. Next year, I'll be sure to attend the full event. If I'm not already in Africa chasing down stories myself. Switchpoint uses the hashtag #switchpoint. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Lucky, for dinner AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/14/2013 09:25:33 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: “If you want to eat meat, I believe you should be present—or, better, a participant—in the death of at least one of the animals that you eat,” writes Michael Ruhlman on his blog. His post is about a "French farm that raises ducks for foie gras":http://ruhlman.com/2013/04/farm-transparency-v-farm-secrecy/, but it picks up on a theme Michael covers frequently. If you’re a foodie and you’re not reading Ruhlman.com regularly, get his blog into your reading diet. As a Peace Corps volunteer in the Republic of Vanuatu, I was present at the death of two animals that I would soon eat. In fact, one was a pig named Mistersugar (yes, my nickname and Twitter handle). I held down the pig while a friend put it out of its misery. We split it eight ways, I shared out seven of the pieces with my adopted family and the village chiefs, and then I cooked myself a midnight meal within an hour of Mistersugar’s death. I wrote about that (pork in plum sauce) in my blog post, "It’s a pigpen":http://mistersugar.com/2004/12/18/its-a-pigpen. But before the pig, there was a cow. My father — he had been a Peace Corps volunteer, too, and his stories had inspired me to join up — came to visit me and my wife, and fellow PCV, on Paama Island along with my stepmom and one of my four brothers. After a week of hiking the island and teaching in the school and enjoying kava (a narcotic) and laplap (baked manioc) and storian (talking story), we decided to thank the five villages that we served by buying a cow. We paid the equivalent of a couple hundred dollars, and Dad named the cow Lucky. Lucky lost its life just a few feet from the placid South Pacific. I watched at its throat was slit and blood pumped out, as its belly was cut open and its guts scooped out, and as those guts were tossed into the ocean. Ah, I thought, now I know why there’s a history of fatal shark attacks off the black sand beach that looked so inviting. Later, I watched as Lucky was hacked into pieces to be shared with Tavie, Liro, Lironessa, Asuas and Voravor, and then as Liro’s portion was further cut down into bite-sized cubes for a curry and coconut-milk stew. After farewell speeches and gifts showered upon my family, we joined the village under the mango tree and spread out on colorful pandanus mats. With the effervescent Milky Way a bright blanket overhead, we enjoyed that stew, and more storian. This, I thought, is what it means to be lucky. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: On posting my first Medium essay AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/14/2013 03:42:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I finally got to use the new blogging service Medium, via an invite from "Cyrus Radfar":https://twitter.com/cyrusradfar (whom I met at ScienceOnline2013), so I used it to post a short essay, inspired by a "post by Michael Ruhlman":https://medium.com/r/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fruhlman.com%2F2013%2F04%2Ffarm-transparency-v-farm-secrecy%2F, about eating animals that you killed. I've written before about the night "Mistersugar the pig was killed and cooked":https://medium.com/r/?url=http%3A%2F%2Fmistersugar.com%2F2004%2F12%2F18%2Fits-a-pigpen, so I wrote this time about Lucky the cow, also raised, butchered, stewed and eaten on Paama Island. Read "Lucky, for dinner":https://medium.com/life-in-words-1/ff498e07cdf4. I've been wanting to try Medium for a while, as noted in these previous posts: * "Looking for a good medium":http://mistersugar.com/2012/12/25/looking-for-a-good-medium * "Exploring new blogging tools, editors and trends":http://mistersugar.com/2013/03/10/exploring-new-blogging-tools-editors-and-trends Medium makes the writing of a post as simple as possible: add a photo, type a title, start writing the post. It's clean, large type, centered on the page and really smooth. I especially liked the ability to add a note along the side of the main column, kind of like a footnote. As noted in my "Exploring new blogging tools post," there's a trend to simplifying the online writing experience. (Check out the many tools on the horizon.) Medium will be a popular tool because of this ease. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 43 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/02/2013 10:02:57 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A year older today, and still as happy and alive and active as before. No complaints at all, since I'm armed with a notebook or two filled with ideas and plans and dreams. Into it I go. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Mary's take AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 08:54:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The timing just happened this way. Yesterday, Good Friday, I finished reading the "Testament of Mary":http://www.colmtoibin.com/content/testament-mary-3 by Irish novelist and journalist Colm Toibin. It's a short, at times opaque and cryptic -- even for me, raised as a Catholic and a "one-time priest wannabe":http://mistersugar.com/article/4108/a-family-orientation -- imagining of the getting-it-off-my-chest admission of Mary, the mother of Jesus, about what really happened at Christ's crucifixion. In this novel, Mary's final days are filled with a sort of interrogation by two disciples (two of of the epistolarians, so maybe James and Timothy, or maybe not) who want to hear Mary recount Jesus's life and death and resurrection not as she remembered it but as they wanted to write the story. "They caught one another's eyes and for the first time I felt the enormity of their ambition and the innocence of their belief." bq. "Who else knows this?" "It will be known," one of them said. "Through your words," I asked. "Through our words and the words of others of his disciples." Tomorrow is Easter Sunday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: On being excited about emerging pathogens AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 07:36:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Medical journalism CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At Duke in April, there's going to be a two-day "Symposium on Insights and Solutions for Emerging Infectious Diseases":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/03/insights-and-solutions-for-emerging-infectious-diseases-symposium-422-232013/. I'm looking forward to attending this, and blogging about what I learn there. It's right up my alley. One of the speakers is "Ralph Baric":http://www.med.unc.edu/microimm/faculty/virology/ralph-s-baric-ph-d, whom I "wrote about 10 years ago":http://mistersugar.com/2003/09/02/stalking-sars when he was the international go-to expert on the SARS coronavirus. Another speaker is "Linfa Wang":http://www.virologyj.com/about/edboard/userprofile/1220428342222041, director of the Program in Emerging Infectious Diseases at Duke-NUS Graduate School Singapore and a key scientist in zoonoses coming from bats. That's a topic that I'm reading about in Spillover, the book by "David Quammen":http://www.davidquammen.com/. Quammen spoke at ScienceOnline2013 about his book, zoonoses and the word "synecdoche":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Synecdoche ("watch the video":http://scienceonline.com/live/?id=35). Then there's Bart Haynes, former chair of the Duke Department of Medicine and current head of the massive "CHAVI-ID":http://dhvi.duke.edu/programs/duke-chavi-id consortium working on an HIV vaccine. I still own "narrativesofhiv.org":http://narrativesofhiv.org/ (which I bought around the time I was writing my masters thesis, "Narratives of North Carolina Epidemiology":http://mistersugar.com/article/3555/narratives-of-north-carolina-epidemiology). And "Subhash Vasudevan":http://www.duke-nus.edu.sg/content/vasudevan-subhash, a dengue expert. I'm "confirmed seropositive for dengue":http://mistersugar.com/2005/10/26/was-it-dengue. And "Joe Heitman":http://mgm.duke.edu/faculty/heitman/, the chair of the Duke Department of Molecular Genetics and Microbiology. Heitman is one of the key leaders at Duke who is facilitating cross-department and multidisciplinary research. Of course, much of the symposium will probably be way above my head, but I'm going to hang in there and learn as much as I can. I can't wait. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline update: TEEN is next, and scio14 dates announced AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 06:32:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Two weeks from today in New York City is "ScienceOnline Teen":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonlineteen-2/, a one-day event for high school students. Learn more in this absolutely perfect video: It's sure to be a really fun day. Unfortunately, I won't be able to attend. And, earlier this week, Karyn announced the dates for ScienceOnline2014, which is getting a name change -- *ScienceOnline Together* -- to better reflect the purpose of the annual signature event in light of the many smaller topical and regional events in the works. Mark your calendars for *Feb 26 through March 1, 2014* and plan to join us at N.C. State University for another fabulous gathering. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pass the baton AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 03:24:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In school, Anna began to learn to play the violin just four months ago. Earlier this week, she played in the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Schools All City Orchestra. I was quite proud of her, and inspired by the music to reminisce about my own school days playing oboe in the band. Classical music is beautiful, and music in our public schools is important to support. Tap, tap. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Artisans at work AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 03:17:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Film CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Came across this movie the other day, a film about a master artisan making a stunning and beautiful set of illustrations for the album cover of rocker John Mayer: My earlier post mentions my short chat with Mayer before a concert here in North Carolina. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Like son, like father AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/30/2013 03:03:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We've made it through our final round of potty training here in the Zuiker house, and it's relief that Oliver, who turns 3 in a month, can stay dry and clean throughout the day. The 'big boy underwear' decorated with Spiderman or trucks added color to the process, although Oliver was more amused by the flap in the briefs. He calls them his 'trick pants' because of what he can make appear from there. Coincidentally, I recently began wearing new boxer briefs and using the flap myself. Previously, I just pulled down the elastic band. TMI? Probably. But, hey, underwear is a fact of life. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It's an outliner world AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/25/2013 11:32:02 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com invited me to test Little Outliner, a new outliner that he and Kyle Shank unveiled this morning. I figured the best way for me to test this was to write a blog post that I could post to mistersugar.com to explain why I've been following Dave's development of outliner tools and the OPML editor. So, here goes. Just as I was headed to the beach with my family last August, my friend "James Parker":http://about.me/jiparker sent a message and asked why I'd been spending so much time learning to use the "OPML editor":http://home.opml.org/ and its toolset. Since late 2011, I'd been blogging my exploration of the tools developed by RSS/blogging pioneer Dave Winer (see here and here and here). I promised Jim that I'd answer him from St. Augustine, but the family fun on the beach kept me away from my laptop, and then school and work and ScienceOnline and a bunch of other other activities vied for my attention. I never got around to answering Jim, although I thought of his question every day as I posted short messages or links to my Sugarcubes linkblog, which runs with Dave's Radio2 and URL shortener (I have stor.im as my shortener domain). By the way, I met Jim on my first day at college in 1988. He lived across the hall, and he became a good friend. When he wasn't in the theater designing sets and directing plays, he was in the science building using the computers with whch he could code and connect to other computers. Jim was on the Internet, while I was working on the Carroll News using Macintosh and Pagemaker. Later, Jim did some interesting high-tech video production, and now he's got his own mobile app startup. He's been a big influence on me. Well, one of my activities over the past year has been my occasional narrative variety show, Talk Story, which kicked off last summer. That first show was just days after Dave came through North Carolina and shared a long bike ride with me on a near-100-degree July morning. Over brunch, we talked about my excursion into the World Outline, which, with Dave's patient, instructive help over a couple of phone calls, I was able to get up and running on an Amazon EC2 server and S3 disk space. World Outline has allowed me to generate pages for Talk Story and the few shows we've done. Using the OPML editor to draft and shift and rearrange the outlines that get generated into those World Outline pages has been eye opening. Recall that it was Dave who convened us for brunch the morning after the Triangle Bloggers Conference in 2005. It was that morning that he and I talked about building community, and his encouragement to "bootstrap the community" fueled my energies in organizing BlogTogether and, with Bora and Paul and Brian and Karyn and others, what would become ScienceOnline. But Dave also talked to me that morning about outliners. Frankly, I didn't comprehend what he was talking about, but I told him I hoped I could understand one day. I promised to keep reading Scripting News. I didn't understand outlining in 2005, but I was already an inveterate maker of lists -- another important lesson my parents and grandparents taught me (I blogged that observation "here":http://mistersugar.com/2011/08/02/feeling-the-sights-and-sounds-of-my-youth). To this day, I still make lists in notebooks and I scribble notes on scraps of paper. Often I'll rewrite my lists or start a new page in a pocket notebook to draft another description of an idea or project. As I've "written before":http://mistersugar.com/2010/02/08/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am, the act of writing is an integral part of my thinking and knowing and speaking and feeling. I'm happiest with a pen and paper, even if I balance that with hours a week trying the latest computer tools for writing and editing, like the new Little Outliner. _Drafting my blog post in Little Outliner is very easy. I'm loving this._ Reading Dave over the years, and seeing his enthusiasm -- yeah, his evangelism -- for outlining, I wanted to try the tools he was making and offering. His "EC2 for Poets":http://ec2.forpoets.org/ and "S3 for Poets":http://s3.forpoets.org/ tutorials beckoned. I muddled my way through those, kept trying to understand coding and server management and such, posting questions to the Frontier user list (another learning experience: providing clear and straightforward bug reports and user expectations takes some learning, but it's making me a better communicator all around). I still don't fully comprehend it all. But for nearly a year now, I've been using the OPML Editor and posting to Radio2 and listening to podcasts in River2 and adding pages to Talk Story and posting comments to Dave's essays. And here's the thing. The other night, I dreamed about outlining. I woke with the realization that I'm beginning to understand outlining and the power of moving my ideas and words up and down and left and right. I feel myself changing, growing. That's why I took up blogging back in 2000. That led me to Dave. Dave led me to outlining. And, now? Now Dave and Kyle are making a bunch of outlining tools and "Howto":http://smallpicture.com/outlinerHowto.html documents to make it even easier for me -- and you -- to use outliners. From what I've seen so far, this is going to be fun, full of learning, and quite empowering. Jim, hope this finally answers your question. _Note: after I finished drafting this post in Little Outliner, I selected the top headline, hit Cmd-c to copy all of the text below that headline, then went into "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com, which I use to manage my blog, and a Cmd-v pasted the text into my writing window. Smooth and simple._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cyprus and a spin of the globe AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/24/2013 06:54:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Cyprus":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cyprus has been in the news this last week, with a banking crisis and eurozone intrigue. That's reminded me of the grade school report I did on that island in the Mediterranean. I distinctly remember walking into the Caldwell (Idaho) Public Library one Saturday, past the circulation desk and the children's section, then over to the cabinets where I pulled out a folder dedicated to the island. Inside the folder was a copy of National Geographic, and in that an article about the history of Cyprus. I took the journal over to a table near the giant globe on which my father had once shown me the island he'd lived on as a Peace Corps volunteer (Hispaniola, where he served in the Dominican Republic), and I sat and took notes about how the Greek Cypriots and the Turkish Cypriots had divided the island. If I ever become president, I told myself many times since, I'd go to Cyprus and help them find a peaceful solution to sharing the island without walls. Closer to home, Erin has started a new family activity, in which she picks a country each week and Anna and Malia look through our various books -- the Statesman's Yearbook is still the best -- to learn about the nation and its people. Geography was a favorite subject for Erin, and me, and we hope our children are as fascinated by the world as we once were, and continue to be. Yesterday, Malia and Oliver and I went to Flyleaf Books in Chapel Hill. There was a small globe on one of the shelves, and Oliver instinctually reached for it. Made me smile, because at home our globe, while a fraction of the size of the giant Caldwell library globe, sits on a sidetable in our living room for anyone to spin. "Read my other Caldwell posts.":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?q=caldwell ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Talk Story: Voices of Medicine AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/11/2013 03:09:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My occasional narrative variety show, "Talk Story":http://show.storyblogging.org/, returns tomorrow night with a special "Voices of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/03/get-your-ticket-for-the-voices-of-medicine-narrative-show-3122013/ slate of storytellers from the Duke School of Medicine (sponsored by my employer, the "Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu). Jeff Polish of The Monti will be our emcee. I know it will be good! It's a free show starting at 8 p.m. at Casbah, a music club in Durham. "Join us.":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2013/03/get-your-ticket-for-the-voices-of-medicine-narrative-show-3122013/ UPDATE: Listen to four of the stories told that night -- they're "posted on MedicineNews":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/voices-of-medicine-stories/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Day trip to talk about Peace Corps AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/10/2013 08:09:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On Friday, I took the day off from work to drive down to "Davidson Day School":http://www.davidsonday.org/ to talk about my "Peace Corps":http://www.peacecorps.gov/ service in the Republic of Vanuatu. Chad and Kristen Metzler, who both teach at Davidson Day, were volunteers on the same island on which Erin and I served -- they lived on the other side of Paama, with a daily view of the looming, conical Lopevi Volcano across the sea. Chad, who used to come to Liro Village with the soccer team from Luli and Lulep villages, used to run circles around me on the soccer field. Now, he's a winning coach who takes his teams to championships and on tours in Europe. Chad had invited me down to the school to meet his students, share a view lessons of living in the South Pacific, and share lunch. I was able to hold the attention of first the high schoolers and then the fifth, sixth, seventh and eight graders. This photo of the outhouse/shower (with Terry Noel helping me show the structure) was the hit of my slideshow. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/215.jpg! On the drive down, I listened to the new album by "Josh Ritter":http://www.joshritter.com/, The Beast in its Tracks. Erin and I will catch Ritter when he returns to "Cat's Cradle":http://catscradle.com/ in May. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Exploring new blogging tools, editors and trends AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/09/2013 11:13:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's been interesting, over the last year or so, to watch the latest trends in blogging. I've "mentioned Medium and Svbtle before":http://mistersugar.com/2012/12/25/looking-for-a-good-medium. Those two networks are influencing many other efforts, or at least riding the early waves, of new blogging tools that distill the blogging experience down to the writing, with clean and simple themes that offer big or small images and nice typography. For example, the "So Simple WordPress Theme":https://creativemarket.com/jasonsc/2828-The-So-Simple-WordPress-Theme literally strips out all images, the "ZH2 theme":http://zenhabits.net/theme/ is similarly "minimalist":http://mnmlist.com/, and the "wp-svbtle editor plugin":http://themeskult.com/wp-svbtle-editor/ allows you to make Wordpress look and work like Svbtle. Then, there are new CMS offerings: "Craft":http://buildwithcraft.com/, "Anchor CMS":http://anchorcms.com/, "Letterpress":http://wangling.me/2013/01/letterpress.html, "Statamic":http://statamic.com/ and "Dropplets":http://dropplets.com/ (v1.0 available now), and I'm sure dozens of others, as a lot of programmers are rolling their own (reminiscent of the early days of blogging -- "Dave Johnson":http://rollerweblogger.org/roller/page/about, a blogger friend in Raleigh, developed Roller for himself, and the CMS I'm using to write this post is "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com/, developed by Dean Allen for his own use and then offered to a global community). Another interesting development is the emergence of online text editors that use "Markdown":http://daringfireball.net/projects/markdown/ syntax and/or HTML5 local storage (automatically saves the text on your computer and is magically there the next time you open the page in a browser), including "ecrit.es":http://ecrit.es/, "ZenPen":https://github.com/tholman/zenpen and Dave Winer's "Local storage demo":http://scripting.com/misc/localStorageDemo.html. So, lots of interesting new tools for writing online. I'm exploring these because I'm still working on relaunching mistersugar.com and zuiker.com as well as starting a couple of other projects this year. *ADDENDUM* Might as well keep adding to the list, so here's where I'll note additional tools. * "Editorially":http://blog.editorially.com/post/42518461019/introducing-editorially -- "a new collaborative writing and editing platform." * "Koken":http://koken.me/ -- "designed for photographers, designers, and creative DIYs to publish independent websites of their work." * "Draft":https://draftin.com/ -- "Easy version control and collaboration for writers." * "Onword":http://onword.co/ -- "Tired of only being able to access my iA Writer documents on my iOS devices, [Dan Eden] created Onword, a simple web application for writing documents." * "Little Outliner":http://littleoutliner.com -- A new outliner from Dave Winer and Kyle Shank. "I blogged about using it.":http://mistersugar.com/2013/03/25/it-s-an-outliner-world. And now the next tool from Small Picture, a bigger and more powerful outliner, is live at "Fargo":http://fargo.io * "Substance":http://substance.io/ -- "an open platform for collaborative creation and sharing of digital documents." * I got an invite to use Medium, and so I posted my first essay there. "See this post":http://mistersugar.com/2013/04/14/on-posting-my-first-medium-essay to find a link and see what I thought about the writing tools. * "Hackpad":https://hackpad.com/ -- another collaborate document tool. * "Scriptogram":http://scriptogr.am/ -- "Put simply, Scriptogr.am is a tool for generating simple, elegant, static weblogs by reading Markdown files stored in your Dropbox folder." * "Barley":http://getbarley.com/ -- "a this-generation content editor." * Jason Schuller has a nice list of "Promising Solutions for Simple Websites and Blogs":http://jason.sc/promising-solutions-for-websites-and-blogs * "Marquee":http://marquee.by/ - "easy to use, flexible platform that's perfect for telling stories." * "Scrollkit":https://www.scrollkit.com/ - "a new type of content editor that allows you to own the page in one click." * "Siteleaf":http://www.siteleaf.com/ - "A smart, lightweight, considered platform for creating and maintaining websites." * "Hi":https://sayhi.co/ - "Realtime storytelling and publishing." * "Ghost":http://tryghost.org - "Just a blogging platform." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: My brain awareness week AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/09/2013 10:45:30 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I held a brain last week. I was on the "#pictureDuke science photo walk":http://spotlight.duke.edu/socialmedia/2013/03/06/a-wrap-up-of-dukes-science-photo-walk/ of various research buildings on campus. We ended in the new "Trent Semans Center for Health Education":http://medschool.duke.edu/education/mary-duke-biddle-trent-semans-center-health-education with hands-on brain education from "Dr. Len White":http://dibs.duke.edu/research/profiles/23-leonard-white -- he let us don gloves and hold various human brains that he uses to teach brain anatomy to the medical students (his first message was about the generosity of the people who donated their bodies). Geoffrey Mock Here's a photo I took of my colleague, Geoffrey Mock. When it was my turn, I thought how amazing it was that my brain was processing the experience of holding another person's brain that, similarly, had been full of thoughts. Meanwhile, I've been working on a story pitch for the "Story Collider":http://storycollider.org/, and I thought I had my first line: "I used to dream in color." My dreaming activity during my Peace Corps service was dramatically changed by the malaria prophylaxis I had to take in Vanuatu. I thought that my dreams now are in black and white only. But last night, a vivid-green snake appeared, waking me. As I wondered if some snake was loose in my room, some part of my brain told me that the green snake was there to make a colorful point. In the morning sunshine, fully awake and remembering, I beheld my brain in a new light. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Clean hands AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2013 02:37:07 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !>http://mistersugar.com/images/214t.jpg! The New Yorker article by "David Owen":http://www.davidowen.net/, "Hands across America":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/03/04/130304fa_fact_owen, is about the Akron-based maker of Purell hand sanitizer. It's everywhere, but apparently pretty effective at cutting down on the spread of germs. Anna and Malia recently came back from the mall with handfuls of PocketBac, an antimicrobial hand gel sold at Bath & Body Works. Oliver calls this stuff hannitizer. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sur la table AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2013 02:00:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Meals CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Left work at 5 yesterday, and picked up Oliver at the day care center. We were home by 6. In the fridge, I found a rotisserie chicken that Erin bought the day before and beets I'd roasted over the weekend. I carved the chicken, retrieved a Ziploc bag of turkey stock made after our Thanksgiving feast and stored in the freezer, and made a gravy while rice pilaf (from a box) simmered. Anna and Malia used the KitchenAid stand mixer to juice lemons -- we have the citrus juicer attachment -- and Erin arrived home in time to help them make lemonade with the simple syrup I'd made Sunday. By 7, we were sitting as a family, sharing a delicious meal. Related? -- "Family Dinner: Treasured Tradition Or Bygone Ideal?":http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2013/02/26/172897660/family-dinner-treasured-tradition-or-bygone-ideal ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A moment of inattention AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/24/2013 08:44:26 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After a couple of days of rain, today was bright and clear and warm in the 60s. With Erin and the girls off to mass, Oliver and I drove a couple of miles up the road to the Duke Forest. I pulled off Old NC 86 and felt the soft ground and quickly felt the front tires sliding and spinning. Stuck. Nothing to do but go for our hike and hope for the best. We strolled up the path until we found the stream, where Oliver pretended to fish. Woodpeckers occasionally sounded above. Nothing else mattered. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/213.jpg! Back down the path, and just as we returned to the road, another car pulled up to the trailhead, asking if they should park across the street. "I don't advise it," I said. "In fact, I'm hoping you'll give me a push, because I'm stuck in the mud." A push later, Oliver and I were headed home. Later, I dropped Malia at a friend's home, and continued to another Duke Forest trailhead. Still a glorious day, and I felt alive and well running down the gravel of Concrete Bridge Road. The river was high over the concrete bridge, so I couldn't cross; instead, I ran along the river on the single-track trail, hopping over rocks and tree roots, stopping at a high wall of stone to lean against the rock, listen to the river, feel the sun on my face. Running back, I was almost back to the gravel road when, out of the corner of my eye, I spied a couple basking in the sun (clothed) across the river. I kept running, but my brain was still processing the sight, maybe recalling a similar scene with me and Erin on the rocks of "‘Ohe’o Gulch on Maui":http://mauiguidebook.com/road-to-hana-maui/road-to-hana-sites-to-see-maui/seven-sacred-pools/ ("a passionate trip":http://mistersugar.com/2007/02/15/passionate-about-passion-fruit), and at that moment, I lost my attention to the path, I tripped, and I was sprawled on the ground. My left leg is banged up, and I'm sore and achy. But overall, a pleasant day. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Notebooks and my past AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/24/2013 04:42:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm rarely without a notebook and a pen, and nearly every day, I jot a note or two about a blog post to write, or list of friends to thank, or projects to accomplish at work. Back in 2006, to mark my grandfather's final days as a driver, I posted "Let me check my calendar":http://mistersugar.com/2006/02/27/let-me-check-my-calendar. In that post, I also wrote about the pocket calendars that Grandpa Sisco would give me each year. bq. Every January, Grandpa would find a pocket calendar at the dry cleaners or shoe repair shop or bank branch, and he’d give that calendar to me. In the following months, he’d pass on pens and golf pencils and pads of paper. As I recounted in that post, I even ordered pocket calendars for the organization where I used to work. A pocket calendar was still useful in 2007, even though fewer and fewer people were carrying around "Franklin planners":http://franklinplanner.fcorgp.com/store/index.jsp and instead using online calendars to track appointments. Now, of course, mobile phones are our calendars. Notebooks, though, are still useful. Notebooks For ScienceOnline2011, "C&EN Online":http://cen-online.org/index.html gave us a donation so we could order "Field Notes":http://fieldnotesbrand.com/ notebooks for attendees, with enough left over to give a couple hundred to a couple of local high school groups. For ScienceOnline2012, we ordered notebooks, again sponsored by C&EN and this time with a very creative cover design by Karyn Traphagen, from "Scout Books":http://www.scoutbooks.com/. Karl Bates at Duke like these so much that he ordered some for "Duke Research":http://research.duke.edu/, and he handed them out at the ScienceWriters2012 conference. Chris Barncard, from the "University of Wisconsin-Madison":http://www.news.wisc.edu/, was at that conference, and it looks like he's similarly ordered notebooks for his institution. I also found a new orange "Expedition edition of Field Notes":http://fieldnotesbrand.com/expedition/ in my Christmas stocking. All these notebooks would surely have pleased my grandfather. And, I think Grandpa Sisco would have loved this video that I happened upon a few days ago on the Field Notes site (I missed it when it was first posted last year). It shows Field Notes co-founder "Aaron Draplin":http://draplin.com/ talking about his collection of farmers notebooks that he's collected across the U.S. -- see a good selection of these on the "Memo Book Archive":http://fieldnotesbrand.com/memo-archive/ page. Lo and behold, there are three DeKalb Corn notebooks there, and I swear I would have seen one or two of them when I was growing up in DeKalb, working on the farms of my relatives. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Serious about serials AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/18/2013 11:03:43 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Media CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and I watched the full 13-episode "House of Cards":http://movies.netflix.com/WiMovie/House_of_Cards/70178217 series last week, and enjoyed it. We watched two or three episodes each night, and have had a few conversations about how we feel about the various characters and their actions in this political drama. Over the past weeks, I've been seeing many references to 'binge viewing' re House of Cards. Example one: "Shark Week":http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/television/2013/02/25/130225crte_television_nussbaum. Example two: "The Land of the Binge":http://www.nytimes.com/2013/02/10/opinion/sunday/bruni-the-land-of-the-binge.html?partner=rssnyt&emc=rss. I think this complaint is kind of odd. Like lamenting the fact that a Dickens tale can be read in one sitting instead of having to wait for it to be serialized. I, for one, know the "joy of bingeing on a great novel":http://mistersugar.com/2012/07/17/colonel-aureliano-buendia-if-i-recall over a few days or even in one sitting late into the night. Perhaps these critics should drop the old binge card and let us enjoy stories at our own pace. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Crying in my 3CUPS AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/17/2013 10:46:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Restaurants ----- BODY: Before this post, this blog included 23 mentions of 3CUPS, the Chapel Hill coffee-tea-wine shop. It was a special place, where we gathered for "BlogTogether meetups":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/chapel_hill_bloggers_meetup_1_26_2006 (even though the shop never offered wifi), the idea for "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com was hatched, our "inaugural Long Table dinner":http://thelongtable.org/2009/09/a-splendidstart/ was held, and I returned often to enjoy a pot of keemun mao feng and chocolate croissants and to write in my personal journal. Last night, at dinner with friends Perri and Carter and Jeff and Allison, I learned that 3CUPS "closed earlier this month":http://www.3cups.net/blog/3cups-permanently-closing-2213/. I was devastated, disappointed for Lex and his investors and employees, sad for the loss of a place that was so welcoming to readers and writers and conversationalists and gourmands and anyone who wanted to linger over a delicious cup and something tasty. I will miss 3CUPS very much. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Lone ranger walks again AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/15/2013 06:06:07 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the New Yorker this week there's part of a never-finished memoir by Joseph Mitchell, the great writer of urban personalities. The excerpt is titled "Street Life":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/02/11/130211fa_fact_mitchell, and it's a recollection of Mitchell's predilection for walking the streets and neighborhoods and districts and edges of New York City. Simply put, the essay is masterful. (It is available online to subscribers, but worth the $7.99 for the entire print issue.) Here's a part I particularly enjoyed: bq. As I said, I am strongly drawn to old churches. I am also strongly drawn to old hotels. I am also strongly drawn to old restaurants, old saloons, old tenement houses, old police stations, old courthouses, old newspaper plants, old banks, and old skyscrapers. I am also strongly drawn to old piers and old ferryhouses and to the waterfront in general. I am also strongly drawn to old markets and most strongly to Fulton Fish Market. I am also strongly drawn to a dozen or so old buildings, most of them on lower Broadway or on Fifth and Sixth Avenues in the Twenties and Thirties, that once were department-store buildings and then became loft buildings or warehouses when the stores, some famous and greatly respected and even loved in their time and now almost completely forgotten, either went out of business or moved into new buildings farther uptown. After reading this, I wanted to get up and walk. My Grandpa Sisco walked, early every morning through the streets of DeKalb, Illinois. In rain or bitter cold or summer heat beginning to build, he'd make his circuit through downtown "picking up loose change":http://mistersugar.com/2007/06/13/cleveland-chronicle-walking-along, over to the new post office to "deposit his correspondence":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/4471146125/, past St. Mary Catholic Church with a prayer or two, by the Ellwood House already thinking about the game of golf he'd be soon be playing, and then up the few steps to the apartment on First Street. "He lived to be 96.":http://mistersugar.com/2009/12/31/louis-sisco-1913-2009 As I mentioned in a previous post, I recently searched my attic for my old clips and chronicles from Frank the Beachcomber. I also hoped to find Grandpa Sisco's typed diaries, the day-by-day record of what he wanted to share with my mother 2,000 miles away. Sure enough, in the last of the boxes I found a stack of his papers, and I've been rereading them, marveling at the mundane details that he recorded: the day's temperatures, which of my cousins stayed the night, how the NIU football team lost in the last minute of a game, why a week of rain couldn't stop the Sisco Picnic from happening. I mentioned these diaries in the Blogging for the Long Haul session at "ScienceOnline2013":http://scienceonline.com (video available in a week or two). As I regularly remind myself, "I'm a blogger because of my grandparents":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation, and it's amazing to find myself in my grandpa's diary in 1979: bq. Received a nice note from Anton. He sure writes beautiful and told me of the sale he went to and purchased his dad a tie. Gosh, I am so proud of him and then to have read 5000 pages during the summer is remarkable. ScienceOnline2013 had a connection to walking. My friend, "Scott Huler":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/plugged-in/, led a group of our attendees (with cool scio-branded hard hats -- the creative idea of Karyn Traphagen) on a tour of the Raleigh sewers and waterways, creatively captured in this video: I think walking and blogging go hand in hand. A few years back, when the "Research Triangle Foundation":http://rtp.org (managers of the Research Triangle Park) was considering ways to make better use of social media, I proposed that they hire a 'park ranger' -- someone whose job would be to roam the area and get to know the companies and buildings and people and activities and wildlife and botanical life as intimately as Mitchell got to know his city -- and share it on social media. I also proposed something similar for Duke University, and "Cara Rousseau":https://twitter.com/cararousseau as Duke's social media manager is doing this even better than I imagined it, including leading people on a "campus photo walk":http://spotlight.duke.edu/socialmedia/2012/11/09/a-photowalk-picture-duke-university/. A few of us are now working on ideas for how Duke Medicine can empower someone to walk the halls of the hospitals and clinics and research laboratories. I take a daily walk myself -- I'm not an early riser like my grandpa, so I get up from my desk around 2pm each day. I have my own circuit through the medical center and Duke's campus, with variations that take me into the Duke Gardens or past the Duke Chapel. Reading Mitchell's memoir of his walking, I'm now inspired to look even more closely at the buildings and at the trees and at the brick sidewalks and at the people going in and out and by and by. Time to walk. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It comes close AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/14/2013 08:18:22 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the weeks after each "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com conference, I try to be as still and quiet as possible. Partly this is to rest my mind and body. Mostly this is to listen and learn, as our community returns to their homes and their routines and their studies and their jobs and they begin to share their observations and their feedback and their hopes and their memories. (See the "scio13 wiki page":http://scio13.wikispaces.com/Blogroll+%26+Media+Coverage for a list of blog posts about ScienceOnline2013.) Listening and learning helps us improve the conference year to year. Peter Edmonds, in his "ScienceOnline in Three Words":http://peterdedmonds.blogspot.com/2013/02/scienceonline-in-three-words.html post, and Kelly Oakes in "her post":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/basic-space/2013/02/11/what-i-learned-at-scienceonline2013-performance-feedback-revision-scio13/, nicely capture how the process of improving was a key theme of this year's conference, brilliantly performed by rapper Baba Brinkman. In the post-conference stillness every year, I'm always humbled to see the ways that conversation can lead to connections and collaborations and creativity and community. *Gabriel Aponte*, a young man from Venezuela who has been a key member of the "ScienceSeeker":http://scienceseeker.org development team, attended ScienceOnline2013, and stayed on for a week after. He's written a post, titled, simply, "North Carolina":http://liminalityy.tumblr.com/post/43067407008/north-carolina, about his time at the conference and in the Triangle. His last line floored me. Gabriel also wrote that he can't stop remembering the faces of all the people he met here in North Carolina. I want to thank each of them for helping to make his visit here so memorable: "Brian Russell":http://twitter.com/brianr spent time with him talking about web development. "Karen Kornegay":https://twitter.com/kckornegay gave him a tour of the "Morehead Planetarium":http://www.moreheadplanetarium.org/ and took him to lunch for his first taste of cheesecake. "Paul Jones":https://twitter.com/smalljones and "Fred Stutzman":https://twitter.com/fstutzman welcomed him into their SILS classes. "David Kroll":https://twitter.com/davidkroll took him to lunch in Durham. "Rose Hoban":https://twitter.com/rosehoban and "Steve Tell":www.linkedin.com/pub/steve-tell/a/432/345 hosted him for dinner and a discussion about computer chips and radio parts, and the next day took Gabriel to meet with the Chapel Hill High School robot club. "Karyn Traphagen":https://twitter.com/ktraphagen also spent time with Gabriel, even swinging by at 4:30 a.m. to get him to the airport on time. And lastly, but certainly not leastly, Erin and my children welcome Gabriel into our home and treated him like a member of the family. Erin and Oliver took Gabriel to the "Museum of Life and Science":http://lifeandscience.org/, where the butterfly house made Gabriel feel like he was back in the humidity of Venezuela. As I said at the ScienceOnline2013 Saturday converge session ("video here":http://scienceonline.com/live/?id=31), I saw many other kindnesses among our community. In a separate post, I'll thank many who were generous to me. Meanwhile, I listen. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: An answer to the predicament of Planet Earth AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/11/2013 12:24:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Clips CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Today's surprise announcement of the resignation of Pope Benedict XVI prompted me to grab a couple of pieces of paper off my desk as I prepared to leave the house for work. I'd found these papers a few weeks ago when I was rummaging through the boxes that contain my journalism clips and other writings from grade school through college. This was a story I'd written as a high school senior in January 1988 (but post dated), pondering the question of global climate change. It features a resignation, of sorts. I'm publishing it below as a reminder of how goofy I was in high school (connect the dots: I'd just reread "Siddhartha":http://jz.stor.im/, played "hockey":http://mistersugar.com/2007/05/29/a-hockey-legacy and listened to Sixties music), but also as a comedic focus on an issue that is even more critical to the Earth than it was 25 years ago. h2. The Guru of Mugu January 19, 1989 Anton Zuiker, staff reporter UPI. Mugu, Nepal...Massive tidal wave destroys Tokyo. Earthquake devastates Los Angeles. Eiffel Tower sheared in half by high velocity winds. Avalanche in Swiss Alps leaves destruction in its wake. Moscow buried under 125 feet of snow. As you know, I could list the the catastrophes and disasters of the last week in a ten-page report. Our planet is suffering from a plague which has never before been witnessed by human beings, a plague of natural calamities. The top scientists of the world are unable to offer explanation of this. Even the weathermen are baffled. So, as a very distressed investigative reporter I traveled to this Himalayan mountaintop high in Northern Nepal. Only the great Guru of Mugu would have the answers. I had to consult him. I found the Guru peacefully strumming a guitar, singing “What a day for a daydream, custom made for a daydreamin’ boy.” With fear and trepidation, but more than all an intense desire to seek the safety of Humankind, I interrupted the great and learned man. "0 Great Guru, the Guru of Mugu, I am distraught and I need your advice." “It had better not be...” “No. No. No. I do not need the answer to life. I need the answer” – my breath caught in my throat – "to the predicament of Planet Earth. Why are there tornadoes and volcanoes, earthquakes and blizzards? I just don't understand.” My voice was high-pitched and racing. “Why are all of helpless millions of people dying?” He answered slowly. “Son, do not fear.” “But, why...” He stopped me with a nod. “Sit and I will tell.” It was a command from a holy one, and I instantly obeyed by sitting on a boulder. The Guru, squatting before me, began. “You must understand. Mother Nature, our great life-giving force, was tired. For all of those millennia she had labored for the earth. It was she that sent the rains of the Great Flood. She that made the Grand Canyon. Mother Nature blew the winds that sent Columbus to the new world, she that turned on the cold wave that allowed a puny kid named Wayne Gretzky to skate for eight straight months and improve his hockey skills beyond excellence. She worked very hard, believe you me, and she needed a rest. Don't you agree?” I nodded, dumbfounded. He was silent. I waited. He continued. “Mother Nature had two choices. She could work on, tired as she was, or hand the job over to her daughter. She could take the work no longer, so with a sigh she put Daughter Earth to work. And that's why the calamities occur.” I nodded, dumbfounded. He was silent. I waited. He was still silent, maybe even asleep. “But I still don't understand,” I blurted out. With a yawn he continued. “Daughter Earth was very inexperienced. Her mother, thinking that she could continue forever, had never bothered to explain to her how exactly to run the earth’s weather patterns. So Daughter Earth is struggling at the controls, trying her best to keep the planet functioning. While she learns the ropes we can do little but wait. I nodded, dumbfounded. He was silent. We waited. Perplexed, I whispered, “But is Mother Nature nowhere around to help?” “Son, please understand. Mother Nature, upon retirement and like any good retiree, went to visit her sister, Mother Venus. She recently sent a postcard back, saying she’d be staying on Venus for a year or two. Seems the weather there is simply magnificent. Now do you understand?” I nodded, dumbfounded. He was silent. I waited. He was asleep again. I quietly got up to leave. “Wait,” said the Great Guru of Mugu. “You cannot depart without the lesson.” “And what, 0 Great One, is the lesson?” He picked up his guitar, strummed it vigorously, and sang, “Teach, your children well...” ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bora interviews me about my career, thoughts about blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/24/2013 10:12:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Two weeks ago, I posted my "interview with Bora Zivkovic":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/13/an-interview-with-bora-zivkovic. Yesterday, Bora reciprocated with "ScienceOnline – crossing a river with Anton Zuiker":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2013/01/23/scienceonline-interview-with-anton-zuiker/, in which I shared many of the formative moments in my life and career, with links back to posts here on The Coconut Wireless. One of those moments was this one: bq. My dad regularly took me and my brothers into Chicago to visit the Museum of Science and Industry and to see the Blackhawks and White Sox and Cubs (he taught me how to keep the box score, and always have hope), and his stories about being a hard-working vendor — ‘Beer, here!’ — were often more interesting than the games we’d come to see. Just now, I was rooting through the closet where I keep boxes and boxes of magazines, papers, photos and other stuff from my life. In one folder, along with my Zuiker Chronicles: Anton Edition that I produced and sent during college and my time in Hawaii, was a three-page recollection by dad about how he broke into vending. Great find! Soon as I get his permission, I'll post it to "Zuiker Chronicles Online":http://zuiker.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline grows up, and I meet it for first time AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/23/2013 02:15:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: "ScienceOnline2013":http://scienceonline, the annual science-and-the-web conference, starts in a week. It's going to be grand, stimulating and far reaching, building on the success of the past and with the addition this year of hundreds of others gathering at nearly two dozen "Watch Parties":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline2013/scienceonline2013-watch-parties/ around the world. !http://scienceonline.wpengine.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/test_logo_06.jpg!:http://scienceonline.com On his Popperfont blog, scientist *Dave Ng* posted his "Getting organized for #scio13":http://popperfont.net/2012/12/13/getting-organized-for-scio13-making-to-do-lists-and-some-networking-a-k-a-meeting-wonderful-people-homework/ list of goals for ScienceOnline2013. Others have followed suit (see a "growing list of blog posts, articles and other mentions":http://i8.stor.im/). Like them, I'm very much looking forward to the conference. I was at each of the previous six, but in many ways, this seventh will be my first. From the North Carolina Science Blogging Conference 2007 through ScienceOnline2012 last year, I have been intimately involved as co-founder and co-organizer, so much so that I never really got to be a participant in the conferences. I explored this, in part, in my post-scio12 essay, "Triptych: three reasons for me being me":http://mistersugar.com/2012/02/13/triptych-three-reasons-for-me-being-me. bq. I get sheer joy from seeing our attendees enjoy the conference, learning and discussing and strengthening their connections. But I don’t get to attend or enjoy in the same way. My satisfaction comes from seeing friendships form, careers blossom, conversations start or continue or broaden, kindness amplify. Seeing the many hours over many years that Bora and I (and later, Karyn) put into this volunteer effort, Erin recognized the stress it put on us organizers. She often lovingly asked me, "Do you enjoy doing this? Are you having fun?" She would urge me to track my time so I could really understand that ScienceOnline was a second (unpaid) job on top of my professional job, and that that effort needed to be balanced with my health, work, family and other obligations. Her sending me away for a weekend writing retreat led to an "important personal epiphany":http://mistersugar.com/2010/02/08/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am. "This is my volunteer mission," I reported back to Erin. "I do this because I get immense satisfaction from bringing people together." The community responses to this passion -- glowing and thoughtful blog posts, detailed feedback forms, unexpected thank you notes ("Glendon Mellow":http://www.glendonmellow.com/ handed me a card one year, and I still carry it around with me) and verbal compliments -- have been, well, priceless.

One key #scio12 moment for me: when @lizneeley complimented my writing as graceful. Thankfully, she ignored my tears. 1/2

— Anton Zuiker (@mistersugar) January 24, 2012
My family, like the spouses and children of Bora and Karyn, have given their unconditional love and support all along, and in their own way they have been an important part of ScienceOnline. They stuffed swag bags, shuttled attendees, delivered cookies and "Locopops":http://www.ilovelocopops.com/ treats to the conference venue, attended keynote talks and celebration dinners, and taught _me_ a "thing or two about grace":http://mistersugar.com/2002/05/26/naturally. For them, I made use of the "Duke Personal Assistance Service":http://www.hr.duke.edu/pas/, began to take daily walks, found a more satisfying job and returned to writing in my diary. Bora and I regularly talked about the future of ScienceOnline, and ways to make it a sustainable effort. We suspected that a dedicated nonprofit organization would be best, yet it would take a few years to get to that. Instead of cutting back and giving ourselves a break, we followed the community's wishes and kept going -- and then made ScienceOnline even bigger. "Karyn joined the ScienceOnline planning committee":http://scienceonline.com/they-made-scienceonline2012-possible/, ScienceOnline2012 was a huge success, and the three of us knew it was time to form the organization. With pro bono help from Erin's law firm -- following in the steps of so "many other organizations and individuals who have given time, effort, money and other resources":http://scienceonline.com/they-made-scienceonline2012-possible/ to ScienceOnline through the years -- and "pledges of support from two foundations":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline-gets-seed-grant-programming-grant-from-two-foundations/, we submitted the North Carolina and IRS paperwork, and cheered when "ScienceOnline became official":http://mistersugar.com/2012/11/03/scienceonline-from-mango-tree-to-tax-exempt. That's why we had plenty to toast last week when we sipped our "DIY slivovitz":http://mistersugar.com/2013/01/21/diy-slivovitz-done-good. Still, I've been waking up each morning with a jolt, thinking I'm supposed to be responsible for the conference, the one chasing down the details, the one making the decisions. Then I remember that that's Karyn's _job_ now (Bora, we're job creators! Karyn, you're an executive!), and I happily realize I don't have the chest pain that sent me to clinic last year for an EKG (heartburn only), and that this is the way I wanted it to be. Now I'm chairman of the board, responsible for leading an organization and supporting the community in a whole new way. What an awesome, and energizing, way to start each day. Looking back at "Bora's blog post on the eve of the first conference":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/01/17/final-notes-on-the-science-blo/, I can't help but feel amazed at what our coffee conversation has led to. The first comment on that post asks about livestreaming at a time when we were just worried about getting people at the conference to talk, and now ScienceOnline has grown into this entity with a board and a director and all those watch parties and satellite groups forming around the world. Wow! "ScienceOnline, what have you become?!":http://mistersugar.com/2012/09/17/cheering-on-scienceonline Looking ahead, I'm super excited about what we, the ScienceOnline community, are going to accomplish together, starting with ScienceOnline2013. The eagerness of scio13 attendees to get to Raleigh to begin those conversations and festivities is infectious. Just watch the Twitter stream. *My goals for ScienceOnline2013* So, as I get ready for the conference next week, I breathe deeply and prepare to dive into the event in a personally new and exciting way. It almost feels like I'll be a first-time participant. Here's what I hope to do at the conference: # Say hi to old friends, exchange "handshakes":http://mistersugar.com/2012/02/18/i-want-to-hold-your-hand and hugs, meet new friends, thank one and all for their part in making ScienceOnline such a splendidly rich and supportive community. # Take part in the "discussion sessions":http://scienceonline2013.sched.org/, connect with others in the Figshare Cafe and have fun at the evening parties. Listen more than I talk. Learn and observe. Help where I can. # Find 10 tools, examples or strategies for improving how we communicate the science and research of the "Duke Department of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu. # Find at least three people with whom I can collaborate on a project, activity, or initiative. # Have a ton of fun and "dance Gangnam Style":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline-the-music-video-take-two/. # Beam. With. Pride. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: DIY slivovitz done good AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/20/2013 07:00:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: scienceonline ----- BODY: Bora and I have been sipping slivovitz for years, in friendship and in celebration of the annual ScienceOnline conference. So when Bora came across "The ease and appeal of DIY slivovitz":http://3i.stor.im in the Washington Post last fall, we knew we had to try it. After weeks of searching online for the right plums, I happened to find two pounds of very ripe Italian prune plums in a local grocery store, and immediately prepared the concoction: vodka, sugar, cinnamon sticks, orange peel and the plums, poured into Mason jars. I put the two jars in a dark corner of one of the cabinets. Sixty days into the 90 we needed to wait, Bora and Karyn were over for a ScienceOnline board meeting. After we'd discussed important business, we tested the slivo. It wasn't ready. The waiting was over last week, so I strained the liquor into clean bottles, and stashed them in the freezer. Bora and Karyn returned Friday night. I poured, we toasted, we tipped. "This is good," Bora immediately reported on Facebook. It's quite sweet, but very plummy, with pleasant perfume of cinnamon. Karyn wanted more, but she needed to get back to her office, where she's cooking up even more ScienceOnline goodness. We promised to make a triple batch this summer, and to gather again next month to toast to Karyn's leadership of the organization and, in our tradition, a successful ScienceOnline2013. I poured second shots for me and Bora, and we sat in the living room and talked for a couple of hours. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/212.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The books I carried AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/16/2013 09:55:41 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: scienceonline ----- BODY: I went for my daily walk through the medical center yesterday: first into the new "Trent Semans Center for Health Education":http://medschool.duke.edu/communications/new-facility-named-mary-dbt-semans, where I sat for a few minutes to read from "Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic":http://www.amazon.com/Spillover-Animal-Infections-Human-Pandemic/dp/0393066800/ and then over to Bostock Library to retrieve "Rabid: A Cultural History of the World's Most Diabolical Virus":http://www.amazon.com/Rabid-Cultural-History-Worlds-Diabolical/dp/0670023736/. Spillover is the new book by science writer "David Quammen":http://www.davidquammen.com/. He'll be a speaker at ScienceOnline2013, and his book is one of those to be featured in the "big book giveaway":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline2013/books-at-scienceonline2013/. Another title on that list is "A Planet of Viruses":http://carlzimmer.com/books/aplanetofviruses/, by "Carl Zimmer":https://twitter.com/carlzimmer. I'm reading that e-book on my iPad. As I was walking back through the Duke Medicine concourse, holding those two books and my iPad, I stopped to talk with "Zubin Eapen":https://twitter.com/zeapen, a cardiologist and digital native. He remarked that it was good to see me carrying books. That was nice validation for my lifelong habit of always having reading material at hand, or in hand. One of the fun aspects of the "ScienceOnline community":http://scienceonline.com is learning about what others are reading, or writing, or blogging about their reading and writing. I can't wait to see the joy on the faces as their hands reach out for new books to read. (Kudos to Karyn for organizing such a great collection.) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: mistersugar needs a new design AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/14/2013 11:36:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sometime just before Christmas, I gave up. I stopped trying to be a web designer. !>{hspace:1em}(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/209t.jpg! Back in early 2000, when I was just back from Peace Corps service in the Republic of Vanuatu, I got a job working at an Internet startup company called PlanetKnowHow, southeast of Cleveland. As I surfed the World Wide Web each day looking for how-to content, I listed in a spiral stenographer's notebook any cool websites and handy tools I'd encountered -- my first entry, which my friend, Karyn, will appreciate, was for (the now defunct) octopus.com, with the note "interesting way to customize web content." My early online explorations helped me to start a family website called "Zuiker Chronicles Online":http://zuiker.com (more history "here":http://mistersugar.com/about). Ever since, I've been blogging and tinkering with code. I considered my self-administered web life as mental exercises, but also as a continuation of the Peace Corps tradition of learning a new language, or two. (In Vanuatu, I'd learned Bislama, a pidgin language used among the 82 islands with their 113 distinct languages.) I designed the current themes at zuiker.com and mistersugar.com, but that was back in 2006. As the years passed, and Web design trends showed a lot of creativity and new functions, I filled more notebooks with wireframe sketches and theme inspirations. I especially liked the back-to-basics, simple designs for blogs, often just a single column of text. As I "noted last summer":http://mistersugar.com/article/4753/upgrading-to-textpattern-45, I had begun to dabble with Foundation and Bootstrap. The holidays approached, and I thought I'd have down time to develop my site. Still, I was starting to recognize that my developing style was as inefficient as it could be, what with the way I introduced design elements one at a time. A new year was coming, in which I intend to shift my focus back to my priorities: health, family, "work":http://news.medicine.duke.edu, "service":http://scienceonline.com. I finally told myself that while tinkering with code was a nice avocation, my time is valuable, and I was wasting it. So, I gave up. I turned for advice to my brilliant friend, "Beck Tench":http://becktench.com/. We met for a beer and duck frites at "Bull City Burger and Brewery":http://www.bullcityburgerandbrewery.com/Bull_City_Burger_and_Brewery/Home.html, a Friday evening crowd filling up the place around us. Beck told of her trip to Salzburg and contemplations on her future work. I showed her my design inspirations, talked about the simplicity of single-column text in a responsive design, and expressed my hopes for finding a designer to give me a similarly anodyne-but-crisp style. Beck listened. I explained that I regularly use the search function to mine my 13 years of blogging, and often find essays and anecdotes I'd forgotten I'd ever shared. My style, I said, is one of storyblogging: recounting a current event, relating it to a story of my or my family's past, and making an observation. "What is a blog?" she asked. "A blog is a frequently updated website, with short posts displayed in a reverse chronological order," I said. I knew she'd heard my "blogging 101":http://mistersugar.com/unc/blogging101/ spiel plenty of times before. "What if it isn't?" she asked. What if my blog, after 13 years of writing and referencing and layering, is less about chronology and more about themes, she suggested. What if mistersugar were to be designed around these connections and continuations, listing not just the latest posts but also displaying the threads between multiple items? And something more than the "If you liked this post, you'll like these" plugins that some blogs use. I found this fascinating, and liberating. In recent months, I knew that I was floundering in my web designing because I was fixated on simplicity. I'd been trying to force my blog -- myself, even -- into an envelope that just didn't reflect the contours of my life and writing. Then, the New Yorker arrived with an "essay by John McPhee":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2013/01/14/130114fa_fact_mcphee on choosing the right structure for his narrative reporting projects: chronology versus theme. Just what Beck and I had explored a few days earlier. Beck suggested searching far and wide for a developer who would dig into my archives to understand my blogging history, and maybe help me customize the content management system (I use "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com) to help me see the connections and present the threaded stories. I imagine I could show those threads and connections with embedded Storify or Prezi-like presentations, and I may try to prepare at least one to see if there's a there there: I think my blogging and writing is interesting, maybe only because it's been the way I write my life's story, but some days I fear that there might not be a lot to interest others. However, after 13 years blogging that story, I feel nowhere near finished. So, the next chapter starts with a professional designer, someone who can find the potential in my archives and inspire me to share and observe and connect more and deeper. I'm looking for a freelance Web designer to help me create the new mistersugar.com, a home for my blog, photos, links (I call them sugarcubes) and other details about life as I live it. Please contact me at anton@zuiker.com if you'd like to be the one to help me. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/210.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: An interview with Bora Zivkovic AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/12/2013 08:05:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Penpals ----- BODY: _For years, "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org has been interviewing attendees of the "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com conferences about their careers, aspirations and views on the use of the Web in science, science education or science communication. "Read all the interviews in his series":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2011/10/30/scienceonline-participants-interviews/ and meet some amazing people._ _Today we turn the tables on the Blogfather and ask him a few of his own questions._ _Bora is a prolific blogger, and he's no doubt already covered his questions in long, thoughtful posts on his blog, "A Blog Around the Clock":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/, so I've asked him to provide links to relevant posts. I've also added a few new questions. I thank my lucky stars that Bora and I have become such fast friends through our ScienceOnline collaboration. But, there's a lot I still don't know about him. Let's see what he'll share with me, and you._ *Bora, welcome to The Coconut Wireless at mistersugar.com. I've been blogging longer than you, but you've taught me countless lessons on how to blog, build networks and connect with a global audience. Would you, please, tell my 10 readers a little bit more about yourself and what drives you? Where are you coming from (both geographically and philosophically)? What is your background? Any scientific education?* I was born in Belgrade -- then Yugoslavia, now Serbia -- where I grew up surrounded by artists, theater people, writers, journalists, philosophy professors, intellectuals of various stripes, and "an occasional scientist":http://blog.coturnix.org/2010/08/01/origins-of-science-writers-but-am-i-one/. I always loved animals and nature, but had to learn about it from books, as nobody in the family really knew how to identify birds and insects and other animals one would encounter "when venturing out of the big city into the great outdoors":http://www.lablit.com/article/88. I "started riding horses when I was five years old":http://sciencepolitics.blogspot.com/2005/05/my-equestrian-past.html, and horses, horse trainers, and other people inhabiting that world -- less intellectual, on average, than our usual dinner guests, but bringing in different types of worldy wisdom -- taught me valuable lessons on self-reliance, self-confidence, personal courage, ability to make stuff with my hands out of whatever materials are available, ability to make friends with people of all ideological and intellectual backgrounds, and the value of friendship -- how a small band of good friends, by trusting each other and working together, can "move mountains and accomplish great things":http://storycollider.org/podcast/2011-11-06. Combination of my love of nature and animals, and my work with horses, led me to start my studies in "veterinary medicine at Belgrade University":http://www.bg.ac.rs/eng/memb/facult/medic/en_veterinarski.php. In 1991, after participating in ultimately unsuccessful anti-Milosevic demonstrations in March, and with the war looming dark on the horizon, I sold my horse and used the money to buy a ticket to America. I boarded on one of the last trains out, to London, and flew from there to JFK and then straight down to North Carolina. The war started a week later. I stayed in North Carolina ever since. On my first day in Raleigh, after a couple of months of traveling and trying to figure out what to do, I met Catharine who a year later became my wife -- yes, 21 years together! We decided to start our family right away. After a couple of years working at a horse farm in North Raleigh and being treated as a family member by its owners, I received my green card and decided to abandon the idea of becoming a veterinarian but instead to go back to my original love, biology. I did my graduate studies at "North Carolina State University":http://harvest.cals.ncsu.edu/biology/, studying how birds' brains measure time of day and time of year (circadian rhythms and photoperiodism in Japanese Quail) under the mentorship of one of the pioneers of the field of Chronobiology, "Dr. Herb Underwood":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/thoughtful-animal/2010/06/25/7_questions_with_bora_zivkovic/). I earned my MS in 1998 -- the same year I became a US citizen and voted for the first time. I did all my PhD work, but never defended my Dissertation. Instead, I started political blogging, and then science blogging, while adjunct teaching BIO101 to adult students at "NC Wesleyan College":http://www.ncwc.edu/adult/. In 2006 I joined the "Scienceblogs.com network":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/, owned by Seed Media Group, now a subsidiary of National Geographic. In 2007, I landed a job with "Public Library of Science":http://www.plos.org/ literally in the "comment section of my blog":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/04/24/update-on-i-want-this-job/. I worked (telecommuting all along) there for three years as Online Community Manager, mainly focusing on PLOS ONE. In 2010, after the "infamous #Pepsigate affair":http://blog.coturnix.org/2010/07/10/the-pepsigate-linkfest/, I left both Scienceblogs.com and PLOS and landed my current job as "Blogs Editor at Scientific American":http://blog.coturnix.org/2010/09/15/alert-some-big-and-important-and-exciting-news/), a dream job where I learn something new every day, both working from home in our farmland neighborhood between Chapel Hill and Pittsboro, NC, and on my monthly visits to our New York City office. We launched the "blog network":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/home) in June 2011 and I've been enjoying working with bloggers and editors every single day. *Tell us a little more about your career trajectory so far: interesting projects past, present and on the horizon?* Looking back, it is interesting how my projects gradually switched from focusing on my own career goals to the projects that are mainly focused on building and strengthening the community. After leaving graduate school and the dreams of a tenure-track position in the academia, and starting to sail into the unknown future at the time when blogging was still laughed at, I primarily focused on my own blog as a project. In the early days of science blogging, before professional science writers joined it in large numbers, most science bloggers were active researchers. As such, they had restrictions on what they could do with their blogs, as they needed to keep their careers safe. Out of the lab, I had much more freedom to explore the potential of the form, so I did a lot of experiments. I was the first blogger to have a "blog post cited as a reference in a scientific paper":http://circadiana.blogspot.com/2005/10/blog-post-as-scientific-reference.html. I was one of the first to translate my own scientific papers into plain English on my blog. I was one of the first to "publish unpublished data on my blog":http://circadiana.blogspot.com/2006/04/influence-of-light-cycle-on-dominance.html. I posted my entire "BIO101 lecture notes":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2011/11/19/bio101-physiology-coordinated-response/ that are still, years later, garnering quite a lot of traffic. I wrote a series of "Basics" posts "explaining the fundamentals of my own discipline of chronobiology":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/category/clock_tutorials/. And, through my blogging, I got to publish another paper -- a study done out in the field for which I did not have to get out of my pyjamas -- and then of course "I blogged about it":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2010/02/03/my-latest-scientific-paper-ext/. But over the past several years, my interests have shifted. Instead of pushing my own career as an individual, I am now much more interested in the way I can help build, support and grow a community of people who, by using the Web, spread science and scientific way of thinking to a broader swath of general population. It is a synergistic system, really: as community sustains itself, grows itself, as a part of that community I myself am taken care of - this is how I landed both of my last two jobs (PLOS and SciAm), due to my efforts in helping the community grow. "As you well remember yourself":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4776/an-off-line-event-about-online-science-literacy, after attending the Triangle Bloggers Conference '05 and PodcasterCon '06 in Chapel Hill and ConvergeSouth '06 in Greensboro, as well as local blogger meetups you organized, I had the idea that something similar could be organized with science as a focus. I often have great ideas that alight and fizzle out quickly, but implementation is something else altogether -- it is something that requires good planning and sustained effort. Which is where you come into the picture. And this is why we work so well together - you are always able to channel my wild energy, make a plan, and make sure we follow each step and get stuff actually done. At one of the meetups (at 3CUPS cafe, I believe), you took me aside and suggested we could turn the idea of a science blogging event from just an idea into reality. The following January, the first ScienceOnline -- then still called North Carolina Science Blogging Conference -- was held on the UNC campus. The rest, as they say, is history. The seventh annual "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com is about to start in a couple of weeks. It is going to be bigger and better than ever, with 450 amazing participants, each doing something novel and cutting-edge using the internet to communicate, teach or do science in brand new ways. ScienceOnline is now a large global community (much larger than the 450 who will gather later in January) of people with similar goals of moving science into the 21st century. They are scientists, students, teachers, writers, journalists, bloggers, web developers, and more, and they are interested in many aspects of this, from scientific publishing, collaboration, altmetrics, to citizen science, to science education and popularization, to political action, to science writing and journalism. And all those elements are interconnected and synergistic, so when people in this community find each other and talk to each other -- offline or online -- ideas spark, collaborations ensue, and new projects get started. Bloggers are more likely to cover papers that are Open Access. Collaborations are easier and faster to establish on social media than at scientific conferences. Science writing gigs and jobs are more likely to be offered to people who are active, useful and respected members of the online community. Online activity breeds trust, and everything else follows from there. But even more importantly, ScienceOnline is now an organization under the leadership of "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com/. The annual flagship event in Raleigh is just one of the things we do. "Satellite events":http://scienceonline.com/near-you/, (monthly, biannual or annual) are sprouting around the world (Vancouver, Seattle and San Francisco already did a test-run in Fall, but several other cities are planning it for Spring and beyond), thematic events will start happening in 2013 (e.g, "ScienceOnlineTEEN":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonlineteen-2/ in April), and "Watch Parties":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline2013/scienceonline2013-watch-parties/ are being organized around the world. There are now regular ScienceOnline tweetups happening in several places (e.g., New York City, the Triangle area, D.C., Chicago, Providence, Los Angeles). And we have our own projects, each also designed to build and grow the community, to get people connected, and to produce something of value, from our Scienceblogging.org aggregator (which will see a re-design soon), to "ScienceSeeker.org":http://scienceseeker.org platform -- watch out for more news about its development at the close of ScienceOnline2013 event), to "Open Laboratory":http://scienceonline.com/openlab, the annual anthology (yes, printed book) of the best science writing online. And there is more to come ... Outside of official ScienceOnline work (and my own job at Scientific American), I have recently been involved in some additional projects. One is "Science Studio":http://www.thesciencestudio.org/, a multimedia equivalent of the Open Laboratory, in its first year highlighting the best science podcasts, which is spearheaded by "Rose Eveleth":http://roseveleth.com/ and "Ben Lillie":http://storycollider.org/. Together with three other science bloggers, I am in the process of getting a project funded to edit a book that can serve as a manual to science blogging, something that can be useful to both researchers and journalists if they want to use the blogging platform to the greatest advantage. And I am very excited about organizing a panel called "Killer science journalists of the future":http://sci4hels.wordpress.com/about/, which is not just going to be a one-hour panel at WCSJ2013 in June in Helsinki, but an ongoing project -- preparing for the panel by doing everything in public, getting community feedback, and actually showing instead of telling. We took a little break over the holidays, but "expect to see our activity ramp up soon":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2012/11/26/sci4hels-the-killer-science-journalists-of-the-future-want-your-feedback/. *I'm sure I've bored you a few times with my "crossing-a-river metaphor":http://mistersugar.com/article/4035/five-year-plans for how I live my life. If you have a metaphor or philosophy or goal for living your life, please tell us about it.* I have joked before that I want to be like "Honey Badger":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4r7wHMg5Yjg when I grow up. But not really. Sure, honey badger has a clear goal, sticks to it despite difficulties, and is generally in the "go get it" mode. Useful to think like that if one is prone to giving up too easily. But in many ways the video is opposite of what I think is the best way to accomplish big goals. Sure, a dedicated, focused individual can get honey, and perhaps even kill a cobra. But one should aspire to bigger goals . And bigger goals require collaboration of more people. By ignoring everything and everyone, by pushing forward regardless of what others say, and by stepping on others in pursuit of one's own small selfish goals, the honey badger deprives himself of being able to participate in communal efforts that can accomplish much, much more. So, my metaphor is almost opposite of Honey Badger, and is much closer to the ideas of "Friends in Low Places and Horizontal Loyalty":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2012/05/15/the-sa-incubator-or-why-promote-young-science-writers/. *You first started blogging about politics, but certainly you've found your niche in science blogging. If you had to change your focus, what would we find you writing about, and why?* I quit political blogging when I decided I wrote everything I could about the topic. I find it boring to keep repeating myself, so when I ran out of ideas, I stopped. I still keep up, though, by reading trustworthy political bloggers and following smart political journalists on Twitter. I often write about the new media ecosystem, about blogs, social media, state of science journalism, and have at least three posts taking shape in my head right now (I hope to post them before ScienceOnline2013). As the world is changing so fast, I guess I will often have something new to say on these topics. But one area that always produces surprises, and can always excite me, is science. I cannot envision a time at which I'll think that I have written everything I could about science. Science itself provides new ideas and new material every day, so I intend to write about it forever. *You're known as the Blogfather, in part because of the way you nurture other bloggers, grad students and young scientists. But you're also a father and a husband and a son. Tell me what family means to you.* Hmm, this is a two-part question, right? I think the nickname "Blogfather" is the best nickname I've ever had. Sure, there are other blogfathers. I have my own -- "Publius":http://lawandpolitics.blogspot.com/, who later blogged at "Obsidian Wings":http://obsidianwings.blogs.com/ and whose long-form blog was initially a model for my own, where I started commenting before I ever started my own blog. But I try to do more than just be a model blogger for other bloggers. I try to take an even more active role - discovering talented writers, helping them get started, promoting them until they can do this on their own, introducing them into our community. Some science bloggers now prominent in our community started their blogs on my laptop! When I picked the bloggers I wanted to have at the moment of launch of the SciAm blog network, I mainly avoided including superstar journalists (I hired only a couple of those, let other media companies scoop up all the others) as we already have plenty of those -- I see them every time I go up to New York and look around the SciAm newsroom, typing busily at their desks. About half are exciting but reliable, veteran bloggers who I could count on to keep blogging excellent stuff every week, keep the network going. But the other half were new people I took some risks on -- some of them had written as few as seven, or three, or just one blog post before starting at SciAm. But I detected talent, sensed they would take the bull by the horns and turn into great bloggers and writers once given this opportunity. And most did -- some of them did much better than even I expected. And now they are stars in their own right, getting better, more lucrative offers from other organizations -- which I regard as a WIN for everyone involved: they 'made it', they will get paid for it, there will be more and better paid science writing out there, and I have the satisfaction of knowing I helped them get there (and joy of being called the "Blogfather" by them). And now that the network is well established and humming along nicely, I intend to do this even more -- give new people a chance, both on the Guest Blog and by giving them their own spots on the network. I also started a blog dedicated to helping new writers (despite their usual age, I tend not to use the word "young" as at least some of them are entering the business of writing later in their careers, perhaps leaking out of the research pipeline), "The SA Incubator":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/incubator/, where Khalil Cassimally and I do whatever we can to highlight and promote up-and-coming science writers and to provide them with resources they need to succeed. And I also try to help upcoming science writers in other ways. I am on the advisory board of the "UNC program for science and medical journalism":http://jomc.unc.edu/medicaljournalism, and a visiting faculty at the "NYU program for science and environmental reporting":http://journalism.nyu.edu/graduate/courses-of-study/science-health-and-environmental-reporting. I gladly accept invitations to visit (or Skype into) classes in other science writing programs, I suggest new/upcoming writers as conference speakers, I am always on a lookout for jobs and gigs for them, start projects with them, and I try to get as many of them as possible to attend (and even moderate sessions at ) ScienceOnline conference, etc. And with a few of them I took a more active mentorship role, helping them in their regular, day-to-day grappling with the new world of science writing business, giving them confidence in their work, and generally letting them know I am here for them if they ever need my help. And I do all of this for free. _I need to find a way to actually make money this way ;-)_ I was fortunate to grow up in a wonderfully loving, supporting family. This gives one strength to go out and do stuff, try some risks, sometimes win sometimes fail, knowing that there are always people who love you unconditionally no matter what. Living 13,000 miles away from home was tough. My father died 10 years ago, grandmother nine years ago and grandfather five years ago. I managed to see each of them one more time, briefly, just before they died. But I miss being there all along, being there with them over the last years of their lives, listening as they reminisce about their lives, trying to acquire some of their wisdom. I could not even afford to go to their funerals. And I miss them terribly. I managed to go to Belgrade only four times since I left (in 1995, 2008, 2009 and 2011), but I hope I can make it a more frequent occasion in the future. My Mom visited us twice so far -- in 1994 and 2003 -- and I hope she comes back soon. My brother managed to visit us often back when he was in graduate school at University of Chicago, but his later move into faculty position in Portland OR and then Edmonton AB, makes travel harder, so we sometimes meet in New York instead. I just spent a week over the holidays in Edmonton with my brother, my mother and my wife -- three of the most important people in my life (others being my kids). I wish this can happen more often. The last couple of decades had their ups and downs. Adapting to the American culture. Getting into grad school. Getting out of grad school. Trying to figure out what to do next. Getting into dire financial straits. Getting gradually out of them. Being unemployed. Being wonderfully employed. It is the family that provides the safe harbor at the end of the day, the spouse who acts as an achor, grounding me when I want to go crazy, and the kids whose very existence prevented me from doing anything stupid, but trying again and again, until something worked out. I want my own family to be just like the family I grew up in -- full of unconditional support and love. We always treated our kids just a little bit more adult, mature and responsible than what their ages warranted. That forced them to grow up into our expectations, always striving to be better. They know we trust them with their decisions, so they have confidence to try new stuff, explore the world on their own, and it also makes them want not to betray our trust by doing something irresponsible. They know that they are young and that we are giving them plenty of space and time to explore. We are not afraid to let them try and fail. They can choose a career that is hard to turn into a well-paying job, or they can change their minds on future careers every six months - it doesn't matter. We are always there for them, supporting and helping them in their explorations. Just like my wife is the anchor of stability for me and is my best friend, we also want our kids to understand our family as an anchor of stability for them, their parents as their best friends, and our home as their safe harbor where they can always return in-between adventurous journeys into the unknown. But I don't want to say too much about them - let them develop their own online and offline personalities, not ones sketched out by me. *Each year at ScienceOnline, you've stood before the community and stressed that there are no celebrities among us, that every voice and experience is equally important. I'm really glad you made that a bedrock value since the start. And, yet, in a way you've become a celebrity whom everyone wants to hug. How does that make you feel?* I don't know if that is my temperament, or the way I was brought up, or the result of growing up in an ostensibly egalitarian culture of a socialist country, but I always abhorred hierarchies. I believe that every human being is basically good. Sure, one's circumstances can push a person into becoming unpleasant, or criminal, or self-desctructive, or a serial killer. But I still believe that at the core, somewhere deep down, everyone harbors a seed of goodness. Thus everyone deserves respect. I have a knee-jerk reaction about people having automatic power over others due to authority based on birth, or acquired knowledge, or success in official hierarchy-protecting institutions. Authority, for me, is something that one has to work hard to deserve, by being generous to others. I am much more easily accepting of authority of someone who, like me, has an egalitarian outlook, than someone firmly entrenched in a hierarchical worldview in which the only way one can climb up the ladder of success is by pushing someone else down. I think we can all help each other go up if we all respect each other, learn to trust each other, and work together on our common goals of making the world a better place for our children. Going from being a nobody to being a well-known and liked personality in our circles happened very fast. I was not really prepared for it. On one hand, it feels good to one's ego to be liked and to feel semi-famous. On the other hand, I hate being high in some sort of new hierarchy of popularity in our community. I don't see myself as better than anyone else. It took me a while to realize that being an editor at Scientific American is perceived by some as being in a position of power over other people, especially upcoming science writers. I want to talk to everyone as equals, and do not like when people look up to me and treat me as a person in power. Are they talking to me because I can potentially help them (or at least not tank their careers) or because they really like me as a person? It is somethimes hard to tell. Whatever power I may have that is real, I want to use wisely, for the good. I want to use whatever influence I have to spread the wealth, to help other people succeed, to help make the new science and media ecosystem grow and get stronger through the efforts of the entire community. And I want people to trust me in that, and to treat me as an equal in turn. So, 2012 was a year when I had to come to terms with my new prominence in the community. I did a lot of introspection and had long conversations with some of my closest friends, trying to figure out how to be more humble, less bragging, how to deal with this new position of power, how to behave in this hierarchical society, how to make friends and avoid making enemies, and more. It was a physically, intellectually and emotionally difficult struggle for me, but I think I entered the 2013 year with a much clearer view of who I am, who I want to be, and a better awareness of what kind of image I project. Which brings us to the upcoming ScienceOnline2013 event. As you know, for the past few years, there was a custom for attendees to find me and hug me...and then quickly tweet something using the hashtag #IhuggedBora. It was fun at the beginning. After all, most of the ScienceOnline attendees were my personal friends back then. And I am a hugger -- I like physical contact. But now, not everyone who attends is my old friend. And I don't want the act of hugging me to be some kind of a ticket into the community, or a badge of approval. It should not be a competition. And it certainly should not be a way to spread diseases (yes, I got my flu shot last month, but things can stick on clothes and spread that way). Coming to ScienceOnline shoud not be about coming to see me or you or Karyn, but coming to see each other. It's not about me, but about the community and teaching and learning and doing. So, I am asking people to try to refrain from using the hashtag #IhuggedBora. Good old friends who hugged me many times before and want to do so again are, of course, free to hug me. If you really want to hug me, go ahead, but the event should not be Twitter-worthy. But not everyone is comfortable doing this. So, if that's what you'd rather do, just shake my hand. Or hi-five me. Or just say hello. Or ignore me and go hug and say Hello to other attendees, people who you really, really want to talk to. Let the conference be about the community and what we can all accomplish together, and not about me. I'd like to sit at the back of the room in sessions and just be one of many people interested in the topic - no special privileges. *Well, one of the privileges of our friendship has been sipping slivovitz together.* Ha! Slivovitz is medicine! It helps us kill all the #scioPlague germs we gather during ScienceOnline! It also tastes good. And of course, it reminds me of home, where slivovitz is something consumed daily. ;-) *So, what's with always ordering Coca-Cola with just a little ice?* It's European style. They don't usually serve ice in Europe, but keep sodas in the fridge to keep them cold. And I keep my sodas in the fridge to keep them cold at home and don't put any ice in at all. But at a restaurant in the USA, one never knows if the soda will be cold or not. So adding a couple of cubes makes sure it is at least somewhat cold without the obnoxious amounts of ice that seem to be the norm on this continent. *What aspect of science communication and/or particular use of the Web in science interests you the most? I'm pretty sure blogging figures in your work. Social networks and media, too. You're so active online, and many people think you don't sleep. Is all this online activity worth it?* First 150 years after Gutenberg built the first printing press were a period of intense experimentation with the format. It took that long to get from printing Bibles, church flyers, political pamphlets and Victorian porn, to the emergence of first newspapers and first scientific journals. We are just at the beginning of a similar period of intense experimentation with the Web. Many of us were born before the Web became big and still think in terms of print. We take formats perfected for print over centuries and try to shoehorn them into our web pages. And we are starting with digital equivalents of Bibles, church flyers, political pamphlets and not-so-Victorian porn. So I am "mostly just watching":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/2010/12/20/the-line-between-science-and-journalism-is-getting-blurry-again/, trying to see the Big Picture as much as it can be discerned at this early stage, try to see what the new generations of digital natives are doing with the platform, and how the Web is starting slowly to produce new formats, born of, from and for the Web. I am not one of those people who jumps on every bandwagon and has to try every new shiny thing. But I observe how others use the new shiny things. I read what people like "Robert Scoble":http://scobleizer.com/ say about their experience using new shiny things. I carefully read what wise Web observers say, people like "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com/, "Jay Rosen":http://pressthink.org/, "Jeff Jarvis":http://buzzmachine.com/, "Clay Shirky":http://www.shirky.com/weblog/, "danah boyd":http://www.zephoria.org/thoughts/, "Zeynep Tufekci":http://technosociology.org/, "Scott Rosenberg":http://www.wordyard.com/, "Dan Conover":http://xark.typepad.com/, "Chris Mims":https://twitter.com/mims, "Anil Dash":http://dashes.com/anil/, "Alice Bell":http://alicerosebell.wordpress.com/ and "Marie-Claire Shanahan":http://boundaryvision.com/ And I think I have a good nose for detecting important developments while they are still in their inception. That happened to me when I first saw a blog, when I first saw Facebook, when I first saw PLOS, some other things. It took me a while to get on Twitter, but I never disparaged it or laughed at it like many others did, e.g,. "silly, time-wasting thing where uninteresting people post what they had for breakfast...and it has a silly name, too". People I trust, like you, "Wayne Sutton":http://socialwayne.com/ and "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog/ found value in it, so I decided to wait until the day Twitter became useful to me. When that day arrived, I signed up but I already knew how to use it by observing it from within FriendFeed where many imported their tweets. As I have said many times, "blog is software":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2011/07/29/blogs-face-the-conversation/. A decade ago, that was the only software one could use to say anything online. Today, there are other places that are a better fit for various forms of communication, e.g., YouTube for videos, Flickr for images, Twitter for brief updates and announcements, Facebook for more personal connections. Thus, blogs have become places where people write longer, more serious pieces. This means that the way we view blogs and use blogs is changing. The commenting is changing as so much discussion of blog posts is now happening away from them, on social media. One's blog is now not the only outlet for a writer, but just one of many such outlets, one piece of one's online portfolio, and "one stage in one's writing process":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2012/06/22/new-journalistic-workflow/. Despite legends, I do sleep. It's just that I sleep at the same times others sleep, so they don't notice my absence from social media. One of the things I am trying to do is to get offline a little more often, spend more time with the family, with my dogs, reading books, watching movies, playing piano or guitar, going out to commune with nature, perhaps even exercise! We'll see how successful I am in this. *What music do you listen to around the house? What percentage of all those books lining the walls and stacked on the floor have you read?* Interestingly, each one of the four of us at home has somewhat different music tastes. We have an iPod in the kitchen with an eclectic mix of music we sometimes all listen to, but most of the time we each listen to our own music on our laptops. Also interestingly, I do not have iTunes or my own iPod or anything dedicated to music. I have some old CDs in the car for those moments when NPR is uninteresting (or I've already heard that show before), and I have accumulated hundreds of music videos on YouTube in my Favorites folder, so I sometimes listen to those. My musical tastes essentially stopped evolving when I moved from Yugoslavia to United States. With just a few exceptions, I still listen to the stuff composed before 1991, either in English or in Serbian language. *You've been at every ScienceOnline conference. What's most memorable of any or all of them? How do you hope ScienceOnline2013 is similar or different?* Wow. This is actually a difficult question. Each year was fantastic, and each year was more fantastic than the previous one. How can one pick and choose any particular moment? The first time Stacy Baker's students floored us all in their session? The brief but very passionate persentations by John Rennie and John Dupuis in the same session a couple of years ago? The Krulwich keynote address? The very first time anyone ever heard Rebecca Skloot talk about the subject of her upcoming bestseller "The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks"? The incredible blog reaction to Mireya Mayor's keynote? The look on the faces of SignalShare guys when they saw how much data we were pushing over the wires per second? Or just sitting in the hotel lobby on the first day, greeting my old and new friends as they keep arriving one by one from the airport? Or walking through the snow from Sigma Xi to the Radisson with my friends at the end of the day, talking about the ideas we were just exposed to all day long. With Karyn at the helm this year, with her amazing creative imagination and her attention to detail, and with your calm and steady support, I am sure the seventh conference will be the best yet. I am glad that you and I don't have to worry about catering and shuttle details at 4am on Gchat every night for a month before the event. I may even show up rested on the first day, ready to thoroughly enjoy it myself! So, thanks to the entire ScienceOnline community for making the event as great as it is, with everyone taking initiative to make it as best as possible. *Please share three descriptive words you hope people would use when talking about you.* Generous. Honest. Trustworthy. *What question were you hoping I'd ask you? Answer it, please.* Hey, this was very long already! But can I ask you one? Is this year's slivovitz ready for human consumption yet? *It's ready. And it's good.* ----- EXCERPT:_For years, "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org has been interviewing attendees of the "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com conferences about their careers, aspirations and views on the use of the Web in science, science education or science communication. "Read all the interviews in his series":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2011/10/30/scienceonline-participants-interviews/ and meet some amazing people._ _Today we turn the tables on the Blogfather and ask him a few of his own questions._ ----- -------- TITLE: Ride share AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/04/2013 12:30:43 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: Tonight, I picked up Bora and Catharine at the airport to give them a ride home. It was late, and a lot of driving, but the memory of my grandfather, "Louis Sisco":http://mistersugar.com/article/4606/louis-sisco-1913-2009, and the countless times he came to get me at Midway or at the NIU pond or any of a number of places near and far reminded me of his boundless generosity and never-ending willingness to drive me someplace. I really miss him. I miss grandma and grandpa and the conversations we had in the car, or at the diner, or setting up the Hopkins Park shelter for the Sisco Picnic. Last month, in my "island jukebox":http://mistersugar.com/article/4770/my-island-jukebox post, I mentioned an incident in Honolulu that's spurred me to be a better organizer of parties and conferences and such. But I was also "reminded recently":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation that it was the experience of watching Grandpa Sisco prepare for the annual family gathering (and the Zuiker jamborees in Tomahawk, Wisconsin, too) that's truly inspired me to convene family and friends and strangers. In four weeks, 450 people from around the world will gather in Raleigh for ScienceOnline2013. Most of the organizing duties for this event have fallen to my friend Karyn, who as executive director of "ScienceOnline":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation is taking the conference and the organization to new and exciting levels and places and collaborations. This transition has been by design -- the last 10 years of organizing events -- BlogTogether and ScienceOnline and Talk Story and The Long Table -- have taxed me. The year ahead for me will be one of quiet contemplation added to my quest for conversation. Which might mean more late-night drives to pick up friends at the airport. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pilgrimages AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/28/2012 03:14:45 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: West Side Market at 100 As my blog archives will attest, I return to Cleveland two or three times a year, and I nearly always make a visit to the "West Side Market":http://www.westsidemarket.org/, Stefanek Barbershop and "Lucky's Cafe":http://www.luckyscafe.com/, among other favorite places. I also meet up with friends Joe, Jack, Michael, Richard and John for conversation. This morning, I drove over to the market -- last month, it celebrated 100 years of operation -- and checked in on Foursquare. "Jack Ricchiuto":http://agilefuture.com/JackRicchiuto.html was across the street at a coffeeshop, so he walked over and we walked through the market. I bought a small bottle of fish sauce, three vanilla beans, a loaf of olive bread and a small container of locally made chevre and a larger container of papaya-pineapple-mango-habanero salsa. We walked back to the coffeeshop and talked about Jack's latest book, Agile Planning, and about my changing role in ScienceOnline. I've learned much about conversations and collaborations from Jack, and was once again inspired by him. Checking Twitter, I saw that "Chef Chris":https://twitter.com/CosmicKitchen and "Kristin Lubben":https://twitter.com/KristinLubben were in the market. They, too, are visiting family in the Cleveland area, up from their home in Wilmington, North Carolina. We're connected on Twitter, but had never met until Jack and I walked back in and found them waving at us. (I knew they'd be at the market, which is why I'd timed my visit for this morning.) We stood in the middle of the hall, chatting, as the market crowd streamed past. I love this historic market for its tight spaces that force strangers to bump into each other. And I love social media for giving me ways to orchestrate a rendezvous with friends old and new in those spaces. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Looking for a good medium AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/25/2012 05:05:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In "The end of history and the last website":https://medium.com/the-sea-of-fog/3877ef6d968c, a post over on Medium.com -- the new online publishing-tool venture of Blogger and Twitter cofounder Ev Williams -- Robin Sloan makes an argument against writers designing their own sites, because creating a site to work well and look great on the variety of mobile devices, with their different operating systems and browsers, is tough these days. So, use Medium, he suggests: bq. In fact, the whole experience I’ve just described is part of the argument for a site like Medium. That argument goes: No writer should be in the business of making a personal website. They’re hard to find, readers rarely return to them, and besides—let me just contribute this last part myself—they aren’t even fun to make anymore. So, he suggests, we should use managed systems such as Medium (though only a few have yet to be invited to use the system). I have no doubt Medium is going to be easy to use, and in that ease, ideas will flow. But I find Sloan's argument both clarifying and a bit depressing. That's because I'm still muddling through a redesign of my own, trying to get mistersugar.com to look as sleek as the sites of other writers and bloggers and developers who have simple sites on which they easily stream their ideas. Even Medium is inspiring my design directions, as is Svbtle.com, an invite-only network of bloggers with a back-end system that's supposed to be fresh and conducive to distraction-free writing. A few weeks ago, I nearly threw up my ends in redesign defeat, tweeting "At this point, I should just pay a professional." (By the way, I've put my searchable Twitter archive online "here":http://static.storyblogging.org/mistersugar/index.html.) I may still end up paying a pro to dress my site in a new look, but it's hard to make that decision, not for the cost but because mistersugar.com exists because I set out in 2000 to learn how to roll my own site, manage my own content and design my own look. I want to be making my own site -- I'm using "Zurb Foundation":http://foundation.zurb.com/ framework at the moment -- but I also want to use my time most efficiently, and perhaps I'm at the stage of my career, my blogging and my entrepreneurialism that I shouldn't be spending my time looking through the designs at Themeforest or the typography tips at Codrops. I also have an idea for a small writers network of my own, a cross between Svbtle and The Magazine. I have the writers, but I'll need a site design. Given the snail's pace of the mistersugar.com redesign, it's clear I can't accomplish this myself. Time to look for help. I don't think we should all just flock to big networks and rely on their tools and designs, if that's what Sloan was suggesting; maybe he just means writers should find partners in designers or developers who can more efficiently build the single sites, small networks or large communities we need to share ideas and engage in conversations. I'm an early adopter of both Blogger and Twitter, so naturally I want to try Medium. But I also want to reenergize mistersugar.com and continue my blogging for years to come. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: We write letters AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/15/2012 12:28:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In good Zooker tradition, Malia channeled her feelings about yesterday's school massacre into a letter to a leader: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/205.jpg! And here's what Malia and I wrote this morning in a book of notes in memory of the late "Bill Dow":http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/12/08/2531417/bill-dow-the-doctor-of-local-food.html#storylink=misearch, founder of the "Carrboro Famers Market":http://www.carrborofarmersmarket.com/. !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/206.jpg! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: That's how AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/14/2012 07:10:34 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It happened that way. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: My island jukebox AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/10/2012 09:09:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: Hawaii ----- BODY: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/204.jpg! Twenty years ago, I was living in Hawaii, enjoying my first year out of college, working two jobs and patiently plotting a lifetime with a woman who lived far away. These were four of the records that I bought that year, that I listened to constantly, and that I still play repeatedly. "Us":http://www.amazon.com/Us-Peter-Gabriel/dp/B003YOXINU - "Peter Gabriel":http://petergabriel.com/ So here I was, in a tropical paradise after I'd departed Cleveland and turned back Erin's "Claddagh ring":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Claddagh_ring (making her single again). She'd come out to Honolulu to visit that first Christmas, but then months went by when we were dating others and doing our own thing. When she went to Austria for a semester abroad, there was silence, and the distance hurt. When Erin sent me a mixed tape with R.E.M.'s "Half a World Away":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MLMnpB51vVM, I misinterpreted her meaning, and thought I was finally losing her. Come Talk to Me singed that wound, but also gave me solace, somehow shoring up my strength. "Hapa":http://www.amazon.com/Hapa/dp/B00005B2UZ - "Hapa":http://www.hapa.com/ I was super lucky to become friends with Alicia, a coworker at HMSA, and she coaxed me out to the bars (Anna Banana's and Moose Mcgillycuddy's, among others) to hear the hot bands of the day. But I think I first heard Hapa at the Honolulu Zoo one Friday afternoon, and I loved the music. Now on sunny summer afternoons, I go driving in the country and crank up the instrumentals Olinda Road and Kaopuiki Aloha, and imagine I'm smelling the alluring scent of a lei pikake. "August and Everything After":http://www.amazon.com/August-Everything-After-Counting-Crows/dp/B000003TAP - "Counting Crows":http://www.countingcrows.com/ I decided to have a party one weekend, so I set up poolside with a boombox and cooler full of beer, but, since I told only one person at work, no party. That one pal did show up, with another coworker and a tub of chili, and we drank beer and listened to the Counting Crows. Ever since, I've been obsessively organizing meetups and "salons":http://mistersugar.com/article/3823/salon-selectives and "unconferences":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/anatomy_of_a_bloggercon, trying to live down that embarrassing lack of organizational effort. "Facing Future":http://www.amazon.com/Facing-Future-Israel-IZ-Kamakawiwoole/dp/B00000JFG3/ - "Israel Kamakawiwo'ole":https://www.izhawaii.com/ I met the gentle giant once, bought his CD and will always "cherish his autograph":http://mistersugar.com/article/4629/supa-ukulele. At the time, I was taking a Hawaiian language class at the University of Hawaii-Manoa, and I still have the book, "Ka Lei Ha'aheo":http://www.uhpress.hawaii.edu/p-172-9780824812591.aspx. My brief time in Hawaii meant I'd never be kama'aina, but the aloha spirit has never washed off. Listening to Iz makes me remember fondly those days. It certainly helps that I "got":http://mistersugar.com/article/4680/10-years-in-nc-15-years-in-marriage-20-years-in-love the "girl":http://mistersugar.com/article/4681/sights-and-sounds-remembering-our-wedding-day. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sea food AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/09/2012 11:43:04 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/203.jpg!:http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157632204206203/ Erin, my wife and fellow Peace Corps volunteer, was recuperating in the capital after a bout of malaria when my dad, stepmother and brother, Nick, came to visit us in the "Republic of Vanuatu":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vanuatu. Erin and I took them one night to Harbourside, our favorite restaurant, in a converted copra warehouse serving Mediterranean-inspired Pacific Rim cuisine. From the shop next door, we brought in bottles of Australian and New Zealand wines, which went splendidly with the coriander-crusted red snapper. I couldn't imagine a more delicious meal. I'd asked some of my fellow Peace Corps volunteers if they were up for a trek to stand atop an active volcano. Kevin and Erika, Josh (born on the same April 1970 day as me), Pat and Doug, Karyn and Tom said yes. So off we went to "Ambrym Island":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambrym, in the middle of Vanuatu's archipelago of 82 islands. First a flight from Port Vila in a "Twin Otter prop plane":http://mistersugar.com/photos/index.php?gallery=./vanuatu&image=airplane.jpg, then a three-hour boat ride along the north coast, once slowing down to allow two chickens to be tossed from the shore, destined for a dinner pot. After nightfall in Ranon Village, Nick and I and others drank kava on the beach, but not enough to delay our setting out early for the long hike. My heavy red L.L.Bean backpack strapped on, we meandered along the coast, then into the bush, hours of sweating and trudging and sipping frequently from water bottles. I eventually caught a glimpse of Mt. Marum, one of the twin volcanoes that I could usually see glowing from Paama Island, where Erin and I served. From the trail, Marum looked like Diamond Head Crater on Oahu, where I'd lived after college and worked nights in a popular pasta joint. Before we could exit the jungle and step out onto the vast ash plain leading to the twin peaks, our young ni-Vanuatu guides instructed us to toss stalks of cane onto the path ahead. "Kastom," they said. More hours of hiking, through the cinder sea, toward pillars of smoke rising from Marum and Benbow. At one point, our guides dashed away, disappearing past an oasis of tall grasses. Had we not paid enough to the guides and the Volcano Association, or had our kastom offerings already offended the spirits? We kept walking, drawn to the cauldrons, and eventually were rejoined by the youth. "Mitufala go luk long wanfala wild bullock," explained Kinter. Chasing a wild cow? Fresh steak would have been an unexpected part of the tour package. No steaks, but we'd reached our campsite, they told us. We hurriedly pitched our tents, and scrambled up the steepening slopes for another hour, pausing only to refill water bottles from the tiny spring in the cleft of a ravine. Then, precarious on the lip of Marum's crater, hot gases and steady wind blowing into our faces, we wondered if a day's hiking would really end with a wall of sulfurous smoke blocking any view of the lava below. But, a wind shift and a clearing, and 20 minutes to gaze down on the gurgling, spurting of earth's innards. Back at camp, staring into a fire of our own making, we shared storian - conversation and storytelling - and Erika's bottle of wine. I crawled out of my tent in the middle of the night, faced the rumbling volcanoes, and peed onto the ash plain. At dawn, we began our descent to the south side of Ambrym, balancing for miles on the tops of ridges of a stunning, eroded moonscape, even "rappelling in ad hoc harnesses":http://mistersugar.com/article/3410/climbing-the-wall down a rock face. Exhilarated but exhausted, we arrived sea level at a dusty road. In one direction lay Sesivi, a village where we might find a truck to take us back the other direction to Craig Cove, with its airstrip we needed the next day. But it happened to be Vanuatu Independence Day - July 30, 1999 - and while there was sure to be dancing and lots of baby powder in Sesivi, we could very well be stranded there. So we walked more, hours more. When we entered Craig Cove at dusk, we were utterly spent. Someone sang out for the owner of the guest house, and a shopkeeper let us grab cold Tusker beer (Vanuatu, not Kenya) from the cooler. We locked ourselves inside the guesthouse and took stock: can of tuna in chili-infused oil, bottle of olives, spaghetti noodles. Put together, it made a most satisfying meal. I collapsed onto a bunk and slept. Later, on Paama, Erin was back to full health but still bummed she'd missed the volcano. Our close of service was within a month, and we were planning our return home to Cleveland the long way, with stops in "Brisbane and Bangkok and Bilbao and Bergen":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=696. One morning, with a knock at the door, a man offered a just-caught two-and-a-half-pound spiny lobster, still wriggling and quite beautiful. Erin marinated the meat in lime juice and garlic and mixed in freshly squeezed coconut milk and tomato and onion. "This makes a delicious dish," says the recipe for Koran's Special Lobster Salad, in the Kakaim Gud! Peace Corps Vanuatu cookbook (Koran was a beloved ni-Vanuatu program officer). "I hope Erin's careful cuisine honored the creature's life," I wrote in my journal at the time. "It sure tasted good." *Afterword* National Geographic sent a team of scientists and photographers into the craters just a few weeks before our trek. Read the November 2000 journal article and see photos at "Going to Hell":http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0011/feature3/. See a few more of the photos from my trip to Ambrym in this "Flickr set":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157632204206203/. In early December 2013, astronaut Mike Hopkins "tweeted this photo of Marum and Benbow":https://twitter.com/AstroIllini/status/407629101566947328 from the International Space Station: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Anticipation AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/04/2012 04:41:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Blogging ----- BODY: _In chess, you want to be thinking many steps ahead. GPS helps us anticipate the turns or highway exits. Premier League players pass to where their teammates are running. This post begins to explore an idea for organizational communication that I've been pondering of late. It's half baked. Help me think through this -- add your comments below._ Walking along the concourse that connects Duke University Hospital to the older clinic buildings, I've been fascinated by the "construction outside":http://construction.dukemedicine.org/ (Duke Medicine Pavilion, the Trent Semans Medical Education Building, renovations to the old power plant, and more). Lately, I've noticed that new concrete curbs for a repositioned access drive seem to run smack into a corral holding large oxygen tanks and other gas lines. That seems awfully narrow, I think, but I bet there's a plan I'm not seeing. I can only come back tomorrow to see what's changed. I have to watch progress as it unfolds. (Or, neuroscience tells us, as it unfolded microseconds ago. Read this "fascinating New Yorker profile of David Eagleman":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2011/04/25/110425fa_fact_bilger.) What if there were a way for me to know what I'll be seeing from the concourse tomorrow? h2. Routines, and guiding When Anna and Malia were toddlers, they insisted on being told the day's plan. Their growing minds wanted to know what to expect in this big and dangerous world, even if the plan was the same plan as the day before. Even because the plan was the same; repetition builds synapses, right? Oliver is like this now, asking a question over and over an over. "Dad, can I hold the green Tic Tac box?" So Erin taught me to forecast the places we'd be going, the people we'd be seeing, and the routine we'd go through to end the evening: take a bath, put on pajamas, brush your teeth, read some books, sing "la-la-la":http://mistersugar.com/article/3651/lullaby. The family joke is that I can never remember the words to "Hush, Little Baby":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hush,_Little_Baby. Take a look at the lyrics: that song is a list of what's going to happen. On the days that Oliver comes with me to Durham, I tell him when we're about to get to the part of the Durham Freeway that will give us a brief glimpse down Fulton Street toward Duke University Medical Center. "Look for the "helicopter":http://lifeflight.duhs.duke.edu/modules/lfabout/index.php?id=3 on top of the hospital," I say. For the first week, he couldn't find it. But this week? He's able to anticipate where to look, and he sees the silhouette of the helicopter against the morning sky. "I see it, dad!" As a college junior and senior, I was a resident assistant in the dormitories of John Carroll University. In one of the orientation sessions to train us for this job, the director had us pair up, with one person donning a blindfold and the other person instructed to guide the sightless one out of the building and through the campus. This is a common team-building exercise to teach trust, communication, using other senses, describing the world around us, and keeping each other out of harm's way. "The steps are five feet ahead. We'll be going down. I want you to reach out with your left hand and grab the railing. How are you feeling?" h2. Small just, just ahead I've been thinking a lot about these experiences, and wondering how they might help me be a better organizational communicator. Milestones and big changes and annual events are a must to communicate, but what about the smaller details? Since the "Back to the Blog":http://mistersugar.com/article/4758/it-happened-back-to-the-blog event a few months ago, I've been wondering how blogs might be better used in communicating the "small just and just ahead" -- that is, the small things that have just happened, and what's next to come. At Duke, I created the "MedicineNews blog":http://news.medicine.duke.edu for the Department of Medicine so we could have a river of news to share the activities of our department's nearly 2000 individuals -- physicians, residents, research fellows, support staff, Nobel laureate -- and spotlight funding opportunities and upcoming presentations. Blogs are used by countless organizations, of course, usually for their news releases and product announcements. I suspect most organizational blogs are used to record what's happened rather than what's about to happen, the approved messages or big events. Back in 2005, I wrote "How to persuade a business to blog":http://mistersugar.com/article/3963/how-to-persuade-a-business-to-blog bq. Meet with the CEO or the head of the marketing department and say this: I asked one of the employees to tell me about all the interesting things that happened at the company this week. Look what she found! This is great information, and we could really use this to reach some new customers. It’s fresh and useful information, with a conversational tone, and it really gives a glimpse into the life of our company. And I really like how the talents of our employees can give a human element to our business. You know, this would make a great weblog on our company website. Last week, I came across this even shorter advice: "Do things, tell people":http://blog.idonethis.com/post/21267449208/the-slow-web-movement We know that there's unprecedented access to information and data and sensory stimulation today. But does that mean we have the information we need? Not always. Dave Winer has written about this "time of information poverty":http://threads2.scripting.com/2012/november/movieMonitor. I particularly like the way Dave "narrates his development work":http://worknotes.scripting.com/. As a user of his software (see my "sugarcubes linkblog":http://static.storyblogging.org/sugarcubes/admin/linkblog.html and "Storyblogging world outline":http://show.storyblogging.org/ -- my lack of coding and scripting and server setup skills often makes me feel like I'm blindfolded -- his worknotes give me the small just and just ahead that make me feel safe and guided. As board chairman of "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com, a new and small nonprofit, and communications director within "Duke Medicine":http://dukemedicine.org, a large and complex health system, I'm looking for ways to narrate more. I'm starting to talk to my scio partners and my Duke colleagues about how providing streams of smaller news bits might actually help our communities feel more informed and connected. My concourse walking left me wondering. But, whether or not I know how the service driveway will be routed may not really affect my life or work. There's so much sensory stimulation coming at us each day, and clearly our brains filter away most of the details. Would having more bits of information help us live and work differently? I think so. Would the "rule of reciprocation":http://www.npr.org/blogs/health/2012/11/26/165570502/give-and-take-how-the-rule-of-reciprocation-binds-us apply; would giving more information to employees get them to give more attention to the organization and its leaders and their initiatives? Actively sharing and reviewing and evaluating information about the world around us helps children learn, the blinded navigate and teams coalesce. I've scheduled time in the week ahead to revise my Department of Medicine communications plan. I'm thinking it should be renamed the communicating plan. I'm ending this post now. I'm still formulating these ideas, but the family wants to go get a Christmas tree. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cleaning AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/29/2012 07:36:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Had to update Txp. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: First-class father and natural-born blogger AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/25/2012 08:44:16 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I just left my father at the airport, with a handshake, a hug and an "I love you, dad." In a few hours, he'll be on his way to Honolulu, sitting in first class enjoying a hot fudge sundae and the Sunday New York Times before he works on his legal cases and rewrites a children's version of "his Peace Corps story":http://Zuiker.com/books. During his visit to North Carolina this week, dad asked me to search out the "eulogy dispensation notice" he once sent me (I referenced it in "an earlier post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4730/make-another-martini-tell-another-story), absolving me from any responsibility to stand in front of family, friends and community to speak about his life, because I'd been kind to him while he was alive. I searched through my file drawers and through five binders of letters collected during my own Peace Corps service (lots of potential writing and narrative projects in there, I realized), didn't find the dispensation memo, but did see lots of short notes from dad, and long essays and letters to editors and politicians. This morning, just before we left the house, dad sent a short message to the Zuiker family mailing list: bq. great visit at Anton and Erin's for over a week. wonderful family wonderful children. lots of fun more later. For years, I've been "crediting my grandfathers with the inspiration for me being a blogger":http://mistersugar.com/article/4671/let-s-be-social-together. This morning, though, I realized that my father, with his constant stream of messages and essays and books and calls and visits, shows that he, too, is a "natural-born blogger":http://scripting.com/stories/2009/11/24/naturalbornBlogger.html. Dad, even if I do find that notice, I intend to stand at your funeral - may it be decades in the future - and proclaim your graces. For now, I am most thankful for your present and generous example of what it means to be a man, a husband, a father, a brother, a blogger, a citizen and a first-class human being. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Of the people, for the people AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/18/2012 09:00:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Films CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On Friday, I spoke to the "Knowledge4GlobalHealth Leadership Institute":http://www.amsa.org/AMSA/Homepage/EducationCareerDevelopment/AMSAAcademy/K4GH.aspx, a gathering of undergraduate, medical and law students. We explored social media and how it can be used by the students as they collaborate on various global health initiatives. "Here's my outline.":http://3805.mediahackers.org/socialMediaForGlobalHealthAdvocacy#/ Later that day, I met the Duke communicators at Durham's "Fullsteam Brewery":http://www.fullsteam.ag/, for a happy hour -- I drank Fullsteam lager and ate "Chirba Chirba":http://www.chirbachirba.com/ dumplings -- while our newest colleague, "Audra Ang":https://twitter.com/audra_ang, read from her new book about food and life in a changing China, "To the People, Food is Heaven":http://www.amazon.com/Audra-Ang/e/B0083IOD8G. At home, I hugged my dad ("and shook his hand, too":http://mistersugar.com/article/4709/i-want-to-hold-your-hand), who's in with Dorothy for a week of Thanksgiving family fun. So, Saturday was spent mostly at the stove, "preparing turkey stock":http://ruhlman.com/2012/11/turkey-stock-recipe-classic/ for Thursday's gravy to come. With grandparents here, Erin and I got out for a rare date night. We saw the new Spielberg film, "Lincoln":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0443272/. With the opening scene and it's creative recitation of the "Gettysburg Address":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gettysburg_Address, I had tears in my eyes and I knew I was going to enjoy this story about our greatest president and his efforts to pass the Thirteenth Amendment. (I read Gary Wills's book, "Lincoln at Gettysburg":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lincoln_at_Gettysburg:_The_Words_That_Remade_America, when I lived in Hawaii, and I recently took down my copy, which is still wrapped in the parchment paper I used on it 20 years ago.) Today, Sunday, I actually went to mass at the Newman Center at UNC -- dad thought I wanted him to attend, and I thought he wanted me to attend -- the first time since the new wording. New wording or not, I wasn't any more endeared to the mysteries of the Christian faith, but I was surprised by how nice it was to be among babies and seniors, athletes and the disabled, single students and families filled their own rows. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Let me count the ways AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/16/2012 04:03:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm glad "Barack Obama":http://www.barackobama.com/ was reelected last week. I'm happy my dad taught me the joys of eating a Hostess cupcake. I'm thankful for "Dave Winer":http://davewiner.com/ and "Ev Williams":https://medium.com/@ev and "Gina Trapani":http://ginatrapani.org/ and "Marco Arment":http://marco.org and so many other developers for the tools they've given me. I'm delighted that "Dean Allen":http://www.textism.com/about/ is back at the helm of "Textdrive":http://textdrive.com/. I'm honored to be husband, dad, son, brother, friend, colleague, follower and all the other ways I interact with the world, and I hope I can return some measure of the love and generosity and learning and companionship you have shared with me. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline, from mango tree to tax exempt AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/02/2012 09:58:22 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: Earlier this week, Karyn Traphagen went to the "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com/ post office box, and found a letter from the Internal Revenue Service alerting us to the approval of our application for our organization to be a tax-exempt public charity. Karyn's excitement in sharing the news with me, and then the world, brilliantly capped ten years of building on the idea that people online would want to gather offline to deepen their conversations and strengthen their connections. "For me, a dream come true," I tweeted. I'm really proud of what we've built, and eager to see our nonprofit organization succeed in serving and sustaining the global ScienceOnline community. Start slow, start small, Johnny Bruce told me 15 years ago under a towering mango tree. (Read "this post to the end":http://mistersugar.com/article/3179/a-tale-of-two-deans to get the story.) While the logo for ScienceOnline is an atom, and our "mascot is an octopus":https://twitter.com/scioctopus, the kernel will always be the notion that little ideas can grow into something glorious, indeed. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It's 100 for Cleveland's West Side Market AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/02/2012 09:52:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: There's a big celebration tomorrow in Cleveland to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the venerable "West Side Market":http://www.westsidemarket.org/about.html, a place I visit every time I'm in Cleveland (which is two or three times a year). I wish I could be there to celebrate. Next best thing is reading Michael Ruhlman write about how "he's going to participate as chef":http://ruhlman.com/2012/11/west-side-market-is-100/ at the shindig. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Gold-medal blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/25/2012 09:37:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I got home tonight in time to tuck the kids into bed. Most nights, Malia and I take turns reading pages in one of her books (Beezus and Ramona, by Beverly Clearly, most recently), but tonight instead I recounted four parts of my day, including a "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com meeting with Bora and Karyn, and a walk along the Duke Medicine concourse with visitors who wanted to get to the Duke Chapel -- when they confirmed they were indeed originally from the Philippines, I broke out the only Tagalog I know: "Kamusta na po kayo?" I asked. "Mbuti," they replied. I asked Malia what my four anecdotes shared in common. "You talked with people," she replied. Yes, conversations. They drive me. "Good night, Malia." I paused in the door. "You know, I need to come up with a costume for the "SCONC":http://sconc.org Halloween party at this weekend's "ScienceWriters2012":http://www.sciencewriters2012.org/ conference in Raleigh. What do you think I should wear?" "You should wear your seven gold medals, dad." We're all still laughing about our night a few weeks ago out on the patio playing talk-show host. Here's Oliver interviewing me: I chuckled at Malia's suggestion, but told her that I'd just opened a note that had come in today's mail. "Karen Mishra":http://www.linkedin.com/in/drkarenmishra wrote: bq. "Dear Anton -- I am thanking important people in my life. Your name came up this week and I realized that I would not be a "blogger":http://www.trustiseverything.com/blog/thank-you-17-thanks-for-being-a-great-colleague/ without your initial instruction and encouragement when I was in the PhD program in the j-school....I so appreciate your willingness to help me when I was just starting out." "Malia, her note was a gold medal." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: On magazines, printed and online AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/21/2012 02:33:30 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm a magazine aficionado -- this will be the "36th post to use the word magazines":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?q=magazines here on The Coconut Wireless. And this picture shows just one collection of magazines around the house: Saveur magazine collection When I was a teenager on St. Croix, the rented house we lived in had stacks of National Geographic issues all around, and I wanted one day to be become editor of that golden journal. (There were other magazines, hidden away in closets, that my teenage eyes sought out, but propriety stops me from telling more.) Later, at age 25, I became editor of Northern Ohio Live, an arts and culture magazine. That's where I met Michael Ruhlman, whose career as a writer has taught me so much. Read his latest, a short memoir called "The Main Dish":http://ruhlman.com/2012/09/the-main-dish-my-kindle-single/, which he's published as a Kindle Single. This is a good example of a writer, accustomed to the print-publishing model, making the most of new opportunities. In high school, I was editor of the New Pennies literary magazine. It won a National Scholastic Press Association "Pacemaker Award":http://www.studentpress.org/nspa/contests.html#ypm. In Honolulu, I bought "my first copy of the New Yorker":http://mistersugar.com/article/113/the-new-yorker-newyorkercom-my, and I've been subscribing nearly continuously since, even when I lived on Paama, where my afternoon siestas were spent reading the every single word in the New Yorker, the Atlantic, and yes, Newsweek. For many years, the "Peace Corps sent copies of Newsweek":http://peacecorpsconnect.typepad.com/peacecorpspolyglot/2008/06/peace-corps-dis.html to volunteers the world over. I distinctly recall sitting under the massive mango tree at Liro Primary School, reading Newsweek on the developing Clinton-Lewinsky scandal on 1997. We got over that affair, and Bill Clinton is burning up the campaign trail stumping for Barack Obama (I voted twice for Clinton, and will do the same for Obama). But, Newsweek will "soon cease to be a printed publication":http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/18/newsweek-will-cease-print-publication-at-end-of-year/. For even longer than I've been blogging and talking about online journalism, I've been a proponent of printed magazines and books. Until very recently, I never walked across campus -- I've studied and worked at UNC, N.C. State or Duke -- without a newspaper, magazine or book in hand. But, now, I walk with iPad, on which I can read the New Yorker, the Atlantic, Saveur and all the others. I love the convenience, but I'm still getting used to a completely digital reading experience. As I was reading Cloud Atlas these last few weeks, I kept wanting to page back to reference an earlier passage or scene or dialogue. I'm not sure yet how to do that within the Kindle app. On the iPad earlier this year, I read Doc, by "Mary Doria Russell":http://marydoriarussell.info/. I saw that she's "writing on a sequel":http://www.marydoriarussell.net/2012/10/14/yes-im-writing-a-sequel-to-doc/ to that novel about Doc Holliday in the run-up to the shootout at the O.K. Corral. I'll buy it, and maybe in printed form, if partly out of fingertip nostalgia - my memories of reading "The Sparrow":http://www.marydoriarussell.net/books/the-sparrow/ have a three-dimensional quality, the reading encompassing not just words moving across retina but also my sitting, holding the book, breathing, turning pages, underlining favorite lines. For me, reading has been a contact sport. On the day Erin and I moved to North Carolina, I met two graduate students in the UNC medical journalism program. As we unpacked for our new life in Carrboro, I opened one heavy box filled with magazines I'd saved through high school, college, Cleveland and the South Pacific. Many of those issues had articles about medicine and infectious diseases and science, and so I followed my new neighbors into the medical journalism program at UNC. That eventually led me into "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com, and a role as advocate for electronic communication. When I heard the news about Newsweek stopping its print run? My first thought: I wonder if there's an opportunity for ScienceOnline to create a magazine? In a way, Bora's been proving this opportunity for years with the Open Lab anthology (published last month as "The Best Science Writing Online 2012":http://www.amazon.com/Best-Science-Writing-Online-Laboratory/dp/0374533342/?tag=braipick-20). I recently received the first issue of "Howler":http://howlermagazine.com/, a magazine about soccer that I backed on Kickstarter, and I'm a subscriber to Marco's new "The Magazine":http://www.marco.org/2012/10/11/the-magazine app. My point? There's a lot to read, and a lot of ways to read it. How awesome. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It happened: Back to the Blog AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/21/2012 02:22:34 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just reporting back that we did meet for "Back to the Blog":http://sites.duke.edu/back on Sat., Oct. 13 at Duke University. A huge thanks to Cara Rousseau and Jonathan Lee for helping pull this off, and, of course, to the 40 attendees who spent their Saturday morning discussing the history, trends, tools and techniques of blogging. Fenella Saunders wrote up her notes from the meeting: "5 Blogging Tips For Newbies":http://spotlight.duke.edu/socialmedia/2012/10/19/5-blogging-tips-for-newbies/. Meanwhile, this week Signals vs. Noise, a long-running blog from 37signals, "got a redesign":http://37signals.com/svn/posts/3285-the-typography-and-layout-behind-the-new-signal-vs-noise-redesign, reflecting many of the trends we discussed at Back to the Blog. Here's the Storify for our #back2blog discussion: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Nobel connections AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/11/2012 09:29:48 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I was standing at my bathroom sink early yesterday morning, my face covered in shaving cream, when I heard the news that *Robert Lefkowitz, MD*, had been awarded the Nobel Prize in Chemistry. I couldn't get cleaned up and dressed fast enough, and to my laptop in order to get to the fun of sharing in the excitement at Duke. Since Dr. Lefkowitz is a professor of medicine, I immediately "posted the great news":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2012/10/congratulations-dr-lefkowitz-on-receiving-the-nobel-prize-in-chemistry-2012/ to the MedicineNews blog. Duke University was abuzz, and demonstrably proud of the accomplishment of Lefkowitz as scientist and, importantly, mentor. He's sharing the prize with a former postdoc in his lab, Brian Kobilka, who is now at Stanford. The Duke news conference -- watch the archived video on "Duke's ustream channel":http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/26050200 -- also gives you a sense for Lefkowitz's humor and personality: "If people know I won the Noble Prize, great. If they don’t, I ain’t gonna tell ‘em." That made me think back to August of last year, when I was in his office along with New York photographer "Richard Corman":http://richardcorman.com/ (check out the cool portraits on his site), one stop on our tour of the Department of Medicine. Lefkowitz had us in stitches the whole time, joking about his New York past and the Yankees of yore. "Why are you so funny," Richard asked him. Lefkowitz told us that he has used humor in his lab meetings for a long time. "I tell jokes, and the fellows laugh. And when they laugh, they're making connections. And that's what science is, making connections." That's a great insight. Of course, his Nobel is for his contributions to our understanding of how "G protein– coupled receptors":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/G_protein-coupled_receptor allow connections between molecules and cells, and without those connections, we'd not be able to live and learn and laugh and celebrate a Nobel Prize coming to Duke. Congratulations, Dr. Lefkowitz! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spotting the progress AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/06/2012 01:19:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Back in April, on the occasion of the first anniversary of Science Online NYC, I wrote my post "The four Cs of inspiration: Overlapping networks of ScienceOnline":http://mistersugar.com/article/4724/the-four-cs-of-inspiration-overlapping-networks-of-scienceonline. Since then? "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline.com has become a nonprofit organization, incorporated in North Carolina, awaiting 501(c)3 determination from the I.R.S., planning ScienceOnline2013 and growing by leaps and bounds. See my previous post, "Cheering on ScienceOnline":http://mistersugar.com/article/4754/cheering-on-scienceonline. And, yesterday, Nature.com announced a name change for the New York City meetup and annual meeting in London, now to be called "SpotOn":http://www.nature.com/spoton/, for science policy, tools and outreach online. Bravo. The Web is a great place to be a science lover, and to find ways to say "Let's get together":http://mistersugar.com/article/4697/awareness-of-situational-conversation to talk and share and collaborate. ScienceOnline and SpotOn are two great reflections of the power of the Web and the promise of our shared community. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Update: Back to the Blog is a go AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/27/2012 04:16:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Earlier this year, I wrote about an idea to gather people for discussions about the trends and threads in blogging. I'm happy to report that, with help from Duke University "Office of the Vice President for Public Affairs and Government Relations":http://publicaffairs.duke.edu/ and Duke's social media maven, "Cara Rousseau":http://spotlight.duke.edu/socialmedia/, we will convene the "Back to the Blog":http://sites.duke.edu/back/ conference on Sat., Oct. 13. Yes, it's short notice. But come anyway. Should be some good discussions and demonstrations and debates. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cheering on ScienceOnline AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/17/2012 11:49:02 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: This morning at 9 a.m., the first open registration period for "ScienceOnline2013":http://scienceonline.com/scienceonline2013/ opened for a tranche of 100, and closed soon after. We're 134 days from the start of our seventh annual conference -- we're expecting 450 attendees, three full days of discussion sessions, and plenty of hugs and handshakes. This is an event that two guys sitting on a couch in a Carrboro coffee shop thought up as a rewarding way to gather an online community together for face-to-face conversations. I can clearly recall the night *Bora Zivkovic* and I talked about this, and as I've written here and elsewhere, said at the conference every year and shared on Twitter all the days in between, I'm all the better because of this collaboration and the friendship it affords me. Bora is in New York City this week, doing amazing work with the blogs network at Scientific American, and tomorrow celebrating the publishing of The Open Laboratory, the annual anthology of the best of science blogging that he conceived, edits and champions. What an amazing accomplishment. Meanwhile, there's been a momentous change: with the leadership of *Karyn Traphagen* -- she joined us as conference organizer for the previous two events -- we have created "ScienceOnline, Inc.":http://scienceonline.com, a nonprofit organization with a mission of supporting the science connections, conversations and collaborations of the global ScienceOnline community. Karyn is executive director, and she's simultaneously building the organization, assisting local groups as they bootstrap monthly ScienceOnline meetups across North America, and spearheading the planning and logistics of ScienceOnline2013. If you've been following the #scio13 hashtag today, you've seen how proactive, informative, responsive and thoughtful Karyn is. ScienceOnline is in very good hands. And, if you've been following the online chatter, you know that there are thousands of science-minded explorers, educators, students, librarians, bloggers and so many others who make up this community and thrive on the "four Cs":http://mistersugar.com/article/4724/the-four-cs-of-inspiration-overlapping-networks-of-scienceonline. It's humbling to watch their interactions, and inspiring to see how much they respect each other. Some days, when I'm struggling to stay afloat from too many commitments and projects and ideas that I can't say 'no' to, I think back to a day in Cleveland in 1995. The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame was getting its grand opening, and thousands of us were standing across from the sloping I.M. Pei building on the shore of Lake Erie. Yoko Ono came to the microphone and yelled: "Cleveland, what have you done?" I cheered loudly, because that's what you should do when you're in a crowd that has much to celebrate. So, to my friends Bora and Karyn, the other leaders and volunteers who have partnered with us through the years, and all those who joined along the way and swelled this crowd, I say loudly: ScienceOnline, what have you done? _cheering wildly_ !http://scienceonline.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/09/test_logo_06.jpg!:http://scienceonline.com ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Upgrading to Textpattern 4.5 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/01/2012 06:05:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I have used Textpattern to run mistersugar.com since 2004. Recently, the "CMS got a major upgrade, to 4.5":http://textpattern.com/weblog/369/textpattern-cms-450-released-a-hive-of-activity. I'm happy to report it's running fine. And over at Joyent, Dean Allen has returned to assure us lifetimers that our accounts will continue in a new Textdrive 2.0. (Dean is the creator of the original Textpattern CMS as well as one of the co-founders of the original Textdrive.) In the next week, I'll be giving mistersugar.com a new look, using "Foundation":http://foundation.zurb.com/. I'm also working with "Bootstrap":http://twitter.github.com/bootstrap/ on another web project, and I'll be talking about what I've learned through all this at a Duke WebCom meeting in October. More tonight. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Simmer down, blog AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/24/2012 08:01:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: School starts soon, summer vacations come to an end this week. Overhead, a big rainbow lingered in the sky as Canada geese silently practiced their formations, my children and some neighbor kids racing around the cul-de-sac on scooters. My mother is packing her car, preparing for a move to Arkansas, where she'll live near my brother. Her summer with us was nice. She listened as her grandson, Oliver, talked and talked. And she's leaving impressed with my cooking skills. One day this week, I prepared coq au vin. Another day, poached eggs over risotto (admittedly, from a box). Last Sunday, roasted chicken and potatoes. Most of that cooking was informed by Ruhlman's Twenty. Lately, I've been thinking about turning the heat down on my blogging, for a slow simmer about the rhythms and rituals of daily life, a simpler, thoughtful and connected writing, like the "Amish Cook":http://www.oasisnewsfeatures.com/ and the NYTimes essays by "Verlyn Klinkenborg":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Verlyn_Klinkenborg. It's a good season. I'm living it. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Home again, looking for a home AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/19/2012 09:10:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Travels CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Untitled I returned last night with the family -- just Erin and the kids, no big Zuiker jamboree or Shaughnessy shindig for us this year -- after a most enjoyable week at St. Augustine Beach, Florida. We spent mornings on the beach, and after afternoon naps (while thunderstorms rolled over), went to the "Castillo de San Marcos":http://www.nps.gov/casa/index.htm or the "lighthouse":http://www.staugustinelighthouse.com/ or miniature golf or "Marineland":http://www.marineland.net/. Dinners at "Mango Mango's":http://mangomangos.com/ and "Cap's on the Water":http://www.capsonthewater.com/ were delicious (and see the wine we enjoyed, labels in my my "Flickr set":http://flic.kr/s/aHsjBwE4TQ). The highlight of this very relaxing vacation was seeing osprey dive for fish just 10 yards from where I was playing in the surf with Anna and Malia. Amid the fun and frolicking, I learned that the father of my good friend, Bridget McGuinness, had died. "Jim McGuinness":http://0u.stor.im was a wonderful family man and devoted deacon, and was so kind and funny and generous. I also learned this week that my lifetime web hosting account with Joyent is being terminated. I was the 20th person to pay into the "original VC200 round":http://textusers.com/wiki/VC200, and my $199 has been adequately returned in the hosting I've received in the eight years since (the space and bandwidth and other logistics actually ballooned through the years, too). The parting of ways has been a bit heated and acrimonious -- not everyone has been happy about how the covenant, i.e. hosting for as long as the company is around, has been broken at will, but most of us realize the situation is complex and we've gotten a great return on investment through the years. There's more to learn in the days ahead, but it looks as if I'm looking for a new home for my many websites, and will be moving to a new web host soon. So, I've started to make a plan about how to back up my files, pare my list of domains and sites, and refocus my online activity. This coincides with my active exploration of the OPML tools that "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com is developing, and the Back to the Blog conference I expect to announce this week. This will be a gathering of the minds to explore the trends in blogging. In fact, while I was on vacation last week, announcements about "Medium":http://medium.com (by Ev Williams, but at the moment only a whitelisted blog network) and "Branch":http://branch.com, and a "post by Anil Dash":http://dashes.com/anil/2012/08/stop-publishing-web-pages.html show that there's a lot to be discussed. It's good to be home. Today was a rainy day, but I went out with Oliver and Anna to shop at the nicely renovated "A Southern Season":http://www.southernseason.com/store/default.asp, and later I roasted a chicken and potatoes to go with the key-lime pie that Erin and Anna and Malia made. We had a family dinner with my mother, then I ironed five shirts for the week while listening to "The Monti podast":http://www.themonti.org/podcast/ (episode #38: 'triumph of' versus 'triumph over'), followed by chasing and being chased by Oliver as crocodile or tiger. Now I've written this blog post, and I'll read a little more of the book I started at the beach, "Cloud Atlas":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloud_Atlas_(novel), before sleep and the start of a new work week. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: About the River2 podcatcher, and sounds for my laundry AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/07/2012 10:19:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: "As you know":http://mistersugar.com/article/4747/the-tools-of-persistance-with-a-pinch-of-pepper, I'm getting the hang of my new "OPML server tools":http://howtos.opml.org/. I even found a way to help make them a "little better":http://worknotes.scripting.com/august2012/8712ByDw/radio2TitlesThatContainDoublequotes. Today I started to look more closely at the "River2 podcatcher":http://river2.newsriver.org/#usingRiver2AsAPodcatcher feature, a way to subscribe to podcasts. I can already see how this is going to solve an important problem in my life. Soon, I'll be taking a vacation with the family, and Erin's sure to ask me a night or two before we head out on the road if I can get some of her favorite radio shows onto one of the many electronic things we carry with us. She likes the "Diane Rehm Show":http://thedianerehmshow.org/, and "This American Life":http://www.thisamericanlife.org/ (which actually comes as a default subscription in River2), but I usually can get only one or two shows downloaded in time for the drive. In "my river":http://static.storyblogging.org/mango/rivers/admin/index.html, I can already just click a link beside a latest episode -- I'm seeing ones for "The Story":http://thestory.org/ and "Blank on Blank":http://blankonblank.org/ -- and the episode starts to play in the browser. This could work just fine for most of our drive, but it also looks like there's an easy way to download an entire folder of the latest podcasts. That's what Erin wants as she drives (I'm usually in the back seat entertaining Oliver or watching movies with the girls). Most Sunday nights, I end the weekend at the ironing board, pressing a few shirts for the week, listening on my iPad to stories from "The Monti":http://themonti.org/podcast or "StoryColider":storycollider.org. Fifteen years ago, I was washing my clothes by hand in an aluminum tub outside our Peace Corps house in the Republic of Vanuatu. I'd usually listen to R.E.M. or U2, but once or twice I was able to pop in a tape with a few episodes of "Fresh Air with Terry Gross":http://www.npr.org/programs/fresh-air/, which Erin's mom had sent. Other tapes we received during our two-year stint had dinner conversations and wedding salutations from our families back home. A podcatcher on Paama was little Enna, who stood beneath the cacao tree to grab the cacao pods that Jimmy or Terry would hack off the tree trunk above. On the ground, we'd split the pods, scoop out the cacao seeds and suck the tart pulp around the seeds. A few times I saved the seeds and tried to dry them, roast them and make chocolate from the insides, but to no end. Turns out "making chocolate":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chocolate is a whole lot harder than eating it. Sounds, stories, chocolate -- just a few of my favorite things. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: An Olympics observation AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/07/2012 09:49:33 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As I age, I find it hard to sit down to watch the summer "Olympics":http://www.olympic.org/ -- the overproduced American television version of the Olympics, focused squarely on the American athletes and even then on the shortest of their highlights, is the opposite of my favorite quadrennial sporting event, the World Cup, with 90 minutes of uninterrupted play. Still, I've snuck a few moments to watch gymnastics and some track-and-field events with Erin and the kids, although they somehow takes days to watch the already tape-delayed events. Today, I found myself thinking about the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. I was 14, spending the summer in Illinois with relatives (my family lived on St. Croix at the time). One week, I was at my Aunt Judy's home, and somehow, I'd developed a shortness of breath and a painful chest spasm. I didn't have health insurance, that I know of, and my aunt and uncle paid for a visit to their family physician, who diagnosed a pulled muscle and suggested a few days bed rest. That meant watching the Olympics, with Mary Lou Retton and company triumphant in gymnastics and the men's and women's volleyball teams fighting for medals -- "gold for men, silver for women":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Volleyball_at_the_1984_Summer_Olympics. I've enjoyed playing volleyball ever since, and even organized a weekend late-night game with friends when I was a freshman at John Carroll University. And, I admit, when I "stood outside":http://mistersugar.com/clips/696/from-there-to-here the "Olympic stadium in Sydney":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/2000_Summer_Olympics six months before the 2000 games, I crouched down as if I were a sprinter and bolted for a short run. Because the Olympic games do inspire me, even if I don't have the luxury of being laid up in a bed with a full week to watch. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The tools of persistance, with a pinch of pepper AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/06/2012 10:28:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Teaching Oliver to crush pepper As Dave Winer tells it in "Chipping away at 'hard' -- for the poets":http://scripting.com/stories/2012/08/06/chippingAwayAtHardForThePo.html, I persisted in trying to get Radio2 and River2 functioning, but just wasn't understanding how it was I was supposed to connect the S3 buckets to the OPML software. This was after we had agreed, on a phone call a couple of weeks ago, that I didn't know enough about server technology and so I should concentrate on using the tools he'd set up for me on his server in order to get a good feel for their simplicity and power. But, I've been reading Dave for a decade now, and I see the promise of managing my own content and the tools to create that content. That's exactly why I started mucking around with HTML and blogging when I got out of the Peace Corps in 1999. "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com, the CMS I've been using since 2005, is about to go to version 4.5, a testament to the persistence of the volunteer community that's kept that tool alive for so long. The Textpattern developers and Dave and quite a few others working on open-source projects inspire me to keep learning, and teaching. I thought of this tonight as I made chicken noodle soup, with two-year-old Oliver in my arms (I follow "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com, whose dictum that America is _not_ too stupid to cook: "roast chicken":http://ruhlman.com/2010/01/america-too-stupid-to-cook/, "stock":http://ruhlman.com/2011/04/easy-chicken-stock-recipe/, "soup":http://ruhlman.com/2010/11/turkey-stock-oven-method-2/). Oliver wanted to help, so he started rummaging through the drawer, asking me what each item was, and repeating the words. Rolling pin. _Rolling pin._ Can opener. _Can opener._ Sifter. _Sifter._ Skewer. _Skewer._ (Quick lesson about sharp objects.) Scale. _Scale._ (That one is fun, because there's an on/off button.) I could literally hear his vocabulary expanding, his brain learning. I took down the mortar and pestle, grabbed some peppercorn, and taught him how to crush, then toss a pinch of pepper into the soup. (Quick lesson about rubbing eyes after touching pepper.) Pinch of parsley went in next. The soup was a hit with the kids, so much so that there was none left by the time Erin got home from work. After dinner, Oliver and I laced up our sneakers and ran down to the cul-de-sac to play basketball, me lifting him up so he could drop the ball through the net. So, anyway, Dave called me up last week. He noticed that I was still at it, working through the "OPML Editor/Server Howto Directory":http://howtos.opml.org/ but clearly stumped by multiple issues. He could have told me to take a hike for not heeding his earlier advice, but instead he gave me a couple of hours of his time to fix the server issues, teach me a few things about how parts of the internet work, and see the connections. When he told me last month on our bike ride and in coffee conversation that we should work together, he meant it. From the tone of his post today, I get the sense Dave might have felt something similar to what I felt when I was helping Oliver learn by doing. You've got to read his post, and not because I'm in there -- notice how many other people he lists as having the knowledge and opportunity to teach. Pass it on. Pretty and powerful. And now I have a new set of tools to work with. You can see my Radio2 blogging on the "static archives page":http://static.storyblogging.org/sugarcubes/admin/linkblog.html (that is, a .html page) and you can "subscribe to the feed":http://static.storyblogging.org/sugarcubes/admin/linkblog.xml. I'm close to replacing the Sugarcubes linklog in the mistersugar.com sidebar with this Radio2 feed. My Radio2 posts also automatically go to my @mistersugar Twitter stream. I'm using stor.im as my personal URL shortener, and slowly rebuilding my daily newsfeed interests in River2, as well. Soon, I'll start writing my own tutorials, posing my own threads, making my own phone calls to friends who need help getting going with these tools. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Talk Story to return AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/31/2012 11:11:06 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Short update here about Talk Story, the narrative variety show. Next show will be Tues, Sept 11 8pm at Casbah in Durham (be sure to also attend "The Monti":http://themonti.org season opener that week). Then Oct 9 and possibly Nov 13. On the day aft Thanksgiving, we'll have a LongTable/TalkStory potluck as part of the National Day of Listening. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Still building my web skills AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/22/2012 09:34:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: If you've been following my tweets this weekend, you may have caught on that I'm learning some new Web skills. Mostly I've been getting a new server up to run the World Outline, Radio2 and River2. I owe "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com a huge shout of thanks for his continued inspiration and the tools he's creating for anyone who wants to control their own content. Dave's being patient with me as I fumble my way along, learning about EC2 and S3, how to manage DNS, and remembering to read the "howtos":http://howtos.opml.org/ slowly and closely. Little by little, I'm getting there. My linkblog is "here":http://r2.storyblogging.org.s3-website-us-east-1.amazonaws.com/linkblog.html and will grow, and eventually become the Sugarcubes here on mistersugar.com. My river (the RSS feeds I read each day) is working, though not public for some reason. My new URL shortener will use stor.im, but I've done something wrong and now my Radio2 bookmarklet is borked. But, hey, this is great fun to me, because I'm learning and getting ideas along the way about how to use these tools. In the next few days, when I get this all working, I'll have a place for the storyblogging and Talk Story and other narrative projects (background: "Talk story: Reviewing my decade of narrative so far, and what's next":http://mistersugar.com/article/4733/talk-story-reviewing-my-decade-of-narrative-so-far-and-whats-next. I'll try to chronicle my experiments and explorations here. And by the time we host the Back to the Blog conference at Duke in late September (announcement later this week, with luck), I'm hoping we'll be able to gather others who are using Dave's OPML suite of tools for a discussion about what comes next ("gotta keep Dave busy!":http://scripting.com/stories/2012/07/22/iAmNotBusy.html). Oh, I'm also steaming along on a redesign of the Coconut Wireless (this blog on mistersugar.com, which had its start back in July 2000 because I wanted to learn about HTML and knew I needed a place to express myself online). Malia gave me her two cents on a key design block that was holding me up. And, I decided to use "Foundation":http://foundation.zurb.com/ instead of "Bootstrap":http://twitter.github.com/bootstrap/ (which I'll get to master once I'm in the World Outline). So, more learning and building. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Your compliments make me smile AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/19/2012 12:25:07 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: Over the last few days, close friends have said some very nice things about me, either to me directly or to others in my presence. That made me feel good. My boss told me, "Do more of what you're doing." Her confidence in me made me stand straighter. This afternoon, as I was standing in line for coffee, a stranger -- a visitor to the hospital, who looked exhausted and worried, and confused about what she wanted as sustenance at the moment -- looked to me and asked about my eyeglasses. I told her I'd had to find just the right frames to satisfy Erin and her loving ridicule for all oversized frames I've selected in the past. "You chose well," the woman said. That made me smile. A few minutes later, when I was back at my desk, I felt a bit ashamed that I hadn't used the fifty-dollar bill in my hand to buy the woman a drink of her choice. Compliments and courtesies. They make the world go round. Which is why this article, "The Perfect Compliment":http://www.esquire.com/print-this/how-to-compliment-1009?page=all, by "Tom Chiarella":https://twitter.com/Chiareality/, is a delightful read that will bring tears to your eyes. And, because you are a sensitive, observant and caring person, I'm sure you'll soon be framing your next compliment to a friend or stranger. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Colonel Aureliano Buendia, if I recall AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/16/2012 10:18:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I don't remember the first time I read the book. Maybe it was while I was swinging in a hammock in the South Pacific. Maybe earlier, in between day job and restaurant night job in Honolulu. Maybe even earlier, as a diversion from the more impenetrable novels of Latin American Dictators in Literature, a class I took at John Carroll University. But, I did read One Hundred Years of Solitude, by Gabriel García Márquez, and I loved it. A few years later, I read it again, sitting on a bench across from Arabica Cafe at Cleveland's University Circle, this time a diversion from my editing duties at Northern Ohio Live. I brought that beloved copy with me to North Carolina, read it again I'm sure, and then I was wandering the shelves of Durham's Book Exchange in 2002, holding Anna Olivia in my arms, and a copy of Cien anos de soledad, in some magical, real way, was leading me to the register to exchange thirteen dollars and fifty-eight cents for the dream of reading the original Spanish chronicle of Macondo. !http://mistersugar.com/images/201.jpg! I'll take both copies with me to the beach next month, and try to forget, before I open to the first page, about the remarkable tale ahead. Aaron Bady's "Autumn of the Patriarch, Forgetting to Live":http://thenewinquiry.com/blogs/zunguzungu/autumn-of-the-patriarch-forgetting-to-live/ is an insightful essay about the novel and the important theme of not remembering. It's a fitting tribute to García Márquez, who is still with us, but losing his own memory. For the moment, I'll revel in my reminiscences of the many moments this book for the ages has enthralled me. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Scripting a good story AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/16/2012 12:12:36 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The last week has been one of the most fulfilling of my life. Here's why: On Tuesday, I showed up on *Scripting News*, the blog of blogging pioneer Dave Winer, in the post "How future-safe was the first Harvard blogging site?":http://scripting.com/stories/2012/07/10/aNoteOnFuturesafing.html (which also mentioned Bora, who'd just posted a thorough "history of science blogging":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2012/07/10/science-blogs-definition-and-a-history/). Dave mentioned the bike ride he and I took on Saturday, braving the morning heat to ride the Durham length of the American Tobacco Trail. After our ride, we went for brunch and a long, relaxed chat, one of the best conversations I've had in a long time. At one point, Dave said, "Let's work together." I'm not sure I'm in Dave's league, but I was thrilled by this, because Dave's vision has long inspired me. Just getting the chance to talk with him was cool, and it reminded me that I had recently written about connecting with people online and then enjoying their company and conversation. bq. We’ve been promoting that for years with our BlogTogether events. Social media, to me, has always been best to say, “Let’s get together.” -- "Awareness of situational conversation":http://mistersugar.com/article/4697/awareness-of-situational-conversation (11/25/11) Dave returned to his hotel to write the very important "Twitter is a Corporate API":http://scripting.com/stories/2012/07/07/twitterIsACorporateApi.html post, and I went with the family to the pool for a birthday party. Later that night, at a dinner with BlogTogether friends that I had organized so Dave could hear about some of the projects and interests we have here in the Triangle, I told the table that in 2005, when Dave was here for the Triangle Blogging Conference, he encouraged me to bootstrap the community, and to learn about outliners. BlogTogether and ScienceOnline are just two of the manifestations of how together we've bootstrapped an community. Paul and Brian and Bora and Karyn and Cara and the other friends at the table have been amazing partners in these. We've got a lot to be proud of. Outliners? In the last few months, Dave's development of the World Outline has intrigued me. Then he posted an explainer that made it understandable to me (turns out it has a lot to do with the way I'm always making lists for myself, and rearranging and swapping the items on the lists). I liked how Dave explained the "Let's work together" comment to the table: it's one of the best compliments a person can give to another. That was a keen and succinct way to describe the collaborations that we seek to facilitate, collaborations that grow out of connections and conversations. (I wrote about this in "The four Cs of inspiration":http://mistersugar.com/article/4724/the-four-cs-of-inspiration-overlapping-networks-of-scienceonline) Tuesday morning, my boss handed me a letter saying I'd be getting a raise to reflect my good work. I love my job at Duke University Department of Medicine. Tuesday night, of course, was Talk Story, which I captured in "Some good storian last night":http://mistersugar.com/article/4741/some-good-storian-last-night. On Thursday, Talk Story showed up in the Raleigh News & Observer, in a poignant column by Burgetta Wheeler, "Spoken word, handwritten letters make lasting impressions":http://www.newsobserver.com/2012/07/12/2195115/wheeler-spoken-word-handwritten.html. Again, Burgetta was getting at the very heart of BlogTogether: we bootstrap online community in order to get people meeting face to face, and maybe working together to better their neighborhoods and cities and the fields in which they work. On Friday, I showed up on the popular blog Boing Boing in the post "You are your bellybutton lint":http://boingboing.net/2012/07/13/you-are-your-bellybutton-lint.html. Original Tar Heel Bloggers Justin Watt and Jason Griffey alerted me to my moment of fame. The photo of my bellybutton flora was there to illustrate the article, about research led by Rob Dunn (who happened to be one of the storytellers at Talk Story). Friday afternoon, Erin and I and the kids drove south to visit my aunt and uncle and cousins, who live on Lake Murray near Chapin, South Carolina. They took us out on the boat for two days of sun, swimming, tubing and talking. I was delighted to see quite a few osprey soaring over the waters (Frank the Beachcomber loved to make clay osprey to sit on his driftwood creations.) Here's Oliver with Erin: !http://mistersugar.com/images/200.jpg! So, quite a week, blending many facets of my life: friends, family, food, work, blogging, nature and narrative. I wonder what the week ahead has in store. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Some good storian last night AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/11/2012 11:47:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Talk Story is tonight AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/10/2012 11:50:46 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm gathering friends to tell stories tonight in Durham. "Join us at Casbah at 8pm.":http://www.smore.com/5tqs-talk-story ----- ----- -------- TITLE: One question we shouldn't be asking our kids AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/06/2012 06:09:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In "Spoiled Rotten":http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2012/07/02/120702crbo_books_kolbert, a New Yorker review of recent books on childrearing, Elizabeth Kolbert explores why American kids seem to "rule the roost" while kids in the Peruvian Amazon (not unlike the kids in Vanuatu) figure out early on how to use a machete and pick up after themselves, and their families. While I fit in with my fellow American parents in giving my children lots of space and piles of stuff, I've long fought the craziness of asking kids "Do you wanna …" for anything and everything. Try this: over the next few days, when you are around families, listen to the parents and observe if they let their children decide everything. "Do you want to wash your hands?" "Do you wanna take a drink of your juice box?" "Do you wanna have five more minutes to play in the sandbox?" It seems to me that this one question is an important reason -- or, at least, a good indicator for - why we have ceded parental authority, and childhood learning about rules and consequences and being part of community. Do you want to respond? Please add a comment below. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Two seconds to blood AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/04/2012 12:18:46 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At work today, I made my way to the basement of a building to meet with one of our star physician-scientists. I walked down a hall, then through a doorway, and as I passed through that, a major knuckle on my right hand glanced against the doorframe. I looked down to see a white indentation, and was aware of a warning thought moving from one part of my brain to another. 'That could become a bloody mess,' neuron passed to neuron. A few steps later, I looked down to see a growing bead of bright red blood forming on the knuckle. 'I told you so.' I was "early to the meeting":http://mistersugar.com/article/4707/triptych-three-reasons-for-me-being-me, so I asked a woman in the office for a bandage. Later, thinking about the out-of-body experience of observing a thought brought on by an injury to my hand, I remembered the feeling of the serrated knife that neaty sliced my finger (right hand, little finger, minor knuckle) one day during my Peace Corps service. That cut felt much different than other cuts I'd had from straight knives. For a brief moment if felt, well, good. Two seconds later, I was hopping in pain, and fretting that I'd better clean it fast and well or I'd have another case of blood poisoning to add to my history of infections. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Food trucks, coconut water and huhoi AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/23/2012 08:29:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After work Thursday, I headed over to the "Regulator Bookshop":http://regulatorbookshop.com/ on Ninth Street, to eat a turkey burger from the "Only Burger":http://onlyburger.com/the-truck truck, drink a "Fullsteam":http://www.fullsteam.ag/ lager, and listen to food writer (and director of the amazing "Southern Foodways Alliance":http://southernfoodways.org/) "John T. Edge":http://www.johntedge.com/ talk about his new book, "The Truck Food Cookbook":http://truckfoodcookbook.tumblr.com/. !>http://www.workman.com/is/pshrink/products/covers/9780761156161.jpg! I sat next to Claire Cusick, whose "article about the closing of Magnolia Grill":http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/the-legacy-of-magnolia-grill/Content?oid=3084661 in the Independent nicely captured the local food community's deep admiration for chefs Ben and Karen Barker. After the reading, Claire introduced me to local cookbook author "Nancie McDermott":http://www.nanciemcdermott.com/. Nancie is spearheading a local group called "Culinary Historians of Piedmont, NC":http://www.chopnc.com/, and she told me that she was a Peace Corps Volunteer, in Thailand in the 1970s. We shared a laugh about the recent NPR story about coconut water, "Is The Coconut Water Craze All It's Cracked Up To Be?":http://www.npr.org/blogs/thesalt/2012/06/18/155115477/is-the-coconut-water-craze-all-its-cracked-up-to-be, since we'd both drank our healthy share of fresh coconut juice straight from the round shell during our respective PC experiences. "The best part isn't even the juice," I said. "It's the sweet gel inside." Here's a photo of me drinking from a coconut on Paama Island. This was early in my time in Vanuatu, and recently I'd lost nearly 20 pounds after a bout of giardia. After I finished drinking, I smashed the shell into pieces and then used a piece of the green outer skin -- which Terry or Noel had hacked off with a machete before cleaning the coconut and handing it to me -- to scoop up the gel. Refreshing coconut By the way, the name of my blog here on mistersugar.com? *The Coconut Wireless*. I've written of coconuts often. Coconuts are an important part of our daily life in Vanuatu, and made my Peace Corps service very memorable. Whenever I think back on those two years and those good friends, there's nearly always some form of coconut in the memory. But, when I first arrived in Vanuatu, I was a bit blinded to that. Having grown up with a plan to be a Peace Corps Volunteer -- my father served in the Dominican Republic and inspired me (read about that in my "introduction to his memoir":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4005/foreword-to-step-to-freedom) -- I had huge expectations by the time I set foot on Paama Island: I wanted to learn a language I'd use the rest of my life, master a martial art, make music and cook delicious foods. For some months, I was pretty down on Vanuatu being able to give me that ideal PCV experience. Bislama was a simple pidgin language. Most meals consisted of rice and canned mackerel, or roasted taro and baked yam pudding wrapped in leaves. Music echoed the Presbyterian missionary past. Eventually, though, I opened my eyes and ears to the delights of the Melanesian culture, village life and South Pacific environment all around me. "Listen to Chief Louis Obed singing a custom story":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/index.php?id=3, for instance. Here's one set of entries from my journal that nicely captures my frustrations and an epiphany: bq.. *Friday, March 5, 1999 - Chief's Day holiday* Yesterday, as we dedicated the library (a testament to Erin's persistence and vision), we were requested to attend a 5:30 p.m. meeting in Voravor … which turned out to be a 6:30 thank-you dinner in which the Asuas/Voravor women offically accepted and affirmed Erin's work for obtaining sewing machines and a volleyball net. In Voravor, the men shared with us a dish new to us, rolled breadfruit with coconut milk, flattened onto the bark of a natangura palm tree, cut with bamboo, and eaten off of small wooden paddles. Custom, and glad to see it. It's sad to think that Liro Village is so far removed from many of its customs -- Voravor isn't that much different, but at least they still take the time to prepare their breadfruit this way. As the church bell clanged forever this morning, I lamented how religion is so clearly guilty of the dilution of culture, here and everywhere. *9 March* I should have waited, for in the last 4 days I've witnessed many groups making 'huhoi', the mashed breadfruit with coconut cream. Even Noel called me to his smokey kitchen to watch him pound the steaming breadfruit into a dough using a greeen coconut, speared with a stick to create a handle. So, culture is alive. p. This morning, on my run through the neighborhood still damp from yesterday's thunderstorm soaking, the smell of wet leaves and undergrowth reminded me of fallen breadfruit leaves outside our home on Paama. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A vibe in Cleveland AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/13/2012 11:17:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A couple of times each year, Erin and I pack the kids into the van and take a road trip to Cleveland, where Erin grew up and we both went to college. Sometimes we are there in the heat of summer, other times during the cold, grey winter. This week, we'll be there for a warm "reunion":http://sites.jcu.edu/reunion/ at "John Carroll University":http://jcu.edu. It's been 20 years since I graduated there with a degree in communications and an infatuation with Erin. Things have turned out quite well for me, in both my career and love affair (it's been nearly 16 years since we got married in the JCU chapel). I'll step back on campus with a feeling of accomplishment. As this blog has chronicled through the years, I've tried to make the most of my short visits to Cleveland, wading through the depressing grayness and crumbling industrial cityscape to meet friends and family in the cool cafes and restaurants and galleries and parks that have made northeast Ohio such a livable place. Now I'm coming back to Cleveland at a very interesting time. On NPR earlier this week, "Rust Belt Reboot Has Downtown Cleveland Rocking":http://www.npr.org/2012/06/11/154740024/a-comeback-for-downtown-cleveland looked at the resurgent downtown (my friend and fellow JCU '92 alum, Joe Cimperman, visited us in North Carolina last week and was telling us about some of these exciting developments for the city). And writer "Anne Trubek":http://annetrubek.com/ was recently inspired to create a "Rust Belt Chic":http://rustbeltchic.com/ anthology to celebrate the area. I'm picking up a definitive vibe: Cleveland is rocking its way back. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Things to be done AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/04/2012 11:57:42 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: "Brain Pickings":http://www.twitter.com/brainpicker, a site I've recently started following for a daily dose of interesting links and articles, had a cool post last week titled "Thomas Edison’s To-Do List, 1888":http://www.brainpickings.org/index.php/2012/06/01/thomas-edison-to-do-list-1888/. It shows notebook pages from Thomas Edison at age 41, listing -- under the header 'Things doing and to be done'-- the many inventions he planned to accomplish. We're all the better because of Edison's tinkering and list making. I'm a list maker too. Not as smart as Edison, and most likely not destined for such consequence. But, still, I have things I'm doing. Years ago, I listed a bunch at "Anton's goals & milestones":https://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pages/271306-anton-s-goals-milestones. bq. Early in my Peace Corps service, Erin and I found ourselves lost in the hills of Paama, so we sat on a rock in the middle of a field and chatted about our future. Here’s the list of goals I came up with then … From that long-ago list, "spend a day naked, every year" is one I'd still like to start, and continue. In the meantime, many of the the items on my current 'things doing' list are much less solitary and certainly fully clothed. Yet, they're clearly in line with the community organizing I was doing as a Peace Corps volunteer. Here's what's to be done in the months ahead: *MedicineNews* My day job, as communications director for the "Duke University":http://duke.edu "Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu, is demanding, invigorating and highly rewarding. Much of what I'm doing there is reflected in the "MedicineNews blog":http://news.medicine.duke.edu. *Talk Story* I "blogged about this new event last week":http://mistersugar.com/article/4733/talk-story-reviewing-my-decade-of-narrative-so-far-and-whats-next. Join me in Durham on Tues., July 10, 2012 for the "Talk Story":http://www.smore.com/5tqs-talk-story narrative variety show. It's going to be fun. *ScienceOnline grows up and out* As I chronicled in my April post, "The four Cs of inspiration: Overlapping networks of ScienceOnline":http://mistersugar.com/article/4724/the-four-cs-of-inspiration-overlapping-networks-of-scienceonline, after six years of the annual conference as a volunteer effort, the ScienceOnline community is now big enough that we're forming a nonprofit organization to sustain the conference and support the community's activities. In the months and years to come, I'll be dedicated to building the organization as a founding board member. Luckily, the uber-talented "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com/, has agreed to be our executive director. And the local leaders and far-flung members of the ScienceOnline family are adding their expertise and experiences and yearnings for online and face-to-face conversations. Watch "ScienceOnlineNOW.org":http://scienceonlinenow.org for the latest news, stop by one of the local meetups in a city near you, and join us in Raleigh in January for ScienceOnline2013. *Back to the Blog* It's a really good time to be a blogger. Sure, Twitter and Facebook and Pinterest and Instagram and a slew of other social networks and apps are getting all the attention, but 15 years into the world of blogging, there are exciting trends and threads that make being a blogger fun and interesting. I've been excited to see how many bloggers are using simple, responsive design to get back to the basics of sharing their thoughts (see "Marco.org":http://www.marco.org/, "Inessential":http://inessential.com/, "Drawar":http://drawar.com/). Of course, "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com continues to inspire and innovate (I especially dig the way he's doing threads with "Bootstrap":http://twitter.github.com/bootstrap/ and "Disqus":http://disqus.com/). Using the beta "Branch.com":http://branch.com, "Anil Dash":http://dashes.com/anil/ posed the question, "How do blogs need to evolve?":http://beta.branch.com/how-do-blogs-need-to-evolve. I use "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com, which is seeing new energy (I'm planning to relaunch mistersugar.com next weekend, btw), and Wordpress and Tumblr have amazing communities and so many themes and templates I get dizzy looking through them each morning. It's really a good time to be a blogger. So, for much of this year, I've been thinking that a *Back to the Blog* event would be timely and quite interesting. Many of the bloggers who attended our first BlogTogether event, the Triangle Bloggers Conference in 2005, are still around, and doing interesting things -- "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org, who sat behind Dave Winer at that conference, has become my friend and ScienceOnline collaborator and possibly the world's leading expert on blog networks. I was connected to UNC back in 2005, but now that I'm at Duke, I can team up with my colleague "Cara Rousseau":http://www.linkedin.com/in/carar -- she's the "Duke social media":http://socialmedia.duke.edu manager -- and it looks like we'll be able to hold this event in September. More about this event soon, and contact me or Cara with your ideas. Like other BlogTogether events and the annual ScienceOnline conference, I'm hoping the Back to the Blog conference will be conversational (rather than presentational), hands-on and a place to make connections and forge collaborations. "BlogWorld":http://www.blogworldexpo.com/2012-nyc/ is happening this week. It may indeed be the "world's largest conference and tradeshow for bloggers," but until today, the day before it begins, I hadn't seen one reference to it. So, I think we can offer a rewarding event here in North Carolina. *Great Lakes Food Blogging Conference* My plate is already full, you see. But there's an opportunity that may take me back to Cleveland for what I'd love to call the Great Lakes Food Blogging Conference. You know from my "recent post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4730/make-another-martini-tell-another-story about my friend, "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com, that I like food blogging. Turns out that there are four days this September (20-23) in which Cleveland is going to be a great place to be a foodie: *Mayor Frank Jackson* is convening the annual "Sustainability Summit":http://www.city.cleveland.oh.us/CityofCleveland/Home/Community/ThingsToDo/AISummit to discuss the Year of Local Foods, the "8th International Public Markets Conference":http://www.pps.org/publicmarkets12/ takes place downtown and at the 100-year-old "West Side Market":http://www.westsidemarket.org/, and the third annual Ripe Fest convenes at University Circle (no info online yet). So, why not ask food bloggers to gather at the same time and talk about how we use our blogs to reflect the food in our lives? I'll need to team up with others to pull this off (my college friend and best man, City Councilman "Joe Cimperman":http://www.clevelandcitycouncil.org/ward-3.aspx, visited North Carolina last week and urged me to make this happen), but this could be fun. *About that list* Looking through this post, even I think I'm nuts to consider so much in so little time. But if Thomas Edison can list the things he wants to work on, then each of us should feel courageous and inspired enough to write down the things we want to try to make happen. I'll help you accomplish yours, if you help me realize mine. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Mark your calendars: Talk Story is 7/10/2012 at Casbah AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/27/2012 11:43:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In case you missed it at the bottom of my previous post, I'm organizing a free event called *Talk Story: A narrative variety show* at Casbah on Tues., July 10, 2012. Mark your calendars, and please join me in Durham that night (time to be determined). And, I'm looking for storytellers. Contact me via Twitter, email or phone. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Talk story: Reviewing my decade of narrative so far, and what's next AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/27/2012 11:38:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On my "40th birthday in 2010":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40, I pledged to make my next decade one of narrative. Let's see how I'm doing. *In October 2010*, we held the "BlogTogether Birthday Bash":http://mistersugar.com/article/4640/the-blogtogether-birthday-bash-at-the-casbah-10-19-2010 at the Durham music club Casbah, and asked local bloggers to share stories about what blogging has meant to them or done for them. That's when "David Kroll":http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected/about/ surprised me with the lovely song "Minister of Ether":http://mistersugar.com/article/4649/minister-of-ether. *In March 2011*, I led a session at the Duke in Depth weekend, with alumni telling stories about their Peace Corps experiences. I recounted how my father's service had inspired my own. More "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4658/the-week-in-review-brothers-bon-jovi-peace-corps and a video of my story "here":http://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=n1MI8mq8KtI. *In January 2012*, my ScienceOnline co-organizers Karyn Traphagen and Bora Zivkovic and I invited Jeff Polish, founder and executive director of "The Monti":http://themonti.org, to coordinate a storytelling program at the "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com banquet. The result was a night of great fun. "Listen to all seven stories.":http://www.themonti.org/2012/01/the-monti-at-scienceonline2012/ *In February 2012*, I got a spot on the "IgniteRaleigh":http://igniteraleigh.com/ stage, and I used it to explain why "I want to hold your hand":http://mistersugar.com/article/4709/i-want-to-hold-your-hand. *This month*, I organized the "Martinis and Mentors":http://mistersugar.com/article/4730/make-another-martini-tell-another-story party to welcome "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com back to the Triangle and to learn about the perfect martini and Reynolds Price as Michael's mentor. I recounted an incident at North Ohio Live when founding editor Dennis Dooley sat me down for the editing lesson of a lifetime. I'm bringing narrative to my work, too. We launched the "Voices of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu/2012/05/voices-of-medicine-ken-lyles-with-cathleen-colon-emeric/ podcast just a few days ago. And lately, on Sunday evenings before I turn in for the night, I iron my shirts while listening to the podcasts of "the Monti":http://www.themonti.org, "the Moth":http://themoth.org/, "StoryCollider":http://storycollider.org/, "StoryCorps":http://storycorps.org/ and other storytelling organizations. And this new NPR show, "John Wesley Harding's Cabinet of Wonders":http://www.npr.org/2012/05/25/153299494/about-cabinet-of-wonders, looks like an interesting mix of music and stories. So, so far, there is narrative in my 40s. h2. What's next? Back in 2010, a week before my birthday pledge, I "blogged about the Monti and the soon-to-be-opened Casbah":http://mistersugar.com/article/4619/cue-the-casbah (this is Durham, NC), saying I had ideas for events in that space. Jeff would eventually fill that space for his Monti shows before moving on to larger venues as the Monti justifiably grew in popularity. We had the BlogTogether bash there, as mentioned above, and we also brought the ScienceOnline2011 attendees to Casbah for good beer and readings from our science authors. A few weeks ago, Jeff told me that Steve Gardner at the Casbah was looking to offer the stage on Tuesday nights for spoken-word events. Steve has already had "The Hinge Literary Center":http://hingeliterary.org/ doing their "Mixtape Readings":http://casbahdurham.com/2011/04/tue-may-22-the-hinge-mixtape-readings/, and the Hinge and Duke's Center for Documentary Studies are collaborating on a series called "Professor Diablo's True Revue":http://www.cdsporch.org/archives/tag/casbah. There's to be an open-mic comedy night, too. There were Tuesdays to fill, Steve told me. Here was a great opportunity, and I jumped. I pitched four ideas. He liked three of them, and suggested putting them together. So, here goes. On *Tues., July 10, 2012 at Casbah*, we'll kick off *Talk Story: A narrative variety show*. This will be an evening of true stories, told by friends and colleagues I'm recruiting to the effort (and I'm looking for volunteers). Some will have a thousand words to tell a story about a photograph. Others will tell a story in tandem. We'll have a Tweet, Tweet segment, a medical detective story, and audience participation. It's going to be fun. And free! Watch for a dedicated site for Talk Story, and if you have ideas for other creative ways to tell a story, or suggestions for who might be a good storyteller, contact me soon. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Hanging around Calder AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/24/2012 04:08:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Calder orange, reminds me of Flamingo in Chicago, a frequent stop on my childhood visits to the city. Today, after posting my first "Voices of Medicine podcast":http://wp.me/p22RBr-1Lc, I broke away from my work for an afternoon visit to Duke's "Nasher Museum of Art":http://nasher.duke.edu/ to stroll through the current exhibit, "Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy":http://nasher.duke.edu/calder/. I'd wanted to get back to see this exhibit after an initial walk through a few weeks ago, when I was invited along with other local arts-minded bloggers to see the Calder in the after-hours quiet. That visit reminded me of all the times I had strolled from my desk at Northern Ohio Live to visit the nearby "Cleveland Museum of Art":http://www.clevelandart.org/, where I would visit a favorite Turner, van Gogh, Brancusi and a painting showing a golden wheat field, telephone poles without any intervening power lines and an approaching summer thunderstorm. Rain or no rain, the Nasher isn't quite lunchtime walking distance from my current office, but there's no reason for me not to get over here more often. I also wanted to revisit the Calder because of the memories it dangled in my mind. When I was in high school in DeKalb, Illinois, my father took me and my brothers into Chicago for ball games and museum trips and family meetups. We'd often walk up to the burnt-orange, bent-over Calder Flamingo sculpture in Federal Plaza. Other days, we'd end up at my grandparents home in Park Forest, where I'd meet "Frank the Beachcomber":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html in his upstairs Studio One workspace. He'd let me rummage through the jar of shark teeth he'd collected on trips to Florida, and he'd teach me to roll clay figurines. bq. My grandfather was a woodsman, too (in the 1930s and ‘40s, he wrote about hunting and fishing for magazines such as Field & Stream), and his love of wildlife came through in his crafts. I loved his mobiles, simple and unique, clay Canada geese hanging from a piece of driftwood. One day up in Studio One, before I was a teenager, he showed me how to take a piece of modeling clay, to roll it and shape it into a bird’s form. His fingers touched the birds lovingly. His eyes sparkled with memories of formations of geese banking overhead. ("In the woods, 3/6/2002":http://mistersugar.com/article/3666/in-the-woods) Did grandpa talk about Calder's influence on him? I forget. But Calder invented the mobile, and as the Nasher exhibit shows, and Frank's driftwood-and-geese mobiles attest, artists and craftsmen and children alike have been inspired to balance objects from above. (As a boy, I'd hung a toy "Vought F4U Corsair":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vought_F4U_Corsair from the ceiling above my bed.) I'm glad I came back today, because the air currents in the Nasher are more active, caressing the Calder mobiles. That gentle movement, and the creative platforms beneath each piece (designed by the curators here), and the shadows doppling the grey walls, have made for an enjoyable mid-day break. _Alexander Calder and Contemporary Art: Form, Balance, Joy will be at the Nasher through June 17, 2012. See photos of the pieces in the show at "nasher.duke.edu/calder/images.php":http://nasher.duke.edu/calder/images.php, and hang something fun at your home soon._ … As much as I like the delicate Calder pieces, I most enjoyed this mirthful-but-blue scene by *Nathan Carter* called "Traveling language machine with #3 frequency disruptor and disinformation numbers station." Traveling language machine with #3 frequency disruptor and disinformation numbers station (Nathan Carter) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: After a fashion AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/23/2012 10:04:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: Last night, while I waited for Erin to return from a night out with friends at the movies, I watched the season finale of "Glee":http://www.fox.com/glee/. I watched it again tonight with Anna and Malia, who were intrigued about the idea of graduating from high school and who had to say goodbye to whom. Each of the main characters gets a short voiceover to reminisce about the distances they've come during their four years. Kurt uses his to express pride in bringing fashion, and acceptance, to McKinley High School. I can't say that I had the same effect at changing hearts and minds among my fellow students, but I can say with certainty that I was not the most fashionable student at DeKalb High School. Yet, for my graduation party, I collaborated with my father to have a faux-fashion show in the garage, my family and friends seated around as dad announced each change of outfit and explained their significance for a young man setting out from his home, off to college, sure to travel the world, maybe to fall in love and have a family. I just dug out a couple of photos from that day. They're too blurry and dark to scan and post here. In one, I'm wearing the college outfit -- white shirt and bow tie, slacks and a cloth belt, friendship bracelet, blazer slung over my shoulder -- and gazing directly at the camera. I was ready to say my goodbyes and head off to "John Carroll University":http://jcu.edu (where I'll return in a few weeks to celebrate a 20-year reunion). My high school years were four wonderful years. Obviously, 20 years out of college means high school was a long time ago. But my memories of that time are strong, and, yes, gleeful. Last week, with the season's first sweet corn on the table, I mentioned to Anna and Malia that I'd been DeKalb's Corn Fest King. They wanted to know if I'd worn a crown -- nope, just some lemon leaves -- but I grabbed my senior yearbook and turned to the page showing me as Homecoming king. There were other mentions of my accomplishments, but the most important pages were those at the back of the book, filled with the farewell notes and doodles and autographs of my friends. In the end, its the friendships we fashion, whether in high school, college, Peace Corps or the overlapping networks of social media, that should give us something to sing about. _Read this "2005 post":http://mistersugar.com/article/3901/heartland-homeland about an essay by Calvin Trillin with his observations of my home town and county._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Your 5-minute, 5-day orientation to Twitter AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/21/2012 03:28:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At a party this weekend, an acquaintance admitted she still didn't know how best to use "Twitter":http://twitter.com, even though her publisher was going to expect her to mount a full-fledged social media effort to promote her next book. Any suggestions for absorbing the possibilities of Twitter? she asked. Yes, I said. Just commit to five minutes a day for the next five days, and follow this schedule: *Minute 1: Read* Sign into Twitter. You should see a column of tweets by the people you are already following. (If you have an account but few that you are following, use the search at top of the screen to search for a topic of your choosing -- I'd go for 'chocolate' myself). Scroll, scan, skim, read. Get a sense for what your friends and professional colleagues are sharing. It might be *something new* (e.g., a new article or photo that person has posted online), *something recommended* (e.g., breaking news, a funny video, a get-rich-quick scheme) or *something personal* (e.g., just ate chocolate, just dreamed about chocolate, just covered my lover in chocolate). [Those three somethings sound familiar? They're the components of the internet, after all. "Read more.":http://www.unc.edu/~zuiker/blogging101/] Oh, and this might help: * *RT = retweet.* The person is echoing someone else's tweet. This is the power of Twitter, which is really a global overlapping of personal networks. It's how information or links or memes go viral, by bouncing from one network to another. * *MT also means retweet*, but the person has made a few edits to make room (Twitter limits a tweet to 140 characters, after all). * .@mistersugar (a period before the at symbol) is a way to trick Twitter to show the tweet to everyone in your network. Otherwise, Twitter will just show a tweet that starts with someone's handle (@mistersugar is me) to only the people in your network who already follow me. *Minute 2: Retweet* Ok, you've read the river of news (information flowing in reverse chronological order) for the first minute. Now, find a tweet you just read and liked. Retweet it, which shares the tweet with people following you. Hover your cursor over the tweet, and you should see Retweet appear. Click on that. A popup window will show a blue button. Click it. That was fast. You probably have 45 seconds to retweet a few more. There's an ongoing debate about whether retweeting means you are endorsing the information or sentiment or opinion in that tweet. Not sure we'll ever end this debate, but generally you should retweet something that you want to share with your network. Might be something you agree with, or something you want to challenge others. If you're interested in it, retweet it. While you're reading the tweets of your network, you'll notice a lot of retweets of people you don't know or follow. Eventually, you'll see how easy it is to click on a name to learn more about that person, see a few of his/her latest tweets, and decide if you want to follow that person. *Minute 3: Reply* Time now to *reply*. This is where you answer someone. This is conversation, and you do it every day verbally, nonverbally, via email and other technology. This is what most intrigues me about social media, for when we can use our connections to have conversations, we're well on our way to forming collaborations and cementing community. By now, Twitter is probably telling you, at the top of the window, that there are a few more -- or a hundred more -- tweets ready to float onto your screen. I'm seeing 53 in my screen right now. Click on that message, and the new tweets will appear. Scan them. Find a tweet that poses a question, or makes an assertion. Hover over the tweet, find the Reply link, and click that. A popup window will appear, and give you a place to write your reply. Notice Twitter has included the @ name(s) of your connection and anyone else that was mentioned in the tweet. This means you'll have less than 140 characters for your message, but I know you can find a short way to reply. Remember, you're having a conversation now. Be polite, and be constructive. Ok, you've replied. How's your time? If you've got 30 seconds, click on the @Connect link in the black menubar at the top of the window. This will take you to a list of the tweets that previously have mentioned you or replied to one of your previous tweets. Reply to one of these. That's how conversation works - give and take, speak and listen, give and get. *Minute 4: Direct message* So, everything you've done now has been in public, like eavesdropping and engaging in conversation in a big tent where your cousin is getting married (unfortunately, I can't attend my cousin Jenny's wedding next month in Colorado, where the entire Zuiker clan is gathering). Twitter also provides a way to have a one-on-one conversation. This is called direct messaging. In the menubar at the top of the window, find the human profile just to the left of the search field. Click on the profile and select 'Direct messages'. A popup window will show you messages sent to you -- only people who you follow can send you direct messages -- and show you a 'New message' button. Click on that and the window changes, with a space to indicate who you are messaging, and a place to type your message. Send one of your contacts a message, even if it's just, "I'm really glad to know you." Everyone likes a compliment and to be appreciated, "especially when they're still alive":http://mistersugar.com/article/4730/make-another-martini-tell-another-story. Twitter's direct messaging is very convenient. I used it the day Erin ended up in the emergency room and I "suddenly needed the help of my community":http://mistersugar.com/article/4592/staph-stalls-settling-down. But, you must concentrate when you are sending a direct message. Lots of us have been embarrassed when a personal message has instead been posted publicly. *Minute 5: Share your own* The final minute is all yours. Go back to the Twitter Home screen and in the left column, find the field that says 'Compose a new Tweet…'. Share something with your network and the world (overlapping networks, remember). Something new, something recommended or something personal. Start a conversation. Did it? You're done for the day. Come back tomorrow, and run through your five minutes. Do this five days straight. You'll either be hooked, or realize that the other tools, methods and activities in your life are higher in priority. That's ok. For me, chocolate always come before Twitter. h2. Bonus For best practices in the category of promoting your own book through social media connections, conversations and collaborations, see "Rebecca Skloot":http://rebeccaskloot.com/ and "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com/. _Note that Twitter will most likely change the user interface of its site, and many Twitter clients have different ways of showing the various functions and tools. So, many of the descriptions above may get out of date. I'll try to keep them somewhat current. When in doubt, find someone nearby who knows Twitter, offer to buy them a cup of coffee, and sit down together to have a conversation._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Make another martini, tell another story AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/18/2012 04:45:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: Penpals ----- BODY: Wednesday's "martinis-and-mentors party":http://mistersugar.com/article/4729/martinis-mentors-drinks-stories-with-michael-ruhlman-5-16-2012 was a blast, and went just the way I had hoped it would, with tasty barbecue prepared by our host, "Jason Roberts":http://politicalscience.unc.edu/people/faculty/faculty-directory-a-c/jason-roberts, perfect martinis, great conversation among the 30 friends and guests, and stories from our visiting star, "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com, and others. Michael was in town for a celebration of the life and memoirs of his mentor, the writer Reynolds Price. Holding a stack of letters that Reynolds had written to him, Michael read one four-page letter that was filled with intricate phrases and simple, powerful advice. I hope Michael finds a way to share his correspondence with Reynolds with the world -- it's sure to be an instructive and loving look into mentorship, friendship, writing. We then had stories about mentors from Jason (college professor), "David Thomas":http://www.dbthomas.com/ (editors), "Stephen Jenkins":https://twitter.com/#!/cloudcity (college professor), "Rose Hoban":https://twitter.com/#!/rosehoban (grad school professor) and Dean McCord (Dean Smith). Jeff Polish, who usually is impresario of "The Monti":http://mistersugar.com/article/4205/sit-down-and-share, recounted his experience prepping Elizabeth Edwards for her "Monti story":http://www.themonti.org/storytellers/elizabeth-edwards (my blog post about my 5 minutes with Edwards is "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4205/sit-down-and-share). When we were finished, Michael wrapped up with this: "We all have someone who made a difference in our lives. Tell them about it, while they are alive." Once, after I'd published my "father's Peace Corps memoir":http://mistersugar.com/article/4007/step-to-freedom, dad sent me a message that said, "At my funeral, all you need to do is stand up and say, 'I told him what he meant to me when he was alive.'" Yesterday, my friend Beck Tench let me know this:

I wonder if @mistersugar knows how good it feels to know that he believes in you?

— Beck Tench (@10ch) May 17, 2012
And here's what Michael had to say about the party:

@mistersugar that was a grt evening. Like the salons of old. You made it new!

— ruhlman (@ruhlman) May 17, 2012
----- ----- -------- TITLE: Martinis & Mentors - drinks & stories with Michael Ruhlman - 5/16/2012 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/06/2012 06:46:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com DM'd me recently to say he'd be back in North Carolina to attend "From A Long and Happy Life to Midstream: Reading and Celebrating the Works of Reynolds Price":http://bit.ly/IOowtM at Duke University on May 15. Would I want to get some local foodies together for another event? Of course. Back in November when Michael was here, "Andrea Reusing":http://www.andreareusing.com/ hosted and prepared an "amazing multi-course dinner":http://lanternrestaurant.com/menus/michael_ruhlman.html at her Chapel Hill restaurant, "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com/. Michael wrote about his visit and that dinner in his post, "Book Tour Blessings":http://ruhlman.com/2011/11/book-tour-blessing/. This time, I thought, we'd do something a bit simpler. Michael has been blogging about cocktails on Fridays, including "The Manhattan":http://ruhlman.com/2012/04/classic-manhattan-recipe/ and "The Perfect Martini":http://ruhlman.com/2012/04/the-perfect-martini/. (My friend, Ilina Ewen, also blogs about cocktails in her 5:00 Fridays posts on "Dirt & Noise":http://www.dirtandnoise.com/.) Michael also had an inspiring post about teaching his son to cook, "Chicken Curry: Teach Kids to Cook":http://ruhlman.com/2012/04/easy-chicken-curry-recipe/. I've had a total of one martini in my life, and that one not very good. Like Michael, I've had mentors who have helped me become the writer and person I am today (explored in my "recent post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4707/triptych-three-reasons-for-me-being-me). And, just today Malia was at my side learning to make strawberry jam. So, why not a Martinis & Mentors event, to mix some drinks and share our stories about the mentors in our lives? *That's just what we'll do on Wed., May 16 from 7:30 p.m. on at the home of my neighbor, "Jason Roberts":http://politicalscience.unc.edu/people/faculty/faculty-directory-a-c/jason-roberts* (a Ruhlman fan, too). We'll have space for 40 or so, and are asking for $20 per person to cover the cost of the martini mixings and appetizers (perhaps something from "Ruhlman's Twenty":http://ruhlman.com/my-books/ or another of Michael's books about chefs, restaurants and good eating). Join us! Register now (popup form) form. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A life boat would do AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/04/2012 08:49:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: Housecalls ----- BODY: My work at Duke finished for the week, I pulled into nearby "Waller Family Farm":http://www.wallerfamilyfarm.com/Site/Welcome.html to pick another bucket of strawberries. On the radio, "SiriusXM channel 33 - 1st Wave":http://www.siriusxm.com/1stwave, "She Blinded Me with Science":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/She_Blinded_Me_with_Science by "Thomas Dolby":http://www.thomasdolby.com/ came to an end, and DJ Richard Blade mentioned that Dolby had recently been on the radio talking about his home in East Anglia, where he had placed an old lifeboat in his yard, the lifeboat outfitted as a recording studio powered by wind and sun. Given my "lifelong desire to park a decommissioned submarine in my own backyard":http://mistersugar.com/article/3172/playing-for-honor, I was delighted by the story. Read about Dolby's lifeboat-studio in "this Treehugger post":http://www.treehugger.com/green-home/thomas-dolbys-sun-and-wind-powered-musical-lifeboat.html. And, I now know that Dolby is connected to "TED":http://ted.com, for which he serves as musical director. Maybe we can invite him to "ScienceOnline2013":http://scienceonline2013.com to talk about his hit song, lifeboat and more. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Knowing when to listen AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/04/2012 04:48:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's my "decade for narrative":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40, and I see stories all around me. Yesterday, I learned a lesson. I was walking back from a meeting across campus, and I came upon *Irving Holley*, emeritus professor of history. Normally, he's walking and talking with another gentleman, a librarian, and I catch a snippet of their conversations as I stride swiftly past. Once, I stopped and asked them who they were and why they were always talking about the past. Yesterday, Holley was walking alone, slowly making his way down the long, "new concourse":http://construction.dukemedicine.org/news/new-concourse-connects-duke-hospital-and-duke-clinic that connects the buildings of Duke University Hospital. I pulled up to him, and asked if I could join him. Together we ambled along, he using a cane and me enjoying the relaxed pace so I could listen to his recollections and sage advice, including "Stay away from old age as long as you can." Holley is 93, and still writing. When I parted ways at the hospital cafeteria, I'd realized my lesson: never walk past a story. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Come back, but silently AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/04/2012 04:29:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: This summer, I'll be headed back to "John Carroll University":http://www.jcu.edu for a reunion of the Class of 1992. It's been 20 years since I graduated with a degree in communications, ending a very enjoyable four years in suburban Cleveland. As I was preparing then to move far away to Hawaii -- to hang out with my dad, learn to surf and work to pay off my student loans (just $5,000) -- a mentor said to me, "Anton, don't forget, you can always come back." That advice meant more than just returning to JCU. It was really a lesson in empowerment, a reminder that I didn't need to feel stuck anywhere. And so when my loans were paid off, I'd realized I was too blind and clumsy to surf well and "my love affair with Erin":http://mistersugar.com/article/4680/10-years-in-nc-15-years-in-marriage-20-years-in-love wasn't diminished, I did return to Cleveland, and gladly (also mentioned in my Cleveland Plain Dealer "essay about running the Honolulu Marathon":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=729 with dad). As Erin finished her fourth year at Carroll, I roamed the city working as a writer, bookseller and failed one-day waiter. Lately, I've been thinking about a specific string of days during my college experience. You know from my previous posts -- "A family orientation":http://mistersugar.com/article/4108/a-family-orientation and "Found in the archives: My story on The Story":http://mistersugar.com/article/4715/found-in-the-archives-my-story-on-the-story -- that I contemplated the priesthood. As part of my discernment, and because JCU is a Jesuit university, one fall break I attended an "eight-day silent retreat":http://sites.jcu.edu/campusministry/about/retreats/eight-day-retreat/, in which I walked in the snow, read at length, wrote in a journal and generally contemplated where my life would take me. I spoke only briefly each day when I met with a spiritual advisor, and I listened intently for the voice of god, although only the cardinals and the brown squirrels seemed interested in talking to me. Those eight days were a luxury, and I'm envious of my 20-year-old self. Now, my life is so much more full -- wonderful family, great job, list of projects and plans (more about that in a post coming up) -- and I'd love the opportunity to take 8 days for a silent retreat, or even the full 30 days for the Ignatian retreat that Jesuit novices complete before being ordained. Two years ago, I took two days for a self-guided silent retreat to the North Carolina coast, and there I had an epiphany: "Thinking places, or I am before I am":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am reinforced the importance of quiet contemplation. As I wrote then, being a reader is fundamental to me being a writer and a thinker. I was honored that my friend, Beck Tench, was inspired to take a "retreat of her own":http://www.flickr.com/photos/10ch/6616600351/. This week, seeing that "Harry Marks":http://curiousrat.com/home/2012/5/2/im-giving-up-reading-for-a-year.html is giving up on words for a year made me chuckle, and shudder. Just give me silence for 30 days, or 8, or 2, or tomorrow. I'll be refreshed, and ready to come back. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The four Cs of inspiration: Overlapping networks of ScienceOnline AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/30/2012 11:14:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Today over at the "Of Schemes and Memes":http://blogs.nature.com/ofschemesandmemes/2012/04/30/our-baby-is-turning-1-a-super-sonyc-reflection-on-becoming-a-born-again-scientist blog, Rockefeller University scientist "Jeanne Garbarino":http://twitter.com/#!/jeannegarb recalls the beginnings of "Science Online NYC":http://blogs.nature.com/ofschemesandmemes/category/science-online-nyc-sonyc, a monthly meetup in New York that started in April 2011. It's always interesting to see what inspires people to come together. Jeanne explains how she got connected to the online community of scientists. "Bora":http://blog.coturnix.org gets a nice reference -- "...or getting a twitter follow by this guy who goes by "BoraZ":http://twitter.com/#!/boraz, I somehow found myself quickly immersed in the science online community" -- and Jeanne's use of the "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com livestreams (thanks "NASW":http://www.nasw.org/ and "AAAS/Science/EurekAlert!":http://aaas.org for underwriting that!) whetted her appetite for face-to-face conversations with other science lovers. bq. The ScienceOnline meeting in North Carolina, however, was different. EVERYONE who wanted to be heard was heard. There was no hierarchy and information flowed freely. Even though I was tuning in from afar, I could tell that this meeting was different, for it was not a “meeting” at all. To me, it seemed more like a gathering of friends who are all passionate about communicating science and, miraculously, the lines between being professional and being social became blurry. Jeanne connected with "John Timmer":http://arstechnica.com/author/john-timmer/, "Lou Woodley":http://twitter.com/#!/louwoodley and "Joe Bonner":https://plus.google.com/116957182748087486670/posts, and together they planned the inaugural Science Online NYC, or SoNYC, with a kick-off in April 2011. [Note the spaces in the name; while the "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonlinenow.org conference and community helped inspire SoNYC, (and "Science Online London":http://scienceonlinelondon.org before that), a question about a trademark and how a formal organization might later be named led to the shared-but-different name. More about that below.] Connections, conversations, collaborations, community: these are the values that have instilled our BlogTogether and ScienceOnline activities for more than 10 years now. In this journey, I've been inspired by others -- I last wrote about some of the people and experiences that helped form me in my post "Triptych: Three reasons for me being me":http://mistersugar.com/article/4707/triptych-three-reasons-for-me-being-me -- and I've been quietly happy when I see that my late-night, chocolate-and-slivo-fueled efforts have been some small inspiration for others. Last month, when I was in Palm Springs, "Ivan Oransky":http://twitter.com/#!/ivanoransky told me over lunch that his experience at ScienceOnline helped give him energy to build on his idea for "Embargo Watch":http://embargowatch.wordpress.com/. "Jai Ranganathan":http://www.nceas.ucsb.edu/~ranganathan/jai.html and others have similarly taken inspiration from the ScienceOnline community, and their "#SciFund Challenge":http://scifundchallenge.org/about/ is an exciting experiment in crowdsourcing science. There's a host of our ScienceOnline friends involved in "Download the Universe":http://www.downloadtheuniverse.com/, which grew out of that group's learned discussions at past conferences about new science publishing opportunities. Last week saw the grand opening of the "Nature Research Center":http://naturalsciences.org/ at the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, and I was delighted to watch "David Kroll":https://twitter.com/#!/davidkroll, "Brian Malow":http://www.sciencecomedian.com/, "Holly Menninger":http://hollymenninger.com/ and others in action during the 24-hour opening. (Brian mentions his introduction to ScienceOnline in "this great interview":http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/Meet_Brian_Malow.mp3/view on WUNC's The State of Things.) And now there are ScienceOnline meetups and activities starting in "Seattle":http://scienceonlineseattle.org/, "Vancouver":http://scienceonlinevancouver.com/, "the Bay Area":http://scienceonlinebayarea.org/, Chicago, Los Angeles, Washington, D.C. and other cities. I don't take credit for any of these -- without exception, the individuals who are starting these initiatives and meetups are smarter than me, closer to the science, dedicated to advancing our knowledge of the world around and our bodies within. But at night, when I wake up and my subconscious tells me I'm doing too much and I should be overwhelmed and wouldn't it be nice to chill out for a year or two, I smile and think, somehow, I've plugged into a community of amazing people, and if organizing a conference and building a community gets me opportunity to converse with them, I'm not stopping. In my waking hours, I talk at every opportunity about the 4 Cs (refer 2 graphs above) and the power of overlapping networks and how my life has changed because of all that. And it's with that enthusiasm for the greater ScienceOnline community that last April I proposed to my daughter, Anna, that she accompany me to New York City to celebrate her 10th birthday and to attend the first SoNYC meeting; I was particularly excited about being on hand to congratulate the organizers and support the endeavor. Anna agreed to go, albeit reluctantly, and the breakneck pace I put her through over our 36-hour trip confirmed all her suspicions. In her own words and from an essay she wrote to my wife, Erin, to explain her lingering feelings for the big city: bq. The New York trip was pretty fun but not the best. Well, the fun part is that we went to the "bookstore":http://www.strandbooks.com/, we saw my mom's friend from work [her office up high over Times Square], we saw a movie and did a lot of other things. It was overwhelming because we kept going places and going places and we never got to stop at the M&M shop or another shop. But the best part about the trip was that I got to spend time with my dad and saw a "movie":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1596346/ and a "museum":http://www.metmuseum.org/. My dad had a meeting we went to and I slept for most of the time but I was tired. I just fell asleep on the table while my dad talked...When I got home I was so happy because my house is a gentle, kind-hearted place where I play and get along with my siblings, and of course our parents. Over time, Anna's talked more and more about our trip to New York City, and told me she loved our lunch at a Japanese restaurant, reiterated her appreciation for the mid-day movie break, and asked again why that naked cowboy guy with the guitar was standing in the cold. In the year since that trip, and SoNYC's start, the monthly meetup in New York City has proved quite successful -- congrats Jeanne, John, Joe and Lou! -- mirroring the amazing momentum of the greater ScienceOnline community and our flagship annual conference. The connections, conversations and collaborations are inspiring individuals and groups left and right, and as Bora and Karyn and I build out a "new nonprofit organization":http://scienceonlinenow.org to support this community, we're listening for the right ways to reflect the overlapping networks, shared models, innovative tools and future opportunities that will promote science and the 4 Cs. Which brings me back to the ScienceOnline moniker, spaces between words, and where we go from here. Later this week over at "ScienceOnlineNOW.org":http://scienceonlinenow.org, we'll be posting updates on the organization and drafts of community guidelines to help us chart the waters of brand building and network promotion and such. As is our constant aim, we thrive on feedback and ideas for crafting the best guidelines to grow and nurture the community. We'll also have updates on plans for ScienceOnline2013, ScienceOnlineTEEN and more reflections on the smart and cool people stepping up to form local ScienceOnline groups and similar activities. With luck, we'll all think of the ScienceOnline community as a gentle, kind-hearted place were we get along, collaborate and love our parents. Long live Science, and may we share our inspirations through ScienceOnline. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 100 performances AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/12/2012 03:44:29 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The E in TED and TEDMED stands for entertainment, and so the "TEDMED 2012 program":http://www.tedmed.com/2012speakers has included a number of artistic performances: dance, music, poetry and singing -- including the "Gay Men's Chorus of Washington":http://www.gmcw.org/, which filled the inside steps of the Library of Congress and filled the hall with their joyful harmonies. Spoken word artists "Sekou Andrews":http://www.youtube.com/user/sekouworld/featured and "Steve Connell":https://twitter.com/#!/steveconnell slammed us with a great poem: photo courtesy of TEDMED The Montreal-based dance troupe "Traces":http://tracesusa.com/ thrilled us with their acrobatics: photo courtesy of TEDMED "MOMIX":http://www.mosespendleton.com/ mesmerized us, "Jonathan Mann":http://jonathanmann.net/song-a-day wrote a song, and the "Washington Performing Arts Society’s Children of the Gospel Choir":http://www.wpas.org/gospel/wpaschildrenofthegospel.aspx lifted us with their youthful, passionate voices. Then, I was standing in the very back of the Kennedy Center's Opera House, and "Robert Vijay Gupta":http://www.ted.com/speakers/robert_gupta.html came onto the stage, violin in hand: Somewhere in that beautiful moment, I was struck by how enjoyable life is with performers to entertain us, and how I want to experience more performances. Better yet, experience those performances with my children alongside. And why not make that a project? Why not set off to experience 100 performances with my children? If I were to look back through the "archives of my blog":http://mistersugar.com/archive, I bet I've already taken in dozens of performances through the years, whether free concerts at the Carolina Inn or Durham's American Tobacco complex and other venues around the Triangle. So, I'm thinking I'm about to set out to record the next hundred, and to ask Anna and Malia (and eventually, Oliver) to contribute to this 100 Performances project. My good friend (and best man at my wedding), "Joe Cimperman":https://twitter.com/#!/joecimperman, used to tell me about how his mom would take him to the Cleveland Orchestra at Severance Hall. His memories of those experiences are the types of memories I want to cultivate in my own children. And I want us all to revel in the arts, whether on the TEDMED stage or the porch down the street from us. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: In at TEDMED, & left out of the Declaration of Independence AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/12/2012 02:33:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "TEDMED":http://tedmed.com rolls on, and I'm still here, and still grateful I got into this large, lavish, learned gathering. Last night's delegate party was in the "Library of Congress":http://www.loc.gov/index.html, an inspired, and inspiring, choice. While my friend "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com used her special card to get onto the floor of the reading room, I wandered into an "exhibit on the writing of the Declaration of Independence":http://www.loc.gov/exhibits/jefferson/jeffdec.html. I was fascinated by the editing -- the cross outs and inserts and rewrites -- and moved by the thought that the same work I do was done to so much better and longstanding effect by Thomas Jefferson and his compatriots. My work is writing and editing, certainly, and I love the craft of finetuning a sentence and paragraph and article. But I've come to realize, too, that conversations drive me. I got the sense from the exhibit that quite a few conversations helped finesse the Declaration, too. TEDMED is giving me many new individuals to converse with, and I'm looking forward to seeing where these connections go. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The passive way to meet people can be the best AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/11/2012 03:59:09 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "TEDMED":http://tedmed.com today, I waited after the late-morning session to have the chance to say a quick thanks to Francis Collins, NIH director (as I mentioned in an "earlier post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4719/attending-tedmed2012, Collins was kind to me a while back), and so I was late to the lunch. I filled a plate, chatted with "Ivan Oransky":https://twitter.com/#!/ivanoransky about his very enjoyable talk (about baseball, prefixes and more), and then, considering whether I should join a conversation somewhere, instead found an empty table. I sat down. Ate the delicious Indian cuisine. Took a few notes in my ScienceOnline2010 Field Notes notebook. Then "Donna Cryer":http://www.cryerhealth.com/ ("@DCpatient":https://twitter.com/#!/dcpatient) walked over, saying, "No on should sit alone at TEDMED." She sat down, and immediately we were talking about shared connections and ideas for facilitating conversations among patient communities. Donna has a great story -- "Liver transplant and IBD patient accelerating patient engagement and collaborations in health technology, policy, and systems improvement" -- and I'm looking forward to catching up with her again, soon. Looking for another empty table ... ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Heartbeats on the moon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/11/2012 09:49:13 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "TEDMED":http://tedmed.com today, "Jay Walker":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jay_S._Walker brought out an artifact from his amazing "Library of the History of Human Imagination":http://walkerlibrary.com. To set it up, he recounted the first moon landing and the frantic search for a boulder-free space to set down the lunar module. "Sixty seconds," says Houston, warning of the fuel running low. "Thirty seconds." Finally, the famous "The Eagle has landed" comes back from the moon, confirming touchdown. "Houston responds":http://www.historyplace.com/unitedstates/apollo11/land.htm with relief: "You've got a bunch of guys about to turn blue. We're breathing again." And then Jay shows the actual EKG of Buzz Aldrin, showing his elevated heart rate. Pretty cool. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Attending TEDMED2012 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/06/2012 09:09:57 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Travels CATEGORY: Blogging ----- BODY: Next week, I'll travel to Washington, D.C., to attend "TEDMED2012":http://tedmed.com, where I'll be an invited blogger. I'm looking forward to these three days of talks and conversations that "explore the ideas, innovations and challenges that will help shape the future of health and medicine for 300 million Americans...and the world." "Francis Collins":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Francis_Collins, director of the "National Institutes of Health":http://nih.gov, will be one of the speakers. I'm sure the thousand other delegates will vie for his attention, but if I happen to run into him, I'll thank him for taking the time to sit down with me (and Erin and others) in Chapel Hill back in 2000; I'll explain to him that his willingness to listen to a graduate student inspired my attempts to combine my journalism background, public health interest and new media skills. Soon after grad school, I started my collaboration with "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org -- Bora will attend TEDMED, too, along with ScienceOnline's executive director, "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com. It's through ScienceOnline2012 that we met a couple of the TEDMED organizers, who invited us up to Washington to experience this gathering. We're excited to see what we can learn, and what we might bring back to ScienceOnline. "Ivan Oransky":http://embargowatch.wordpress.com/about/, who has attended all six of the ScienceOnline conferences, will also be a TEDMED2012 speaker, along with "Jonathan Eisen":http://phylogenomics.blogspot.com/, and "Diane Kelly":http://www.sciencemadecool.com/diane-a-kelly/, also scio12 alums. While I'm at TEDMED in Washington, "TEDMED will be at Duke":http://wp.me/p22RBr-1rC via a live simulcast sponsored by the "Association of American Medical Colleges":https://www.aamc.org/ (it was an AAMC meeting, for communications, marketing and development folks, that I attended "last month in Palm Springs":http://mistersugar.com/article/4713/travels-west). One reason I'm jazzed about attending TEDMED is my "40s-decade focus on narrative":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40. I'll be listening for the different ways that the speakers tell, and show, their stories. [Edited to include Diane Kelly; HT Ben Lillie] ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The ScienceOnline2012 video review AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/03/2012 12:12:42 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We've posted a video review of "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com to our new "ScienceOnlineNOW.org":http://scienceonlinenow.org site, where we've also announced dates for ScienceOnline2013. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 42 on 4/2, and content to observe the world AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/02/2012 03:26:28 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: Family ----- BODY: Yesterday, after a tiring day outside in the yard tending the plants (I moved the "white ginger":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40 to a wetter, better place in the backyard flower garden), edging the lawn and painting the porch railing, Erin and I were sprawled on the couch watching an episode of "Friday Night Lights":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0758745/. Oliver was still awake -- we'd been visited by Erin's brother, Michael, and his family, and the weekend's activity had him off his sleep schedule -- nestled into my shoulder, where he watched for scenes of the football games on the television. When my throat started to itch, I made a soft cough. Oliver looked over to Erin. "Water," he asked, and Erin handed him his sippy cup, which he fluidly handed back to me. It was the sweetest, most observant gesture from this little boy -- he turns two at the end of the month -- and I hugged him even tighter. There's a certain contentment that comes from observation. Oliver went to sleep soon after he'd shared his water cup with me, and Erin and I fell asleep before the episode was finished. This morning, after a loving birthday hug from Erin and wishes from Anna and Malia, I stopped by the coffee shop to write in my journal -- my first entry since "my trip to London":http://mistersugar.com/article/4686/london-people-pubs-and-perfection last fall -- and to enjoy a strong latte. Whether it was the caffeine from the espresso or the I'm-so-glad-to-be-alive-on-my-birthday attitude I woke into, I've gone through the day even more closely observing the world around me. I'm looking at little details in the buildings and plants and people I'm passing. On my walk to the "Gothic Bookshop":http://www.gothicbookshop.duke.edu/ to pick up a copy of "The Checklist Manifesto":http://gawande.com/the-checklist-manifesto by Atul Gawande, I recorded this snippet of conversations and sounds: This may be my special day, but what I've observed today reminds me that I'm one small part of an immense and active cosmos. I'm content with that. Perhaps "42 is the answer to the universe":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Phrases_from_The_Hitchhiker%27s_Guide_to_the_Galaxy#Answer_to_the_Ultimate_Question_of_Life.2C_the_Universe.2C_and_Everything_.2842.29, after all. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Oh, the dogwoods AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/27/2012 08:52:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: Flowers ----- BODY: Spring is here, oh, so here. The thin dogwoods are splendid, leaning out from their protected perimeter placements with their splendid covering of delicate white flowers, as if to say, "We're in the shadows most of the year, but we're here, and Spring is our season, too." A couple of summers ago, Erin and I planted a delicate dogwood sapling in center of the flower bed beneath our front porch. This year, for the first time, it flowered. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Found in the archives: my story on The Story AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/26/2012 12:27:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: "Cori Princell":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/cori-princell/3/524/275, producer of "The Story with Dick Gordon":http://thestory.org/, was kind enough to search the archives of the show for the recording of my brief interview, about "the moment I decided not to be a priest":http://mistersugar.com/article/4108/a-family-orientation, back in 2006. That was before WUNC, where The Story is based, began to post show archives to the Web. I've wanted to hear myself ever since, especially after my friend, "David Kroll":http://cenblog.org/terra-sigillata/about/, "wrote a song about me":http://www.reverbnation.com/davidkrollnc#!/artist/song_details/6156296, with a nod to my earlier plan to enter ministry. I've posted the audio to my "Sounds On podcast":http://mistersugar.com/sounds (What, didn't know I had a podcast? I keep forgetting, too), but here it is again: One Sunday earlier this month, I was with Anna, Malia and Oliver at the playground in our neighborhood. All three kids were in the swings, and with the sun setting behind me, I stood in front of them, laughing with them as I pushed them higher. This, I thought to myself, is exactly what I chose that Cleveland summer day so long ago. I did it. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Travels west AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/21/2012 04:07:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I started the morning in
and am now in
enjoying the beautiful Palm Springs weather and vistas -- there's snow on the tops of the surrounding mountains. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Music before dawn AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/16/2012 05:29:07 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Oliver woke at midnight last night, just as I was beginning to doze -- after another few hours of intense discussion about budgets and personal finances and more planning and discernment about the future direction of ScienceOnline -- and I tried to get him back to sleep. Eventually, Erin took over, and I crashed into my pillow. It's been a wondrously warm week here in North Carolina, so we slept with the windows open. The cool air felt great. Before sunrise, the dawn chorus started up, and though I was only half awake, I reveled in the music of the birds so content in the trees outside. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Astronauts are cool, and space exploration is important AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/28/2012 06:51:15 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At the Duke School of Medicine this afternoon, Dean Nancy Andrews, MD, PhD, and the Medical Scientist Training Program sponsored a talk by NASA astronaut and M.D. Anderson musculoskeletal oncologist Robert Satcher, MD, PhD. Showing photos of the shuttle Atlantis, NASA training facilities and eve the shuttle's toilets, Satcher regaled us with his course to the stars. His main point was that we need more space exploration: "We haven't been to another planet yet." His slide showing the relative annual budgets of U.S. defense spending and other expenditures was funny if not a bit horrifying -- Americans spend more on Halloween each year than the space agency. I wanted to be an astronaut when I was a boy. I hope my son and daughters get the chance to explore the heavens. They'll get no candy next October! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: I want to hold your hand AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/17/2012 10:30:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: Last night, I was a speaker at "IgniteRaleigh 3":http://igniteraleigh.com, given 5 minutes, 20 slides and about 600 listeners. "Enlighten us, but make it quick," were my instructions. I'd proposed to tell why "I want to hold your hand," with tips on how handshakes can be used for community building. I didn't get a lot of votes, but IgniteRaleigh organizer "Ryan Boyles":https://twitter.com/#!/therab invited me to take one of the extra slots on the program. I agreed to go last, prepared my slides, rehearsed intensely, and showed up with a lot of excitement, then greeted my friends Karyn and Mark and Dawn and Brian. The "other speakers":http://igniteraleigh.com/2012/02/10/speaker-announcement/ were really good -- a proliferation of breweries in North Carolina, lessons about teenagers and a tribute to millennials, "memorable experiences from a train car":http://karlsakas.com/create-memorable-experiences/, and more -- and the emcees, "Page and Jake":http://igniteraleigh.com/2012/02/11/a-snippet-of-emcees-page-and-jake-in-action/, funny together. Then it was my turn, and I stepped onstage. I vaguely recall how the next minutes went: strong start, sometimes trouble with speaking into the mic, then rickrolled on my 18th or 19th slide. But I finished, and got my message out there, with maybe a few people in the crowd turning to another to shake hands. Video of the talks will be posted online, and I'll point to it when available, hoping I was somewhat coherent in my delivery. [UPDATE: video embedded below.] But I also want to make sure my message gets out (especially so I can show my dad, whom I centered my talk on), so I sat down with my "Zoom H1 Handy Recorder":http://www.zoom.co.jp/english/products/h1/ today, recited my script, and used "Soundslides":http://soundslides.com/ to make this narrated slideshow (note I've adjusted the length of individual slides for better timing): ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Embedding a tweet AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/15/2012 10:51:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

Well, well. I finally got the #newnewtwitter. It certainly is different. Guess I need to embed a tweet on my blog to make up for my grousing.

— Anton Zuiker (@mistersugar) February 16, 2012
----- ----- -------- TITLE: Triptych: three reasons for me being me AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/12/2012 11:19:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: scienceonline ----- BODY: p.   bq. "We had very good beer and very bad deviled eggs at a little former gas station behind the venue where Anton did not explain why he works so hard on other people’s behalf." My friend "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com/2011/11/book-tour-blessing/ wrote that after his book tour through Durham and Chapel Hill in November. He wanted to know why I went to the trouble to facilitate his visit, organize his itinerary, publicize his storytelling, even meet him across Duke's campus to make sure he'd found the radio studio in time for his interview on the "Kojo Nnamdi Show":http://thekojonnamdishow.org/shows/2011-11-02/cooking-theres-app/transcript. I mumbled something or other to him that night, demurring as humbly as I could. But, I've pondered his question often since, especially in the intensity of "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com, my volunteer activity that consumes me, drains me and once again inspires each year. In the afterglow of the conference, and in reading the outpouring of "#scio12 observations and satisfactions and realizations":http://scio12.wikispaces.com/-Blog+and+Media+Coverage, I cried in relief, laughed in exaltation, nodded in satisfaction and dreamed in exhausted delirium. I was part of something special. Time now for me to blog again, to try to describe the experience of organizing the conference that I want to attend, but which I can't participate in as everyone else does because I'm focused on the details, big and small, that help make it a place where amazing people feel comfortable connecting, sharing, collaborating and more. Ed Yong's "Scattered reflections about ScienceOnline 2012":http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2012/01/22/scattered-reflections-about-scienceonline-2012-scio12/ captures the formula. I get sheer joy from seeing our attendees enjoy the conference, learning and discussing and strengthening their connections. But I don't get to attend or enjoy in the same way. My satisfaction comes from seeing friendships form, careers blossom, conversations start or continue or broaden, kindness amplify. See "Reflections of a First Time ScienceOnline Attendee":http://atomic-o-licious.com/post/16408126370/reflections-of-a-first-time-scienceonline-attendee, "Nerd Vegas – Reflections on Science Online 2012":http://nerdletestuary.wordpress.com/2012/02/12/nerd-vegas-reflections-on-science-online-2012/ and "ScienceOnline 2012 – Behind the #scio12 hashtag":http://sci2morrow.com/2012/02/09/scienceonline-2012-behind-the-scio12-hashtag/ for a few (of the many) that lifted me up. Through all this and over the past weeks, I came upon a trio of reasons to answer Michael and share with others. I hesitate to enunciate these -- the limelight isn't my ambition -- but the more I looked into the archives of my blog, the more I realized all the strands have been here all along. And so, I offer this triptych depicting the details that help me, and perhaps you, understand what motivates my community organizing. h2. Confidence I spent the summer before my freshman year of high school living with my grandparents in DeKalb, Illinois. Early each morning, Grandpa Sisco would have me up and out the door so that I could be the first one at the pick-up point, where I waited for the rest of the detasseling crew to arrive for our day in the corn fields. I didn't mind being so early, so early in the morning. Grandpa was teaching me an important lesson about showing up, and showing up on time. Walking the long rows of corn gave me a taste of hard work, and money well earned. (It set me on the way to becoming DeKalb's "Corn Fest":http://www.cornfest.com/ King of 1987, too.) When the summer was over, but before I could return home to St. Croix, my mother and brothers had left the island to make DeKalb home. We moved into an apartment overlooking another cornfield. I showed up for my first soccer practice in brown corduroy pants straight from an after-hours physical exam at the home of a quintessential community doctor and insisted I could run the end-of-practice 2-mile circuit along with my new teammates. Before our senior year, my teammates chose me to be co-captain of the team, but they reminded me then, and still do whenever we reunite, about my freshman geekiness. I'd moved much already as a child, and I'd made friends in half a dozen states, but being new in a group is never easy. I'm a loner who needs people. That first weekend of the school year in DeKalb, I sat and cried. "What's wrong, Anton?" my mother asked. "I don't have any friends," I answered. "Everybody else is out doing something tonight." "Well, you have a choice. You can sit and fume, and you'll be lonely. Or you can call someone right now and see what they're doing tonight. Maybe you'll be able to join him. You can wait, or you can act." I didn't like the telephone. Years earlier, it had taken me hours to find a shred of courage to pick up the phone and dial the Jerry Lewis Labor Day Telethon to pledge a few dollars. But mom was right, so I did call a newfound friend and I did go out that first weekend. Years later, when I was sitting at my N.C. State University desk and had the idea to organize a bloggers conference, mom's lesson was ingrained enough that I quickly reached out to UNC friends and asked them to collaborate with me on the "2005 Triangle Bloggers Conference":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/anatomy_of_a_bloggercon. By then, though, I didn't need the phone, because email and blogs were faster and easier. I met "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org at this gathering. (See his "epic writeup about ScienceOnline2012":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/a-blog-around-the-clock/2012/02/06/scienceonline2012-thoughts-about-present-and-future/, and understand my sheer delight in calling him friend.) bq. I made sure to call my mom soon after the conference to tell her how well the day had gone, because I knew she’d be proud of me. She taught me a valuable lesson one day during my freshman year of high school. I was moping in my loneliness, and mom told me the best way to remedy waiting by the phone for some friend to call was to pick up the phone (my great fear) and call a friend with an invitation to get together." ["posted 2/13/2005":http://mistersugar.com/article/3868/bloggercon-takes-off] I'm over my fear of the telephone, and actually enjoy calling people, though I still can't talk at length like Erin can. And, new media tools make it even easier to reach out to people. bq. Social media, to me, has always been best to say, “Let’s get together.” ["posted 11/25/2011":http://mistersugar.com/article/4697/awareness-of-situational-conversation]. My mother's challenge on that long-ago August day was more than just a challenge to pick up the phone. The deeper lesson was one that I have written and is with me at all times: bq. Today, I talked with a friend who has recently been in need of some financial help, and we remarked on cultural differences that determine whether someone is comfortable asking for money from family members, friends or a widely distributed community (such as all our overlapping online social networks). One of the most important lessons I’ve learned over the years is the sole line written in the front of my Moleskine notebook: For the asking. As in, ask in order to receive, but also be prepared to provide when I’m asked. ["posted 9/25/2010":http://mistersugar.com/article/4639/when-giving-goes-viral] Through blogging, I also met "David Kroll":http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected/about/. Last year, walking out of the Bon Jovi conference with him, I riffed on how the lessons instilled by my mother and grandfather (and father, read below) give me the confidence to make myself and my world better. I also long ago turned away from the Christian notion of the fall of man, in which humans were once perfect, sinned and need a god to redeem us. Instead, I like the idea that, just as living things are evolving, we humans are adapting biologically and societally. This idea that we can be better is ingrained in the BlogTogether ethos (and, yes, many religious traditions): "blog about others as you would have others blog about you.":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation And you can see this in action right now, and understand why David was a natural choice to be the inaugural recipient of the BlogTogether Community Service Award. He is once again urging our ScienceOnline community to come to the aid of one of our own: "#IAmUninsured: An #IAmScience Story":http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected/2012/02/10/iamuninsured-a-iamscience-story/. h2. Consequence While my mother was building my confidence, my father was informing my vision and directing quite a bit of my career. As I wrote in the forward to his Peace Corps memoir, "Step to Freedom":http://zuikerchronicles.com/steptofreedom/, dad inspired me to travel, observe, act and organize. bq. What I thought about was Idaho, when I was 10 years old. My father, Joseph, would take all of the sofa cushions and line the floor of the dining room, where we would play a version of floor hockey with wooden spatulas and spoons and a Wiffle ball. By then, I'd already wanted to be a Peace Corps Volunteer. In that same dining room Dad regularly showed his Peace Corps photos on the bare white walls, using a finicky slide projector and a Zuiker penchant for storytelling. The Peace Corps never had so good a recruiter. ["posted 9/5/2005":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4005/foreword-to-step-to-freedom] So, I wanted to do as my father had done. And, so, I watched with him, learned from him, listened to him. bq. "When I was in high school, dad would gently warn me about how, in a time of AIDS and underage drinking, my decisions could have deadly results. He wasn’t using fear or guilt—being a good Catholic, he could have used the guilt card, though I might have subconsciously done this anyway, since I didn’t want to get him in any trouble at his job with the State’s Attorney. He was using reason. He was challenging me to play mental chess, to move the pieces in my mind, to pick the path leading to long life. ["posted 9/7/2004":http://mistersugar.com/article/3480/do-turtles-play-chess] This lesson made me cautious, but also ambitious. When you think ahead, you can imagine the dire consequences, but you can also dream of success, and see the steps for getting there. (You might say I also have a healthy fantasy -- "I can solve the cold war!":http://mistersugar.com/article/3179/a-tale-of-two-deans). In college, I saw a movie that captured that consequence concept in two simple questions. bq. One person I met through blogging called me this morning to thank me for once telling him about a scene in the film Last Temptation of Christ. I remember this scene as Christ walking along the shore of the Sea of Galilee, thinking to himself, “What if I’m wrong.” Then, as the drumbeat builds to a crescendo, he wonders, “My god, what if I’m right?” (Turns out I’ve remembered this slightly wrong, but the idea is the same.)" ["posted 2/5/2006":http://mistersugar.com/article/4073/on-friendships-near-and-dear-near-and-far] The "accurate monologue":http://www.script-o-rama.com/movie_scripts/l/last-temptation-of-christ-script.html is this: "What if I say the wrong thing? What if I say the right thing?" What I've always understood that to mean is this: we won't know if we're successful unless we try, and we won't be successful if we're not passionate and sincere and inclusive. h2. Community ScienceOnline2012 opened with me standing in front of a large group of people, telling a story about my father, encouraging handshakes: I realized later in that day that, in a real sense, I'd attained a vocation of sorts. bq. When I was in high school, Father Schwartz captivated me with his homilies every Sunday. I would sit in the pew -- we were always in one of the first five rows —- and think about the role of priest and the opportunity to speak before a crowd each week. That is what most attracted me to the priesthood: that power of the pulpit." ["posted 3/18/2006":http://mistersugar.com/article/4108/a-family-orientation] I didn't become a priest. Instead, I fell in love, got married, and, together with Erin, became a Peace Corps Volunteer after all. When Erin and I were married in 1996 -- in the chapel of our alma mater, "John Carroll University":http://www.jcu.org -- we asked Charlie McCarthy, the Franciscan friar officiating our vows, to begin the mass with the sign of the peace, traditionally done much later in the ceremony. So, we started our marriage with handshakes. In his homily, Charlie talked about passion, both the spark Erin and I share as well as the energy that drives us to better our world. It was in Vanuatu that I became even more accutely aware of handshakes, and not just because I missed my grandpa's "Zooker handshakes":http://mistersugar.com/article/4659/the-zooker-handshake or my dad's reach-behind-while-driving-to-show-I-love-you handshakes. Everywhere I went, a villager greeted me with a single shake. bq. The handshake became routine. In a communal society where physical intimacy is never public, the handshake was an important bond. Even this could last. I’ll always remember Noel matter-of-factly holding my hand as he and I walked up the road to the store together." ["posted July 2000":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=696] At village meetings, school feasts and Sunday church services, there were usually lines of people with which to exchange handshakes, including a woman changed by Hansen's disease, snotty kids and men with hands made rough from subsistence farming. There were also passing lines for working together. I wrote about those experiences, and an episode of Little House on the Prairie that I watched a few years later with little Anna: bq.. On Paama Island, we formed these lines many times a week: whenever a cargo ship stopped just offshore, we’d jog to the black-sand beach and pass sacks of flour or cement to the waiting (and lone) truck. (One of the most beautiful moments of my time on the island was the day all of the students at Liro Primary School and Vaum Junior Secondary School circled the schoolyard so that Erin and I could shake each of their hands in farewell.) In the Little House episode, Doc Baker sees Charles struggling through the pain of broken ribs to lift heavy seed sacks high into the shed. Mr. Hansen sees the same need from his sawmill, the blacksmith from his forge and Mr. Olson from the general store. They were observing their world, and their world wasn’t moving at 65 miles per hour. Their individual reaction times led to community action. Maybe that’s key to community. The men of Walnut Grove were quick to assist Charles because they were all working—and thinking—on their feet. ["posted 8/25/2004":http://mistersugar.com/article/3470/passing-lanes] p. And that brings me back to ScienceOnline, and The Long Table, and food blogging events with Michael, and our annual BlogTogether backyard barbecue. Each has been my attempt to ask friends and strangers to get together, shake hands, share a meal, tell a story or teach a skill, and through our growing bonds of community, to make our world a little better. These events, and the people who have gathered and given their time and talents, have certainly made my world better. I've gained friends -- "Karyn Traphagen":http://stay-curious.com/ the newest, unafraid to jump aboard the speeding ScienceOnline organizers bus -- and had countless conversations that have broadened my understanding of humanity. A community made me -- grandparents, parents, siblings; friends, lovers, rivals; teachers, coaches, clergy, doctors; bloggers, tweeps, connections, followers. How could I not give back to my community? h2. Afterword At the ScienceOnline2012 talent show, David Kroll did a reprise of Minister of Ether, a song he wrote about me and some of the themes above. David sings "Let's get together now and see where this goes, Distill us some humanity from this firehose" ("full lyrics":http://www.reverbnation.com/artist/song_details/6156296), referring to the essay "Bloggers to talk science":http://www.newsobserver.com/2007/09/22/56069/bloggers-to-talk-science.html by News & Observer editor Dan Barkin, writing about our early efforts to organize the science blogging conference: bq. The Web has evolved into a tribal Internet of passionate bloggers like Zuiker, and he has become a sort-of local brand. He's a quiet visionary. He's a low-key doer. He's a let's-get-together-and-see-where-this-goes guy. It's the Zuikers of this new, interwoven world who may play a significant role in determining how far Web 2.0 goes from being a sociable network to a social force. ["Bloggers to talk science":http://www.newsobserver.com/2007/09/22/56069/bloggers-to-talk-science.html, by Dan Barkin, News & Observer, 9/22/2007] Whenever I see Dan, I shake his hand. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: This is a test AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/12/2012 09:39:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Screwed up my blogging system as I prepare for a long, reflective post. Fixed. Bad code in embedded audio player. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: One word to start the new year: home AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/02/2012 08:54:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: At Atlantic.com, Julie Beck has an interesting essay on the "Psychology of Home: Why Where You Live Means So Much":http://www.theatlantic.com/health/archive/2011/12/the-psychology-of-home-why-where-you-live-means-so-much/249800/: bq. But while it's human nature to want to have a place to belong, we also want to be special, and defining yourself as someone who once lived somewhere more interesting than the suburbs of Michigan is one way to do that. Beck explains that her house if filled with pictures and references to past places she's lived. My house is similar, with photos of my Peace Corps community of Liro Village in the South Pacific, music from my time in Honolulu (Olinda Road by "Hapa":http://www.hapa.com/albums.html the best), bins of journals and term papers during my studies at John Carroll University or reporting notebooks from my early years as a magazine editor. See my "Travels":http://mistersugar.com/travels page for a map of my round-the-globe trip that inludes some of my past homes. But North Carolina is home for me now, as I noted in my post "10 years in NC, 15 years in marriage, 20 years in love":http://mistersugar.com/article/4680/10-years-in-nc-15-years-in-marriage-20-years-in-love. Still, our families are spread far and wide, and Erin and I often talk into the night about where home would best be for us now, next year, in five or ten or more years on. My dad's "20th marathon":http://www.sportstats.ca/display-results.php?lang=eng&racecode=101627&first=&last=zuiker&bibnum=&page=0&sortby=place&city=&sizeofpage=20&limit=500 (he and I and my brother, Nick, ran our first together in 1993, and I would have loved to be with him for this race; Nick was there this time, too) and my brother-in-law Mike's sudden heart surgery -- he's blogging his recovery at "ShaughnessyMD.com":http://shaughnessymd.com -- made this discussion even more timely. As much as we want to be nearer our families, I keep reminding myself that my ancestors left their homes and familiies, sailed across the ocean and started a new life in America. I was thinking about that on Christmas Day, when I set out on a walk of my own through the neighborhood, into the woods of the future "Moniese Nomp":http://www.co.orange.nc.us/deapr/parks/twin_creeks.asp county park and along the new Jones Creek Parkway. It was a beautiful, warm day, and just what I needed to still myself at the end of a busy year and on the cusp of "an intense month ahead":http://scienceonline2012.com. As I finished, I was walking up a path beneath my street, and I looked up to see my house. "I want to live in this house for a very long time," I said to myself. I'm very happy here. One of the reasons we chose this big house is because we wanted to entertain our friends, neighbors and community. We did that over the last couple of weeks in a series of bagel brunches. Today's was a gathering of some of my BlogTogether friends, just a great group of people on a relaxing day off enjoying each other's company. That's the psychology of home for me. You've got mail ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Finding inspiration for a new mistersugar.com AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/20/2011 09:18:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As things slow down for the holidays -- "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com planning notwithstanding -- I'm going to take some time to rework the design of mistersugar.com. This site has had the same design since 2006, and web design has gone through quite a few trends since. I've spent the past few months monitoring Wordpress themes and site templates, at "WooThemes":http://www.woothemes.com/ (we use the Canvas theme for "MedicineNews":http://news.medicine.duke.edu and the Kaboodle theme for ScienceOnline2012.com), "ThemeForest":http://themeforest.net/ and others -- mostly lots of portfolio sites and sliders and same-looking business pages. I've also seen quite a few blogs going the simple way: "inessential.com":http://inessential.com/ and "marco.org":http://www.marco.org/ and "CarpeAqua":http://carpeaqua.com/ and "Zero Distraction":http://zerodistraction.com/ are reduced to a single column of text. Anil Dash also has a simple blog -- like the others listed above, he's a great writer and a thought leader to follow - on which he spotlighted "Bootstrap":http://twitter.github.com/bootstrap/, a design toolkit for rapid site development. See his post "Bootstrap Rising":http://dashes.com/anil/2011/12/bootstrap-rising.html. A similar framework is "Foundation":http://foundation.zurb.com/ by Zurb. Last week, I played a bit with "TypeKit":https://typekit.com/ and adjusted the fonts of my blog. In the next week or two, I hope to rework the site on Bootstrap. I'm also experimenting with Dave Winer's "Radio2":http://docs.reallysimple.org/#itsAllAboutYourFeed minimal blogging tool for running a linklog. I've run both my blog and my "Sugarcubes":http://mistersugar.com/sugarcubes linklog with "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com/, but Radio2 might help me better coordinate my linklog and the links I share on Twitter. I've got Radio2 and OPML Editor mostly figured out; just need to find the way to point a subdomain to Radio2. So, anyway, as I move into my 12th year of blogging, I'm excited to revamp the site. Stay tuned. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Awareness of situational conversation AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/25/2011 02:20:29 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The other day, in a discussion with other social media leaders at Duke, someone remarked that college students think it's weird when adults respond to their online conversations. I've heard this before, but I've had a hard to buying the argument that we should be cautious in engaging with young people online. I've spent the last week thinking this over, my thoughts rooted in a childhood experience: I was in second grade (in Caldwell, Idaho), and one morning was excused to use the restroom. On my way back to the classroom, I passed two teachers in the hallway, talking. When one of them mentioned a trending topic, I blurted out, "Star Wars, I want to see that movie." One of the teachers reacted immediately, grabbing my arm, marching me over to a bench and sitting me down. With one hand, she squeezed my cheeks. "Don't you ever interrupt a conversation like that again," she barked. I learned my lesson about impertinence from that reprimand. But I also became attuned to situational conversations -- what I think of as dialogue in public spaces -- listening attentively whether someone is speaking directly to me or whether the conversation is between others. This is eavesdropping, clearly. But when is eavesdropping impertinent? I asked my brother-in-law, Tom Michael (he's general manager of "Marfa Public Radio":http://marfapublicradio.org/, and is a great radio conversationalist) to consider this situation: You and I are sitting at a busy outdoor cafe, talking, and we're aware -- consciously or subconsciously -- that others around us may be passively or actively listening to our conversation. How do you feel when someone leans over and says something related to our conversation? Tom: Depends if they offer us directions because they heard us trying to figure out the best way to the outlet mall or because they heard us talking about a friend who is going to have surgery next week. So, yes, clearly there are lines that can be crossed. Situational conversation depends on the situation, the location, the topic, the people. An empty cafe and someone sitting down close by to intentionally listen in is an affront. Or we whisper, talk cryptically or in Bislama to lessen the chance that eavesdroppers will understand. But I've also had some wonderful conversations because people sitting by offer their ear, their perspective, their thoughts. Now take the question to social media, where the tools we use to converse -- Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and others -- give us a spectrum of privacy settings, allowing us to determine who exactly can listen in. Granted, the default for most social media tools is full public exposure, but given the ability to make a conversation private, can we assume that what's public is fair game to be listened to and responded to? I'm not sure I have all the answers, but I'm posting this on my blog that is open to the public, and I'm hoping you'll listen in and join the conversation. h2. Afterword Much of my online activity, and the supporting events I've organized (like "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com and "Michael Ruhlman's recent visit":http://ruhlman.com/2011/11/book-tour-blessing/ to Chapel Hill and Durham) has been to facilitate conversation. Recently, I've seen and heard others realizing that the great potential of social media is to get people together in face-to-face gatherings. We've been promoting that for years with our BlogTogether events. Social media, to me, has always been best to say, "Let's get together." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Further thoughts on friendship and passion AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/06/2011 01:31:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin kindly left two of the upstairs bathrooms for me to clean, and since I've spent much of the past 48 hours sleeping, slumbering, napping or otherwise unconscious -- more about that later -- while Erin efficiently scrubbed, folded and arranged our home to look clean and shiny, I gathered up the cleaning supplies, some old towels and the iPad opened to the "Monti podcast":http://www.themonti.org/podcast/. While I listened to "Robert Bland":http://www.themonti.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/10/Podcast-Episode-5_RobertBland.mp3 and "Dorothy Clark":http://www.themonti.org/wp-content/uploads/2011/09/Podcast-Episode-2_Dorothy-Clark.mp3 talk about love and fatherhood and race relations, I was struck by the passion with which Jeff Polish has executed his dream of facilitating storytelling in North Carolina. I first met Jeff in 2008, when I was talking about a storyblogging idea and he was already getting his storytellers lined up for the Monti. I got to his second show, in May 2008 -- Frank Stasio, Randall Kenan, Tanya Olson and others on the theme 'travels' -- literally the last one in the door, and I've been his biggest fan since. I'm looking through my Moleskine notebook now, and see that I asked myself what story I might one day tell; the tale of Geo the lost dog on Paama is one I've been working at ever since, writing and rewriting a little bit after every Monti show. This week's show gave me double inspiration to finish. I had told Jeff that "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com was returning to Durham, and he'd be a good storyteller. Lo and behold, Michael was up on stage at "Motorco Music Hall on Tuesday":http://www.themonti.org/events/rescues telling about how the "CIA":http://www.ciachef.edu/ rescued him as a writer and made him as a chef, and about the passion for perfection that's made "Thomas Keller":http://tkrg.org/ the best chef in the land. (Erin and I sat next to "Donna Turner Ruhlman":http://ruhlmanphotography.com/, Michael's wife; she contributed the photos to Ruhlman's Twenty. It was very nice to spend this time with her.) Closer to home, "Andrea Reusing":http://www.andreareusing.com/ is the best chef in the Southeast, as determined by the Beard Foundation this year. Andrea had Erin, Jeff, Michael, Donna and me -- and a host of others -- in her "Lantern":http://www.lanternrestaurant.com/ restaurant Wednesday night for a special dinner. My previous post is about that dinner, and doesn't even come close to doing justice to the menu, the service, the setting. Clearly, Andrea has a passion for her work; buy a copy of her book, "Cooking in the Moment":http://www.andreareusing.com/about.html and you'll get a glimpse as to why. At that dinner, in one room, three individuals who inspire me with their passion: Michael with his writing, Jeff with his storytelling, Andrea with her cooking. I spoke a few words to explain why our stars had aligned, telling a short story about how my mother taught me to reach out and ask friends or strangers to gather and participate. With "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com looming, and me working late into each night on the details and logistics of this annual conference -- hence the utter exhaustion that's knocked me out this weekend -- I've been reminding my friends that this is my passion (I call it, alternately, the BlogTogether and Long Table ethos). When Michael stood up and told the room that "Anton is an angel, a true angel," I think he was acknowledging my passion. Look, and you'll see passionate people all around. Yesterday, my friend "Wayne Sutton":http://socialwayne.com/about/ must have been thinking about this, because he tweeted this tag 13 times: "#passion":http://twitter.com/#!/waynesutton/status/132881661900750848. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Still savoring the Lantern dinner with Andrea Reusing and Michael Ruhlman AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/06/2011 01:18:55 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: !>(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/194t.png!:http://ruhlman.com/my-books/ "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com was in the Triangle this week, telling a story at "The Monti":http://www.themonti.org/events/rescues, signing copies of Ruhlman's Twenty at "A Southern Season":http://www.southernseason.com/, "talking cookbooks on WUNC":http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/How_America_Eats.mp3 and headlining a "special dinner at Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com/menus/michael_ruhlman.html. The talented and lovely "Andrea Reusing":http://www.andreareusing.com/, winner of the 2011 James Beard Award for Best Chef Southeast, ("here's a photo":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/511509262/ I snapped of her back in 2007) and her team at "Lantern":http://www.lanternrestaurant.com/ created a most memorable meal ("full menu, with wine pairings, is here":http://lanternrestaurant.com/menus/michael_ruhlman.html), with an amazingly diverse set of tastes and textures. As Michael pointed out, serving all this amazing food family style was a brilliant way to facilitate the meal (the "Long Table":http://thelongtable.org spirit, I'd say). I had my very first raw oyster -- Nassawadox oysters with hot sauce and North Carolina horseradish -- and loved the softness (I took three bites). The dainty tea eggs with sichuan salt and scallion were perfect, and I wanted to ask if there were more in the kitchen, but before I could I was savoring the rilettes with "ume" salted cherries and the crispy Chapel Hill Creamery pork belly with 5-spice and pickled pumpkin. The crispy whole puffer fish with Edward’s country ham, braised cabbage and oyster mushrooms was unique, and fun to eat. I'd order that for lunch every day if I could -- Andrea gets a lot of this fish from Virginia, and talked with us about sustainable seafood and other local ingredients. At the dinner were quite a few local suppliers to Lantern. I sat next to Richard Teague, whose "High Rock Farm":http://www.facebook.com/pages/High-Rock-Farm/194399713933164 in Gibsonville, NC produces chestnuts, pecans, blackberries and raspberries. Richard is a retired chemical engineer living in a restored historical farmhouse built in 1807, and he's got a lot of chestnuts, from which he's beginning to produce gluten-free chestnut flour. Also at our table was Phoebe Lawless, whose "Scratch Bakery":http://piefantasy.com/ is pie heaven. Dessert was ginger fizz with muscadine grape creamsicle and homemade candied ginger. Mmm, mmm, mmm. That was created by Monica Segovia-Welsh, who works at Lantern and bakes bread with her husband in a wood-fired stove at their "Chicken Bridge Bakery":http://chickenbridgebakery.weebly.com/index.html. Here's Monica serving "Bora Zivkovic":http://blog.coturnix.org the roasted Moulard duck with kasu, white sweet potato, and pickled apple and shallots: So, an amazing night I won't soon forget. Many thanks to Michael for traveling to North Carolina and to Andrea for delighting our appetites and to the many producers of food and cooking who make life so delicious. UPDATE: Even though Andrea and I only started discussing this event a few weeks ago, she and her sous chef, Miguel Torres, explained to us that the meal had really begun 18 months prior, when they'd first put up a ham for curing in Andrea's basement. Talk about slow cooking! UPDATE 2: I forgot to mention the best part of my conversation with Richard Teague. When he learned that I'd grown up in DeKalb, Illinois, he told me that his late wife was a member of the Ellwood family of DeKalb. My grandparents lived across the street from the historic Ellwood House, and I once read an essay as part of an Independence Day ceremony on the front lawn. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bobsledding on science and stories of food AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/31/2011 11:40:15 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Cookbooks ----- BODY: Quickest of posts to say the next few days are going to like speeding down a hill on a bobsled, taking me with it as fast as can be. Tomorrow, for a brief few minutes, we'll open "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com registration at 12 noon EDT for for 100 spots. A few minutes later, albeit unconnected to #scio12, "MIchael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com will be interviewed by Frank Stasio on WUNC's The State of Things show. By evening, Erin and I will be in our seats at "The Monti":http://themonti.org eager to hear Michael and the other featured storytellers. Their theme is 'rescues.' Wednesday morning, Michael will be at "A Southern Season":http://www.southernseason.com/info.asp to sign copies of his great new cookbook, "Ruhlman's Twenty":http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0811876438/ref=nosim/ruhlmancom. Wednesday night, we'll be dining in the splendid "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com with a "10-course meal":http://lanternrestaurant.com/menus/michael_ruhlman.html. It's sure to be an amazing night! (Join us -- there are seats available.) And throughout these days, I'll be hard at work on "Department of Medicine":http://news.medicine.duke.edu projects. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Oliver on the downhill AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/23/2011 08:20:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sound to sound AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/17/2011 10:20:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I followed a link from "Scripting News":http://scripting.com to venture capitalist Fred Wilson's blog, AVC, and found a "post":http://www.avc.com/a_vc/2011/10/sound.html about "SoundcCloud":http://soundcloud.com/, a service I signed up for back in August to post the clip of "Erin and me talking about our wedding day":http://mistersugar.com/article/4681/sights-and-sounds-remembering-our-wedding-day 15 years ago. On the SoundCloud site, I saw that rocker "John Mayer":http://www.johnmayer.com/ has an "account":http://soundcloud.com/johnmayer. That reminded me of this excellent post, from a few months back, on Berklee Blogs, "John Mayer 2011 Clinic – 'Manage the Temptation to Publish Yourself'":http://www.berklee-blogs.com/2011/07/john-mayer-2011-clinic-manage-the-temptation-to-publish-yourself/. When I read that, I remembered "sitting in the green room":http://mistersugar.com/article/4630/alone-for-the-weekend-i-keep-busy of the TWC Pavilion at Walnut Creek last summer, listening to Mayer talk about struggling to focus on the writing that mattered to him. Walking back from a meeting on campus at the end of the day today, I heard the bells atop the Duke Chapel chiming, so I took out the iPad, opened the SoundCloud app, and recorded the sounds of bells, bicycles and students walking through fallen leaves: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Michael Ruhlman, Lantern and thelongtable.org AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/12/2011 09:47:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: the-long-table CATEGORY: Meals ----- BODY: Michael Ruhlman -- his name shows up on this blog quite often -- is coming back to the Triangle next month to promote His latest book, Ruhlman's Twenty. Michael will be a featured storyteller at "The Monti":http://themonti.org Nov. 1. The next night, he'll be guest of honor at a special dinner at Chapel Hill's great "Lantern Restaurant":http://lanternrestaurant.com. I've revived "thelongtable.org":http://thelongtable.org to reflect this opportunity to hear from Michael. Head over there to read more about his visit. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sprinkles make me happy AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/06/2011 10:37:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Malia's art teacher, Becky Springer, was nice enough to send along this image of Malia working on her class project, a still life in pastel crayon: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sit back and listen AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/04/2011 10:27:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Physicist and open-science advocate "Michael Nielsen":http://michaelnielsen.org/blog/michael-a-nielsen/ visited Duke today to give a public talk, "Doing science in the open":http://cit.duke.edu/2011/09/doing-science-in-the-open-a-talk-by-michael-nielsen/. His host, "Paolo Mangiafico":http://twitter.com/#!/paoloman, allowed me to take Michael to lunch, so I invited a a host of Department of Medicine faculty, but in the end only "Misha Angrist, PhD":http://blogs.plos.org/genomeboy/ and "Susan Spratt, MD":http://medicine.duke.edu/faculty/details/0225107 (and see her "Spratt's Salads":http://sprattsalads.com/ site) were able to join us. The conversation was mostly about genomics, electronic medical records and whether physicians should allow patients to friend them on Facebook (re: "AMA social media guidelines":http://www.ama-assn.org/ama/pub/news/news/social-media-policy.page). After lunch, Michael and I walked through campus toward Perkins Library. He commented on how I'd let him and the others do much of the talking, and how I'd engaged later in the discussion with questions to each of the individuals around the table. Earlier this summer, I participated in a two-day communications review at "Brookhaven National Laboratory":http://www.bnl.gov/world/. I sat, listened, took a lot of notes. When I finally started talking in our final session, a fellow panelist remarked that it was like a dam bursting. I think he meant that I'd saved my insights and perspective and that he was glad I finally shared them. So, yes, that's my style. I sit back and listen. Usually, I'm thinking to myself that, damn, these are smart people and I should shut up and learn from them. But eventually, I speak up. In last year's epiphany essay, "Thinking places, or I am before I am":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am, I wrote that I'm a reader before I'm a writer. Similarly, I've realized that I am a listener before I am a speaker. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sixth time around - ScienceOnline2012 coming soon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/03/2011 12:44:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Summer is over -- the heat in our home kicked on over the weekend -- the girls are back in school, and it's conference-planning season. "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com/, our sixth annual science blogging (and more) conference in North Carolina, is coming up, and I'm back to late nights interacting with "Bora":http://coturnix.org and a growing group of collaborators as we dream up new ways to make the event special and memorable. Read Bora's post on the Scientific American Network Central blog: "What is: ScienceOnline2012 – and it’s coming soon!":http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/network-central/2011/10/03/what-is-scienceonline2012-and-its-coming-soon/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: London people, pubs and perfection AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/07/2011 10:09:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On the plane now (the same United Airlines 767 with an out-of-commission lavatory that I flew seven days ago going the other way across the Atlantic) headed home after a fun time in London. The two-day "Science Online London":http://www.scienceonlinelondon.org/ conference was very enjoyable, with good sessions and demonstrations and discussions focused on data sharing and promoting open science ("Michael Nielsen":http://michaelnielsen.org/ keynoted with a talk heavy on social research, arguing that open science needs to be a common good for it to become common; "Nielsen will be at Duke Oct. 4":http://bit.ly/q33SMy). The British Library was a good, central place to hold the conference, and the weather these first few days was simply splendid -- warm, sunny, perfect. On Saturday, I broke away from the conference to meet up with a handful of long-time "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com users, at a pub in Covent Garden. I've used Textpattern as the content management system for mistersugar.com since 2004, and the other guys have helped the open-source CMS stay alive. It was fun to drink a pint, share our support-forum memories, and talk about ways to make Textpattern a more popular choice for site and blog development. Both nights after the conference sessions, we ended up, naturally, in the pub, drinking English ales and talking about science, communication, journalism, social media and more. Great group! Sunday, I checked of the hotel and walked to the flat of my step-brother, Nathan. We set out then, walking through nearby Regent's Park and into Camden. As the rain began to fall, we walked along the canal and into Camden Lock Market. We bought plates of West African food, and sat under an umbrella, talking about travel, St. Croix -- we hadn't seen each other since I lived on the island, nearly 30 years ago -- and things to do in London. We split up after that, I walked to the Tube and headed to the British Museum to view the Rosetta Stone and the Parthenon marbles. Then, shopping and people watching along Regent, Oxford and Carnaby streets. Monday, cappuccino and croissant at on of the many tiny cafes in Fitzrovia, then more Underground traveling, popping out at Green Park for a quick look at Buckingham Palace -- flag was up so Queen in residence; witnessed one of the guards almost slip and fall on his march to and fro, his heavy clogs apparently hitting a smooth or damp patch on the rug -- then walking along Piccadilly to shop. Lunched again on food from an ethnic stall, this time Moroccan salmon tagine in the courtyard of St. James Church. A double-decker bus to Kensington South station for a visit to the Victoria & Albert Museum (just of a couple of forgettable Turners but an amazing cast of Trajan's Column, displayed in two sections because the scale is so big) and a call upon a writer friend attending an ill spouse in the reputable Royal Marsden Hospital. There's no secret to writing a book, he tells me. "You sit down at a keyboard, and you begin to type word after word." He's written numerous books himself, at least two about aeroplanes and airlines, others about travel. So that I'm sitting at flight 37,023 feet high, writing a blog entry about my trip to London, is a good sign that I've got it in me. Once back in North Carolina, I've got big projects at Duke, and ScienceOnline2012, and a narrated slideshow to commemorate 50 years of the Peace Corps through pictures of my dad's and my own service. I've enjoyed this trip immensely. The freedom of singular travel is great, although at every turn I wanted Erin and Anna and Malia and Oliver to be along with me to experience the city with me. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: London market, I'm falling down AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/01/2011 05:26:43 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My flight to London was uneventful, and by 8:30 am my new passport had its first stamp and I was in the Tube on my way into the city. I dropped my suitcase at the hotel, where I ran into "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org and his family (they were on on the same schedule but different flights), so we made our way to a nearby coffee shop for a jolt of caffeine. I then split off and found a seat in the "British Library":http://www.bl.uk/ to check email and work on the prezi that Bora and I will use for our discussion session at "Science Online London":http://www.scienceonlinelondon.org/ tomorrow. Lunch time, and so I headed to the London Bridge Tube station and nearby "Borough Market":http://www.boroughmarket.org.uk/, where I wandered through the stalls and streets, tasting samples and noticing what the Londoners were buying for their lunches (also noticed how narrow and fitted the men's suits were, similar to the styles in New York when I was there earlier this year, and something I need to adopt). I stopped into "Neal's Yard Dairy":http://www.nealsyarddairy.co.uk/ and walked out with 252 grams of Westcombe cheddar, which I'm nibbling now in my hotel room. I also bought a serving of Vietnamese-style green curry and rice, then found a seat on the lawn of the "Southwark Cathedral":http://cathedral.southwark.anglican.org/ -- site of a church since 606 A.D. -- and with the sun on my back and the conversations of people all around, enjoyed a perfect lunch. I moved over to a bench to have a better view of the cathedral, and chatted with an older English woman who sat down to make herself a thermos of instant coffee. We talked about the weather -- "Gorgeous day in London today, isn't it?" and "Hurricane back where you're from, eh?" -- and then got onto 9/11. I mentioned my thoughts that most Americans aren't really prepared for the tenth anniversary this month, less the usual American obliviousness of history and more coping for that horrible day. ("It took me only a day to find distraction.":http://mistersugar.com/article/2496/little-innocent-anna-and-i) From the market and the cathedral, a walk along the Thames to "Tate Modern":http://www.tate.org.uk/modern/, a huge building with not as much art as I expected. I was too tired and hot and sweaty to go through with my plan to see the "Miró exhibit":http://www.tate.org.uk/modern/exhibitions/joanmiro/default.shtm, so I returned to the hotel and met Bora and family again. I've just woken from a nap, written this post, and will now step out for a walk. Busy days ahead with the conference, then more sightseeing and activities. I'm in London until Tuesday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Off to London AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/31/2011 06:09:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: Travels ----- BODY: Waiting to board my United Airlines flight over to London, where I'll be attending "Science Online London":http://www.scienceonlinelondon.org/, sister conference to the annual ScienceOnline conference we hold in North Carolina each year ("ScienceOnline2012":http://www.scienceonline2012.com/ will be Jan. 19-21, 2012 on the campus of N.C. State University). I was last (and first) in London in December 1999 with Erin, our last stop on our around-the-world ticket home from our "Peace Corps":http://peacecorps.gov service in Vanuatu. (Read about our various stops in my essay, "From There to Here":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=696, and "see those travels on a map":http://mistersugar.com/travels.) I'll have a few days to walk, tour, talk and eat. Pictures and essays to come. #solo11, #scio12 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Hurricanes and cameras, and memories of Frank the Beachcomber AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/26/2011 11:09:37 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: Travels ----- BODY: Last week, Erin and I and the kids jetted up to Jerusalem, Rhode Island (technically, we flew to Boston and were driven down in a swank SUV) to spend a few days in an ocean-side cottage owned by the family of Dorothy (my father's wife of 12 years). Three of my brothers also came in, and Uncle John and Aunt Patty, too, all to share a few days with my father on the occasion of his 70th birthday (technically, Sept. 9). That first night, I was a basket case, suffering the worst anxiety of my life. My mother was in an Altoona hospital -- she was out the next day, and fine -- and I was behind on the planning for an important two-day photo shoot for the department's annual report publication. I barely slept, and I couldn't stop fretting about impending disaster for the project. But watching the tides go in and out the next day, I started to calm. Dad, healthy as an ox, helped by keeping us active; he took us out for a long kayak paddle up the inlet and an even longer bike ride out to a nature preserve, where he and Joel and I looked out over a pond and marveled at the lotus flowers and frogs floating on the lilies. One day, walking along the beach with Dot, I asked about hurricanes. I shouldn't have.

I arrived in Hawaii, asked about hurricanes, Iniki arrived. Arrived in Vanuatu, asked, Susan arrived. Rhode Island last week? Irene aiming.Wed Aug 24 15:51:08 via TweetDeck

And here's Irene tonight, as it aims dead-on for that Rhode Island cottage: Dad is back in Hawaii, but Dot stayed at the cottage, so I'm hoping she's getting to someplace safe! And I hope the cottage weathers the storm, because I thoroughly enjoyed my time there. In fact, by the time we left Rhode Island (via Amtrak to Boston and Jet Blue to North Carolina), I was rested and ready to return to work and to nail down all the details necessary for the photo shoot. That shoot happened this week, and it couldn't have gone better. "Richard Corman":http://richardcorman.com/, and extraordinary photographer from New York, spent two days crisscrossing the Duke University Medical Center with me and his crew, and he captured some fantastic images of our physicians and residents. I learned a great deal from watching Richard interact with his subjects, how he used light -- mostly natural, along with some electric lighting -- and how he set up and framed an image. As I walked alongside Richard, I couldn't help thinking about Frank the Beachcomber, my grandfather who loved photography. I know he would have loved seeing me have the chance to learn from a pro. (See the "archive of Frank's photos":http://www.zuiker.com/FZphotos/enterzuiker.htm that my cousin, Jeff, put together when we first launched Zuiker Chronicles Online.) Richard and the crew and I somehow missed the East Coast earthquake that struck on Tuesday. The temblor had the hospital buildings shaking, but we had just walked outside; I didn't feel a thing move. Earth, wind, light, water. It's been an elemental couple of weeks. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Visiting art museums this year AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/21/2011 12:38:33 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last evening, Malia accompanied me to the "Triangle Tweetup":http://triangletweetup.org/2011/08/19/ncma-tweetup-a-night-at-the-museum/ at the "North Carolina Museum of Art":http://ncartmuseum.org/. It was a beautiful summer evening, and the outside gathering between the museum's older building and the new wing was a perfect way to meet some friends (Bora and Catherine, Karyn and Mark) and spend some time with my daughter. I hadn't been to the museum in a few years, and so this was my first time seeing the new galleries. I was initially shocked seeing the new building as I drove onto the campus at dusk -- it smacked of a FedEx distribution warehouse, seeming more like a big box set down in what once was a green lawn. But once inside, I was astonished at the flowing beauty of the galleries. Malia and I walked around for 20 minutes or so, and decided we need to return with sketchbooks and pencils and more time. I suspect arriving in daylight will give me a different, better perspective of the exterior, too. I'm on an art museum kick, of late. In May, when I was in Chicago ("to discuss social media at the University of Chicago":http://mistersugar.com/article/4671/let-s-be-social-together), I had a few hours to myself before I met my college buddy Mike Thomas for dinner downtown, so I wandered through Millenium Park and then into the "Art Institute of Chicago":http://www.artic.edu/aic/, which also had built a brilliant new wing since I'd last been through. Loved it, although not being able to get a pot of tea at the second-floor cafe -- 45 minutes before cafe closing time was some arbitrary cutoff for brewed tea -- inspired me to stop by and fill out a comment card (still unanswered) to share my mixed experience. Still, can't wait to get back to Chicago, the park and the institute. And earlier this year, I was accompanied by Anna on a trip to New York City to attend "Science Online NYC ":http://blogs.nature.com/u6e5b2ce1/2011/03/17/announcing-science-online-nyc-sonyc. We had a full day to tour the city, so we started at the "Metropolitan Museum of Art":http://www.metmuseum.org/, where my favorite space was the Chinese Garden Court: When I was in Cleveland in June, I wanted to get to the "Cleveland Museum of Art":http://www.clevelandart.org/ -- it, too, is expanding. I would have beelined for my favorite painting, "The Burning of the Houses of Lords and Commons":http://www.tate.org.uk/servlet/ViewWork?cgroupid=777774231&workid=72975&searchid=11458&tabview=work by J.M.W. Turner, and then wandered over to peer at "The Large Plane Trees (Road Menders at Saint Remy)":http://goo.gl/rZGND by Vincent van Gogh. That was the work that my John Carroll University art history professor, Robert Getscher, took us to (my art history class met each Wednesday evening at the museum), instructed us to lean in and look closely, and observe the faint hint of a red-and-white checkered pattern. "Van Gogh was so poor that he used a restaurant tablecloth for his canvas," I recall Getscher telling us. Next month, I'll be in London for "Science Online London":http://www.scienceonlinelondon.org/. I'm planning to visit the "Tate Modern":http://www.tate.org.uk/modern/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sights and sounds: remembering our wedding day AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/10/2011 11:22:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and I retrieved our wedding photo albums and then sat down with Anna and Malia to relive that special day 15 years ago. Listen in: Stories about our wedding by mistersugar And here's a photo from that glorious day: I previously posted one of my favorite images from that day, of me "chatting with my brothers":http://mistersugar.com/article/3842/the-zuiker-five. And two more -- one with my grandparents Francis and Clarice Zuiker, the second Erin shooting hoops in her wedding gown. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 10 years in NC, 15 years in marriage, 20 years in love AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/03/2011 11:09:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and I and little Anna moved to Carrboro *10 years* ago this week ("after a quick trip to Pittsburgh to see my father and grandmother":http://mistersugar.com/article/222/our-quick-trip-to-pittsburgh), not knowing that we'd make North Carolina a permanent and wonderful home. Next week, it will be *15 years* since Erin and I were married ("see this post":http://mistersugar.com/article/3842/the-zuiker-five with my favorite photo of me with my four brothers), hoping that we'd "travel the world":http://mistersugar.com/travels and "have babies":http://mistersugar.com/article/4652/2010-in-review and "continue":http://mistersugar.com/article/4507/erin-shaughnessy-zuiker-jd-mph "learning":http://mistersugar.com/article/3402/travels. *Twenty years* ago last week, I was a "John Carroll University":http://www.jcu.edu/index.php orientation advisor waiting for last-minute arrivals, when Erin and her mother checked in. "Go upstairs and find Anton Zuiker," they were told. The rest is -history- on this blog. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Feeling the sights and sounds of my youth AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/01/2011 11:56:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: us-virgin-islands CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The other day, driving to NC State to discuss logistics for "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com, I took a break from the rage-inducing coverage of the political hostage taking in Washington, and tuned into the Eighties channel on SiriusXM. Up came this song: Whenever I hear songs from my youth, I viscerally sense those teenage days; nostalgia must clearly have a chemical basis (a quick literature search and I see that perhaps "even worms feel nostalgic":http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0960982205011498). Hearing Cyndi Lauper (or Christopher Cross or Duran Duran or Journey or REO Speedwagon or "Musical Youth":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dFtLONl4cNc) singing, I could feel myself back at my desk in the small bedroom on St. Croix as Time After Time emanated from the single speaker of my grey radio with its one tape deck. Good days, they were, with a great soundtrack. Back in March, I was in Asheville with the family and good friends, and in the basement of the hillside house where we were staying, I encountered the very radio that made my youth so musical. UPDATE 10/21/2011: In searching my blog archives, I came across a "photo of me in St. Croix holding the radio":http://mistersugar.com/article/3832/specs. Similarly, last night I caught a few minutes of "U-571":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0141926/, a film about a WWII submarine. That had me feeling back to Rainbow Beach and the paperback novels about underwater cat-and-mouse games. I wrote about that memory in "Below the surface":http://mistersugar.com/article/4580/below-the-surface. Recently, I brought back a couple of boxes of papers and mementos that had been stored in the Cleveland attic of my in-laws. I opened one box, grabbed a random envelope, and discovered the green spiral notebook that listed all of the naval vessels I watched pull into the Frederiksted pier, with notes about which I toured -- the first was the "USS Trepang (SSN 674)":http://bit.ly/pnELr4 on April 7, 1983 (which would have been just days after we arrived on St. Croix and days after my 13th birthday), the last was the "US Coast Guard Cutter Alert":http://www.uscg.mil/pacarea/cgcalert/ on March 5, 1984. My father and my "grandfather":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html both taught me the importance of keeping track of things in notebooks. "You never know when you'll need these lists," my dad suggested. I'm so glad he did, because this notebook with a thirteen-year-old's penciling means my nostalgia has a basis in time, too. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Required reading & viewing on eve of tomorrow's snip AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/20/2011 08:49:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Tomorrow, I visit the urologist for a simple procedure. I'm preparing for the snip by rereading the legendary post "Liveblogging the Vasectomy Chronicles":http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig/2008/02/liveblogging_the_vasectomy_chr.php by "David":http://cenblog.org/terra-sigillata/ "Kroll":http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected/, and listening as "Abraham Verghese":http://www.abrahamverghese.com/ reads from his fantastic novel, Cutting for Stone (I was at "this reading at Duke in 2009":http://mistersugar.com/article/4573/listening-to-verghese, and squirmed in my seat as he read this deliriously funny passage). UPDATE 8/11/11: The procedure went smoothly, I had no pain whatsoever, and I'm feeling great. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Smell of sweet basil reminds me of Paama AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/16/2011 12:48:24 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: For 15 years, Erin and I carted around a two-piece copper-in-wood planter set, but never had the space or place to put it together, or the money to stock it with orchids and jade and other exotic plants. We'd bought it from a cousin, thinking it would work great in the sun room of our Shaker Square apartment, but then we moved to North Carolina, lived in a series of smaller apartments, and got too busy to worry about a bit of wood and metal. Finally, a few weeks ago, looking into the garage where the planter was collecting spider webs, we decided to put it to use on the back patio, sans copper. I drilled a few holes, assembled it on the deck, and filled it with soil. Erin and the girls planted basil and dill seedlings, and also tomatillo and tomato plants that we've since moved to a small bed in the backyard. The dill we used last month for grilled salmon with cucumber-dill sauce, and it's gone to seed and collected a trio of monarch caterpillars. The basil is full on, and with this "pest recipe from Saveur":http://www.saveur.com/article/Recipes/Pesto-1000082089 has provided a few tasty meals this week. As I washed the dishes tonight, the sweet aroma of the leftover basil leaves reminded me of the good fortune we had on Paama. I had exited the classroom of Vaum Junior Secondary School one morning, and amid the tropical smells of the island, I caught a familiar scent and took notice of the shrubs lining the building (painted in light blue to reflect the donations of the European Union that had allowed the recent construction of the school -- my "dad's crowning achievement":http://zuiker.com/books during his Peace Corps service was building a school, but we arrived to one just built). Basil! For the next year, I'd regularly walk over in the afternoon to snip a few leaves, which Erin added to a simple but tasty sauce for our pasta. caterpillar on dill ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pastoral scene, digital experience AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/28/2011 02:33:14 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: One day a couple of weeks ago, on a day that she usually stays home with Oliver, Erin learned that an important hearing was happening in a Raleigh courtroom and she needed to be on hand to represent a client. So, I took a mid-morning break from work to drive home. Erin headed east, Oliver went down for his morning nap, and I settled into one of the stools at the kitchen counter with the new iPad2 that the Department of Medicine had issued to me. For two hours, I read email, New Yorker features (now that I can download any issue to the New Yorker app, I have much less need to keep the stacks of old print issues laying around the house) and the stream of tweets by those in my network of friends, ScienceOnline community and social media mavens. The house was still, the neighborhood quiet, and I was lost in the ether(net). Erin arrived home before noon. I gave her a hug and kiss, and got in the car for my return drive to Duke. I drive the back roads to and from Durham, and on this day, the fields of hay were a lush green, the Duke Forest trees a cooler shade, and the air just buzzing with life. I soaked it all in, and just as I was thinking how different this natural experience was from the previous two hours of digital stimulation, I passed an intersection where two cars had collided, their drivers standing separate and each talking into a mobile phone. That's an anomaly, I thought. Something's wrong in the code. I may have seen The Matrix a few too many times. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pause before sleep AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/15/2011 12:45:18 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As I do each night before I go to bed, I've stepped out onto the front porch to take a deep breath, still myself and observe the night. Tonight, I hear a barred owl down one end of the neighborhood, a whippoorwill down the other end and a toad in the prairie grass in the front yard. The deer must have visited last night, because the lily buds were missing when I checked the flower garden before sundown. The moon is bathing the night air in silkiness. I'm ready to slip into my dreams. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Give me the moose AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/09/2011 11:11:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I just submitted this comment to "NPR":http://npr.org via their web contact form: bq. "Now, something that pushes the boundaries of things we consider on All Things Considered," said Melissa Block in the lead-in to today's "delightful taxidermy story":http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2011/05/09/136146064/taxidermy-a-way-to-keep-from-wasting-what-nature-had-given-us. Take it back! You had just moved from "a story about a lying politician":http://www.npr.org/2011/05/09/135603636/michele-bachmann-evolution-of-a-cultural-warrior that ruined my drive through the country. I'll take a story about a stuffed moose over one about a breathing cultural warrior any day. Block's comment was incongruous with the variety of stories the show covers. I loved the taxidermy story, and hated having to listen to one about another politician who seems to think we're all stuffed, lifeless and unblinkingly accepting of her malarkey. The politician in question: "Michele Bachmann":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Michele_Bachmann. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Let's be social together AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/08/2011 10:24:47 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On Friday, I had the privilege of being the keynote speaker for a half-day social media workshop for the "University of Chicago":http://www.uchicago.edu/index.shtml campus communicators. It was an honor to be invited back to the city where my grandparents lived. Indeed, I can draw a direct line from the writing life of my grandfathers, which I credited in the opening sentences of my essay "When blogging, face the conversation":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation, to the reasons I was standing before the 125 people in the auditorium of the university's International House (quite a few who are doing some great work online and using social media tools). Here's what I wrote back in 2006: bq.. For years, both my grandfathers regularly sent typewritten letters to their family members, who were scattered from coast to coast. Grandpa Sisco invariably recorded his daily schedule — early morning walk, daily Mass, evening supper out with Grandma — while Grandpa Zuiker crafted adventure chronicles about fishing trips to the Outer Banks. I became a writer because they wrote. And then, with the Web, I became a blogger. p. And "here's the Prezi":http://prezi.com/ajb-p78apuex/social-media-connections-community/ (slide presentation) I used this week to share some of my experiences and observations from my decade in blogging, social media and online community building. Note the first set of slides show my grandfathers, including Grandpa Sisco's storied postcard -- mailed in 1961 and returned to him in 2003, having been lost behind the post office counter all those years -- that surprised me with the messages on the back. Take a look, and notice how his typewritten postcard could today have been communicated with Twitter: the first part of his message is 137 characters, the second part is 111 characters (postcard photo is also on my Flickr account "here":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/4471146125/ and "here":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/4471925714/in/photostream/).
Thanks again to "John Eckroth":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/john-eckroth/a/971/111 and "Ankur Thakkar":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ankur-thakkar/28/4a/507 for inviting me to UChicago, and to "Rhianna Wisniewski":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/rhianna-wisniewski/8/529/38 for suggesting me as a speaker (she attended "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com and met me there). ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Oliver is one today AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/29/2011 12:45:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My son is adorable, active, smart and a joy in our home. Erin's recuperating from foot surgery, so a proper party for little Oliver is postponed to next week. He still may get his first cupcake this evening, and certainly a loving rendition of Happy Birthday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: FOMO? Not with Duke Today AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/19/2011 11:04:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last week, the Duke Communicators got a preview of the new "Duke Today site":http://today.duke.edu, which is set to officially launch in the next day or two to the Duke community. Last year, in "What's happening, Duke?":http://mistersugar.com/article/4617/what-s-happening-duke, I wrote about how the "Events@Duke":http://calendar.duke.edu/ calendar is becoming an indispensible electronic bulletin board of the galaxy of activities on this campus. Duke Today is a wonderful complement, and I'm excited to see this new version. Our university is a sprawling place, and I've long harbored the notion that the perfect job would be as roving reporter with no more responsibility than to visit every nook and cranny of campus, attend whichever seminar or talk or concert seemed of interest, and then share the experience on my blog or social media streams. Put together, Duke Today, Events@Duke, "Duke on Demand":http://ondemand.duke.edu and Duke's "social media roundup page":http://socialmedia.duke.edu/ are giving us ways to stream the life and activity of the university to the web. A couple of times in the last few weeks, I've heard the expression fear of missing out (FOMO); see "Feel Like a Wallflower? Maybe It’s Your Facebook Wall":http://www.nytimes.com/2011/04/10/business/10ping.html, for example. I've never felt that, partly because I am always striving for balance in my life -- the highlight of my days now is when I walk in the door at home and little Oliver comes toddling down the hallway to hug me hello -- but also partly because I'm fascinated with the tools that are helping us to reflect the fullness of life, whether at home or on campus. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spinning class with Colum McCann AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/06/2011 10:56:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I came home from work this evening in time to shoot hoops with Anna and Malia -- little Oliver, too, who I held up to dunk a small b-ball, and then he hung from the rim -- but decided I needed to return to Duke to attend the "Archive-sponsored reading":http://dukearchive.wordpress.com/2011/02/23/the-archive-literary-festival-colum-mccann-april-6-2011/ by author "Colum McCann":http://www.colummccann.com/. I've been a fan of McCann since my Peace Corps hammock-reading days: I wrote about his books in my posts "An imagination":http://mistersugar.com/article/3621/an-imagination and "As darkness falls":http://mistersugar.com/article/4600/as-darkness-falls. I'm so glad I went back to campus tonight, because McCann was enthralling in his argument for finding and telling stories -- there are so many stories to tell, he said, that they "spin in a Yeatsian gyre." I'm in my "decade of narrative":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40, so this opportunity to hear from a great storyteller was an inspiration. I bought a paperback copy of "Let the Great World Spin":http://www.colummccann.com/books/spin.htm because my hardcover copy, along with a copy of "This Side of Brightness":http://colummccann.com/books/brightness.htm, is off with some friend or relative. Since those days in Vanuatu, when I pressed the advanced reader's edition of Brightness into the hands of as many of my fellows PCVs as I could, I've been urging others to read McCann. You should, too. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 41, and still telling my story AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/02/2011 08:41:14 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last year on this day, I marked "my 40th birthday":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40 with a celebration with friends and family and a pledge that this decade would be one of narrative (my 30s were devoted to writing). A year into my 40s, I'm happy with where this is going, highlighted by the Tell Your Own Story session I organized -- along with my friend and Duke colleague, David Jarmul -- for the Duke In Depth weekend in February. (I wrote about it here.) At that session, I started off with a story of my own, about my path to the Peace Corps and how my service in the Republic of Vanuatu informs my online community building. I've posted video of my story: My goal this next year is to tell a story at a "Monti StorySLAM":http://themonti.org/ (listen to Monti founder and impresario Jeff Polish "interviewed on The State of Things":http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/Meet_Jeff_Polish.mp3/view) and, at work, to begin the Voices of Medicine project that will feature the physicians and researchers of the "Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu. Every story needs a beginning, and this is mine. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Rash decision AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/27/2011 10:16:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and I had already made the decision for Erin to cut back to half time at work to allow us to take Oliver out of daycare (he goes to the splendid "Childcare Matters":http://childcare-matters.org/drupal/welcome, successor to the Holy Family Daycare that took such good care of Anna and Malia when they were younger), but last week was a prime example why we need to slow our lives down a bit. Amid our engaging jobs -- I'm loving my role at the "Duke Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu, and Erin is thriving as an attorney at Smith Moore Leatherwood -- our juggled drop-offs and pick-ups schedule, ongoing side projects such as "ScienceOnline2012":http://scienceonline2012.com, visiting friends and a house to keep clean, Oliver came home from daycare with a rash. One look and we knew it was serious. Right away, looking at the rash around this waist, I figured it was the diaper we'd borrowed from our neighbors. Yes -- we had to borrow a diaper because we'd run out in the house, a good indicator our life is a bit nuts. But when Oliver's armpits looked inflamed, Erin focused on the baby food, which has some new alphabet-like vitamin additive. In the morning, Erin took Oliver to the pediatrician, who took one glance and asked, "What medication has he been taking?" Of course. Oliver had just finished a course of amoxicillin for an ear infection. His rash was an allergic reaction, and we should have known from our own previous experiences with some very severe reactions to medications that this was more probable than a different type of diaper or a nutritional additive -- another indicator that we need more time to focus on our family. Oliver has been struggling with this reaction through the weekend, and it's been painful (and sleep depriving) to watch. He's got a great disposition, and in the hours that the antihistimine works, he's been walking through the house, alternating kicking the small pink soccer ball or bouncing his small basketball. Yes, he's only 11 months old and already playing soccer! (The subject of this NYTimes Magazine article, "A Soccer Phenom Puts the 'I' in Team":http://www.nytimes.com/2011/03/27/magazine/mag-27Soccer-t.html is a high school girl who also learned to walk and kick a ball at the same time; Anna and I are looking forward to watching her when she comes to UNC to play.) Every time I look at Oliver's angry rash and pained smile, I know we're making a wise decision to find better balance in our home. Here's to a summer of fewer allergies, more futbol and happy and healthy parents and kids. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Twitter for Scientists AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/18/2011 07:45:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm testing a new way to post short items to my blog, similar to Tumblr. Here's a good resource: Twitter for Scientists. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Reunited with my boyhood baseball mitt AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2011 09:49:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My brother, Nick, surprised me last week during his visit -- he dropped an old leather baseball mitt into my lap with a nonchalant "I think this is yours." Indeed it was. This mitt, a Wilson model endorsed by pitcher "Bruce Sutter":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bruce_Sutter, was the one I bought in Caldwell, Idaho when I was 10 to replace my first mitt, a red leather beauty that I left at the water fountain near the ball field. I was devastated by that loss, but my father took me to the sporting goods store, helped me choose a new mitt and showed me how to break it in by putting a baseball in it and sticking it under my mattress. Dad also showed me how to strengthen my wrists by swinging a baseball bat with one hand, and taught me how to fill out a box score, and how to be a proper Cubs fan -- "There's always next year" -- even though our side of the family are White Sox fans. Later, when we were living in DeKalb, Illinois, I'd take this mitt with me when Dad took us to Wrigley Field or Comiskey Park, always hoping to catch a foul ball. My favorite spot of any ballpark anywhere was the sunken left-field picnic area at Comiskey where I'd enjoy a hot dog and dream of being out there on the grass in the lights among the fireflies enveloped by the crowd's cheers. It was also pretty cool to be sitting in the seats when the vendors would greet my father by name, hand over a free soda or bag of popcorn, and talk with dad about his days working the ballparks (like my "grandfather":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html and uncles, dad vended at Wrigley, Comiskey, Soldier Field and Chicago Stadium as a teenager all the way through law school at DePaul University). This mitt served me well over many summers of Little League and high school ball as an outfielder, second baseman and shortstop (I also picked up a catcher's mitt in high school, but my poor eyesight caused me to be a shy catcher). I must have left the mitt at home sometime during college, and the fact that it's stayed in the family with so many moves astonishes me. I just wish my baseball card collection would turn up, too, although chances of that are slim, since my shoe boxes full of cards got tossed in the trash before the family had ever left Idaho. I celebrated my reunion with my boyhood mitt by playing catch with my daughters in the front yard. And given my friend Bora's lack of baseball experiences -- see "An Open Letter to Bora Zivkovic on Baseball":http://blogs.plos.org/blog/2011/03/01/an-open-letter-to-bora-zivkovic-on-baseball/ -- I'll soon be buying some tickets to the "Durham Bulls":http://www.durhambulls.com/ and taking him out to the ballpark -- with mitt in hand, of course. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Speaking of AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/05/2011 11:46:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: Film ----- BODY: With a successful "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com behind me, I had wanted to retreat to Southport again this year to spend a weekend walking, reading, writing, thinking -- my retreat last year was a rewarding time of introspection and discovery -- but I decided against a weekend away from my family and instead took the afternoon to sit at "3CUPS":http://www.3cups.net/ with a big pot of keemun mao feng, a pile of magazines, a notebook and my journal. After a couple of hours on my own (bookended by conversations with long-time acquaintances, including "Mark Overbay":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/mark-overbay/a/560/b34, who told me about his new venture, "Big Spoon":http://twitter.com/bigspooners "fresh-roasted peanut butter":http://www.indyweek.com/indyweek/big-spoon-taste-carolina-billygoat-brewing/Content?oid=2101485), I headed over to the "Chelsea Theater":http://www.thechelseatheater.com/ to see "The King's Speech":http://www.kingsspeech.com/, a splendid film. That movie over, I came straight home, energized enough and very much needing to be with my precious family. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Testing a Twitter plugin for Textpattern AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/03/2011 11:53:34 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just testing the "arc_twitter plugin":http://redhotchilliproject.com/txp/arc_twitter. If you've clicked a link to get here, thanks for visiting. My "About page":http://mistersugar.com/about explains who I am and what I do here. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The Zooker handshake AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/03/2011 11:18:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Dad CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On my cluttered desk at home tonight, I find a clever photo of my father's extended hand printed on a piece of paper. It's addressed to little Oliver, with this inscription: bq. Little Ollie: Your first Zoooooker handshake. G.Z. Happy Valentine's Day. Grandpa Zooker On the reverse is taped a $1 bill. My dad -- and uncles -- are famous for shaking the hands of the kids in our family, thereby slyly transferring a bit of cash for ice cream cones or popcorn or some other treat. I love my father's creativity. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The week in review: brothers, Bon Jovi, Peace Corps AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/28/2011 12:13:24 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Busy week just past, with a visit from my brothers, Nick and Matt, who flew in from the West to spend a few days hanging out on the campuses of "UNC-CH":http://www.unc.edu and "Duke":http://duke.edu and taking me to see "Bon Jovi":http://www.bonjovi.com/ in concert in the RBC Center. We had an extra ticket to the concert, so I asked "David Kroll":http://cenblog.org/terra-sigillata/ to join us. Before we headed to the arena, I presented him with the first BlogTogether Community Service Award, which I'd announced at the opening reception of "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com. David's an amazing supporter of science bloggers -- read his latest post, "It just changes – that’s all":http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected/2011/02/23/it-just-changes-thats-all/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+plos/blogs/main+(Blogs+-+Main), to observe the depth of his humanity -- and has helped both me and Bora through the years as we've grown the conference and nurtured the BlogTogether spirit. !http://mistersugar.com/images/175.jpg! (Details about how to nominate someone for the 2011 BlogTogether Community Service Award will be posted this summer.) The rest of the week I was focused on our Thursday evening research retreat for "work":http://medicine.duke.edu, but I also took an hour to participate in a Duke WebCom discussion about social media -- more and more of my Duke colleagues are incorporating social media into their work. I'm especially happy that any Duke student, employee or faculty member can easily create a Wordpress site at "sites.duke.edu":http://sites.duke.edu The next day, I led a storytelling session as part of *Duke In Depth: A World Together* (info "here":http://www.dukealumni.com/learn-travel/duke-depth at the moment, later "here":http://www.dukealumni.com/learn-travel/duke-depth/past-events). This session was an opportunity for the alumni -- many of them Returned Peace Corps Volunteers -- to share a story about what they learned working in another country. I started with a story that blended elements from my essay "From There to Here":http://mistersugar.com/clips/696/from-there-to-here, my blog post "Bugs in the night":http://mistersugar.com/article/559/bugs-in-the-night and "my introduction":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4005/foreword-to-step-to-freedom to my dad's Peace Corps memoir, "Step to Freedom":http://zuikerchronicles.com/steptofreedom/. Eight others stood up to share their stories, about visiting Mother Teresa's hospital in Calcutta, teaching Moroccan school kids the meaning of John Lennon's song, Imagine, and how a romance bloomed in Nepal. We'll post video soon. "Ken Goodson":http://www.linkedin.com/pub/ken-goodson/6/132/57b, advisor to the Peace Corps, Returned Peace Corps Volunteer and former country director, and Duke alum, was also at the session, but he had to wait until the keynote speech at the "NC Peace Corps Association":http://www.rtpnet.org/~ncpca/ dinner last night (also part of the Duke In Depth program - ). He shared the Peace Corps stats -- 9600 volunteers currently serving in 72 countries (with requests from 20 other countries), and 200,000 RPCVS (Peace Corps alums), and of current volunteers, 97% have cell phones and 80% use the Internet daily. Those last stats made me grateful I served when I did; as I told in my storytelling session, my time on a tropical island with no electricity and spotty phone service fueled my desire to jump into the Web. I mentioned that in my "recent year-in-review post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4652/2010-in-review. Goodson also talked about his time as Peace Corps country director in Mongolia, when the swearing-in ceremonies began to feature the new volunteers singing and performing traditional Mongolian songs and dances. Many of these performances are on YouTube, including this one: Today, a run with Anna and Malia, then the Duke-UNC women's basketball game in Cameron Indoor Stadium. It's midnight, and another week beckons. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Science on the move AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/16/2011 11:36:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scienceonline CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Two links to note today: Over at the UNC j-school site, "my answers are featured in the newsletter":http://jomc.unc.edu/the-connection-february-2011#zuiker for the Medical & Science Journalism Program, for which I've been invited to serve on the "advisory board":http://www.jomc.unc.edu/graduate-studies-graduate-students/advisory-board. And on the "ScienceOnline2012 blog":http://scienceonline2011.com/2011/02/scienceonline2012-to-grow-into-new-venue-at-nc-state-university/, I've announced that the conference is moving to a larger venue next year -- we'll be at the McKimmon Conference & Training Center at NC State University Jan. 19-21, 2012. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Anatomy of ScienceOnline2011 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/24/2011 08:15:21 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scio11 CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC ----- BODY: After our very first BlogTogether event (actually, the event that birthed BlogTogether), the *2005 Triangle Bloggers Conference*, I posted the "Anatomy of a bloggercon":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/anatomy_of_a_bloggercon to reflect the various ways we organized that event. We've continued that tradition after every one of our science blogging conferences. The ScienceOnline2011 anatomy post is up now: "They made ScienceOnline2011 possible":http://scienceonline2011.com/2011/01/they-made-scienceonline2011-possible/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Time to breathe AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/18/2011 08:45:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: scio11 CATEGORY: ----- BODY: With "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com now done, it's time to take a deep breath and center myself. From the many feedback and blog posts and tweets, it seems we did another good job. Deep thoughts come next. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Loose screws in the dark AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/09/2011 03:12:27 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Quickest of posts to share a funny anecdote brought on by this geegaw: I attended the "Duke TechExpo":http://sites.duke.edu/techexpo2011/ last Thursday -- and I was a panelist on a session about communication technology strategies -- and when I realized that this tote-bag item was a flashlight with screwdrivers (little metal screwdriver rods fit into the center of the light facet, and when pushed into a screw, engage the light), I chuckled in remembrance of my one-and-only appearance on live television. That disaster had me, as editor of Northern Ohio Live, filling a one-hour slot on Cleveland's public television fund drive. I fumbled my way through, and hit rock bottom when trying to make a station-branded flashlight seem more valuable then it might have been. "You can use this for finding loose screws in the dark," I mumble. Huh? When I got back to my in-law's home where Erin was waiting with her parents, I didn't have to say a word before they laughed and laughed and laughed. QVC host material I am not. And yes, I'd read the "Malcom Gladwell":http://www.gladwell.com/index.html profile of Ron Popeil, "The Pitchman":http://www.gladwell.com/2000/2000_10_30_a_pitchman.html. A lot of good that did me. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 2010 in review: something to jump for AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/01/2010 09:49:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's fitting that the book I finished last in 2010, just last week, was "Say Everything":http://www.sayeverything.com/, by "Scott Rosenberg":http://www.wordyard.com/ ("@scottros":http://twitter.com/scottros). Rosenberg's book is a phenomenal history of blogging, and not a page went by that I didn't find myself nodding in agreement or satisfaction, recalling my first encounter or long relationship with the bloggers or tools or sites he was describing. For example, *Dave Winer* figures prominently in Say Everything, and I was familiar with many of the references. I started reading Dave's "Scripting News":http://scripting.com soon after I started the "Zuiker Chronicles Online":http://zuiker.com in 2000, and I've learned so very much from him through the years. When we sat together on the patio of "Crook's Corner":http://www.crookscorner.com/ the day after the 2005 Triangle Blogging Conference ("noted here":http://mistersugar.com/article/3870/triangle-bloggercon-next-steps), he urged me to "bootstrap your community." (It's nice to see my "mistersugar icon still on Winer's site":http://scripting.com/2005/02/13.html#When:5:18:51PM.) This month's "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com is a direct result of that conversation and that first conference, and not just because my partner in the five-year ScienceOnline effort, "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org, "sat next to Winer":http://blog.coturnix.org/2010/01/21/making_it_real_people_and_book/. ScienceOnline2011 is going to be our biggest and best event yet, and we're stoked -- if not sleep-deprived. It turns out Scott Rosenberg will attend, too, and we'll feature his must-read book at the Friday books-and-beer happy hour at "Casbah":http://casbahdurham.com ("Karyn Traphagen":http://boulders2bits.com/ has organized this, and it's going to rock). At some point during Say Everything, I mentioned to Erin how fortunate it was that we'd been "Peace Corps Volunteers":http://peacecorps.gov when we were (Republic of Vanuatu 1997-1999). In 1997, I was just beginning to to dabble in the Internet -- through "Excite.com":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Excite.com -- but spending the next years on an island with no electricity (hence no Internet) gave me an insatiable hunger for all things Web when I alighted back in Cleveland in 2000. Ten years later, my story was very much entwined with the story of blogging. If you know me or read my blog (or have seen my "About page":http://mistersugar.com/about), you'll know that I celebrated my "decade of blogging":http://mistersugar.com/article/4634/a-decade-of-blogging in July. Of course, the year had started off with "ScienceOnline2010":http://mistersugar.com/article/4609/thank-them-they-made-scienceonline2010-possible, our fourth annual North Carolina science blogging conference. Soon after that heady, intense experience, I retreated to the coast for silent contemplation and realized it's through writing that I think best. "Thinking places, or I am before I am":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am is probably the most important blog post I've ever written. April began with "me turning 40":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40, and ended with "Oliver's birth":http://mistersugar.com/article/4622/oliver-anton-zuiker. In June, "I took a new job at Duke":http://mistersugar.com/article/4628/midstream-and-taking-a-new-step, as communications director of the "Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu. August saw our "14th wedding anniversary":http://mistersugar.com/article/4636/14-years-and-counting -- can't say it enough, but I am one lucky man to be married to *Erin Shaughnessy Zuiker*. The next month, I found another reason to be grateful, and I wrote "When giving goes viral":http://mistersugar.com/article/4639/when-giving-goes-viral. In October, we held the "BlogTogether Birthday Bash":http://mistersugar.com/article/4640/the-blogtogether-birthday-bash-at-the-casbah-10-19-2010, and David Kroll wowed me with a song, "Minister of Ether":http://mistersugar.com/article/4649/minister-of-ether (David wrote a great post about his own blogging anniversary, "Five years of Terra Sigillata":http://cenblog.org/terra-sigillata/2010/12/15/five-years-of-terra-sigillata/). And then, for the rest of the year, I focused on the juggling act of life -- my duties at Duke, Erin's as attorney, Anna and Malia at school learning, Oliver developing, conference planning kicking in, holidays and family gatherings. My mother and brother, Joel, are visiting this weekend; this week marked the one-year anniversary of the "death of my grandfather":http://mistersugar.com/article/4606/louis-sisco-1913-2009, *Louis Sisco*, and my mother and I paused to remember what an amazing man he was. Long before Dave Winer was telling me to bootstrap the Triangle blogging community, Grandpa Sisco was giving me lessons for bootstrapping my life. All in all, I think my 2010 -- a year of personal and professional accomplishment -- was testament to the influence of my grandfather, mother, Dave Winer, Bora, David, Erin and so very many other individuals who have graced my life. If I couldn't "say everything" and had but one thing to utter, it would be this: Thank you. _Don't miss Bora's even longer "year-in-review post":http://blog.coturnix.org/2010/12/31/2010-in-review/ in which he details his amazing year._ ----- -----

    What a great post, what a great year, what a great decade! Thank you for everything you do, and for being who you are!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://blog.coturnix.org DATE: 01/01/2010 09:49:38 PM ----- COMMENT:

    love the Rosenberg book — surprised you’re just now getting around to reading it! anyway, great yearly wrap-up, and may 2011 likewise be filled with joy and accomplishment!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cyberthrush@gmail.com URL: http://ivorybills.blogspot.com DATE: 01/01/2010 09:49:38 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Same chair, different chicken AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/27/2010 02:29:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Oliver in December 2010: Oliver and a chicken bone in the high chair. Malia in September 2004: Same chair, different chicken Anna in December 2001: Anna at 11 months _This post first published 9/7/2004 and updated with Oliver's picture 12/27/2010._ ----- -----
    COMMENT: Cute little primates. AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaff9er@hotmail.com URL: DATE: 12/27/2010 02:29:05 PM ----- COMMENT: Our thoughts are with you and the little one. Please keep us posted. Hope to talk to you soon. AUTHOR: EMAIL: saipanjbr@hotmail.com URL: DATE: 12/27/2010 02:29:05 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Elizabeth Edwards, go with grace AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/07/2010 11:10:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I was saddened by the news of the death, from cancer, of "Elizabeth Edwards":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Elizabeth_Edwards. I was fortunate to spend a few minutes of high-quality time with her back in 2006, and always hoped I'd run into her again here in Chapel Hill. I've long wondered how to teach my children to live lives of grace. Elizabeth Edwards, I will tell them, lived and died with grace in her soul. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Great voice, indeed AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/06/2010 08:19:38 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: Radio ----- BODY: NPR this morning featured Israel Kamakawiwo'ole for its "50 Great Voices series":http://www.npr.org/2010/12/06/131812500/israel-kamakawiwo-ole-the-voice-of-hawaii. I had just gotten dressed and found myself riveted in place, cherishing this tribute to Iz and remembering the day I met him. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Minister of Ether AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/03/2010 07:26:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Music ----- BODY: At the "BlogTogether Birthday Bash":http://mistersugar.com/article/4640/the-blogtogether-birthday-bash-at-the-casbah-10-19-2010 back in October, my friend "David Kroll":http://twitter.com/#!/davidkroll surprised me with a song he wrote in my honor -- he even mentioned "Frank the Beachcomber":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html and "Erin":http://zuiker.com/erin/. I was honored beyond belief. Listen to it "here":http://zuiker.com/z/j or below ("lyrics here":http://www.reverbnation.com/davidkrollnc#!/artist/song_details/6156296). ----- -----


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 12/03/2010 07:26:21 PM ----- COMMENT:

    This is beautiful, Anton. (We are) Rich in so many ways.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: nswift1@mac.com URL: DATE: 12/03/2010 07:26:21 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Distilling humanity from a firehose is the key (and resonant) line. He’s captured you perfectly.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: john.ettorre@gmail.com URL: DATE: 12/03/2010 07:26:21 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Images and words, mixed AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/27/2010 11:16:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A few weeks back, Erin arranged for a family photoshoot out at the stunning rural home where we'd been invited to attend the "Host Roast":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157605131381137/with/2503890388/ a few years back. Photographer "Julie Rodon":http://jhrodonphotography.com/ snapped a few hundred photos of us, and we're delighted with the images. 2010 Family Photo Shoot - strolling I've posted some in a "Flickr set":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157625353634583/, and we'll be using a few for our holiday card. I also finally have a professional "profile photo":http://mistersugar.com/images/171.jpg to put on my "About page":http://mistersugar.com/about. Our Thanksgiving meal was all the more tasty this year because of "Michael Ruhlman's fantastic stock recipe":http://ruhlman.com/2010/11/how-to-make-thanksgiving-gravy-it-starts-with-easy-turkey-stock.html and a double-breasted bronze heritage turkey raised on the small farm of Oliver's daytime caregiver. And the crust of our pumpkin pie (as well as "pies baked by neighbors":http://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=1745207233980&set=a.1142751412961.2021712.1352731887 for their meal) was made with the lard I made a few weeks back. Today, after a run (Anna riding along on her bike), I took the girls to see Disney's new animated film, "Tangled":http://adisney.go.com/disneypictures/tangled/#/home/. It was delightful. We saw it in 3D, which really only popped during a stunning lantern on the lake scene. I've also been watching the miniseries "Pillars of the Earth":http://www.the-pillars-of-the-earth.tv/, based on the "Ken Follett":http://www.ken-follett.com/news/index.html novel, which I enjoyed reading many years ago. Now I'm reading "Say Everything":http://www.sayeverything.com/, a history of blogging by "Scott Rosenberg":http://www.wordyard.com/ (I'm delighted that he's planning to attend "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com) -- his book, and a recent upgrade of "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com, have me refocused on chronicling my life and work here on the Coconut Wireless weblog. Tomorrow, we'll be using our new "Vitamix":http://www.vitamix.com/index.asp mixer, which our good friend Harold "Butch" McCarty sent us. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Thanksgiving 2010 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/26/2010 01:54:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Yesterday, "10 years to the day of my Blogger.com debut":http://mistersugar.com/article/63/thanksgiving-day-im-in-my, I spent the morning (in my pajamas) preparing the turkey, stuffing, gravy and other dishes for the holiday meal. My "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com collaborator "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org and his challa-bearing wife, *Catharine*, came by later to share the meal. Afterward, while sitting in the living room chatting, Bora and I made this short Thanksgiving message in gratitude of all the participants, volunteers and sponsors who have made our annual event so special. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sitting, sipping and swinging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/23/2010 08:17:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I stopped drinking coffee months ago (only came around to coffee, and cafe mocha at that, in 2004), but felt today was just the day to sneak off to "Caffe Driade":http://www.caffedriade.com/ for a latte in one of those big bowls they serve. Alas, all the bowls were in the dishwasher, and the barista asked me if a pint glass would suffice. I hesitated, but decided a glass would do just fine. A few yards away, I sat down to enjoy the latte and the "Malcom Gladwell":http://gladwell.com/index.html article "Talent Grab":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2010/10/11/101011fa_fact_gladwell. When I finished, I zipped over to Lowe's to get the extra-long drill bit I needed to finish -- finally -- the porch swing project. Sixteen months in the making, that project was to find a way to hang the handmade swing, which a friend had given us as a wedding present, from the beams in the front porch ceiling. With advice from a few friends with more carpentry savvy than me (and no help from the carpenter putting up the houses all around this new neighborhood), a special order of long eye hooks, and half-a-dozen visits to Lowe's, I found a way to poke holes in the ceiling board, find the 2x4s and embed the hooks. Once the swing was up, it was clear it needed some adjusting. But not before a fun photo op: ----- -----

    No problem at all. They’ll soon be tall enough that it’ll ultimately be the perfect height!

    Nice job – beautiful front porch, too!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://blogs.plos.org/takeasdirected DATE: 10/23/2010 08:17:47 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Walking my beat AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/29/2010 11:13:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: One of the joys of "my new job":http://mistersugar.com/article/4628/midstream-and-taking-a-new-step is the ability to get out and walk across campus. Before, I was in the Erwin Square Tower off campus, in a spacious ninth-floor office with a great view of northern Durham County -- and the blue exterior wall of "Locopops":http://www.ilovelocopops.com/. Now, I'm in the heart of the Duke Hospital, just steps from the cafeteria, and minutes from the main quads. I eat my bag lunch at my desk while working, and around 2 each day I head out of the hospital, walking along the temporary walkway and through the first-phase concourse, watching with boyish wonder as I pass the clanging construction of the new Duke Medicine Pavilion and Duke Cancer Center, which are rising in a jumble of concrete pylons, I beams and steel scaffolding. "See the construction cam.":http://www.dukemedicine.org/construction Through the Duke Clinic (also called Duke South by many) and into the Davison Building, historic home of the "School of Medicine":http://medschool.duke.edu (although a new high-tech medical learning center might be next on the building block). I watch for new posters displayed on easels, and flyers taped to doors, and puzzled patients or family members who need a little help getting to their appointment or back to the parking garage. I might run into a colleague, and a quick hallway conversation will provide just the answer or link or recommendation I was in search of earlier in the day. Out the doors of Davison, past huge magnolia trees, and into the heart of campus. I usually make it no further than the Perk, the coffee bar in the von der Heyden Pavilion, an atrium connected to Perkins Library. I buy a chocolate chip cookie, plop down in a cushioned chair, and soak in the youthful energy and focused scholarship of the students all around. I retrace my steps, all the way reveling in my fortune of being able to work in a world-class university. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The BlogTogether Birthday Bash - Oct 19, 2010 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/26/2010 01:49:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As you might know, I recently celebrated "10 years of blogging":http://mistersugar.com/article/4634/a-decade-of-blogging. And, as you also might know, I like to organize BlogTogether events, such as the annual "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline2011.com conference, "food blogging dinner with Michael Ruhlman":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner and the summertime BlogTogether Backyard Barbecue, which I used to hold at my home in Durham before I moved back to Carrboro. But, we haven't had a backyard barbecue in a while. So, let's have a bash, instead (we did this once before for the "Triangle Bloggers Bash":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/triangle_bloggers_bash_notes at WUNC's American Tobacco studios). !http://www.blogtogether.org/images/uploads/BlogTogether.png! *Tues, Oct. 19th -- 7:30pm* Please join me at the *BlogTogether Birthday Bash* on Tuesday, October 19, 2010 at 7pm. We'll have this party at "Casbah":http://casbahdurham.com, a new club/bar in the Brightleaf District of Durham. *Free for all bloggers (and their readers)* The BlogTogether Birthday Bash will be a free event open to writers and readers in North Carolina. Our goal: to celebrate all the bloggers in the Triangle -- no matter how short or long you've been at it. So come ready to meet your blogging heroes, introduce yourself to new friends, and enjoy the diversity of our regional blogging activities (education, politics, technology, food, faith, and so much more). *Share a story* We'll ask a handful of bloggers to get up on stage and tell a story about what blogging has meant to them or done for them, and share a highlight of something they're particularly proud of having accomplished because of blogging. After half a dozen or so prepared stories, we'll throw it open to the crowd for anyone who wants 5 minutes to share a highlight or read a memorable post or thank someone in the audience for their blog mentorship. On the registration form, please tell me if you'd like to share your story or speak to the crowd. *Cash bar, and grab dinner on Main St.* The bar, with good local and draft brews, will be a cash bar. Consider going to dinner before at any of the fantastic restaurants along Main Street and in Brightleaf Square. It's a birthday bash, so we might have a special surprise, too. *Register now* "Register here":http://blogtogether.org/bash2010/register.htm and "see who else is coming":https://mistersugar.wufoo.com/reports/who-registered-for-the-blogtogether-birthday-bash/ to the bash. *Sponsorship opportunity* I'm looking for an organization or company that might want to help cover the cost of pupus (Hawaiian for finger food, or hor'doeurves), or wants to donate an iPad or other door prizes. Please contact me at zuikerATgmail.com. *OK, mark your calendars for 10/19/2010, go register and get ready to celebrate our blogging endeavors together.* ----- -----

    Thanks for posting. Looking forward to the event.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: waynesutton@gmail.com URL: http://socialwayne.com DATE: 09/26/2010 01:49:06 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats, Anton! You do so much for the NC and science communities. Wish I could be there. Have fun, everyone.
    I am so J.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: dnlee5@ymail.com URL: http://urban-science.blogspot.com DATE: 09/26/2010 01:49:06 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Thank you very much for the invitation. I will be certain to pass this information forward! Count me in.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: damondnollan@gmail.com URL: http://www.damondnollan.com DATE: 09/26/2010 01:49:06 PM -----
-------- TITLE: When giving goes viral AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/25/2010 08:29:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Earlier this month, the movie "Pay It Forward":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0223897/ ran a couple of times on one of the few cable channels we get in this house (we do use "Netflix":http://www.netflix.com/ and a "Roku":http://www.roku.com/ player to stream a ton of movies). I've seen that movie before, but I watched a bit again anyway, because I know my life has been touched by quite a few instances of giving. I have been blessed with gifts large and small from generous grandparents, parents, friends, villagers and even strangers. In this post from 2005, "We're all poor":http://mistersugar.com/article/3928/were-all-poor, I mentioned the food deliveries my family would get from a generous priest on St. Croix (Catholic priests have long been kind to my family, one reason I was on the road to the life of a friar; my post "A family orientation":http://mistersugar.com/article/4108/a-family-orientation is key to understanding why I didn't become a priest). Later, when I went to college, my aunt and uncle offered to buy all my textbooks, because my aunt's uncle had bought all of her college textbooks. As he said to her, she said to me: "When you're in a position to do something similar for someone else, do so." Today, I talked with a friend who has recently been in need of some financial help, and we remarked on cultural differences that determine whether someone is comfortable asking for money from family members, friends or a widely distributed community (such as all our overlapping online social networks). One of the most important lessons I've learned over the years is the sole line written in the front of my "Moleskine":http://www.moleskine.com/ notebook: _For the asking_. As in, ask in order to receive, but also be prepared to provide when I'm asked. [interlude] I'm asking around now for tens of thousands of dollars in sponsorship for "ScienceOnline2011":http://scienceonline2011.com, and am also about to ask for just one thousand for the "BlogTogether Birthday Bash":http://blogtogether.org/bash2010/register.htm (details will be in my next post).[/interlude] Of course, the expectations about how we repay someone's generosity is an important discussion. My aunt and uncle made clear I was to pay it forward. Fannie Mae has made it clear that the money lent to us to buy this house is to be paid back, with interest, within 30 years. I loved the tradition in Vanuatu of never returning a plate or dish -- which had been brought to the house filled with laplap or fresh fruit -- empty, but instead with part of a meal you had prepared or fruit you had gathered. In a village of subsistence farmers, giving meant giving back. In fact, wherever I've lived, I've tried hard to be attuned to the ways people give and the ways people receive. Let's all give that more than a moment of thought. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Summer recap, and ScienceBlogging is live AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/29/2010 12:12:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom ----- BODY: Summer isn't officially over for another month, but with the start of school and Erin headed back to "work":http://www.smithmoorelaw.com/zuiker_erin/ this week, we're clearly moving into a new season. Our daily lifestyle is going to get more intense, but the promise of our two darling daughters and the joys of little Oliver will keep us balanced. At work, I've been at my new job -- as communications director for the "Duke Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu -- for two months. It's a big and busy department, with lots of challenge and opportunity. I'm honing a communications plan that will include a research blog (see below for a related development), an annual report multimedia project and a solution to the intranet challenge for keeping 500 faculty physicians and 1000 staff members up-to-date about department news and opportunities. My office is on the first floor of the Duke University Hospital, just a few dozen yards from the cafeteria. Most days, I try to take a walk through the hospital and the busy clinics -- some of the cancer clinic waiting rooms overflowing with patients and their families -- and along the walkway where two new buildings are being constructed ("see construction cam":http://www.dukemedicine.org/construction) to provide more patient-friendly spaces. There's certainly a lot of activity -- patient care, medical education, basic and translational research -- to capture, and I'm in my element. Online, I'm still building, too. Last week, I teamed up with "Bora Zivkovic":http://blog.coturnix.org (my ScienceOnline collaborator) and "Dave Munger":http://wordmunger.com/ to launch "ScienceBlogging.org":http://scienceblogging.org, an aggregator of the many science blog networks' feeds. The response to the site has been quite positive, and the ideas for making that site a more useful service for monitoring the prodigious flow of science blogging will keep us quite busy in the months ahead. And then there's the fifth annual science blogging (and more) conference, ScienceOnline2011, tentatively scheduled for January 2011. Bora and I have been the main organizers of that conference for the last four years, but this year, with the conference needing to expand to reflect the interest in the event and the many developments in the science blogging world this past year, we're going to need quite a bit of help (especially since new jobs for me and Bora -- he'll have news soon, I hope). Watch for a post, a plea for fundraising and logistical and programmitic assistance, very soon. It's still hot outside, and the pool beckons. As I have all summer, I'll continue to ponder these projects and brainstorm new activities, and discuss with Erin just how to accomplish all this in a balanced, healthy manner. Life is great. ----- -----

    Have a wonderful year, Anna and Malia. I know you will do well because you love to learn. God bless you! Love, Grandma.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 08/29/2010 12:12:01 PM -----
-------- TITLE: 14 years and counting AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/11/2010 09:58:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: Thanks to a good friend who offered to watch the girls and sleeping Oliver, Erin and I were able to celebrate our anniversary yesterday with dinner out at "Panzanella":http://panzanella.com (sea scallops for me, chicken for her) and then dessert and wine at "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com. (Lantern is getting continued high praise in the food magazines -- just this week, Food & Wine arrived with a "feature":http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/an-indie-chefs-greatest-hits; Carrboro's "Neal's Deli":http://www.nealsdeli.com/ is also "pictured with recipes":http://www.foodandwine.com/articles/dixie-deli.) As happens each August 10th, I found myself gazing at my beautiful wife wondering just how I got so damn lucky to be able to spend my life with her. And our daughters gave us yet another reason to be proud. They surprised us with a poster they'd colored the night before. This photo doesn't show it, but along the sides they'd written this: Love is everywhere. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Perfection AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/07/2010 06:18:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A decade of blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: Special days ----- BODY: Ten years ago this month, Frank the Beachcomber -- my paternal grandfather, Francis C. Zuiker -- was dying. He was 90 years old, and he had given the extended Zuiker family much to emulate and celebrate. His was a lifetime of hard work down at the Pullman Car Company, but also one of writing and storytelling, family camping trips and musical jamborees, and loving dedication to his spouse and children and grandchildren. *Grandpa meant the world to me, and I wanted to honor him publicly before he passed on.* I was just back from the South Pacific, where I'd spent my two Peace Corps years on an island without electricity and running water. I had the New Yorker sent to me for hammock reading, but by far the most important words that came in the mail were the Zuiker Chronicles letters that my grandfather wrote to me. He was still sharing tales of his earlier trips to the Outer Banks, and still angling for 'trade goods' such as sea shells and shark teeth that he could make into necklaces and earrings. Erin and I boxed up an armful of cone shells and black sand gathered from the beach a hundred yards from our house in Liro Village. *Back home in Ohio, inspired by Frank's legacy of creativity and inspiration, I decided to create a virtual Zuiker Chronicles, a family newsletter for a new, digital age.* To do so, I'd have to learn new skills (HTML programming and website management), write in a new way, and teach the rest of my family how to interact with Zuiker Chronicles Online. I knew Frank would be proud. With the help of a colleague, I launched the site, at zuikerchronicles.com, in late July 2000. It had a few pictures, some essays about my time in Vanuatu, and an invitation to my aunts and uncles and cousins to contribute their own news. Within days, I was updating the site regularly -- updating by hand, editing html files and uploading them to the server over a dial-up connection late into the night. I was blogging, but I didn't know it. At some point, my aunt showed Frank the website I'd created. He may not have comprehended the technology -- he was just trying to breathe those last few months -- but I'm confident he understood that his grandson had done something important to continue the legacy of a man who loved to write and report. Frank died in September 2000, and with the site in place, there was a way for my family to honor the man. The "tribute page to Frank":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html that I put up is still online. (Later, I would edit and publish two books that Frank wrote, "about his childhood":http://mistersugar.com/article/4159/back-forty and about my "father's Peace Corps service in the Dominican Republic":http://zuiker.com/steptofreedom/.) *Blogger by any other name* Not long after, I encountered "Blogger.com":http://blogger.com and quickly converted the site to that tool, which made it so much easier for me to write, post and publish updates to Zuiker Chronicles Online (by now I also had the site pointed to the domain "zuiker.com":http://zuiker.com). Ironically, my "first post using Blogger":http://mistersugar.com/article/63/thanksgiving-day-im-in-my starts with this: bq. Thanksgiving Day. I'm in my pajamas listening to National Public Radio, working on the computer. Truth is, I would spend countless nights at the computer, writing on my blog, promising Erin I'd be done in just 15 more minutes, but crawling into bed well into the morning. I would use many blogging tools -- Greymatter, "MovableType":http://www.movabletype.org/, pMachine, "Textpattern":http://textpattern.com, "Wordpress":http://wordpress.org, "ExpressionEngine":http://expressionengine.com, "Tumblr":http://tumblr.com -- and try any beta that might help me build the online Zuiker community. In j-school in 2002, I encountered the incomparable and real "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog/ and eagerly took his class, Making & Living in Online Communities. "Justin Watt":http://justinsomnia.org and "Jackson Fox":http://jacksonfox.org/#projects were also in that class, and they helped me form the Tar Heel Bloggers group that began to meet regularly at UNC. (Justin was just back in town this weekend, and we held a brunch for him and Stephanie; they'll be "embarking on a container ship sojourn":http://justinsomnia.org/2010/07/the-big-adventure/ soon!) *Building community* The "report I did for that class":http://mistersugar.com/unc/MTZC/index.html was about my Zuiker Chonicles Online efforts and blogging adventures, and the title, Blog Together, would eventually become the abiding concept and umbrella organization (replacing Tar Heel Bloggers) under which I would collaborate with many local and far-flung friends for online community building and offline events. My essay for the News & Observer, "When blogging, face the conversation":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation, set out the BlogTogether philosophy: online community building coupled with face-to-face events will strengthen and enrich our conversations everywhere. Through BlogTogether, we have organized events small and large, from backyard barbecues to "Blogging101":http://mistersugar.com/unc/blogging101/ tutorial sessions to countless talks before affinity groups. Our major efforts started with the "Triangle Bloggers Conference":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/anatomy_of_a_bloggercon/ in 2005 -- blogging pioneer "Dave Winer":http://scripting.com drove in, and over brunch the next day urged me to 'bootstrap the community'. "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org sat behind Dave at the conference, and he's since become my close friend and collaborator on the annual science blogging conferences (we call them "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline2010.com now). "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com and "Ruby Sinreich":http://lotusmedia.org/ and "Wayne Sutton":http://socialwayne.org and "Abel Pharmboy":http://abelpharmboy.wordpress.com/ are also at the heart of BlogTogether. There are so many others, for the Triangle is awash in talented, tireless individuals eager to participate in the conversation. They are a prime reason I was able to convince my wife, Erin, that North Carolina should be our home for good (Erin finished law school recently, and we could have gone anywhere). I'm proud of what N&O editor Dan Barkin wrote about me in his "article about the second science blogging conference":http://www.newsobserver.com/2007/09/22/56069/bloggers-to-talk-science.html bq. The Web has evolved into a tribal Internet of passionate bloggers like Zuiker, and he has become a sort-of local brand. He's a quiet visionary. He's a low-key doer. He's a let's-get-together-and-see-where-this-goes guy. It's the Zuikers of this new, interwoven world who may play a significant role in determining how far Web 2.0 goes from being a sociable network to a social force. Among the many ideas I've chased through the years, to varying levels of success: food blogging (highlighted by a "September 2007 event with Michael Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com/2007/10/on-going-where-.html -- he called me 'sweet'), medicaljournalism.info, storyblogging.org and "narrativesofhiv.org":http://narrativesofhiv.org/, and the nascent "The Long Table":http://thelongtable.org. *mistersugar* In "December 2004":http://mistersugar.com/article/3567/new-digs, I separated my personal blog, The Coconut Wireless, from the family-focused Zuiker Chronicles Online and launched "mistersugar.com":http://mistersugar.com. If you've followed me through the years, you know I've had fun building the mistersugar brand and celebrating its roots in my service to the country of Vanuatu. Connecting my present to my past has been a key theme to my blogging -- it's my form of story blogging, and is a manifestation of the Zuiker Chronicles of Frank the Beachcomber and the weekly typewriter reports of my other grandfather, Louis Sisco. (From my N&O essay linked above: "I became a writer because they wrote. And then, with the Web, I became a blogger." Read my "About page":http://mistersugar.com/about to learn more about the blog name and the pig icon. I have a busy and full life away from the computer, with an amazing wife and darling children, intense career and important friendships, family gatherings and farmer markets, and stacks and stacks of magazines and books. My entries have slowed considerably over the last few years, but I'm proud that The Coconut Wireless still has a strong signal (and that Zuiker Chronicles Online is still standing). I'm proud to consider myself a blogger, and amazed at where blogging has taken me. The last six months have been filled with introspection -- "I'm midstream, don't you know":http://mistersugar.com/article/4628/midstream-and-taking-a-new-step -- and, as you no doubt surmised, this look back on a decade blogging adds to my self-reflection. At my core, I'm grateful to my family, my friends, my community and my country for giving me so much to experience. In 10 years of blogging, I've gotten to express my wonderment and joy at being so lucky. ----- -----

    Interesting stuff Anton… Congrats! 10 yrs. (time flies) & lots of changes. Coincidentally, this week marks the 5th anniversary of my 1st blog on a certain woodpecker that may not even exist! Blogging, ‘tis a wonderful thang!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zyzzle47@gmail.com URL: http://math-frolic.blogspot.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Happy Blogoversary, Anton! You are so authentic and generous and I’m proud to be your (and your family’s) friend.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cczivko@gmail.com URL: DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Great post and congrats!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: waynesutton@gmail.com URL: http://socialwayne.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Happy blogiversary, my friend! And here’s to another ten years of bootstraping the community….with slivovitz ;-)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://blog.coturnix.org DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Before we visited last weekend, I was trying to tell Stephanie how I met you. I honestly couldn’t remember. It’s like at one point I didn’t know Anton, and then I did. The details in between are kind of fuzzy.

    You mentioned above that we met in JOMC 391 in the Fall of 2002, which I had no reason not to believe, except for a nagging feeling that we never took any classes together. I checked my masters coursework (conveniently it’s a blog post) and it turns out I took JOMC 391 a year later, in the Fall of 2003.

    Now I was really curious—-how/when did we meet? So I started digging into my old UNC email archives (conveniently imported into the Google).

    The earliest email exchange I had with you was on Feb 7, 2003, about an International Blog Meetup Day at Strong’s Coffee. The tone of the email is such that it suggests that you didn’t know me before then. Perhaps the first time we met was at Strongs for that meetup? Unfortunately, neither of us blogged about it!

    In the Spring of 2003, I was taking Paul Jones’ Internet Issues and Future Initiatives course (INLS 281). He brought our class to your Journalism Research Roundtable on blogs on March 5, 2003, which I vaguely remember.

    On June 6, 2003, you sent out an email to 10 people at UNC who you knew had blogs with the subject: “Are you interested in joining a UNC-CH weblogs working group?”. Apparently we met at The Loop on July 1. On July 7 you set up MT on http://tarheelbloggers.org/

    The rest is history.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Justin, thanks for digging, and glad you saved all those messages. I do remember meeting you at Strong’s, and every week when I eat at the Loop with my family I remember that lunchtime meeting of the UNC blog minds – Paul Jones, Eric Muller, Sid Stafford, Jean Ferguson, Betsy Sandlin and Jason Griffey were.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations, Anton! Your love for a good story and selfless innovative thinking about community infected me five years ago and I consider myself extremely enriched by having you in my real and online life.

    This history is beautiful and heartfelt – I am certain that Frank the Beachcomber was and is proud of what you’ve done here and what you’ve become elsewhere. Not just Anton The Writer, but Anton the father, husband, friend, and community leader. Even if you simply launched ScienceOnline, your international impact would be something to be proud of for anyone’s lifetime.

    Heartiest congratulations, my friend!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://abelpharmboy.wordpress.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations, a nice look back.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: burnett@pobox.com URL: http://www.subscapeannex.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Thanks so much for the mention, and after reading Justin’s excellent comment, I thought I’d do a little digging. While I’ve not hit the 10 year mark yet, thanks in no small part to you and your friendship at UNC, I’m sneaking up on 8 years…the first post on my blog looks like it’s from Feb 2003.

    I’ve got two posts about a meetup in February 2003…The first mention I have is from February 19, 2003, literally of me waiting on people to show up at Strong’s Coffee. The second is from the next day with a little bit of reflection about the meeting. I wasn’t smart enough to note attendance, but I’m nearly certain that’s where we met for the first time. And I’m equally certain that my initial love of blogging was driven in part by your enthusiasm. Thanks for helping me launch what ended up being pivotal for my career…my blog from UNC SILS helped get me my first national presentation, which got me my first book deal, which led me to where I am now in my career. Thanks to all the people that you mentioned for their part (although I suppose I should doubly thank Betsy :-).

    Congrats on the milestone, and here’s hoping for 10 more years.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: griffey@gmail.com URL: http://jasongriffey.net/wp DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: damondnollan@gmail.com URL: http://www.damondnollan.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Quite an accomplishment, Anton. Congratulations.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: john.ettorre@gmail.com URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats, Anton. I hope to emulate you one day and very much look up to you and your accomplishments. You are an asset, not just to the regional community, but to those who have a passion of spreading knowledge and lighting it on fire. I’ve enjoyed learning about where you started, participating (in a very small way) where you are, and I can’t wait to revel at where your path takes you sir.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cararousseau@gmail.com URL: http://www.thertpblog.org DATE: 07/29/2010 12:38:06 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Oliver's baptism AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/19/2010 10:18:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Little Oliver (or the Big O) was baptized along with his cousin Virginia Grace on Saturday, July 10 in a Solon, Ohio backyard. (There was a bit of confusion about Erin's name at first, but Rev. Tom got it right a bit later.) [Video removed for privacy reasons.] ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Alone for the weekend, I keep busy AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/18/2010 11:26:28 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Aside from the fact that Erin's still in Cleveland for a few more days, this weekend was quite enjoyable, and I'm feeling great. I had a great massage Friday after work, where I'm enjoying my new role and excited about the big challenges and opportunities already piling up. Saturday morning I went to the Durham Farmers Market, where I wandered among the crowd and thanked my lucky stars that I live here, now. I bought a bucketful of blackberries, which I used later in the day to make a batch of blackberry jam. I ran a couple of miles on the treadmill at the gym, and bought a new pair of Nike Air Pegasus running shoes. Saturday evening, I drove with two friends to Raleigh. These friends happened to know a musician named "John Mayer":http://www.johnmayer.com/, who was performing that night at the Time Warner Cable Pavilion at Walnut Creek. We got to go backstage to chat with Mayer before he did his rockin' rock star thing. (Thanks G & J for bringing me along!) Today, I mowed the lawn, scrubbed the shower (mildew be gone!), washed the dishes and folded laundry. Then, a rapid series of meetings, first with a neighbor to plan our new community directory, then with Bora and Christopher to plan "ScienceInTheTriangle.org":http://scienceinthetriangle.org and ScienceOnline2011, and then to dinner with foodie "Dean McCord":http://varminbites.com, his children and friend "Brooks Hamaker":http://twitter.com/MayhawMan, a brewer extraordinaire. (Dean also introduced me to "Phoebe Lawless":http://twitter.com/scratchbake of Scratch bakery.) All in all, a fun few days. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Supa ukulele AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/13/2010 03:04:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Hawaii CATEGORY: Music ----- BODY: The season finale of "Glee":http://www.fox.com/glee/ last week featured a rendition of Over the Rainbow/What a Wonderful World reminiscent -- but nowhere near the beauty -- of the recording by "Israel Kamakawiwo'ole":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Israel_Kamakawiwo'ole. Supa! Everytime I hear that song by Iz, I recall the day I met him in the Ala Moana Tower Records in Honolulu in 1993. I think I happened to be walking past the store that day but noticed a sign about his visiting to promote his new record, Facing Future. I walked in, bought a CD and asked him sign it to my family. Iz was a giant both physically and musically, and with his tiny ukulele and angelic voice, he was a Hawaiian superman. Meeting him was a highlight of my time in Hawaii. Another highlight of my time in Hawaii was when I went to the Kona Coast of the Big Island to interview "David Gomes":http://gomesguitars.com/Site/Welcome_.html, a master craftsman of ukulele and guitar. (Looking for the article I wrote about him; will post later.) There's a new documentary about the ukulele. "Listen to this NPR story.":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=127116452 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Midstream and taking a new step AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The last months, with a "birthday milestone":http://mistersugar.com/article/4620/i-am-40 and the "birth of baby Oliver":http://mistersugar.com/article/4622/oliver-anton-zuiker, have been a fertile time of self-reflection (explained in "this post from February":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am). I've looked back on my first 40 years with satisfaction and gratitude, and turned my middle-aged eyes to see what stepping stones might be arranged before me for the next 40 (read "this post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4035/five-year-plans to understand my 'crossing the stream' guide to life). No mid-life crisis for me, thank you, very much. Still, mid-life is also mid-career. On the heels of "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com, I had jotted down a description of an ideal job, encompassing social media and online community building and the license to roam a large institution looking for opportunities to teach, train, converse and capture stories. ("David Thomas at SAS":http://blogs.sas.com/socialmedia/ is an example for all of us with this dream.) I was starting to get somewhere with my search for such an opportunity -- more and more companies and communities and institutions will be creating such positions, I'm sure -- when an opportunity of a different sort pulled me in. Later this month, I will become director of communications for the "Department of Medicine":http://medicine.duke.edu at the Duke University Medical Center, working with the new chair of the department, "Mary Klotman, M.D.":http://www.dukehealth.org/health_library/news/duke_university_school_of_medicine_names_new_chair_of_medicine I'm thrilled to be joining her team. This new job keeps me at Duke (I've been working for the Duke University Health System since 2007, as manager of internal communications) and is an opportunity to continue using my medical journalism masters degree and various communications experiences to tell the story of the Department of Medicine, which is the largest of the departments that make up the Duke School of Medicine. With more than 1,000 physicians, faculty, researchers and staff treating patients, training residents and investigating diseases and new treatments, the Department of Medicine is going to be a perfect mid-river island for me to explore, map and mine. I'm sure I'll use social media tools and strategies along the way. I'm fortunate to have had a full and wide-ranging life so far, and am grateful to all the family, friends and mentors who have made it so memorable. Thanks for sharing this journey with me -- next month, I'll celebrate 10 years of blogging. Keep reading, please, as I share my experiences and observations, from Duke and beyond. ----- -----

    Congratulations Anton.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: campaign@willraymond.org URL: http://CitizenWill.org DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations! Sounds like a great opportunity.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.org DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats indeed, especially on blogging for 10 years! Not many people can say that (not even me).

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: lenore@alumni.duke.edu URL: http://eronel.blogspot.com DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats! And best wishes.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jones@unc.edu URL: http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats. 40, huh. Always knew you were a babe in arms.

    The new job sounds like a real charge: have fun.

    (And, as you know, given your other news, sleep when you can.)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: Levenson@mit.edu URL: http://inversesquare.wordpress.com DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Awesome! Great to hear. I hope you are fulfilled and challenged at your new job. :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brian@yesh.com URL: http://www.yesh.com DATE: 06/13/2010 12:11:58 AM -----
-------- TITLE: More of the cup AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/10/2010 10:21:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "World Cup 2010":http://www.fifa.com/index.html begins tomorrow, and as you know from reading my "I'm on the ball":http://mistersugar.com/article/4139/im-on-the-ball post, I'll want to watch as much of the action as possible. Sure, it might be harder this time around, with the games mid-morning and afternoon, difficult to break away from the job (some news about that coming to The Coconut Wireless tomorrow). But, I'll catch what I can. ----- -----

    Check out the latest top music charts and keep updated for the world cup anthems.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: groovy.baby28@yahoo.com URL: http://groovybaby.us DATE: 06/10/2010 10:21:16 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Napping on a shag carpet AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/30/2010 10:42:34 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: One day recently, feeling sunburned and weary from exertion, I lowered myself to the living room floor to rest on the white shag carpet that sits between our two sofas. The soft wool enveloped me, and I quickly dozed off. When I woke -- just a few minutes later, this being an active househould -- I found myself thinking back to the summer naps I'd take as an 11-year-old after afternoon baseball games or laps at the swimming pool. The living room in our Idaho home was carpeted in a golden shag, and I'd curl up in a corner where the sun came through the front window. That was the same place I'd often sit to listen to my parents' records, "Parsley, Sage, Rosemary and Thyme":http://www.amazon.com/Parsley-Rosemary-Thyme-Simon-Garfunkel/dp/B00005NKKX/ by Simon and Garfunkel or "The Age of Aquarius":http://www.amazon.com/Age-Aquarius-5th-Dimension/dp/B0012GMVK8/ by the Fifth Dimension, or play the "mbira":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mbira that had somehow found its way into the house. One day, a fever-induced delirium woke me from my nap on the carpet. I'd been dreaming, somehow, in both miniature and large scale, about tiny pebbles coming at me in slow motion like asteroids at the Millenium Falcon. While that unsettling pressurized dreamstate is burned into my memory, fortunately I've never woken to that feeling again. My feet are resting on the carpet as I type this, and I'm feeling sleepy again. ----- -----

    My memories of breaking a fever in childhood almost invariably involve a sensation that I can only compare to being dragged by my feet on the surface of the moon.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org DATE: 05/30/2010 10:42:34 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Six degrees of job searching AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/17/2010 10:29:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the NYTimes a couple of weeks ago, there was "this article about chef and restaurateur Bernard Ros":http://www.nytimes.com/2010/05/02/fashion/02GenB.html?scp=3&sq=chef%20jobs&st=cse, who doubles as a clearinghouse for chef and food service jobs in New York and beyond. Reading it reminded me of my return to Cleveland back in 1994, (I'd left Hawaii to be nearer Erin), where I was directed by a friend to a church basement to meet a woman who was happy to thumb through her Rolodex to find just the right person who might help a job seeker. I don't recall that her referrals led to a job, but her generosity stuck with me. A few year's later, I read Malcolm Gladwell's classic "Six Degrees of Lois Weisberg":http://gladwell.com/1999/1999_01_11_a_weisberg.htm, which profiles a connector extraordinaire. Lately, I've been thinking about these articles, and my experiences with mentors who made introductions on my behalf. I've been tapping into my own (albeit smaller) network of acquaintances as I try to help a couple of friends find work, and begin to consider what options there might be for me. (Calls for caution before tapping into your wide online networks -- it's hard to use social media to find work when you don't necessarily want to lose your current post.) The Triangle remains a vibrant place with an interesting jobs landscape, and I'm eager to see my friends find their next roles. Are you looking for work? Let me know, and I'll share whatever I can. And if you've got a story of a maven like Ros or Weisberg -- maybe you're one yourself -- do share. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Conversation starter AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/16/2010 09:10:37 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A few weeks ago, with Erin's approval, I was able to carve out an evening away from the house (this in the busy weeks before "Oliver's birth":http://mistersugar.com/article/4622/oliver-anton-zuiker), and so I drove to "Isaac Hunter's Tavern":http://www.huntersoakcity.com/ for the "Media Leaders Raleigh":http://medialeaders.tv/raleigh-apr6/ meetup. There's been a steady stream of such meetups and tweetups and conferences of late, and I've fretted over not being able to be among the crowds, tweeting and blogging and snapping mobile-phone pictures. But, the last months have focused my attention on important priorities -- my health, my family, my work, and so I've had to slow down, stay close to home and attend the meetups vicariously through the online postings of "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock and others. In Raleigh, I found myself standing among a lot of enthusiastic individuals happy to be meeting in real life, or eagerly trading business cards and Twitter handles (I exchanged my mistersugar card for a Gregory Ng "Freezer Burns":http://www.freezerburns.com/wordpress/ card). This was a good example of how we make connections these days, our fast-growing online networks fueling meetspace events leading to larger lists of followers and friends. For a brief moment, I stood in the corner savoring the sight of the crowd, thinking about our early Tar Heel Bloggers (2002-2004) and BlogTogether (2005-ongoing) gatherings -- they were smaller, slower affairs, leisurely conversations over coffee and dessert. Even earlier, when I first arrived in the area, I'd been introduced to the Triangle Bloggers Meetup, a monthly lunch of programers and early bloggers -- Sam Ruby, Ken Coar, Mark Pilgrim, Dave Johnson and others. As I looked around at Media Leaders Raleigh, I noticed "Wayne Sutton":http://socialwayne.com/about/ ducking out of the tavern, his iPad tucked safely in his coat pocket. I hustled out to catch up with him, and walked down the street talking with my friend. We had much to catch up on, and the City of Raleigh conveniently had placed a bench at the end of the block, so we sat side by side and chatted for a long time. I listened mostly, for Wayne has been on a whirlwind of a social media tour over the last two years. He's become a star speaker and conference draw, sharing his ideas about marketing, networking and community building, all the while promoting people left and right. "I'm really proud of you," I told him. I also expressed my gratitude for the privilege of having a one-on-one conversation with him. I'm hungry for conversations these days, prompted by "my reorientation back in February":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am. Sitting on the bench with Wayne crystallized the notion that I should facilitate more, and more regular, conversations. I'm looking at the calendar now to schedule more BlogTogether meetups, LongTable dinners and drinks on the patio here at my home. Let's keep talking. ----- -----

    Anton is was great catching up with you and sorry about talking to much :) I’m proud of you too. Looking forward to our next encounter.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: waynesutton@gmail.com URL: http://socialwayne.com DATE: 05/16/2010 09:10:37 PM ----- COMMENT:


    I’m glad you were able to come to the meet up at the Tavern, we were excited to have it. We’d definitely love to host an event for you if you’re ever in need of a venue!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zack@huntersoakcity.com URL: http://www.huntersoakcity.com DATE: 05/16/2010 09:10:37 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Welcome home, Oliver AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/02/2010 12:14:14 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

Create your own video slideshow at animoto.com.

----- -----

    perfect! beautiful! all good things to him and you guys.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: huler@mac.com URL: http://scotthuler.com DATE: 05/02/2010 12:14:14 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations to the whole family. What a welcome addition. And with a name like Oliver…I think of Oliver Wendell Holmes !! He’s a beautiful baby.

    Verghese & Bonny

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: vchirayath@jcu.edu URL: DATE: 05/02/2010 12:14:14 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Oliver Anton Zuiker AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/29/2010 11:07:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Our beautiful son Oliver Anton Zuiker was born early this morning at Duke University Hospital. He's healthy, Erin is doing great, Anna and Malia were happy to meet their brother, and I'm ecstatic. Anton holding his Oliver ----- -----

    He’s a handsome kid! Congratulations!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: schreiner@journalist.com URL: DATE: 04/29/2010 11:07:13 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Wow…Oliver is absolutely goregous!!! I’m thrilled to hear that everyone is doing well! Enjoy:)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: erin.jochum@smithmoorelaw.com URL: DATE: 04/29/2010 11:07:13 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations! He’s beautiful!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: itzue305@gmail.com URL: DATE: 04/29/2010 11:07:13 PM ----- COMMENT:

    You look so happy, and tired. What a beautiful kid! Healthy pink color!


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: droujkova@gmail.com URL: http://www.naturalmath.com DATE: 04/29/2010 11:07:13 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Busy beavers AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/17/2010 10:48:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A couple of weeks ago, on a bike ride through the Lake Hogan Farms neighborhood near my home, I noticed that there were trees gnawed cleanly and downed along the creek, and that the waterway seemed to be more marshy than normal. On closer inspection over the next few days, I saw that there was a beaver dam in the middle of the rising pond. A friend who lives in the neighborhood confirmed that the beavers have been around for years. About the same time, I began to notice that there was a similar pond rising along the Mud Creek at Old Erwin Road, along my route to and from work. Traffic zips along the bridge there, and I could only glimpse at what looked like branches and trunks blocking the flow of the creek. Beyond, the cypress trees were now standing in water, and the area was beginning to look like a classic southern swamp.
View Larger Map Yesterday, having worked later than normal and missed the rush-hour traffic, I stopped my van in the late afternoon sun so I could get out and peer over the bridge. Sure enough, there was an elaborately constructed dam with a beaver lodge beyond. I took this short video to capture the sight: I know that beaver can be quite disruptive and destructive to farmers and homeowners, but to see the engineering of these animals amidst the hustle of Triangle life is pretty cool. Read about "beaver management in North Carolina":http://www.ncwildlife.org/Wildlife_Species_Con/WSC_BMAP_Behavior.htm. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: I am 40 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/04/2010 10:27:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Anton and cake on his 40th birthday My birthday vacation is coming to a close -- there were spring break doctor and dentist appointments for the girls, followed by visits to Maple View Dairy country store for ice cream cones in the afternoon, then the #storiesformistersugar tweetup that was a pleasant evening in which friends old and new joined me for drinks and dessert, and today my father returned to Honolulu, leaving the warm afternoon for a bike ride to Weaver Street Market and some gardening around the house (I planted the white ginger rhizome that my friend Rose gave me for my birthday). I am 40 now, and embarked on my decade of narrative. Thank you to my family, friends, community and online connections for all the threads you've given me. I hope the stories I weave in the coming years will be interesting and meaningful. ----- -----

    Congrats on hitting the big 40, that’s an achievement

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: shornby7@gmail.com URL: http://www.schieldenver.com/ DATE: 04/04/2010 10:27:01 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Cue the Casbah AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/25/2010 09:49:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Solo at "the Monti":http://themonti.org storytelling event the other night, I perched myself at the end of the "Alivia's bar":http://www.aliviasdurhambistro.com/ and ordered a pint of "Fat Tire amber ale":http://www.newbelgium.com/beer/fat-tire. As the restaurant filled up, Monti director Jeff Polish came by to chat about the successful science-themed Monti event he had hosted in January in conjunction with "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com. We also talked about a few other ideas for storytelling collaborations possible in the coming years. As Jeff left to chat up other guests -- my friend "Scott Huler":http://www.scotthuler.com/index.cgi was there with his wife, June Spence; Scott was one of the featured storytellers, and rocked just as much as he did at the science night -- he introduced me to "Jana Bradley":http://twitter.com/trucha33, who had found two stools in the back and claimed the very end of the bar next to me. No sooner had I started to pepper Jana with questions then I noticed her husband was on the other side of the bar, personally serving her her drink. "What, does he think he owns the place?" I wish I had asked. Instead, I bumbled out some question about him being a server or something. Because, um, Fergus does own the place, along with the Federal and the "James Joyce Pub":http://www.jamesjoyceirishpub.com/ next door. Anyway, Jana and I had a delightful conversation, about rabbits and rugby, Canada and Georgetown's international policy program, and more. In the course of that, she mentioned that she and Fergus are *soon to open another space in the Brightleaf District, called Casbah*. That's to be a bar and performance space, with a stage and full sound and lighting, and room for 300 revelers. It'll also have a beer engine (although, in full disclosure, I had to look up "beer engine on Wikipedia":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beer_engine). With "permit in hand":http://twitter.com/casbahdurham/status/11056739449, Casbah is under construction and should open at 1007 West Main Street by late summer 2010, Jana tells me. As I enter "my decade of narrative":http://mistersugar.com/article/4616/a-party-for-my-40th-aka-the-mistersugar-tweetup, I'm already thinking of events I could host there. So, who knows, maybe Casbah will be the perfect place for the annual BlogTogether bash. Stay tuned. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: This van stops for kimchi AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/24/2010 10:09:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After the "Rebecca Skloot":http://rebeccaskloot.com "talk to the Duke Sanford School of Public Policy":http://www.sanford.duke.edu/events/inaugural/special/news/lecture_skloot.php this evening, I strolled back across campus to where I'd parked in the medical center lot. I needed gas for the van before I could make my way back to Carrboro, so I stopped at the station on the corner of 9th and Main streets. I knew the "OnlyBurger":http://twitter.com/onlyburger truck was nearby at Duke's East Campus, and I had a taste for a turkey burger, but the girls were at home waiting for their goodnight kisses and I decided to go straight home. Still, when I glanced up to notice a Korean bbq truck in the Wachovia Bank parking lot across the street, my plans changed in an instant. Aha, I thought, there's bound to be kimchi on the menu. If you've followed my tweets the last few months, you know that I made a "batch of kimchi":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/4146209716/, but that the smell of the fermented cabbage was too much for Erin and girls, who stood firm in banishing my precious food from the house. Still, I'd had time to make kimchi tacos one night. I crossed the street, and eagerly hustled up to the truck. After chatting with the owner/chef's sister, a Korean woman who was surprised I knew what kimchi was, I ordered kimchi quesadilla, learned that the truck -- which is at the state fairgrounds in Raleigh on the weekends -- will be on 9th street the rest of the week starting at 5 tomorrow and 6 on Friday. I'll be back for more kimchi, for sure. ----- -----

    On the last day of my first visit to NYC, I wondered alone through K-Town looking for something to eat. I stopped in a convenience store that had a smattering of folks inside and a buffet in the back. I took a compartmentalized, rectangular styrofoam plate and filled it with all sorts of foods I’d never had before. It was a delicious dinner to end my trip and only $5.50.

    I’ll be sure to stop by the truck this week. Thanks for the tip.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: beck@becktench.com URL: http://becktench.com DATE: 03/24/2010 10:09:25 PM -----
-------- TITLE: What's happening, Duke? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/23/2010 06:40:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Duke University, like all great academic institutions, is a complex place with a dizzying array of academic, athletic, social, artistic and research activities. Only a few years ago, to best know what was happening on any campus, it was best to wander by the bulletin boards and telephone poles to sift through the layers of posters and flyers pinned there. When I worked in Chapel Hill, I used to enjoy wandering down Franklin Street and stopping at the poster boards to discover some new band or arts festival or lecture by a visiting scientist. An aside: my friend John Ettorre, who writes the great blog "Working with Words":http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com/, taught me the reporter's trick of asking to use the restroom before an interview and then wandering away to see what's posted on people's doors and the break room walls. Today, Duke is among the institutions using the web to give it's students, staff and faculty more powerful ways to keep up with what's going on, and interactive ways to dive into the activities. I start each morning with a visit to "Duke Today":http://duke.edu/today/. Then, these: "Events@Duke":http://calendar.duke.edu/cal/main/showMain.rdo is an online calendar of events, "Duke on Demand":http://ondemand.duke.edu/ is a Hulu-like clearinghouse of video from around the university, and "Connect with Duke":http://socialmedia.duke.edu/ is an aggregator for Duke tweets and Facebook updates. There's also the "DukeList":http://dukelist.duke.edu/ that has the potential to become a Craigslist-like trading post for the institution, and "Futurity.org":http://futurity.org/ for news from Duke and other top research universities. And, of course, here on the Duke Medicine side, we have "Inside Online":http://inside.dukemedicine.org. All these tools remind me of how much I'm missing when I'm working away at my desk! Tomorrow, though, I'll take advantage of this great place. In the afternoon, Kari Stefansson of "deCODE Genetics":http://www.decode.com/ joins Hunt Willard (keynote speaker at our first science blogging conference in 2007) and others for a "discussion about personal genomics":http://calendar.duke.edu/cal/event/eventView.do?b=de&subid=3753&calPath=%2Fpublic%2FPublic&guid=CAL-18832e99-278acee5-0127-8bde2b3d-00000119demobedework@mysite.edu&recurrenceId, and at 5:30, superstar journalist "Rebecca Skloot":http://rebeccaskloot.com/ -- who lit up the room at "ScienceOnline":http://scienceonline2010.com the last two years -- "will speak about her bestselling book":http://calendar.duke.edu/cal/event/eventView.do?b=de&subid=3753&calPath=%2Fpublic%2FPublic&guid=CAL-18832e99-26ab716f-0126-ae7ca8f0-00000073demobedework@mysite.edu&recurrenceId, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks. That's tomorrow. Now, I'm speeding over to "Alivia's Bistro":http://www.aliviasdurhambistro.com/ to catch more storytelling at "The Monti":http://themonti.org/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A party for my 40th, aka the #stories4mistersugar Tweetup AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/22/2010 10:47:08 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As I wrote in my "Thinking Places":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am post a few weeks ago, I'm about to celebrate my 40th birthday, and I want to do it in a style similar to how I celebrated 30. For that birthday, I invited friends and family for a party meant to kick off my decade of writing -- guests came with books and journals and pens and other items meant to help me write my heart out. So, for 40, a party as well. This time around, it's to help me begin a decade devoted to storytelling -- I want to develop my narrative skills, in writing, storytelling and digital and social media, and you can help with a story of your own. *Please join me at my home in Carrboro (map below) at 7:30pm on Friday, April 2, 2010.* I'll provide the barbecue and slaw, sodas and cake. You can add to the fun by bringing a sixpack of beer or other libation. The only gift I ask is a story -- a story you can tell us all during the party, a story written in a blog post or tweet (use the tag #stories4mistersugar) or personal letter, or a story in some other form or format. I'm preparing to tell a story or two of my own, and my father will be visiting from Honolulu, so you may get to hear a tale from my childhood. I'm sure you'll also get to eat those delicious chocolate-covered macadamia nuts he always brings with him from Hawaii. If you can join me for this party, add your name to the list using "this form":https://mistersugar.wufoo.com/forms/mistersugar-is-turning-40/. If you're not able to join the party, I welcome your ideas for how I can improve my narrative skills. Just send me a message any time.
View Zuiker Family in Carrboro in a larger map ----- -----

    Awesome! looking forward to it!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mindofandre@gmail.com URL: http://pulseandsignal.com DATE: 03/22/2010 10:47:08 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Sally and I are looking forward to your celebration

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jones@unc.edu URL: http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog DATE: 03/22/2010 10:47:08 PM ----- COMMENT:

    We can’t wait!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cczivko@gmail.com URL: DATE: 03/22/2010 10:47:08 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Hey Anton,
    Lordy Lordy Anton is 40!!! Happy Birthday! Sorry we won’t be able to come tonight. Fabian has a friend in town and this is the only night we can get together with them. Hope you have a blast.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: khermichel@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 03/22/2010 10:47:08 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Sit, eat, talk AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2010 12:51:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Ilina Ewen, blogger at "Dirt and Noise":http://www.dirtandnoise.com/ talks about food, recalling being in Paris quite pregnant but savoring the fresh bread and ripe tomatoes. Such food nostalgia was the topic of State of Things yesterday, with Frank Stasio and Kelly Alexander talking "hometown appetites":http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/sot0305b10.mp3/view and writing about local food memories. Ilina challenging us to shop with the people we love, talk about what we're eating, and sit around the dinner table together. (See "The Long Table":http://thelongtable.org.) tag: #TEDxRTP ----- ----- -------- TITLE: My relationship to homelessness AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2010 11:57:02 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On the way to TEDxRTP this morning, NPR's Weekend Edition Saturday featured a great story about http://invisiblepeople.tv/blog/ ("Former Homeless Man's Videos Profile Life On Street":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=124356908). And now, "Hugh Hollowell":http://twitter.com/Hughlh giving a heartfelt talk about how to end chronic homelessness -- build relationships. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bright day, bright minds, bright ideas AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2010 10:59:43 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's a beautiful and sunny day in the Triangle, and the "RTP headquarters":http://www.rtp.org/main/ is the setting for some of the area's bright minds sharing ideas as part of "TEDxRTP":http://www.tedxtrianglenc.com/. First up is Duke's "Christopher Gergen":http://www.hart.sanford.duke.edu/index.php/people/details/christopher_gergen/ talking about social entrepreneurship (he works with students in the "Hart Leadership Program":http://www.hart.sanford.duke.edu/ and a new project called Bull City Forward). He talks about how people go from living a life to leading a life by articulating a clear vision of what the future looks like, how they pull people around them to fulfill those dreams, and how they build in daily habits of renewal. passions, strengths. (All this speaks to me and my "recent personal reflection and goal setting":http://mistersugar.com/article/4611/thinking-places-or-i-am-before-i-am.) The leaders that Gergen talked to for his book, "Life Entrepreneurs":http://www.lifeentrepreneurs.com/, when asked about biggest fear, didn't answer 'fear of failure' but rather 'fear of regret'. "What's holding you back?" Gergen asks us. Gergen was a great choice to kick off the day. Who doesn't like being inspired and encouraged to have dreams? Next, a talk about creativity by "Andy Hunt":http://blog.toolshed.com/, suggesting that doodling and capturing the next great idea with pen and paper is how to go. My shoulder bag is at my feet, filled with my own notebooks and pens -- lots of idea generating to go into those later today. Watch the TEDxRTP talks live at "http://www.tedxtrianglenc.com/#":http://www.tedxtrianglenc.com/#. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Earthquake relief AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/11/2010 03:59:42 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A call from my mother yesterday alerted me to the news that my hometown of DeKalb, Illinois experienced a minor but rare earthquake. Read about it in the "DeKalb Daily Chronicle":http://www.daily-chronicle.com/articles/2010/02/10/20078834/index.xml. When I was growing up in DeKalb, I learned about the "New Madrid fault":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/New_Madrid_Fault in southern Missouri, predicted by some to have a Big One of its own stored up. Around the same time, I was reading Aztec, an historical novel by Gary Jennings that included some very juicy sex scenes (I was a high school boy, keep in mind). I remember one scene in the book in which an earthquake causes a man to have an erection. Fascinating, if true ... but I digress. When I was a student at "John Carroll University":http://www.jcu.edu, I often stopped by the seismograph in the foyer of the science building (read about "Jesuits and seismology":http://www.seismosoc.org/inside/eastern-section/ES_Jesuits.php) to watch the squiggling record of seismic activity, though I never felt a quake during my time at Carroll. Then, as Erin and I arrived in Vanuatu for our Peace Corps service, I knew we'd be experiencing earthquakes and other natural events -- before our two years would end, we'd be drenched by cyclones, witness volcanic rumblings and lava flows, and suffer through tropical diseases. In those early days, I thought it might be cool to come through an earthquake and be able to add that to my list of things experienced in my travels around the world. One day, while I was lounging in the Eman Emalo Guest House in the capital, Port Vila, I heard a rumbling coming my way. A moment later, a single violent jolt flowed through the cinder-block guest house. That's all, one very short and very minor temblor that left me with the feeling of Mother Earth having a very nasty streak. It caused no physical damage, but it demolished my romantic notions of earth's movement as cause for enjoyment. So now, when I hear news of movement in Vanuatu -- where a "major one hit last year":http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/Quakes/us2009mlcf.php -- or DeKalb or anywhere else, I thank my lucky stars and wish for steady ground. P.S. Duke University and Health System (my employer) has stepped up to assist the people of Haiti after the devastating quake there. "See this page":http://www.duke.edu/haiti/ to learn how the university community is helping, and "see videos":http://insidedukemedicine.org (search for Haiti) from a team of Duke Medicine caregivers who are helping at the "Partners in Health":http://www.standwithhaiti.org/haiti clinic in Cange. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Thinking places, or I am before I am AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/07/2010 09:58:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Like each February of the past few years, I'm floating on a high from the success of the "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com conference, but also reaching for a return to balance in my life. Planning the conference takes a lot out of me. "Go away," Erin suggested. "Take a weekend to yourself and reconnect with who you are and where you're going." Sage advice from the person who knows me best and has seen firsthand my struggles this last year with the too-many-activities stress I've layered on myself. I immediately thought of Portland, Maine, a place of raw and grey beauty in the winter (I visited a friend there once, and loved it) and how it could provide me the solitude to reflect. Too far, though. Charleston, South Carolina? A walkable city with plenty of coffeeshops and sunshine, and I've wanted to get to "Hominy Grill":http://hominygrill.com/ for years. Still too far. "Southport, North Carolina":http://www.cityofsouthport.com/tour/index.htm? A perfect distance, on the water, with a historic town empty during the off season. So Friday evening, amid heavy rains, I kissed Erin and the girls goodbye and drove slowly south, arriving at the Riverside Motel near midnight. A good night's sleep (already known that I need more sleep) and I woke in a cold, damp, overcast seaside town, wondering if I actually had woken in Portland. My computer off, my Blackberry away, I bundled up and went walking past the historic cottages of Southport, thinking, pondering and just being, wearing this solitude like an electric blanket, luxurious and warm in the freedom to peer inward and to think about myself. Off and on throughout the day I walked the streets. In the afternoon I had Oak Island beach all to myself, too. In between fresh-air strolls, I returned to my room to write. I filled pages and pages with the most free-flowing words I've put to paper in many years. That stream of consciousness manifesting in ink on paper helped me to understand the emotional wellspring I'd been neglecting. I've long known, though, that I'm a reader before I'm a writer. Other writers' words entertain me, educate me, challenge me and console me. Over lunch, and then dinner, I devoured "Writing Places":http://harpercollins.com/books/9780061729027/Writing_Places/index.aspx, the latest book by "William Zinsser":http://www.williamzinsserwriter.com/, whose "On Writing Well":http://harpercollins.com/books/9780060891541/On_Writing_Well_30th_Anniversary_Edition/index.aspx is perhaps the best tutorial on writing nonfiction you can read. Writing Places had me choking back tears often. His stories about places he's written, and writers he's taught, spoke directly to me, counseling me to "enjoy the day and its friendships and its unscheduled pleasures" and that "the hardest part of writing isn't the writing, it's the thinking." Bingo. My walking, my reflecting, my writing and my reading through the day made clear that I'd neglected a very important priority over the last decade -- time to reflect and to write. And that loss of time to contemplate and think through my hands had helped to bottle up expression of my emotions. What I realized this weekend is that I think through writing. I get in touch with my emotions through putting words to paper. (I'm happy, don't get me wrong: I have so very much that gives me joy. It's the stress of juggling too many obligations, with no outlet for the pressure, that's caused this sharing.) This was a decade in the making. Ten years ago, I was newly returned from my "Peace Corps":http://www.peacecorps.gov service in the Republic of Vanuatu. During my two years on Paama Island, I'd written daily in a journal, and letters home to family and friends nightly at the table beneath the dim flourescent light powered by the solar panel. But when I was back in the States, I turned full face to the Internet and started a blog to share my observations with my far-flung family -- and anyone else who wanted to read my thoughts. But those weren't my full thoughts, because my blogging is not the same as the journaling I'd done on Paama. What I write on my blog shares only part of who I am and what I'm feeling. "One time I did open up more fully":http://mistersugar.com/article/4189/right-moves, sharing a feeling of hurt at what I thought was a snub, and some of my friends quickly commented on how open I was with that post. (Read that post and you'll see my overdoing it is nothing new. Hmmm.) In 2000, for my 30th birthday, Erin and I gathered my friends in our Shaker Square apartment to usher in my decade of writing. My friend and mentor, "John Ettorre":http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com/ (himself mentored by William Zinsser), had told me years before that I should "live in my 20s, and write in my 30s". I didn't write the book I promised -- though I did edit and publish books by my "grandfather":http://mistersugar.com/article/4159/back-forty and "father":http://mistersugar.com/article/4007/step-to-freedom -- and I managed to write here on The Coconut Wireless (my blog's name, which most don't realize) for 10 years running. For a few months now, I've been thinking about my coming 40th birthday, and how I will commit this decade of my life. I've long been drawn to narrative and storytelling, exemplified by my narrative journalism attempts, the idea for StoryBlogging and our partnering ScienceOnline2010 with the wonderful "The Monti":http://themonti.org. But, I haven't felt that I have the skills to be a storyteller, because I also think of myself as a listener before I'm a talker. My self-examination this weekend, though, has shown me a window and a way. The more I write, the more I think. The more I think, the more I understand. The more I understand, the more I express. So, the formula I'll try is this: * personal journal writing -- words for me; * letter writing -- words to friends and family, sharing my inner life as appropriate; * blogging -- observations and stories for the world, with more of who I am. I know of other changes to make, and my personal insights have given me renewed energy to venture into 2010 and journey into my 40s. This will be a story, perhaps, of places to think. ----- -----

    Lovely post, Anton. You must write – not because you can (and, oh! you can) but because you must. Funny, attending the Monti has really changed me, too. Something deep inside of me (that I do not yet fully understand) has been brought to life. Turning 40 hurt me. But if it pains you, I’m sure that pain will be dwarfed by the tremendous joy of welcoming a new life! Now is the time — we must, all of us, live well.

    Peace, love, and thank you for all that you do,


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cczivko@gmail.com URL: DATE: 02/07/2010 09:58:46 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Thank them - they made ScienceOnline2010 possible AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/24/2010 11:07:32 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

Last week’s ScienceOnline2010, our fourth annual science communication conference in North Carolina, was our biggest, best and most successful event yet, and from the long list of blog and media coverage and the Flickr pictures, YouTube videos and Twitter mentions of the conference (all using the tag #scio10), it certainly seems the BlogTogether spirit was coursing through the 267 participants.

Bora and I can’t be happier, or more proud, of what this conference achieved. More than anything, we are astounded by the openness with which so many people came together to share, explore, question, listen and narrate in order to reflect the importance of science in their lives and how the Web can be used to share their passions for science. See Bora’s excellent post, Making it real: People and Books and Web and Science at ScienceOnline2010 (and please give us your feedback through this form).

Our gratitude goes to all who attended the conference and participated so energetically in the conversations there.

And special thanks goes to the following individuals and organizations that helped us grow and improve this conference. Please thank them for making ScienceOnline2010 possible — click through to their sites to learn more about each person or organization. (We thanked the sponsors of ScienceOnline’09 here, the second event here and the first event here.)

Our host
Sigma Xi was founded in 1886 to honor excellence in scientific investigation and encourage a sense of companionship and cooperation among researchers in all fields of science and engineering. For the third year in a row, Sigma Xi opened its beautiful center for our use, and Meg Murphy and Michael Heisel made sure we had everything we needed.

Our institutional partner
The Contemporary Science Center is a catalyst for transforming science education in North Carolina, using innovative models of teaching and learning to inspire teachers and students statewide to embrace scientific engagement. When we went looking for an organization to handle our accounting (as individuals, Bora and I can’t accept foundation grants and donations), CSC Executive Director Pamela Blizzard enthusiastically agreed to help. Her center is based in a hands-on learning lab in the building of our ScienceOnline’09 institutional partner, the Museum of Life and Science, and it’s a perfect place to encourage high school students to get the science bug.

Our sponsors
Even amid the economic bad times facing our country, we were able to attract repeat and new sponsors who dramatically helped us grow the conference. Sponsoring organizations included the following:

Burroughs Wellcome Fund, an independent private foundation dedicated to advancing the biomedical sciences by supporting research and other scientific and educational activities, not only repeated its support of our conference for the fourth year in a row, it increased its past generous grants by 50 percent this time around. Their substantial support helped us bring New Yorker science writer Michael Specter to the conference as keynote speaker. Russ Campbell, communications officer, has long been a friend to the conference, and we’re indebted to him for his cheerleading for our annual conference and his leadership in forming the Science Communicators of North Carolina (along with scientist and science writer Chris Brodie).

Last year, the Research Triangle Foundation, the granddaddy of science parks in the U.S., helped us even our accounts with a last-minute grant. This year, RTP stepped in as a major sponsor and host of our opening reception. Not only did they provide funding, logistical support and a welcoming opening-night party, but CEO Rick Weddle, Tina Valdecanas, Cara Rousseau and Jordan Mendys also offered important ideas and contacts that helped us make the conference run so smoothly. They also rolled up their sleeves Saturday and Sunday and took over important tasks at the registration table and video cameras.

Over the last year, RTP has also been an important supporter of Science In the Triangle, an evolving experiment in community science journalism and scientific-community organizing. The crew behind SITT was instrumental in helping us make ScienceOnline2010 a much more professional endeavor — witness the nice programs and donor poster designed by Tessa Perrien, the conference iPhone app programmed by Ben Schell and Seth Peterson, the video support by Ross Maloney, and of course the strategic consulting by Christopher Perrien. Sabine Vollmer and DeLene Beeland, contributors to the SITT blog, also provided some great coverage of the conference in addition to their posts about science in this region.

Tricia Kenny of Invitrogen pinged us late one night to ask if that life sciences company could sponsor the conference, and then offered to help us in some very creative ways. These included a cash grant to provide lunch on Saturday, as well as making the cool name badges, providing the tote bags and giving us a large sum to purchase Flip video cameras (through the Flip Spotlight program) that we gave out to video volunteers to record interviews at the conference and back at home.

Google Sidewiki similarly provided a cash grant and ways to win a chrome Flip Mino HD — Community manager Natalie Villalobos ran a contest during the conference to encourage posting to Sidewiki, and among the winners of the Google Flips were the eight high school students from Staten Island Academy, who each won a camera for their many and insightful comments.

RTI International, one of the world’s leading independent, nonprofit research and development organizations, returned as a sponsor, and also hosted a lab tour. RTI is an important corporate citizen in the Triangle, and we were happy they returned as a sponsor.

APCO Worldwide, a communications and public affairs consulting agency, recently sent David Wescott to the Triangle, and when his friends Elle and Jonathan, who have attended the conference multiple times, suggested he help with some sponsorship dollars, he came through just in time to help fund the extra shuttles we arranged to improve transportation between our conference venues.

The National Evolutionary Synthesis Center, which facilitates broadly synthetic research to address fundamental questions in evolutionary biology, participated as a sponsor by providing travel grants to two contest winners (learn more here), as well as paying for the Locopops & cookies treat during the conference.

The American Association for the Advancement of Science, publisher of Science Magazine, also provided a cash grant — and online editor Stewart Wills also brought cool genome t-shirts (modeled here) for the giveaway table.

The North Carolina Biotechnology Center, which seeks to provide long-term economic and societal benefits to North Carolina by supporting biotechnology research, business and education statewide, three-peated its support with a biotechnology event sponsorship grant.

Writer-researcher Pat Campbell of Campbell-Kibler Associates had planned to attend the conference again, and sent a cash grant. When her travel plans changed and she could no longer attend, she insisted we keep the money and use it to help some of our discussion leaders with travel stipends.

CrossRef promotes the development and cooperative use of new and innovative technologies to speed and facilitate scholarly research. They were a sponsor of the 2008 conference, and returned this time around with another cash grant.

Katie Mosher arranged for a donation from North Carolina Sea Grant, which provides research, education and outreach opportunities relating to current issues affecting the North Carolina coast and its communities. Benjamin Young Landis also helped stuff the grab bags and drive people to lab tours.

Event hosts and partners
On Thursday, we gathered at Alivia’s Bistro in Durham to listen to stories with The Monti, a fantastic storytelling organization spearheaded by our friend Jeff Polish. Vanessa Woods, Scott Huler, Amanda Lamb, Rob Dunn and John Kessel delighted us with their true stories about inspiration.

On Friday, RTP hosted workshops in the Park Research Center, Counter Culture Coffee welcomed a group to their weekly coffee cupping, and afternoon lab tours were hosted by the Duke Lemur Center, the Duke Immersive Virtual Environment, the NC Museum of Natural Sciences, the Museum of Life and Science (thanks Larry Boles for driving a van at the last minute!) and RTI. Many thanks to Cara Rousseau for facilitating the workshops and to Nancy Shepherd for coordinating the lab tours. And Friday night, of course, was our RTP-hosted opening reception and keynote talk by Michael Specter, noted above.

On Saturday and Sunday, more than 100 individuals participated as session moderators, discussion leaders and Ignite presenters. See the official ScienceOnline2010 program page to learn more about these talented people who provided their experiences or perspectives as a way to spark the session conversations. Thanks also to David Kroll for organizing the Saturday dinner (losing his voice in the process), to Kevin Zelnio and Andrew Thaler for emceeing the Ignite talks, to Steve Burnett for his tech support during the talks, and to Rebecca Skloot for coordinating the books giveaway (over the course of the conference, we gave away copies of books by Skloot, Specter, Huler, Carl Zimmer, Eric Roston and Felice Frankel, among others).

The generosity of our sponsors, noted above, also helped us pay for full wifi services at Sigma Xi on Saturday and Sunday. We met the guys behind SignalShare at the Social Media Business Forum a few months back, and right away knew we needed them at our conference. We can’t say enough about the service SignalShare provided — and not just the great wifi coverage that allowed us to use more than 25 gigabytes of bandwidth in less than 48 hours, but also the above-and-beyond help Joe Costanzo and Greg Hoffman gave, such as emptying garbage cans and answering countless technical questions from session moderators. These guys are talented, hard working and simply the nicest guys we’ve met.

Many thanks also to Andrea Novicki of the Duke Center for Instructional Technology for arranging the loan of four laptop computers.

Grab bag of science swag
We continued our tradition of providing all attendees with a “grab bag of science swag” filled with science materials and resources. Organizations, companies and individuals donated materials, including: Harper Collins, NobelPrize.org, NASA, Duke Medicine, and others.

Our volunteers
Elle Cayabyab Gitlin was right where we knew she’d be, sitting at the registration table welcoming all of our attendees to the conference. This year Leah Gordon joined her. Lots of others helped out throughout the weekend, stuffing the grab bags, offering rides, organizing the swag table, keeping us on track, cleaning up and much more. Thank you to you all.

Food and coffee
Meals and refreshments were catered by the following: Fetzko Coffees kept us swimming in coffee and espresso drinks with their cool Kona Chameleon coffee truck), Crumb baked the morning muffins, Saladelia Cafe and Mediterranean Deli“ catered the lunches, Locopops made the popsicles (thank you Lenore Ramm for facilitating and NESCent for paying), Whole Foods made the cookies and donated bottles of water, and OnlyBurger slung the burgers.

The organizers
And finally, a word of thanks to Bora Zivkovic, who is both the inspiration for the annual conference and the around-the-clock heart of the event’s online and off-line activities; he organized the program after many months of brainstorming with our session discussion leaders, and blogged continuously to let the world know what we had planned. Anton Zuiker took care of some of the other details. David Kroll and Stephanie Willen Brown also provided help and ideas throughout the year.

Last, but certainly not least, we thank Catherine Zivkovic and Erin Shaughnessy Zuiker for their forebearance, patience and support as we organized this conference.

And with that, we thank each and every one of you for your roles, big and small, in making this a most memorable conference. A toast of slivovitz to you!

----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline2010 has concluded, and I'm flying high AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/17/2010 07:28:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The conference is finished, I'm beat from the marathon last months and intense past four days but oh so upbeat from all the compliments and nice words people are saying about "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com, our fourth annual science communication conference. For now, an inclusive "thank you, one and all." Tomorrow, a detailed and thoughtful letter of gratitude for the hundreds of people who make this event so amazing. !http://www.blogtogether.org/themes/wiki_themes/scizure/images/wiki_logo.jpg!:http://scienceonline2010 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline2010 this week: the BlogTogether spirit AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/11/2010 10:10:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My friend "Bora Zivkovic":http://coturnix.org quite nicely "explains the genesis and development":http://scienceblogs.com/scienceonline/2010/01/scienceonline2010_-_a_brief_in.php of our little conference, which happens for the fourth time this week in "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com. This will be our biggest and best BlogTogether collaboration yet, and I'm excited about the possibilities of putting 275 people together to discuss science communication, education and engagement. ScienceOnline2010 is a labor of love for me (once it's done, of course, I need to focus on my love's impending labor -- we're expecting a son in May!), and I volunteer so many hours of my life to it because of the conversations and friendships and collaborations it engenders. All of my BlogTogether activities, in fact, have been rooted in the idea that building community online must have a face-to-face component (I wrote about this "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation, an essay that starts with a reference to my "just-departed grandfather":http://mistersugar.com/article/4606/louis-sisco-1913-2009). So, this week, I'll be listening and looking as these conversations happen, and I'll be hoping that that BlogTogether seed takes root in those conversations. To our conference attendees, I wish you wonderful exploration of science on the Web, and, most importantly, of the faces and personalities and experiences of the people you will be meeting. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Louis Sisco, 1913-2009 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/30/2009 11:52:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !http://www.mistersugar.com/photos/thumb.php?gallery=./family&image=IMG_8104.JPG&width=500&height=500! My grandfather, *Louis Sisco*, passed away this morning, after a splendid life. Listen to his "oral history":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/index.php?id=7. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Year to year AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/20/2009 12:48:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: 2009 has been a very good and busy year for me and my family: * we "sold our home in Durham and moved to a new house on a new street in Carrboro":http://mistersugar.com/article/4583/when-we-gather, * we traveled to a family reunion and a birthday celebration and a wedding extravaganza, * the girls started a new school the same day "Erin ended up in the hospital with MRSA":http://mistersugar.com/article/4592/staph-stalls-settling-down, * Erin completed her first year "as an attorney":http://www.smithmoorelaw.com/zuiker_erin/, and * we held the "inaugural dinner of The Long Table":http://mistersugar.com/article/4598/a-splendid-start. Lots of highlights to this year, but also an intensity and stress I'm eager to leave behind. 2010 is going to be no less busy, with some exciting milestones already on the calendar promising welcome growth and change. Next month's "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010,.com will be our fourth annual science blogging conference, our biggest and best BlogTogether event yet. Together with "Science in the Triangle":http://scienceinthetriangle.org, our efforts to build a community around science -- locally as well as globally -- will continue to evolve into a more coordinated, collaborative effort. On April 2, I will turn 40, and to celebrate, I'm planning a Long Table dinner for a long, leisurely meal and conversation about turning points. I hope you'll join me for this. In May, Erin and I will welcome another child to our family. We are delighted to be expecting our first son. Read my post "Naming rights":http://mistersugar.com/article/3808/naming-rights and you'll know his middle name, at least. There will be more activities and events and parties and travels, no doubt. Through it all, I resolve to stay committed to my values: family, friendships, collaboration, communication, community and narrative. See you in the new year. ----- -----

    You really have had a busy year, haven’t you? Congratulations on the forthcoming addition to your family, and best of luck in making 2010 a tiny bit less stressful!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.org DATE: 12/20/2009 12:48:06 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Very good AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/27/2009 10:41:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: While Erin and her parents were off at the cinema tonight watching "The Blind Side":http://www.theblindsidemovie.com/ -- a very good movie I saw earlier in the week -- I was home finishing the last pages of a very good novel, "Let the Great World Spin":http://www.colummccann.com/ by Colum McCann. I highly recommend both. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Turkey and its narrative AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/26/2009 08:55:45 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The first Thanksgiving meal in our new Carrboro home, and the turkey and gravy and stuffing and all the rest turned out as tasty as in the past years. Erin's parents are here for a visit, and it was a treat to work in the kitchen beside my mother-in-law, Joanne. Dinner was served in our finished dining room, splendidly decorated by Erin, on a table that was her grandmother's, and on china that my mother lent me. Wish you could have been here with us, Mom, but see you at Christmas. Tomorrow is the "National Day of Listening":http://www.nationaldayoflistening.org/ and we'll be sitting down to have conversations about the past. I'll post recordings to "my podcast site":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/, where you can find previous oral histories from my Grandpa Sisco, Grandma Zuiker and Chief Louis from Paama. As I get up the energy to waddle upstairs to join the family movie night -- "National Velvet":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0037120/, of all films! -- I'm sitting here satisfied and so very thankful. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Pajama day reminder AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2009 11:17:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Malia didn't want to miss pajama day at school again, so she made herself a reminder and put it on the floor near the front door: pajama_day_malia ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Silent conversations AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2009 10:50:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last week, dissatisfied with the crappy feeling of waking up each morning anxious and stressed, I found myself thinking back to the silent retreat I made at the Jesuit Retreat House in Cleveland when I was in college. That experience of being silent, still, and serene, while contemplating life, love, faith and future, was life sustaining. I'd like to add such moments of meditation back into my busy lifestyle. One way to do that will be to participate in the November "Experimonth":http://experimonth.com -- a monthly community challenge organized by Beck Tench -- to build silent contemplation into one's daily life. Over beers at Pinhook on Friday, Beck, "Troy":http://twitter.com/troybur, Ben and I shared our needs and reasons for meditation, and I was struck by how we each readily talked about silence. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: As darkness falls AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/25/2009 12:01:06 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: I read "last week in the NYTimes":http://www.nytimes.com/2009/10/18/weekinreview/18schillinger.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=colum%20mccann&st=cse that Colum McCann, author of "This Side of Brightness":http://www.amazon.com/This-Side-Brightness-Colum-McCann/dp/0312421974 (I blogged about how much I enjoyed that novel "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/3621/an-imagination), has a new novel out, and it's a finalist for the National Book Award. So, I snapped up a copy of "Let the Great World Spin":http://www.amazon.com/Let-Great-World-Spin-Novel/dp/1400063736, and I've been reading it this weekend. Today, after morning rains, afternoon pumpkin carving and a roasted chicken dinner, I set about cleaning the kitchen while Erin tried to coax Anna and Malia to eat the delicious stuffing she'd prepared for the meal. I'd shut off all the lights before dinner, and there were candles on the table. Evening was coming on. In the groove, washing dishes almost contemplatively, I realized I was in a darkening home, and I felt a calm I'd not encountered since my time in Vanuatu 10 years ago. Those years on Paama Island, I lived by the cycles of the sun, earth and moon, rising early, living outside in the elements and brushed by vegetation and wind and sea, sleeping soon after darkness fell. I'm struggling these days to return to a healthy balance, and today was a good day in which I put my work worries and "conference planning":http://scienceonline2010.com aside to live a little more slowly, more sanely. And so I enjoyed the touch of the slippery insides of the pumpkins, basked in the sight of my beautiful wife and daughters, and melted in the peace of twilight. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Diagnosis author Lisa Sanders in the Triangle AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/06/2009 07:13:22 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom ----- BODY: I've been a fan of the "Diagnosis":http://topics.nytimes.com/topics/news/health/columns/diagnosis/ column in the NYTimes Sunday Magazine for some time, and so when I heard that "Lisa Sanders":http://www.med.yale.edu/intmed/faculty/sanders.html, the author, had a new book coming out, I shot her an email message to ask if she'd be coming through the Triangle on a book tour. Turns out, she was indeed on her way down here for Grand Rounds talks at both UNC-CH and Duke. When I asked, she also agreed to meet up with the "Science Communicators of North Carolina":http://sconc.org, so I've organized a happy hour for this Thursday, October 8 from 5:30pm to 7pm at the "West End Wine Bar":http://www.westendwinebar.com/ in Durham. Dr. Sanders's medical detective stories in the Diagnosis column inspired the creation of the hit T.V. series House, M.D. for which she serves as medical advisor. Before medical school, Dr. Sanders was an Emmy Award-winning producer at CBS News, where she covered medicine and health. I've been reading and enjoying her new book, "Every Patient Tells a Story: Medical Mysteries and the Art of Diagnosis":http://www.amazon.com/Every-Patient-Tells-Story-Sanders/dp/0767922468/. In this, she explores the physical exam, visual observation skills, high-tech medical tests and other trends in diagnostic medicine. Dr. Sanders will "read from her book at UNC on Wed, Oct 7th at 12 noon":http://uncnews.unc.edu/content/view/2936/71/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A splendid start AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/26/2009 11:25:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: the-long-table CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2605/3957504248_b3ab3932f1_m.jpg!:http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/3957504248/in/set-72157622461742056 Like all good dinner parties, the "inaugural Long Table dinner last Sunday at 3CUPS":http://thelongtable.org/inaugural-event kept those of us around the table engaged in conversation and sated on good food and wine -- witness the dearth of photographic evidence of the good times we all had. Lenore Ramm had the best camera, and so her "blog post and food pics":http://eronel.blogspot.com/2009/09/first-long-table-dinner.html are the best record of the night; Bora "blogged":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2009/09/foodbloggingstoryblogging_in_t.phpalso, but like me (a few photos posted to my "Flickr page":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157622461742056/) he had a camera with dying batteries and wine-unsteady hand. Suffice it to say, the night was a splendid success: "3CUPS":http://3cups.net was a perfect setting, the Moroccan meal by "Sandwhich":http://sandwhich.biz delicious (full menu below), and the 37 diners a perfect mix of old friends and new acquaintances. I suggested that there was a "thread weaving through the room, beyond these walls to worlds outside, and back again. "You'll notice we're not wearing nametags. Many of us know each other, and we share connections. Others we're meeting for the very first time, and we will discover the six degrees of separation that bind us to someone, something, somewhere, sometime." At the end of the meal, one of the diners leaned over to tell me she'd been one of the original participants in the famous "Stanley Milgram study":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Six_degrees_of_separation at Harvard. "I am honored to know you," I told everyone at the start of or meal. "Please meet, share your stories, enjoy the meal, revel in the community. If at any point tonight you feel inspired to share a memory, propose a toast, compliment or thank someone publicly, please do so." With that, we ate. And then, with perfect timing, "Claire Cusick ":http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/Section?oid=oid%3A3502&category=oid%3A27195 stood up, recounted an experience about food and travel, and then asked others to share their own stories. And others did, cascading their anecdotes about eating kudu in Zimbabwe, running through the streets of Chicago in a blizzard after a night of molecular gastronomy, cooking for Julia Child, ordering the "disgusting menu" instead of the Spanish "menu degustacion" and more. I sat back, pleased that the Long Table experiment was working just as I imagined it. At dinner's end, Christoph Guttentag rose to toast the Long Table initiative, and then asked, "Will there be another?" Yes, and soon. After the dinner, "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog/ perfectly captured the spirit of the night: "The Long Table is sorta the unconference version of a great dinner party." *Thanks* A hearty thanks to all those who attended this dinner -- your active participation in the evening made it a success. Thanks also to Badi Bradley for opening 3CUPS to us. And thanks to Hicham Elbetri, Naima Ejjouf and Soumaya Elbetri for preparing the delicious food, and to Janet Elbetri for facilitating the catering. *The menu* It was delicious. Trio of Moroccan Salads * Zaalouka (eggplant "caviar") with tomatoes and peppers * Moroccan Carrot Salad with lemon, garlic, cilantro and a dash of cayenne * Beet Salad with onions, parsley, cilantro and light vinaigrette Entrees * _Marka_ of stewed chicken with onions, raisins and saffron * Braised Vegetable Stew - potatoes, butternut squash, green beans, tomato & herbs Finish * Moroccan "Baghrir" Pancakes served with butter and honey * Cardamom sugar cookies with lemon-cardamom glaze * Mint tea ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Three scenes by Tom Haines AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/12/2009 10:10:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: the-long-table CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My friend, *Tom Haines*, recently shared with me three recollections about good food and good conversation from his global travels. I've posted them to "The Long Table":http://thelongtable.org/three-scenes-by-tom-haines blog. ----- -----
    COMMENT: Oh, how I wish I could join you at the Long Table! It is probably one of my favorite things to do to sit at a table with friends and family and share food and stories. When the seven Shaughnessys were little and we had a long table and sat as a family every evening for dinner we often had to limit the minutes for each child to talk so we could move on with their homework and chores. And when I was a chld on the farm in Huron, Ohio we always set a big table of food fresh from the fields (the table which you and Erin now have) to accomodate drop-ins and the constant stream of cousins whose parents would drop off for weeks at a time knowing they were in good hands. We still enjoy having all of you at our table (now tables with 18 grandchildren!) It is our own way of celebrating Eucharist. Such a blessing! AUTHOR: EMAIL: seansc@roadrunner.com URL: DATE: 09/12/2009 10:10:53 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Food and friends AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/12/2009 02:38:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: The "North Carolina Literary Festival":http://www.ncliteraryfestival.org is all this weekend on the ("still growing":http://constructionwatch.unc.edu/) campus of UNC-CH, so I stopped by this morning to listen to "Kelly Alexander":http://www.ncliteraryfestival.org/page/alexander-kelly, "Randall Kenan":http://www.ncliteraryfestival.org/page/kenan-randall and "Marcie Cohen Ferris":http://www.unc.edu/ccjs/faculty.bios08/ferris.bio.html talk about food writing. At the same time as the food panel, my friends "Wayne Sutton":http://wayne-sutton.com/ and "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog/ were in the next building discussing "Twitter":http://twitter.com as the "newest tool for literature":http://www.ncliteraryfestival.org/page/tweeting--a-new-form-of-writing. I stopped by at the end, said hello to Wayne, met "David B Thomas":http://twitter.com/davidbthomas, then got a copy of Alexander's book, Hometown Appetites: The story of Clementine Paddleford, the Forgotten Food Writer Who Chronicled How America Ate":http://wunc.org/tsot/archive/sot1013abc08.mp3/view signed by her. Later, at "Weaver Street Market":http://www.weaverstreetmarket.coop/, I ran into my friend "Rose Hoban":http://wunc.org/portal_reporters_tool/rose-hoban. She's planning on attending "The Long Table":http://thelongtable dinner at 3CUPS next Sunday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The Long Table inaugural event AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/06/2009 04:13:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: Erin and I invite you to the inaugural event of *The Long Table*, an initiative to promote good food, good place and good conversation. Throughout the years, our experiences at family holiday meals, Vanuatu village "kakais", restaurant farmers dinners and impromptu tea parties have fostered in us both a strong desire to gather with friends, enjoy a good meal and engage in long, leisurely conversation. It's in the sharing of food and stories and place that the bonds of family and community grow strongest, we have learned. Our new home in Carrboro will be one place for us to set a Long Table to share a meal with you. We also want to encourage the Long Table lifestyle locally and nationally -- we'll support locavore events, plan a few of our own, blog about regional sustainable agriculture and plug into national organizations with similar missions. We're kicking off this initiative on *Sun, Sept 20 from 5pm-8pm at 3CUPS in Chapel Hill*. Hich Elbetri, chef-owner of "Sandwhich":http://sandwhich.biz, and his mother, Naima Elbetri will prepare an authentic Moroccan meal, Badi Bradley and Jay Murrie of "3CUPS":http://3cups.net will choose the wine, and Erin and I will get the conversation started with a story or two. Tickets are $35 per person. Reserve your space by calling 919.724.4220. We do hope you'll be able to join us for this meal. Read about the inspiration for The Long Table at "mistersugar.com":http://mistersugar.com/article/4559/the-long-table. The "food blogging event":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner with "Michael Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ at "Piedmont":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/ two years ago was another precursor. Twitter updates will be posted to "@thelongtable":http://twitter.com/thelongtable. And speaking of storytelling, "The Monti":http://themonti.org/ is a Triangle-based storytelling initiative. Don't miss its season opener on Sept 19th. ----- -----

    w00t! We’ll be there! Like Passover!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: Coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://coturnix.org DATE: 09/06/2009 04:13:47 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Staph stalls settling down AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/30/2009 08:53:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Heedless of our "attempts to settle down":http://mistersugar.com/article/4591/settle-down-settle-in, _staphylococcus aureus_ inserted its nasty self into our lives this last week: Erin ended up in "Duke University Hospital":http://dukehealth.org being treated for "MRSA":http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dhqp/ar_mrsa_ca.html. Intravenous antibiotics -- "vancomycin":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vancomycin, the big guns -- helped arrest the raging infection, and Erin's now home recuperating. A heartfelt thanks to all our local friends and far-flung family members who sent flowers, food, prayers and messages of hope. ----- -----

    I wish you a speedy recovery Erin.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: niuhuskie2001@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 08/30/2009 08:53:12 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I ditto that, Erin. Together, we will overcome our present obstacles to good health.
    God bless you!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 08/30/2009 08:53:12 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Erin, get well soon!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.org DATE: 08/30/2009 08:53:12 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Dear Erin, Wow, when you do something, you do it up BIG! So sorry to hear about your illness. We send our thoughts and get well wishes to you. Please take care of yourself and feel better soon. Love Aunt Ginger, Uncle Stoddard and Grandpa Sisco

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: gallen@niu.edu URL: DATE: 08/30/2009 08:53:12 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Settle down, settle in AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/24/2009 10:07:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Tomorrow is the first day of third grade for Anna; Malia starts kindergarten two days later. Both are at a new school near our new home, and the start of school means this long summer -- and spring before it -- is coming to a close. Since January, Erin and I and the girls have been going full out. We moved: sold our home in Durham, and took up residence in a new house on a new street. We traveled: a friend's wedding in Ithaca, a Shaughnessy family cabin gathering in the Smoky Mountains and the huge Zuiker Family Reunion in West Virginia. We painted rooms, planted flowers and wondered why we were so busy we couldn't get to the swimming pool across town. We shuttled the girls to various summer camps, and hosted a few dinner parties and weekend guests. All this during Erin's first year as an "attorney":http://www.smithmoorelaw.com/zuiker_erin/, and my second year at "Duke Medicine":http://inside.dukemedicine.org. All in all, one nonstop journey. And so it's time to take a breath, settle down and settle into this house. The routines of school and work, once synchronized, should channel us to family bike rides, homework help and weekend gardening. We moved here for the schools, yes, but also so we could set up a long table and invite friends and family -- and strangers -- to our home for good food and leisurely conversations. That's one part of a new initiative I'm about to kick off, called "The Long Table":http://thelongtable.org/home/ (background "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4559/the-long-table. First event will be Sept. 20 at 3CUPS (details to come tomorrow). I'd like to ease back into my blogs, too, so The Coconut Wireless (this blog) and "Zuiker Chronicles Online":http://zuiker.com and "Storian.org":http://storian.org reflect more of my activities and readings and musings. What else? "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010 is in the works, and Science Communicators of North Carolina (SCONC: we say "skunk") is planning a busy season of meetups and social events. What's that? How am I to settle down with a full slate of activities? Ah, my lifelong challenge. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline2010 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/17/2009 10:07:44 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: For the fourth year in a row, I'll be collaborating with "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2009/08/you_are_all_invited_to_science.php and others to plan a conference about science communication on the Web. Learn more at "ScienceOnline2010":http://scienceonline2010.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A reading of history AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/05/2009 09:21:26 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As I puttered around the house on Friday, it was quite nice to hear "NPR's annual reading of the text of the Declaration of Independence":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=106168024. Soon after, as I unpacked boxes of books I've collected over the last 25 years, I came across my paperback copy of "Lincoln at Gettysburg":http://www.amazon.com/Lincoln-Gettysburg-America-Schuster-Library/dp/0743299639, by Garry Wills. That was a book I read when I lived in Hawaii 15 years ago and that inspired me to memorize Lincoln's famously short speech. So, it was another pleasant surprise when this afternoon at a potluck dinner at the home of *Christopher and Tessa Perrien*, we paused before the meal for a group reading of the "Gettysburg Address":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Gettysburg_address. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Filling a home AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/05/2009 11:47:00 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and the girls are in Cleveland this weekend, leaving me home alone to arrange the garage, unpack boxes of books, redistribute piles of junk (to be sorted at a a later date), and generally enjoy the quiet house. Thing is, I don't like being alone, or away from my family. But we needed this time to get the house in order and ready for the many dinner parties, backyard barbecues and other social gatherings that we've wanted to host -- one key reason we bought this large house. Within the next couple of days, I hope to be able to announce the date for the annual BlogTogether Backyard Barbecue (a Saturday in August) as well as the kick-off event for the The Long Table initiative (a Sunday in late September). ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Gotta be, centerfield AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/13/2009 11:23:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: Music ----- BODY: The radio in our Toyota Sienna had been under repairs for a few weeks, but now it's back in, so I've been jamming to the tunes and catching up on domestic and world news via NPR on "WUNC":http://www.wunc.org. Yesterday, on one of the local rock stations, John Fogerty's "Centerfield":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Centerfield was on. That's a song that always makes me smile and cringe at the same time. During our senior year in high school, Julie Countryman and I read the daily announcements over the school's PA system each morning. I usually ended the segment with a quote of the day, supplied by my grandfather. But, on opening day of the 1988 Major League Baseball season, I somehow convinced the principal, Bernie Looney, to let me play Centerfield in its entirety. By the time I got down to my Calculus class, I could tell that my teacher -- and most of the other faculty members -- weren't happy with me for taking so much time out of the class period. I spent the rest of the day feeling as if I'd been stuck out in left field. ----- -----

    Funny how an old bit of shame can creep up on us and feel so fresh. I never remember a happy moment with quite the same intensity. Your high school teachers are the ones who should be ashamed of themselves!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cczivko@gmail.com URL: DATE: 06/13/2009 11:23:39 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Super sushi AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/07/2009 10:33:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last night was a date night for Erin and me, our first since we moved to this new house in Carrboro. So, we drove over to Timberlyne for sushi at Oishi Japanese Restaurant and enjoyed the opportunity to talk and listen and listen and talk. This morning, I read this article in The Atlantic about "changes in American sushi":http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200906/sushi. I'll mention it next time I'm at Oishi or Akai Hana or one of the other local sushi restaurants. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Trapped AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/27/2009 10:54:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Back when I was in high school, one of my assignments for science class was to use a mousetrap to build a vehicle. Not having a mousetrap around the house, I called my grandfather and asked him he had one to spare. "Grandpa Sisco, can I have a mousetrap for a school project?" Grandpa was always giving me chocolate bars and two-dollar bills and bank calendars and new tube socks and golf pencils and more. "You've got everything." "I'll check, Anton." He pronounced it An-tin. "Come on over." I walked the two miles across town and climbed the steps to his apartment. As I walked in, he had a sheepish look on his face. "I don't have any mousetraps," he reported. Later that night, he stopped by our house and handed me a brown paper bag with two new mousetraps. For the next 20 years, he always had a spare mousetrap in his desk drawer. I thought about calling Grandpa again this weekend after I discovered mice in the garage. They were living among the many boxes piled in there -- boxes yet to be unpacked after only two weeks in this new house -- and had been gnawing at the hammock, building a nest of soft fibers. We'd left the garage open into the evening one night last week. I'm hoping the beautiful three-foot-long rat snake the girls and I watched slither across our street recently hasn't followed the mice into the garage. On my next visit to the grocery store, I picked up a couple of traps and put them to work. "Dead one time," I said yesterday morning upon discovering the first of two mice to succumb to the lure of the swiss cheese I used for bait. That's the Bislama phrase we used in Vanuatu. Of course, in Vanuatu our traps were set with roasted coconut and meant for the rats that liked to scamper across our ceiling at night. Pima the puscat got his share, but there were always more rats than a hundred cats could handle. (See my post "Bugs in the night":http://mistersugar.com/article/559/bugs-in-the-night to learn more about our adventures with creatures on Paama.) This weekend, we went to dinner with friends. One told a story about discovering a bat in the bedroom of her infant daughter. I spared her my own story about bats. One summer in college, working on the farm in Sugar Grove, I got the job to clean out an old barn that was to be renovated into a high-class apartment. The spacious and dark barn, as it happened, was home to hundreds of bats, and so I spent a couple of weeks setting mousetraps with peanut butter, discarding bat carcasses and sweeping out guano. As I've since learned, bats are important and to be protected. The interlopers in my garage being mice, the traps are set. ----- -----

    This must be the week for mice stories.
    I was visiting at a neighbor’s home for end of year tennis team potluck and he shared the following.
    They have been troubled with mice in their home on the hill near us but have an aggressive cat who does her job well. There are a couple of small holes in the drywall in the daylight basement that provide an entry for the local field mice so he chose to insert a trap attached to a string so he could pull it out once sprung to dispose of the critter. After the first night that the trap was in he went downstairs to check it and discovered that he had invented the ultimate cat toy. The mouse, in the process of being trapped, had wiggled the trap out the hole and the trap had dangled in the air for the cat to jump and bat at. When the homeowner arrived downstairs in the morning there was nothing left in the trap but the head of the little mouse. The cat was most grateful and believes this should be patented.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: doyle1665@gmail.com URL: DATE: 05/27/2009 10:54:36 PM -----
-------- TITLE: The Big Move AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/25/2009 11:05:16 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: So, we're three weeks into our new home in Carrboro, and I'm finally sitting down at my desk to write about this move, the fleeting grief of leaving a beloved home, and the adventure of making this brand new house on a brand new street all our own. At the moment, I'm in this front office, looking out the window, across the porch and small yard to other new houses in various stages of construction. It's Memorial Day, but there are crews erecting walls, installing floors, laying sidewalks. We're the third family to move into this neighborhood called Legends at Lake Hogan, and over the summer a dozen other houses are slated to be finished and occupied. Our house is in the middle of the street. It's a very fine house. (See "this Orange County GIS page":http://gis.co.orange.nc.us/website/YouCountGIS/viewer.htm?PIN=9860928438&startleft=1967430&startright=1972230&startbottom=800680&starttop=804280&activelayer=3&query=PIN+LIKE+%279860928438%25%27.) We've moved here because we needed more space, wanted to be in the Chapel Hill/Carrboro School District, and scored a fantastically low interest rate on a 30-year mortgage. There's room for our family to grow, for us to host Long Table dinners and BlogTogether Backyard Barbecues, to welcome visiting family and friends. The county is planning to develop a large park just north of us (see "this page":http://www.co.orange.nc.us/ercd/future_parks_and_preserves.asp and scroll down to Twin Creeks), so we'll have plenty of space to play, too. The old: 5506 Loyal Avenue, Durham. Picture of the house at Loyal The new: 235 Legends Way, Carrboro (but with a Chapel Hill address). Picture of the house at Legends *Details* "Andrea and Peter Owens":http://www.theowensteam.com/ were our agents in both the sale of the Loyal home and the purchase of the Legends house. They kept us on track, dealt with all of our obsessive strategizing, and represented us quite well. A big thank you to them. "Tom Holt":http://www.bhspa.com/Bio/ThomasHolt.asp stepped in at the last moment to provide legal counsel -- I was careful to read each and every word of each and every document associated with the purchase of Legends, but I wanted an attorney (other than the closing attorney, determined by the builder of the house) to help me understand some key passages. Tom found an important error straight away, and proved his value. Jim Graves, sales agent for "David Weekley Homes":http://www.davidweekleyhomes.com/Site/Default.aspx, is working hard to fill out the Legends neighborhood. Stop by and see him the model home, tell him I sent you, and move in down the street from us. (My only incentive is the joy of new neighbors.) Jim Talbot, the builder of our home, has been very responsive and attentive to our questions and needs. Moving day was nearly a disaster -- our boxing preparations were behind schedule, our two banks went down to the wire in transmitting the final documents to the lawyers and caused our closing meeting to be delayed, the "All My Sons":http://www.allmysons.com/ moving crew showed up early, and rain dampened not only the furniture but our spirits. The large price tag on the new house added a large dose of worry, too. Keeping us grounded in all of this was our good friend, *Harold McCarty*. He spent a full week with us, and his assistance was invaluable. The "Great Lakes Brewing Company":http://www.greatlakesbrewing.com/ beers he brought from Cleveland helped to end our long work days. *Parting thoughts* Leaving Loyal after five years was difficult. The house looked the best it had ever looked, the yard was groomed to perfection, and the towering trees seemed reluctant to let us go from their embrace. Loyal was a place of friends and neighbors and memories and growth and habits. I grieved those days during which we emptied the house and prepared it for other occupants. Making a new home at Legends, though, is filling the emptiness. There are afternoon breezes and iced tea on the screened patio, trees and creeks and bike paths, sparkling stars and hooting owls long rat snakes, new neighbors and a nearby playground, grass to mow and Carrboro town to visit. ----- -----

    No wonder things have been so quiet on mistersugar as of late. I’m sure this will provide lots of future blog fodder. Best of luck in the new house and the new neighborhood.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 05/25/2009 11:05:16 AM -----
-------- TITLE: When we gather AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/13/2009 09:27:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I went to my first Seder dinner last week, "guest of Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2009/04/seder.php and his family. It was a great experience, and, sitting there, I realized that the "Long Table":http://mistersugar.com/article/4559/the-long-table concept has been around quite a very long time. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Zinsser on Zinsser AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/13/2009 09:12:22 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the American Scholar, William Zinsser gives us "Visions and Revisions":http://www.theamericanscholar.org/visions-and-revisions/, a history of his iconic book "On Writing Well":http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0060891548/, now celebrating its 30th anniversary. If you write, you must read that book. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Ruhlman and ratios AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/12/2009 07:58:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: In preparation for the move next month, I've begun to pack the last of my books. One shelf is devoted to "Michael Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/ and Alex Frater, and this morning I was admiring their amazing output of great writing. Ruhlman has done it again with the release of "Ratio: The Simple Codes Behind the Craft of Everyday Cooking":http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1416566112/ref=nosim/ruhlmancom. Read his "blog post about the book":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2009/04/ratio-the-simpl.html. I plan to get my copy at "The Regulator Bookshop":http://www.regulatorbookshop.com/NASApp/store/IndexJsp tomorrow. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Below the surface AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/12/2009 07:51:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A couple weeks back, there was this "news about submarines colliding":http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2009/feb/16/nuclear-submarines-collide, which followed \ reports a month or two earlier about American subs colliding. That news reminded me of an early evening on the Frederiksted (St. Croix, USVI) pier, as my family and I watched a U.S. Navy sub glide up in preparation for docking for the night. The captain had seemingly given command of the ship to an underling, because when the sub came in too fast and rammed the pier -- making us all jump back in surprise -- he quickly ordered the sub in reverse. The second attempt went much more smoothly. I spent a lot of time on that pier during my first months on St. Croix. I was 13 years old and fascinated by warships. The F'sted pier got a steady stream of visiting ships, in our waters to test their radar and sonar systems. When I wasn't touring the visiting ships, I was in the Frederiksted library poring over the encyclopedic "Jane's Fighting Ships":http://jfs.janes.com/public/jfs/index.shtml, or at Rainbow Beach a mile up the coast, reading a tattered copy of "Run Silent, Run Deep":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Run_Silent,_Run_Deep. On one tour of a sub, as my dad and I were in the control center, a sailor scurried into the room and began taping cardboard over various sensors and screens. "You're not supposed to see this," he said. There'd been other tour groups through the sub before us, including, most likely, the regulars -- the lesbian couple who always had their cameras and telephoto lenses ready even before the ships were visible on the horizon, and a few silent men I imagined to have foreign accents. Another St. Croix memory is in "this post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4367/corner-of-paradise. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Birthday bust AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/05/2009 10:16:33 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In my tally of the last weeks ("previous post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4578/spring-at-5506-our-last), I seem to have forgotten that I also celebrated by 39th birthday on April 2. I was still sick, and the day at work had been a tough one, but Erin and the girls set the table for a delicious meal and mouth-watering cupcakes. I'd bought myself an iPod Touch a couple of weeks earlier, but sitting at that table with my family was simply the best gift imaginable. By 8:02pm I was fast asleep. ----- -----

    Congrats! You and Izzy are both Aries! Yeah!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brian@yesh.com URL: http://www.yesh.com DATE: 04/05/2009 10:16:33 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Spring at 5506, our last AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/05/2009 07:53:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sure enough, February was a down month, as I recovered from the "ScienceOnline'09":http://scienceonline09.com conference, and March gave me a three-week stretch with back-to-back colds. But Spring also brought a series of highs -- Erin and I found a buyer for our house in Durham, we decided to buy a new house in Carrboro (where we lived our first three years here in North Carolina), my college roommate and now company CEO Stephan Liozu was back in town, the Tar Heels advanced to the championship game, and the brilliant duo "Elmer Abbo and Angelo Volandes":http://mistersugar.com/article/3682/documents came back to Durham after seven years for the "Full Frame Documentary Film Festival":http://www.fullframefest.org/ and a long brunch discussion about health care policy and reform with us today at "Guglhupf":http://www.guglhupf.com/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spring moving AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/05/2009 07:53:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sure enough, February was a down month, as I recovered from the "ScienceOnline'09":http://scienceonline09.com conference, and March gave me a three-week stretch with back-to-back colds. But Spring also brought a series of highs -- Erin and I found a buyer for our house in Durham, we decided to buy a new house in Carrboro (where we lived our first three years here in North Carolina), my college roommate and now company CEO Stephan Liozu was back in town, the Tar Heels advanced to the championship game, and the brilliant duo "Elmer Abbo and Angelo Volandes":http://mistersugar.com/article/3682/documents came back to Durham after seven years for the "Full Frame Documentary Film Festival":http://www.fullframefest.org/ and a long brunch discussion about health care policy and reform with us today at "Guglhupf":http://www.guglhupf.com/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Rice Hershey AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/03/2009 08:13:56 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On a phone call with my friend, Richard Gildenmeister, I learn the sad news of the passing of *Rice Hershey*, a man I admired and liked immensely -- I worked with Rice during my time as editor of Northern Ohio Live, and Rice and Bill hosted me and Erin for a dinner at their art- and photo-filled home to talk about our Peace Corps service and their world travels. "His obituary":http://obits.cleveland.com/Cleveland/DeathNotices.asp?Page=LifeStoryPersonId=124338159 -- bq.. RICE A. HERSHEY, 75, passed away on Feb. 17, 2009. Survived by Wilbur J. "Bill" Markstrom, his loving partner of more than 40 years;, brother Philip C. (Catherine) of Copley, and four nieces. Predeceased by his parents, Rice A. and Katherine Elizabeth Steinbacher Hershey, sister Elizabeth Hershey Kennedy and brother Paul T. Born in Akron on June 26, 1933, and reared in Bath, Ohio, Rice early on revealed the artistic bent that propelled his multifaceted career as a theater publicist, magazine writer, virtuosic home chef, cultural omnivore, salonista and world traveler. As a teenager he won Scholastic magazine awards for both his writing and his painting. A member of the last class to graduate from Bath High School (in 1951), he attended Kent State University, where he acted in Medea and The Madwoman of Chaillot and co-wrote a musical mounted as a welcome replacement to the college's outmoded Stunt Night. Infected with the theater bug, Rice left KSU to enter the famed apprentice program at the Cleveland Play House. He again tried his hand at acting before embracing scene painting and set design as his métier. During the summers he worked as a scenic artist for stock companies on the East Coast. The U.S. Army called, and Rice spent more than two years in the service of his country. His assignment to a communications detachment stationed in Asmara, Ethiopia (now Eritrea), awakened a lifelong relish of world culture and cuisine. Upon his return to the States, Rice worked as a reporter for Akron's WADC-AM radio and as a copy chief for the Cleveland advertising agency, Gerst, Sylvester and Walsh, before landing his dream job as the Cleveland Play House's director of publicity and promotion. At an opening-night party (one of Rice's innovations), he was introduced to his companion to be, a young attorney named Wilbur Markstrom, who shared his love of the fine arts and his wanderlust (together they eventually visited more than 50 countries on five continents). Rice left the Play House in the mid-1960s to become marketing director of America's then third largest enclosed shopping mall: Severance Center in Cleveland Hts. To enhance the center's carriage trade image, he turned its fountain rotunda into a venue for not-for-profit benefits. During this period he also reviewed films for Cleveland's classical music station, WCLV-FM. Disproving the adage that there are no second acts in American lives, Rice became a contributing editor of Northern Ohio LIVE magazine in 1980. A natural-born cook who delighted in bringing an interesting mix of people together for celebratory meals and lively conversation, he gained renown in local "foodie" circles for his pioneering "Gourmet Kitchen" column, devoted to the then-novel concept of pursuing culinary adventure at home. He continued to write for LIVE until the mid-2000s, sharing his passion for travel, fine dining, entertaining (invitations to the Hershey-Markstrom's annual Christmas bash were highly prized), the visual arts, opera (setting what must be a record, he and Bill attended more than 120 operatic performances in cities around the globe), books and movies. From 1997 until his death, Rice served on the Short Selections Committee of the Cleveland International Film Festival. Recently Bill donated an edgy Yayoi Kasuma sculpture that had for years bemused visitors to their Cleveland Heights home to the Akron Art Museum in Rice's honor. Friends and colleagues are invited to celebrate the remarkable life of Rice A. Hershey at a memorial gathering at Mayfield Country Club, 1545 Sheridan Rd., South Euclid, Ohio on Friday, March 6, starting promptly at 4:30 p.m. In lieu of flowers, those who wish may make contributions, in Rice's memory, to The Cleveland Orchestra, 11001 Euclid Ave., Cleveland, 44106, or the charity of choice. Private entombment services will be held in Lake View Cemetery in Cleveland. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Discount shopping with Grandpa AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/22/2009 09:21:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sunday night, the Oscars on, I'm sitting next to Erin on the sofa, sipping Darjeeling and savoring a few pieces of dark chocolate from "Trader Joe's":http://www.traderjoes.com/. Last week, my friends were twittering about this article asking "Do Your Know Who Owns Trader Joe's?"http://freakonomics.blogs.nytimes.com/2009/02/19/do-you-know-who-owns-trader-joes/. I knew the answer to that -- "Aldi":http://www.aldifoods.com/index_ENU_HTML.htm -- because I'd read this article a few months back, "The Allure of Plain Vanilla":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/09/07/business/07feed.html?_r=2scp=2sq=aldist=cse. Aldi has special meaning for me, because my grandfather, "Louis Sisco":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/index.php?id=7, regularly shopped there in his retirement. He'd take me with him, and have me grab an empty cardboard box to fill with a few cans of Aldi-label soda, a cantaloupe and chocolate-covered graham crackers, snacks that would go into his fridge and out nearly as fast when my brothers, cousins or I stopped by to flop on the couch and watch The People's Court or the Cubbies with grandma and grandpa. At 95, my grandfather doesn't get to Aldi anymore, but until recently he did still get out and about in DeKalb; a fall last week put him into the hospital with broken ribs and a broken pelvis. So, this Friday, I'm headed to Illinois to visit him. Before I visit him in the hospital, I'll stop by Aldi for old time's sake. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bourdain at DPAC AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/19/2009 10:52:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Travel writing CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I splurged for a good ticket to see "Anthony Bourdain":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Anthony_Bourdain at the splendid new "Durham Performing Arts Center":http://www.dpacnc.com/ tonight, and found myself direct center just eight rows from the stage. Bourdain was entertaining when talking about his travels for his "No Reservations":http://www.travelchannel.com/TV_Shows/Anthony_Bourdain show,, profane when dissing the "Food Network":http://www.foodnetwork.com/ personalities, and even a bit profound when talking about the importance of having a passport to travel beyond our culinary boundaries. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Listening to Verghese AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/17/2009 07:14:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Tonight, I'm Duke's Searle Center to hear "Abraham Verghese":http://www.abrahamverghese.com/default.asp, author of My Own Country and a new novel, Cutting for Stone. See my "post at Inside Online":http://insidedukemedicine.org/home/2009/02/16/physician-author-abraham-verghese-to-visit-duke/ to understand why (hint: he's one of the inspirations for my medical journalism career and the Narratives of HIV series I organized at UNC-CH). ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Table talk AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/10/2009 10:44:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This month I'm guest blogging over at "Twenty-eight Tables":http://february.experimonth.com/, "Beck Tench's":http://10ch.wordpress.com/ experimonth group project for February. It's a great idea: bq. The goal of this experiment is to make family and friends the focus of dinner every night for the entire month of February. In my post tonight, "Eating down memory lane":http://february.experimonth.com/2009/02/10/eating-down-memory-lane/, I write about chicken Marsala and peanut-butter-and-banana sandwiches, with a link to this wonderful essay about rice pudding, "Sweet Memories":http://www.bonappetit.com/magazine/2009/03/sweet_memories. ----- -----

    Oh man, I totally read that as chicken-marsala-and-peanut-butter-and-banana sandwiches…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 02/10/2009 10:44:06 PM ----- COMMENT:

    There is something to family food and tradition or I guess I wouldn’t have saved my last Christmas cookie from my mother this year (my grandmother’s cookie recipe, which she got from an older relative, I think) until Valentine’s Day to devour (being as it was gingerbread and sturdy anyway, whether fresh or not…).

    The taste is my childhood at the holidays.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mjgore@comcast.net URL: DATE: 02/10/2009 10:44:06 PM -----
-------- TITLE: On fact checking AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/07/2009 01:29:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: In the New Yorker anniversary edition, there's a fascinating essay by John McPhee about the role of the fact checker at that magazine and others. Read "Checkpoints":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2009/02/09/090209fa_fact_mcphee today. That essay reminded me of Alex Frater standing on Lopevi Island and telling me about his boot, an ant pile and the New Yorker fact checkers. "Read my post here.":http://mistersugar.com/article/4301/torrid-tales-from-alex ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Thank them - they made ScienceOnline'09 possible AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/25/2009 08:32:09 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ScienceOnline'09, the third annual science communication conference (successor to the 2007 and 2008 "North Carolina Science Blogging Conferences":http://scienceblogging.com), was another unqualified success -- wifi issues notwithstanding. A round 200 scientists, educators, students, journalists and bloggers gathered for three days of activities, meals, sessions and hallway conversations to explore ways to use online tools to promote the public understanding of, and engagement in, science. Find a "comprehensive listing of links":http://www.scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki/Blog_and_Media_Coverage/ (compiled by the tireless and eponymous "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock) to the many blog entries and video clips posted before, during and after the conference to learn about the conversations and networking at the conference. Like our first two conferences, ScienceOnline'09 was a collective activity -- many organizations, companies and individuals pitched in, in ways large and small, to keep this conference free, attendees fed and the discussion lively. Please join us in thanking them -- read below, and click through to their websites to show your interest in what they do. (We thanked the sponsors of the second event "here":http://www.blogtogether.org/index.php/site/thank_them_the_people_behind_scienceblogging/ and the first event "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4259/conference-thank-you.) So, a huge "thank you" to our sponsors for helping us to keep this event free: *Our host* "Sigma Xi":http://sigmaxi.org once again hosted the ScienceOnline'09 conference, as well as the WiSE networking event -- for free -- in their beautiful center. *Meg Murphy* kindly facilitated this -- she's the unsung hero of the conference! and Michael Heisel was on hand for tech support. Sigma Xi was founded in 1886 to honor excellence in scientific investigation and encourage a sense of companionship and cooperation among researchers in all fields of science and engineering. *Our institutional partner* The "NC Museum of Life and Science":http://www.ncmls.org/, which last year arranged for the awesome grab bags, this year stepped up to be our institutional partner (to handle our funds). Debbie May, VP for Administration/CFO, was a delight to work with, and Troy Livingston, VP for Innovation Learning, continues to be one of our biggest boosters. The museum exists to create a place of lifelong learning where people, from young child to senior citizen, embrace science as a way of knowing about themselves, their community, and their world -- I'm there many weekends with my daughters. *Our sponsors* "Burroughs Wellcome Fund":http://www.bwfund.org/ once again gave us a substantial grant to support the conference. Russ Campbell, communications officer, helped to make sure this funding was available to us. BWFund is an independent private foundation dedicated to advancing the biomedical sciences by supporting research and other scientific and educational activities. "The North Carolina Biotechnology Center":http://ncbiotech.org/ repeated its support with a biotechnology event sponsorship grant; Ginny DeLuca and Chris Brodie there are our supporters. NCBiotech seeks to provide long-term economic and societal benefits to North Carolina by supporting biotechnology research, business and education statewide. We used the grants from BWFund and NCBiotech to give small travel stipends to our many session discussion leaders. "JMP Software":http://www.jmp.com/, for the third year in a row, provided a cash grant to help pay for our delicious lunch. JMP is a division of SAS, the leader in business intelligence and analytics -- they've also donated a copy of their JMP 8 software (worth $1500), which we'll have as a drawing prize on Saturday. "Science In the Triangle":http://scienceinthetriangle.org/ was a new sponsor this year. This site is an evolving experiment in community science journalism and scientific-community organizing. If you are based here in the Triangle, think about how you might collaborate with the site to spread news of your organization or research -- Bora and I are looking forward to getting involved with the effort. "Research Triangle Foundation":http://rtp.org helped us even our accounts with a last-minute grant. The Foundation just celebrated the 50th anniversary of Research Triangle Park, and will host the XXVI International Association of Science Parks World Conference June 1-4, 2009. "Blogads":http://blogads.com has sponsored many of our BlogTogether events over the last four years, and once again Henry Copeland and his crew made a donation to this conference. They pioneered blog advertising in 2002 and trail-blaze today. We used the donations from JMP, Science In the Triangle, Research Triangle Foundation and Blogads to feed everyone, with good coffee in the morning and delicious sandwiches and Mediterranean salads at lunch. *Our donors* Enrico Maria Balli, Kim Gainer, Ryan Somma and Russ Campbell made personal cash donations, and David Kroll, our co-organizer, dipped into his own pocket to help make the conference unique. *Grab bag of science swag* This year, IBM provided recycled reusable bags. Other organizations, companies and individuals donated materials, including: "Howard Hughes Medical Institute":http://www.hhmi.org/bulletin/nov2008/features/revolution.html, "Seed Magazine":http://seedmagazine.com/, "Public Library of Science":http://plos.org, "COPUS Year of Science":http://www.copusproject.org/, "Harper Collins":http://www.harpercollins.com/book/index.aspx?isbn=9780061340413, "JMP Software":http://jmp.com, "NC Sea Grant":http://www.ncseagrant.org/, "National Evolutionary Synthesis Center":http://www.nescent.org/index.php and others to be named later. *Friday events* "Counter Culture Coffee":http://www.counterculturecoffee.com/ invited us to attend their weekly coffee cupping. Mark Overbay, marketing communications manager, facilitated our group of 25 and gave a tour of the coffee roasting operation. Afternoon lab tours were hosted by NCCU's "Biomanufacturing Research Institute and Technology Enterprise":http://brite.nccu.edu/ (David Kroll, director), Duke's "Lemur Center":http://lemur.duke.edu/ and "Smart Home":http://www.smarthome.duke.edu/ (Karl Bates arranged these), and the "NC Museum of Natural Sciences":http://www.naturalsciences.org/ (Roy Campbell was host and tour leader). "Rebecca Skloot":http://scienceblogs.com/culturedish/ couldn't join us last year, but with her book finally drafted and off to her publisher, she was game to come to RTP this year to attend ScienceOnline'09 and keynote the "Women in Science and Engineering networking event":http://www.duke.edu/web/wise/jannetworkingevent.html Friday night at Sigma Xi. Erica Tsai, Phoebe Lee, Ana Sanchez, Amrika Deonarine and Rachel Witek put together a fantastic event, and Skloot's talk about the immortal contribution of "Henrietta Lacks":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Henrietta_Lacks to science was riveting. (Abel Pharmboy hosted a rousing wine tasting, too.) *Our discussion leaders* ScienceOnline'09 was an unconference in which all attendees were encouraged to participate and share alike; we asked 69 of them to serve as session discussion leaders, to provide their experiences or perspectives as a way to spark the session conversations. See the "conference agenda":http://www.scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki/Conference_Program/ to find out who facilitated which sessions. *Our volunteers* "Elle Cayabyab Gitlin":http://www.evoquelearning.com and "Risha Zuckerman":http://www.biostat.jhsph.edu/people/staff/zuckerman.shtml demanded the opportunity to spend the conference sitting at our welcome/registration table -- they were awesome! "Larry Boles":http://mlsanimaldepartment.blogspot.com/ and "Bill Hooker":http://www.sennoma.net/ stuck around to help clean up. Lots of others helped out throughout the weekend, offering rides, organizing the swag table, keeping us on track and much more. "Kevin Zelnio":http://other95.blogspot.com/ designed awesome name badges that in the end, couldn't be completed due to some technical difficulties with our printer. Thank you to you all. *The Food* Meals were catered or ordered from "Fetzko Coffees":http://www.fetzkocoffees.com/, "Weaver Street Market":http://www.weaverstreetmarket.coop/, "Saladelia Cafe":http://www.saladelia.com/home/index.aspx, and "Mediterranean Deli":http://www.mediterraneandeli.com/. The Thursday Early Bird Dinner was held at "Town Hall Grill":http://www.thetownhallgrill.com/. Many local attendees brought fruit to share. *The organizers* If you don't know by now, "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock is both the inspiration for the annual conference and the around-the-clock heart of the event's online and off-line activities; he organized the program after many months of brainstorming with our session discussion leaders. He's simply amazing. Meanwhile, "Anton Zuiker"http://mistersugar.com and "Abel Pharmboy":http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig took care of the other details. Again, a huge 'thank you' to all the individuals and organizations supporting our free, public-understanding-of-science conference. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: What a day! AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/20/2009 08:42:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm coming down after the intensity of planning and running the ScienceOnline'09 conference, but at the same time I'm also rising higher and higher with the glories of today's inauguration of Barack Obama. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline'09 is pau hana AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/18/2009 08:27:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The conference is finished. I'm exhausted but satisfied -- lots of happy people, good learning, new friendships, and science confirmed as important to life, love and liberty. ----- -----

    Holy smoke! This is all we have to say about the conference!
    Thank you!
    Paula e Carlos

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: bio-paula@uol.com.br URL: http://www.rastrodecarbono.com.br DATE: 01/18/2009 08:27:03 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Looks like we did it, again, my friend.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: Coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 01/18/2009 08:27:03 PM -----
-------- TITLE: ScienceOnline'09 is on AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/16/2009 11:38:34 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "ScienceOnline'09":http://scienceonline09.com, our third annual science blogging conference (and more) is underway, with an amazing first day filled with coffee cupping at Counter Culture Coffee, lab tours around the Triangle, and a fantastic networking event by Women in Science and Engineering featuring keynote talk by Rebecca Skloot. #scio09 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Holy smoke AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/08/2009 08:50:53 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Again last night, Malia crawled into bed between me and Erin and did her best to kick off the covers and freeze us out of our own comfortable bed. "Holy smoke," she blurted out in the dark, jolting me awake for fear of a fire in the house. But she had more to tell. "I was dreaming in my head about a lot of lollipops. That's why I said, 'Holy smoke.'" ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Ambrosia macaroons, chocolate birthdays & a reminder of Vila AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/05/2009 10:26:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: Vanuatu ----- BODY: Ambrosia macaroons Having never gotten around to writing holiday cards or preparing gifts for my coworkers, and having come across "this recipe for ambrosia macaroons":http://www.bonappetit.com/magazine/2008/12/ambrosia_macaroons in Bon Appetit, I baked up a batch of these delicious orange-flavored coconut cookies for the office, to high praise. Nothing to it, really -- this recipe is easy, fun and tasty. It's one that would be good to make with kids, too; Malia loves to help me drizzle lime frosting over the cornmeal scones we bake, and I know she'd get a kick (and a lick or two) out of drizzling the bittersweet chocolate on these macaroons. Malia did help me mix up some chocolate brownies yesterday. She took those into her class today to share with her friends in celebration of her fifth birthday. Then, tonight, I opened up the Bon Appetit "Fast, Easy, Fresh":http://www.bonappetit.com/dishes/2008/10/the_bon_appetit_fast_easy_fresh_cookbook cookbook and found a recipe for steamed tilapia with a great sauce -- clam juice, lime juice, cilantro, grated fresh ginger, soy and fish sauce (I bought a bottle of Filipino "patis":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish_sauce recently at the "Phil Asia Market":http://www.yelp.com/biz/phil-asia-market-durham) -- that reminded both Erin and me of our very favorite restaurant meal anywhere, anytime, the coriander-crusted red snapper we would order at Harborside Restaurant anytime we were in Port Vila, the capital of Vanuatu. ----- -----

    looks delicious!
    That reminds me of the champagne brunch we had at the Le Meridien in Port Vila. What a beautiful place! Thanks for sharing it with me

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: niuhuskie2001@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 01/05/2009 10:26:10 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Into 2009 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/01/2009 09:55:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: *Highlights from the last day of 2008:* I was courtside (media row) for a Duke blow-out of Loyola (MD), my first time in Cameron Indoor Stadium for a men's basketball game (I took Erin and the girls to Cameron a few days ago for the Duke women's bball game against Quinnipiac), and then, later, a couple of hours at "Beck's party":http://variouspants.com/nye/, followed up by a low-key movie night with Erin to watch "Das Leben der Anderen":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0405094/, timed just right so that the Berlin Wall fell in the film just as the year ended and 2009 arrived. *How I began 2009:* I took a long, solo walk in the cold morning air, then returned to the house to spend the day cleaning and organizing the house, as much in anticipation of visiting family members as preparation for selling this house. Later, my brother Joel arrived with two of his daughters and my mother, come to visit for a few days. At one point during the Duke game yesterday, I noticed that all five Loyola players on the court had shoulder tattoos, and none of Duke players had body art (that I could see). At Beck's party, I met some cool people and talked up my plans for building "The Long Table":http://mistersugar.com/article/4559/the-long-table in 2009. Dinner tonight was a step in the right direction -- a multi-generational family around a table for a home-cooked meal and leisurely conversation. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Go vertical AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/26/2008 09:15:55 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Links CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Our home has piles of paper (and multiple junk drawers, but don't get me started!), and our friend, Perri Kersh, comes to the rescue with "her home office tips":http://neatfreak.wordpress.com/2008/12/24/neat-freak-news-winter-2008/. bq. Horizontal is a no-no. Whenever possible, avoid putting paper in a horizontal position (or you’ll quickly have a pile on your hands). Use vertical tools such as hanging files, wall mounted magazine sorters or simple bill sorters to keep paper on the up and up. My goal today: get rid of the piles. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Christmas wishes AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/25/2008 09:48:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My father called from Honolulu today to say he'd been given a present one of the local newspapers -- his letter to President-elect Obama, "A Christmas wish for better foreign policy":http://www.starbulletin.com/editorials/20081225_A_Christmas_wish_for_better_foreign_policy.html, was running in today's paper next to Tom Friedman's syndicated column. bq. In an attempt to thank you, I am writing this simple Christmas card with some ideas that might fit into your goal of improving our national image to the world. Dad proposes the creation of an American International Disaster Relief Corps, a "Meet Me In America" program and a "University for the World" program. Nice work, dad. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The Long Table AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/23/2008 12:32:04 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last week, Erin and I were the guests of *Christopher and Tessa Perrien* at the Hillsborough restaurant "Panciuto":http://panciuto.com/specialevents.html for a community dinner featuring the star local farmer Eliza MacLean, who raises some of the best pork in this country. (At the "BlogTogether food blogging event last year":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner, we dined on one of MacLean's Ossabaw hogs.) Christopher and Tessa (she runs "Blue Pane Studio":http://www.bluepanestudio.com/) have teamed up with *Troy Livingston* at the "NC Museum of Life and Science":http://www.ncmls.org/ on the "Science in the Triangle":http://scienceinthetriangle.org/, which had some part of its genesis in my stumping for a "Triangle Science Times":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/1060982 home for all things science in this part of North Carolina. I'm looking forward to getting involved in the site once the "ScienceOnline'09":http://www.scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki/ conference is a wrap, and I'm hoping that the "Science Communicators of North Carolina":http://sconc.org/ play a role, too. At some point during the Panciuto dinner, sated by the delicious food and wine, I gazed down the long table set up in the middle of the restaurant. *All the ingredients for a perfect evening were in place -- good food, good conversation, good setting.* !>http://farm3.static.flickr.com/2274/2503901846_b708aeb60a_m.jpg! We were indoors on this rainy December night, but my delight was just as strong as on the stunning afternoon last May when we attended Joe Mosnier's "host roast" (see him in "this great picture by abbyladybug":http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbyladybug/2503002322/in/set-72157605112726104/; notice me at the bottom capturing Joe's welcome speech on video). That dinner, too, had the three ingredients, including a long table ("another abbyladybug image not to be missed":http://www.flickr.com/photos/abbyladybug/2500528431/in/set-72157605112726104/). A realization clicked at Panciuto: *the long table/long meals/long conversations concept neatly combines my love of food and story and community.* Naturally, as soon as I returned home I surfed to my registrar and bought a domain name, "thelongtable.org":http://thelongtable.org. I'm not sure what thelongtable.org will become, but over the last week I've had fun imagining all the ways that this project might weave together my BlogTogether activities, StoryBlogging dreams (with inspiration from "StoryCorps":http://www.storycorps.net/ and "The Monti":http://themonti.org/) and food blogging cravings. My friend *Jack Ricchiuto* hits the nail on the head with his post, "The long version":http://www.jackzen.com/2008/12/19/the-long-version/, and I'm definitely looking forward to Jack taking as long as he wants to tell his story when he joins us at thelongtable.org next Spring. One more bit of context: Erin and I are actively looking for a larger house to become our home (a separate post to follow with more about this), and one criterion is that the house have a space conducive to dinner parties around a long table. *So that's the banquet I'm setting for myself in 2009: more efforts to build online science in the Triangle and an inspired appetite for the long table.* Got ideas for thelongtable.org? Leave a comment, please -- just click on Storian (the Bislama word meaning unhurried conversations). ----- -----

    May all of your aspirations come true in 2009 Anton. These are wonderful ideas. I look forward to the next time we can gather around a long table!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: troylivingston@gmail.com URL: DATE: 12/23/2008 12:32:04 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Thank you for the courage to lead and the graciousness to share. Long tables for the long haul indeed.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ibmchris@mac.com URL: http://www.maninranks.com DATE: 12/23/2008 12:32:04 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Singing the message AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/21/2008 02:50:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Yesterday, these two NPR segments had me laughing, crying and altogether enjoying life: "Mavis Staples on Wait, Wait...Don't Tell Me!":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=98559491 and seven-year-old pianist "Ethan Bortnick on Weekend Edition Saturday":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=98482724. When Staples talked about meeting Martin Luther King, Jr. for the first time, and how her father said of King, "I like this man's message, and if he can preach it, we can sing it," I lifted my hands off my steering wheel and clapped, clapped, clapped (listen at about minute 5 to hear the King story). And then, listen to Scott Simon break into song as Bortnick plays a great version of a Jewish folk song. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: In the mix AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/13/2008 10:54:50 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Somewhere, I remembered, I'd read about a simple formula for making cocktail drinks, but it took me much of the day to find the reference -- I have so many food magazines stacked around the house that I had to page through them, twice, to find the right page. It's in the January 2009 Bon Appetit, online "here":http://www.bonappetit.com/recipes/2009/01/isle_of_pines bq. The best cocktails are the simplest—two or three ingredients mixed in the proper quantities, with passion. Many follow an easy formula: spirit + citrus juice + sweetener = cocktail. Remember it (2 ounces spirit, 1 ounce citrus juice, 1/2 to 3/4 ounce sweetener), and you'll be able to invent your own concoctions. The Bon Appetit recipe for the Isle of Pines cocktail is very similar to the sun-burned rum runner recipe in "The Great Exotic Fruit Book":http://www.amazon.com/The-Great-Exotic-Fruit-Book/dp/0898156882, from which I make homemade grenadine (the sweetener in the rum runner) each winter. It's a simple enough task: remove the seeds from four large pomegranates, put two cups of seeds in a bowl with two cups of sugar, mash and mix and cover and let stand overnight. Put the remaining seeds in the fridge. Next day, stir the sugar and seeds again (sugar has usually fallen to the bottom of the bowl), then transfer to a pot and bring to boil while stirring, stirring, stirring, and simmer for a couple of minutes. Strain and press the seeds to get every last bit of the sweet syrup into a glass bowl or jar. Those seeds in the fridge -- press them through a colander to get fresh pom juice, and then reduce the juice over heat until there's just two tablespoons of dark but concentrated flavor. Add that to the syrup, mix gently, and bottle. Store in the fridge. (And don't forget to clean the kitchen -- there will be juice everywhere, and the counters will be sticky!) I've made rum runners for me and Erin, and we're sipping them as we wind down from an evening at "Disney on Ice":http://disney.go.com/disneyonice/ at the RBC Center -- I twittered from there, "remarking":http://twitter.com/mistersugar/status/1056050333 on the imposter that should have been a Zamboni. Tomorrow, I'm to tackle other recipes, including chapatis using flour I bought at an Indian market I discovered near my home (and next to a Filipino market, where I bought a bottle of pungent patis, a fish sauce). ----- -----

    I just bought some very good Tequila (Don Julio Repasado) and one of the many (simple) recommendations was exact to your post here:
    citrus drink (i tried SPRITE)
    and a nice wedge lime squeeze.
    Very Tasty & Refreshing! as your Rum Runners sound! would love to try some of your Grenadine, makes me think of a Shirley Temple, doesn’t that have Grenadine!?
    Zamboni imposter, darn Disney!
    still need to catch a Canes’ game soon! well… seems Cheers would be appropriate now!Happy Holidays and best wishes for the New Year!
    Wine Tasting Saturday, should be lots of champagne! CHEERS again! Webb

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: webbgardner@gmail.com URL: DATE: 12/13/2008 10:54:50 PM -----
-------- TITLE: This is a test 12/12/08 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/12/2008 06:30:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Where did my blog entries go? ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Friends in faraway places AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/03/2008 10:13:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A good friend stopped by for a visit last night to catch up and tell us more about his life and work in Jarkarta, Indonesia. His wife, also our dear friend, rights the "Indoprism":http://indoprism.blogspot.com/ blog. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spare a nickel AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/03/2008 10:08:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At Weaver Street Market today, an old man sat outside with a sign on his chest: *"I enjoy conversation. Sit with me for 5 minutes."* I didn't bother to spare a few moments to chat with him, and as I rushed by him, I was doubly shamed because, dammit, that simple sign is the kernel of the "storyblogging":http://storyblogging.org idea that I've been thinking about, but not building on, for far too long. ----- -----

    I love this idea. I wish I could do this with my own family. Alas talking to people with hearing problems on cell phones, not so convenient. Maybe if there was a group of volunteers available for storyblogging, they could be dispatched to various areas around the triangle? What is the cheapest audio set up you could use for this kind of thing, and still be able to put it out on the web?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jbucket2@yewess.us URL: http://chaos.wordpress.com DATE: 12/03/2008 10:08:47 PM -----
-------- TITLE: My HIV reporting in video AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/03/2008 09:39:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: When I was in graduate school earning my "masters in medical journalism":http://www.jomc.unc.edu/medicaljournalism/anton_zuiker_549_513.html, I helped produce a 2003 television report about HIV among North Carolina college students. After all these years, the report is now online; Tom Linden has posted the three-part series about STDs "here":http://www.jomc.unc.edu/special_academic_programs/medicaljournalism/sti_tv_reports_998_769.html#hiv. This report grew into my thesis reporting project, "Narratives of North Carolina Epidemiology: HIV Goes Back to School":http://mistersugar.com/article/3555/narratives-of-north-carolina-epidemiology. ----- -----

    Much like crime statistics, there’s a strong correlation between new cases(reported) of STD’s and poverty. You’re just skimming the surface with your middle class campus project. But well done and highly informative regardless.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: andrew61377@yahoo.com URL: http://www.reasononline.org/ DATE: 12/03/2008 09:39:51 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Zuiker in vivo AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/03/2008 09:29:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Along with my superstar science blogging friends "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2008/12/scienceonline09_on_radio_in_vi.php and "David Kroll":http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig, I was on Ernie Hood's fantastic "Radio In Vivo":http://radioinvivo.net/ today to talk about "ScienceOnline'09":http://scienceonline09.com and more. Listen in "here":http://www.ibiblio.org/wcom/podcast/mp3s/mp3s/RIV12032008.mp3. And see David's pictures from the studio, like the one below, "here":http://picasaweb.google.com/david.j.kroll/RadioInVivo. Anton speaking on Radio In Vivo ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Listen up AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/20/2008 10:07:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "StoryCorps":http://storycorps.net asks us to take part in the first "National Day of Listening":http://www.nationaldayoflistening.org/, a fantastic idea if there ever was one. I've been talking about the StoryBlogging initiative for so many years now, often urging people to take advantage of holiday gatherings and family meals to listen to the life stories of their elders. In 2009, I'm hoping to finally make StoryBlogging happen. Until then, I'll be listening. UPDATE: Here's "NPR staff sharing their own stories":http://www.npr.org/multimedia/2008/11/ndol/ndol.html. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Family rules AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/17/2008 11:18:09 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Writing in the New Yorker, Joan Acocella reviews recent literature about 'overparenting' ("The Child Trap":http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2008/11/17/081117crbo_books_acocella, Nov. 17, 2008): bq. This used to be known as “spoiling.” Now it is called “overparenting”—or “helicopter parenting” or “hothouse parenting” or “death-grip parenting.” The term has changed because the pattern has changed. It still includes spoiling—no rules, many toys—but two other, complicating factors have been added. One is anxiety. Will the child be permanently affected by the fate of the hamster? Did he touch the corpse, and get a germ? The other new element—at odds, it seems, with such solicitude—is achievement pressure. I've been noticing part of this -- the way parents of young children ask the children what they want to do, where they want to go, what they want to eat. Overparenting seems actually to be an abdication of authority. Granted, a few months ago Erin and I asked the girls what rules should go up on the wall of our dining area. The summer had left us all harried and on edge, and we decided we needed family rules to help us all settle into the routines of school and jobs. So now we have these: * Listen. * Wake up happy. * Only use kind words. * Set out clothes at night & get dressed without complaining. * Do not whine. * No fussing. * No yelling. * Make your bed. * Stay in your seat at the table. * Wait until the other person is done talking until you talk. * Use nice manners. * Sleep in your own bed. p. Yesterday, my "Duke Medicine colleagues":http://insidedukemedicine.org/home/about/ gathered around our dining table -- my team has accomplished so much with "Inside Duke Medicine":http://insidedukemedicine.org/home/in-print/ and "Inside Online":http://insidedukemedicine.org/home/, and I invited them to share a Thanksgiving meal to celebrate their hard work. The family rules were still on the wall, and I was proud to explain why we had the list, and delighted that Anna and Malia were calm and polite. Balanced parenting is what we strive for in this house. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Slow Monday AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/10/2008 11:27:44 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: With no school for Anna today, and Erin out of town, and the sun dazzling North Carolina, the morning made for a perfect time to alight at "3CUPS":http://www.3cups.net/ in Chapel Hill for tea time with my daughter. We sat, sipped -- chamomile for Anna, Keemun mao feng for me -- and read. Later, 3CUPS partner and manager (and friend) *Badi Bradley* gave us a tour of the new shop, and introduced me to wine guru "Jay Murrie":http://www.3cups.net/site/bios.php. Up the street, at Whole Foods, I picked up more pomegranates for my annual making of grenadine. On my way out of the store, I noticed the inaugural edition of a new publication, "Edible Piedmont":http://www.ediblepiedmont.com/content/. This is great to see, because four or five years ago, when I first read about the Edible Communities newsletters in one of Saveur Magazine's 100 roundup issues, I thought this area needed such a food publication. Edible Piedmont joins a growing list of local food blogs that reflects the exciting farm, food and dining story in the Piedmont. Little by little, I'm putting things in place to be able to focus on food blogging (and story blogging) in 2009. More soon. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Obama wins AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/04/2008 11:03:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Thank you, my fellow Americans. We've chosen well. We give our country new tomorrows. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: I regret I didn't vote today AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/04/2008 08:20:42 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I spent the entire day at my Duke Medicine desk, working diligently on projects and assignments and deadlines. Deep down, though, my excitement was building. Still, I didn't vote today, and I regret it. I kept thinking of voting in Hawaii in 1992, when I went down to Makiki Park and cast my vote for Clinton/Gore. Later that evening, I was down near Waikiki watching a huge screen of Clinton giving his acceptance speech. Wow. Erin, the girls and I have come to Carrboro to spend some time with "Brian":http://yesh.com and others at "Carrboro Coworking":http://carrborocoworking.com/ watching election returns. I want to see Obama win, naturally, since I voted for him last week in early NC voting. ----- -----

    Voting is good for the soul. BTW, I’ve voted in all but two primary elections since 1980 (practice makes perfect ;-) )!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: campaign@willraymond.org URL: http://citizenwill.org DATE: 11/04/2008 08:20:42 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I remember being in that celebration with you – sunburned and happy to both see my dear friend and to try to relax after a lot of stress – thanks to the paradise you and your Dad created there in HI (BTW, i voted absentee so i could come visit.) On this past election night i was retelling that story to Dennis…Thanks for remembering too!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: bridget.m.mcguinness@gmail.com URL: DATE: 11/04/2008 08:20:42 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Long-time shortwave AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/01/2008 11:24:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and I finally got around to cleaning our spare bedroom, which serves as a home office and all-around cybercafe. Erin's law school books and bar exam prep are boxed and archived, my piles of magazines are culled, and Anna has a desk of her own so she can do her homework. !document.write('<\/param><\/param><\/embed><\/object>'); ----- ----- -------- TITLE: It follows: I blog, I run, I storian, I vote AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/30/2008 11:09:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On "my Facebook space":http://www.facebook.com/home.php#/profile.php?id=2721872&ref=profile, a friend asks why I'm not blogging as much these days. Another friend, writing on his own blog, answers the same question -- read Paul Jones on "Twitter ate my blog!":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog/twitter-ate-my-blog/: bq. I thought, at first, that Twitter would be mostly me communicating with a few friends, like say group IM. But it wasn’t too long before Twitter became more of a timely way to share snips of news and information. A place to ask questions and give answers. One blog function done right there. Find my Twitter updates at "http://twitter.com/mistersugar":http://twitter.com/mistersugar. And then there's Andrew Sullivan, who gives us a convert's testimonial to blogging, in his essay in the redesigned The Atlantic, "Why I Blog":http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200811/andrew-sullivan-why-i-blog: bq. You end up writing about yourself, since you are a relatively fixed point in this constant interaction with the ideas and facts of the exterior world. And in this sense, the historic form closest to blogs is the diary. But with this difference: a diary is almost always a private matter. Its raw honesty, its dedication to marking life as it happens and remembering life as it was, makes it a terrestrial log. A few diaries are meant to be read by others, of course, just as correspondence could be—but usually posthumously, or as a way to compile facts for a more considered autobiographical rendering. But a blog, unlike a diary, is instantly public. I think about my own blogging most when I'm running on weekends now. What stories can I share? What observations tell? On Tuesday I attended "The Monti":http://themonti.org, more than 150 people filling Spice Street restaurant to hear six storytellers and their sibling-themed reminiscences. I sat with two sisters who'd grown up on a sheep ranch in eastern New Mexico. A couple of weeks ago, I met three sisters nestled on a bench at the Duke Clinic, proud of the sis who'd survived breast cancer and amused by my too-swift pace that day. My four brothers -- one in Pennsylvania, one in Arkansas, two in Arizona -- should come to North Carolina to share a beer with me. Today I voted, for "Barack Obama":http://barackobama.com. My state is a battleground -- every state should be -- and I'm excited for the possibilities. In the polling station, the poll workers clapped when a first-time voter presented himself or herself. That's democracy. That's something to blog about. p=. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: a-c-e-t-a-l AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/29/2008 09:56:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- -----

    I didn’t want to stop watching!


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 10/29/2008 09:56:18 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I am so proud of my 2 gals!
    Grandma Cheryl

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: czuiker5@earthlink.net URL: DATE: 10/29/2008 09:56:18 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Anna, meanwhile, was using a dictionary to write a Halloween story. And I meant to link to a picture from a couple of years ago, in which Anna fell asleep reading the dictionary.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 10/29/2008 09:56:18 PM -----
-------- TITLE: BlogTogether gets a logo AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/15/2008 10:06:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After nearly four years of "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org activities -- meetups, happy hours, backyard BBQs and an annual conference -- finally a logo: BlogTogether new logo 2008 The very talented and entrepreneurial "Anthony DeLoso":http://anthonydeloso.com/ designed this for us, creatively capturing the spirit of our group -- many individual voices connecting online and gathering offline. The equally talented "Beck Tench":http://becktench.com/ is busy coding new templates for BlogTogether.org, which we'll unveil soon. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: SCONC report AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/15/2008 09:40:22 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last night, the "Science Communicators of North Carolina":http://sconc.org met at the "NC Biotechnology Center":http://ncbiotech.org/ to hear my friend *Cathy Clabby* talk about her sojourn from acclaimed "N&O":http://newsobserver.com science writer to "Knight Science Fellow at MIT":http://web.mit.edu/knight-science/fellows/former/latest.html to associate editor at American Scientist. Our local newspapers, like others across the country, are downsizing rapidly and drastically. (My former professor, Philip Meyer, has a take on that "here":http://www.ajr.org/Article.asp?id=4605.) I try not to drive by looking too long into my rear-view mirror ... which is why I was so glad that Cathy mentioned the importance of science blogging these days, and how many science and health journalists are making use of online tools to tell stories about scientific exploration. The third annual science blogging conference, dubbed "ScienceOnline'09":http://scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki, will explore many of the issues and opportunities in science journalism and education. Check out the "amazing list of sessions":http://www.scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki/Conference_Program/ that "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock has organized for the conference. Registration for ScienceOnline'09 is closed, by the way -- we've hit our limit, and begun a waitlist. Send us a message (info at scienceonline09 dot com) if you want to get on the list. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: ScienceOnline'09 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/28/2008 10:18:33 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's conference-planning season for me, which means I'm back at the kitchen counter every night between 9 and midnight to iron out details for the third annual science blogging conference in North Carolina. We've named the conference "ScienceOnline'09":http://www.scienceonline09.com/index.php/wiki, added another day, and broadened the topics to be discussed, demonstrated and debated. Registration -- the conference is free! -- has been open for just a few weeks, and we're already past 100, with space for up to 200. Register soon. Want to sponsor or donate or volunteer or participate? Send me a message. ----- -----

    Did you hear? Russian agressor attacks USA...
    More info here: hotusanewx.blogspot.com


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: sameones@yahoo.com URL: http://hotusanewx.blogspot.com/ DATE: 09/28/2008 10:18:33 AM -----
-------- TITLE: The launch of Inside Online AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/27/2008 11:33:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Work CATEGORY: ----- BODY: For much of the last 13 months, I’ve been working to create a daily news website to complement *Inside Duke Medicine*, the monthly employee newspaper that I edit as part of my job at Duke University Health System. The goal: flip Inside from its boring "print-to-Web version":http://inside.duke.edu to a more interactive Web-to-print strategy. I wanted a site that could better reflect the ‘river of news’ that flows through Duke Medicine every day, a site that could collect the announcements and articles and stories that then would make it into the newspaper (which we redesigned and reformatted earlier this year — "see the latest issues":http://www.scribd.com/people/view/434462-inside-duke-medicine\). Two weeks ago, *Inside Online* finally launched, at "http://inside.dukemedicine.org":http://inside.dukemedicine.org. Inside Online is a daily news website, public but meant for the employees of the health system. We’re using Wordpress as a content management system; my friend "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com developed the site, patiently working through all the design and functionality changes I sprang on him through the months. (Brian’s now onto a bigger and better project, "Carrboro Creative Coworking":http://carrborocoworking.com). I'm proud of this accomplishment, and eager to see the site succeed as the go-to source of news and information at Duke Medicine. Have a look, and share any suggestions for how we can make it better. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Erin on the job AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/27/2008 08:23:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm still so amazed and proud of what Erin's accomplished -- law school (and two years of grant-supported study of Swahili), passing the bar and transitioning smoothly into her job as attorney at law, all the while being the most awesome and loving wife and mother. For the record, Erin now works on the health care team at the Raleigh offices of *Smith Moore Leatherwood*. "See her bio page.":http://www.smithmoorelaw.com/professionals/xprprofessionaldetailsmithmoore.aspx?xpST=ProfessionalDetail&professional=526 ----- ----- -------- TITLE: She's legit AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/26/2008 10:17:59 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- -----

    w00t! Congratulations!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 09/26/2008 10:17:59 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratz!!! Now, when does she hang out her shingle?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: campaign@willraymond.org URL: http://citizenwill.prg DATE: 09/26/2008 10:17:59 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Over the water AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/31/2008 11:10:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: To celebrate Erin's great news last night, I drove out into a spectacular thunderstorm with nonstop lightning to retrieve tiramisu and a DVD. I returned to the house to find a candlelight picnic on the living room floor, and, basking in the relief of Erin's passing the bar exam, we drank red wine while watching the Irish musical "Once":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0907657/. Another movie rental from last night, this one for the girls, was "Nim's Island":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0410377/, which Anna and I watched tonight. Erin walked into the room just as a cruise ship with Australian tourists descended upon Nim's untrampled beach. "Look familiar?" I asked. Erin laughed. We were remembering that time we'd traveled by motorboat from Paama across to Epi Island, where the villagers of Lamen Bay had agreed to play host to a visiting cruise ship for the first time. As we sat with our Ni-Vanuatu family and friends, a couple hundred Aussies came ashore to wander the small village, wondering how to purchase with their Australian dollars the woven pandanus mats, carved dugongs and other handicrafts that were valued in vatu, the Vanuatu currency. At noon, the ship's cooks set out food at the school grounds, and the crew played the locals in a game of soccer. When that ship departed -- they bagged all their garbage and took it with them (though probably dumped it out at sea) -- we walked down to Tasso's guest house and ordered a couple cold Tusker beers. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Erin Shaughnessy Zuiker, Esq. AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/31/2008 10:35:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: She did it! Erin passed the NC bar exam, and is set to practice law in this state. Congratulations, my love. I knew you would do it. ----- -----

    ROCK! Congrats Erin! Now get out there and help people. :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brian@yesh.com URL: http://www.yesh.com DATE: 08/31/2008 10:35:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations Erin! Well done!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: britonb@hotmail.com URL: DATE: 08/31/2008 10:35:02 PM -----
-------- TITLE: BlogTogether Backyard Barbecue, again AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/20/2008 10:46:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The annual *BlogTogether Backyard Barbecue* is this Saturday, August 23 from 5pm on, at my home in Durham. I’ll provide a cold keg of Carolina Brewery suds, a hot grill and tasty pulled pork barbecue, and a deck perfect for conversing into the night. More details "here":http://blogtogether.org/index.php/wiki. Join us (but let us know you’re coming, please). ----- -----

    Anton, I expect you got my earlier message, but Kim and I (& 3 girls) hope to see you this evening. -Stephen

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: stephen.fraser@gmail.com URL: http://www.salutor.com DATE: 08/20/2008 10:46:36 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Taking stock AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/20/2008 07:18:57 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: One year ago today, I started my job as manager of internal communications at Duke Medicine, a job I've poured myself into and enjoyed. To mark the anniversary, I'll take a break from the dozen projects and deadlines and tasks currently stressing me out so to walk over to the Duke Gardens and sit among the bamboo. School for the girls starts tomorrow. Erin starts her job in two weeks. BlogTogether conferences and initiatives are languishing. I owe time on a freelance project. Fortunately, we're all healthy and well. It's just that I'm struggling with this complicated life I've planned around me. In the kitchen just now to pour a glass of orange juice and feed the cat, I found a lovely note from Erin reminding me to recapture the relaxation of our Miami Beach vacation. By the end of day, then, I'll be in shorts and flip flops, whittling away some of the complications of my to-do list. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Tell me about wine AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/16/2008 12:01:24 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Films CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: The quiet house has been getting to me this week -- Erin and the girls are still in Cleveland -- so I fled the eerie peace last night to see "Tell No One":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0362225/, an excellent French murder mystery. And tonight I went to see "Bottle Shock":http://www.bottleshockthemovie.com/, a dramatic retelling of the 1976 head-to-head blind tasting of French and California wines, in which the Americans shocked the oenophiles. A delightful film, this one. As I drove home, I remembered the blissful New Zealand spring afternoon when Erin and I stopped our camper van near budding vines and green pastures to have a peaceful lunch and glasses of the wine we'd collected on our tour of the country's wineries. (I mentioned our favorite in "this previous post":http://mistersugar.com/article/3646/bob-campbell---wine-words.) The house is still quiet, but promises to return to its bustle and hum when my darling little women return this weekend. Travel safely, Erin. I have a bottle of chardonnay chilled for your arrival. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Miami Beach report AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/05/2008 11:48:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Another run along the boardwalk, and weight training in the gym, then a block down Collins Avenue for lunch at a Cuban diner, fried sweet plantains and a papaya shake. After reading underneath a palm frond umbrella for a few hours, we showered and dressed, then hopped into a cab for a short ride to the Art Deco "Hotel Victor":http://hotelvictorsouthbeach.com/, where we made the most of a "Miami Spa Month":http://miamispamonth.com/Participants/spa_v.htm promotion (there's a similar "Miami Spice Month":http://www.miamirestaurantmonth.com/ for dinner specials around town.) "I feel like a shiny new red car," I told my masseuse, Kelly, during the sea-salt scrub -- this after a muscle-melting 30 minutes on the massage table. A few glasses of orange-infused and cucumber-infused water quenched my thirst, and then I hit the steam room to sweat out any remaining hints of stress or worry gathered over the last year. Upstairs, the Hotel Victor lobby has a tank filled with white undulating jellyfish. (Read this interesting "NYTimes article about the decline of the seas leading to a rise in jellyfish":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/08/03/science/earth/03jellyfish.html?ex=1375675200&en=d23737e4efc0c8bb&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink.) Outside, past Gianni Versace's "Casa Causarina":http://www.miamibeach411.com/ocean_drive/versace_house.html mansion (read my "previous post":http://mistersugar.com/article/3580/obits about my connection to the first victim in the murder spree that ended with Versace's death), around the corner, we had an early dinner -- turkey burger, Monte Christo, chocolate malt -- at the *11th Street Diner*. Walking toward our hotel, we walked up Washington Street, finding our way onto the pedestrian mall, Espanola Way, and immediately getting sucked into the "Cavas":http://www.mycavas.com/v2/ wine tasting shop. I most enjoyed the "Terravid":http://www.terravid.cl/# carmenere and "Erath":http://www.erath.com/PinotNoirOregon06.cfm 2006 pinot noir. All in all, another fine day in Miami Beach. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Miami Beach images AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/05/2008 01:48:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Pictures from our first few days here in Miami Beach: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Up, down and all around South Beach AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/05/2008 12:09:11 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "Michy's":http://www.opentable.com/rest_profile.aspx?rid=7090 last night, we mentioned to our waitress, Bonnie, that we were just in town and eager to learn of other good Miami restaurants. "Hang on," she said. "I'll ask David to come and talk with you." A few minutes later, *David Martinez*, co-owner of the restaurant and husband to chef *Michelle Bernstein*, was tableside, where he spent the next 10 minutes answering our questions and listing off a number of his recommendations for good eating in South Beach. When I asked him why an out-of-town "foodie friend":http://ruhlman.com would recommend his restaurant to us, he said only that Michy's was trying to use local ingredients for fun, fresh tastes. When Martinez walked away, the couple beside us, down from Palm Beach for a return visit to the restaurant to celebrate their 23rd anniversary, told us Martinez was being very modest. (As our meal would attest to so shortly.) Tonight, we walked down to his suggestion for sushi: "Bond St. Lounge":http://www.townhousehotel.com/bond.asp, in the basement of the tres cool red-and-white-appointed "Townhouse Hotel":http://www.townhousehotel.com/, where we had the special mango tango spicy tuna roll, Chilean sea bass skewer, goat cheese crab cakes, sesame-crusted shrimp roll, and a few other nagiri choices. From the Bond Street basement to the rooftop "Plunge":http://www.gansevoortsouth.com/rooftop-pool/index.cfm, a poolside bar atop the Gansevoort South Hotel. Erin and I snuggled in an oversize round ottoman, sipping lychee mojitos and sharing a slice of key lime pie, reveling in our love affair. Tomorrow, another long walk down to the Art Deco district for cappuccino and breakfast, then back to the beach for more reading. I'm on a jaunt with my friend "Scott Huler":http://www.scotthuler.com/index.cgi in his new book, No-Man's Lands, about Homer's Odysseus and a journey through the Mediterranean. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 12 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/04/2008 12:01:20 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: Places ----- BODY: Law school and the NC bar exam now behind Erin, my first year at Duke nearly done, and our twelfth anniversary coming next weekend, we have decamped to Miami Beach for five days of sun and sand. Vacation for a workaholic takes a bit to ease into, but after a run along the boardwalk, buffet breakfast, and six hours under a beach umbrella listening to half a dozen European languages being spoken around me, I think I've got the hang of it. Dinner tonight was perfect balance to the day. Erin was simply gorgeous, and we found our way (at the recommendation of "Michael Ruhlman":http://www.ruhlman.com/) to a great restaurant, "Michy's":http://www.opentable.com/rest_profile.aspx?rid=7090, named for its talk-of-the-town chef, Michelle Bernstein. Her menu was fun to peruse, and even better to taste. We had half orders (tapas sized) of the Peruvian-style ceviche (yellow tail, shrimp, bay scallops with corn on the cob, popcorn and toasted corn kernels); summer peach salad (arugula, Maytag blue cheese, crispy smoked bacon, balsamic vinaigrette); white gazpacho (pureed Marcona almonds, grapes, cucumbers); creamy polenta (truffle poached egg, bacon bits, Parmesan cheese); wild sockeye salmon (Spanish garlic almond sauce, pickled garlic, cucumber-grape salad), and snapper Francaise (boniato mash, mojo beurre blanc) and bread pudding for dessert. We very much enjoyed a bottle of "Tilenus":http://www.tilenus.com/ Pagos de Posada Mencia 2000 Bierzo, and a glass of moscato with dessert. All in all, a fantastic day. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The storytelling narrative AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/03/2008 11:06:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In Cleveland earlier this week, I met up with "Jack Ricchiuto":http://jackzen.com/ in Tremont late one night. We headed over to the new hot spot, "The Tremont Tap House":http://www.tremonttaphouse.com/, for beers and conversation. Jack just finished another book, "Instructions from the Cook":http://designinglife.com/index.php/Main/Books. "What are you thinking about now," I asked him. "Storytelling," he said. At which I launched in on my passions for storytelling: "narrative journalism":http://www.nieman.harvard.edu/narrative/, "oral history":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/, "storyblogging":http://storyblogging.org/, "The Moth":http://www.themoth.org/ and "The Monti":http://themonti.org/. I mentioned "Jif Louis singing a kastom song":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/index.php?id=3 on my last day on Paama. Jack's got some good ideas for teaching people to develop a good ear for storytelling. I've learned much just from observing how Jack interacts with people, asking small questions that get a person talking, and soon enough, that person's story emerges. From my coversation with Jack, I realized that, in developing my mistersugar brand and online identity, I've been "developing a story":http://mistersugar.com/about that gives context to the brand. Now, I'm thinking about a story from my Peace Corps days, about a lost dog and a funny parable from my brother Noel about where that dog might have gone. Watch, or listen, for it here soon. ----- -----

    great work great site thx ;) xtube latin =) nexxx 1 ;)) a series of tube 8s ;)) hqtube com main

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: xtube@hotmail.com URL: http://my.mashable.com/xtubez DATE: 08/03/2008 11:06:48 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Management matters AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/21/2008 10:33:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: For three days last week, a pile of work on my office desk notwithstanding, I was engaged in a fabulously interactive and valuable training session, called A Guide to Managing at Duke. Through this, I learned much about leadership styles and learning differences and management responsibilities -- I even played a habitually tardy employee brought to tears by family health issues in a role-playing session meant to teach us about empathy and the "Family and Medical Leave Act":http://www.dol.gov/esa/whd/fmla/. During the workshop, I thought back on the various management challenges I've encountered in the last 20 years, such as addressing an employee's alcoholism or whistleblowing a supervisor's abusive behavior. I also remembered the key instances when my own managers hauled me to the task, teaching me valuable lessons about procrastination and editing a story into shape. An email midweek, sadly, made me recall another event. Word came to me that *Audrey Chapman*, a writer and journalist who briefly worked with me at the ill-fated PlanetKnowHow Web startup, died at the young age of 42. (Read her "obituary":http://www.legacy.com/Cleveland/DeathNotices.asp?Page=LifeStoryPrint&PersonID=113611120.) It was my task, as Audrey's nominal supervisor, to let her go when it became clear the company was running out of money. "I'm sorry," I told her, quivering from nervousness. "I won't be far behind." After she left, I saw her only once more, running through Cleveland's Little Italy. By then, I, too, had been laid off. Being a manager is a challenging job, the workshop reinforced. But the job can also be highly rewarding when done right, when people come together as a team, share a common goal, communicate clearly and constantly, succeed. I returned to my desk today, to a long list of to-do items -- a newspaper to edit, a newsletter to inaugurate, a blog-based website to launch -- but also to a fantastic team working together on all those projects. ----- -----

    I went through the Managing @ Duke training a while back, and thought it was time well spent!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: lesleylooper@gmail.com URL: http://lesleylooper.blogspot.com/ DATE: 07/21/2008 10:33:54 PM -----
-------- TITLE: When old friends call AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/12/2008 11:05:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois ----- BODY: Our "DHS Class of 1988":http://dekalb88.com reunion last month was well attended, but a few of my good friends from high school weren't able to join us. Some friends we didn't know how to contact. *Khaled Khan* was one of the out-of-touch classmates and friends. No longer. This morning, the phone rang, a voice asked, "Do you know who this is?" and we were off on a long conversation. Khaled was a great friend in high school, a soccer teammate and weekend (fellow teetotling) companion. After graduation, we borrowed my dad's car and drove west to Colorado, where we visited my Boulder relatives, zoomed down a Breckenridge "alpine slide":http://summitnet.com/activityguide/activity.cfm?url=slide&link=slide&title=Alpine+Slide, pretended to be cowboys and paid an artist to draw a caricature[1]. Khaled Khan in Colorado We also camped in "Rocky Mountain National Park":http://www.nps.gov/romo. One afternoon, we set out for a hike up a mountain. On our way up, we noticed puma tracks, and recalled a warning we'd read somewhere that a mountaintop in the afternoon is a good place to be struck by lightning. We reached the summit as the sun was setting and the wind picking up, which is why I'm hunched between the rocks in this picture: Anton on a cold mountaintop We hurried down the mountain, slipping on ice, dropping and breaking our one flashlight in a cold stream, thinking we were hearing wolves howl. The night was dark, and we were spooked, so naturally we talked about religion, me about my plan to be a priest, Khaled about his Muslim faith. I've been on much more strenuous and dangerous hikes (along windswept ridges in Hawaii, and to the lip of a live volcano in Vanuatu), but that Colorado experience is the one that I've recalled time and again. A day or two after that frightful hike, our money running out, we pulled into Estes Park, with no place to stay but plans to leave at first light for our drive back to Illinois. "Let's just sleep in the car," we decided. On the phone to my mother, I nonchalantly mentioned said plan. "But I'll let the police know so we don't get into trouble," I added. When I walked into the police station, the officer on duty looked up. "Are you Anton?" he asked. "Call your mother." Mortified, I went to the pay phone, placed a collect call home, and was instructed by my mother to call a DeKalb High classmate of my aunt's, a man who happened to own a small hotel in Estes Park. The next morning, we began a 20-hour straight-through drive home. fn1. [image removed for quality concerns] ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Who's counting? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/06/2008 07:20:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: Observations ----- BODY: "Dad, how many times have we been to that restaurant?" Malia asked as we drove past the P.F. Chang's China Bistro near Southpoint. "One time. Maybe we should go back," I answered. "We've been there once, and once isn't enough," she said. ----- -----

    That’s my Malia. She is a character! I love her and miss her.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: czuiker5@earthlink.net URL: DATE: 07/06/2008 07:20:52 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Popovers AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/30/2008 08:25:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Saturday, after we'd been to the "Durham Farmers Market":http://www.durhamfarmersmarket.com/ to get honey from Little Tree Farm, cinnamon rolls from "Angels Nest Bakery":http://www.bakery1.com/, tomatoes from Sunny Slope Greenhouses and blueberries from Lyon Farms, Malia accompanied me to the Chapel Hill Mall to purchase a popover pan (at KitchenWorks). Tonight we put it to the test. The result: six gloriously warm popovers that we enjoyed with my homemade strawberry jam and the honey. Popovers made in my new popover pan. If you really want to know about popovers, and see a photo by a "real photographer":http://dtrphotography.com/, click over to Michael Ruhlman's post, "Flour, egg, milk":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2008/05/why-are-they-ca.html. ----- -----

    After an intense day of studying and trying to stay focused, your perfectly puffy popovers with homemade strawberry jam were a delightful treat. Thank you.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: eszuiker@email.unc.edu URL: DATE: 06/30/2008 08:25:44 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I’ll bake for you any day, my love.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 06/30/2008 08:25:44 PM -----
-------- TITLE: My Letters AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/30/2008 08:00:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After dinner tonight, Malia disappeared into the office bedroom to make something for her camp counselor. "These are my letters," she said when she emerged, holding this sheet of paper: My Letters, by Malia Zuiker, permanent marker on white office paper. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Loose bits AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/28/2008 10:15:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I find myself having to muster the mental and physical energy to blog, but here's a jumble of items and thoughts and observations from the last month or so: Erin's disappeared to study for the bar exam, staying at a friend's house so she can concentrate on not washing dishes and mopping floors and folding clothes and ministering to children. I'm doing more of that while she's gone -- and, no, I haven't yet read the NYTimes Magazine article about co-parenting equality, "When Mom and Dad Share It All":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/06/15/magazine/15parenting-t.html -- but I was glad to see Erin come home last night and briefly today. I had to miss "The Monti":http://themonti.org/ storytelling night this week. I realize I never blogged about attending The Monti in May, a delightful couple of hours and six intriguing stories. Jeff Polish is creating an amazing initiative, and I hope I can collaborate with him soon. After eight years with cell phones, and very few minutes ever spoken on my phones, I've hit a tipping point: I'm so busy that I have far less time to use e-mail to communicate with family and friends, and I've discovered that an earphone connected to my cellphone or the Bluetooth connection to the Sentra's radio allow me call more people more often. I've been updating "DeKalb88.com":http://dekalb88.com over the last few days, posting pictures of the reunion and, today, the "slideshow":http://www.scribd.com/doc/3684164/DeKalb-High-School-88-Reunion-Slideshow that my buddy "Rob Deemer":http://www.robdeemer.com/ prepared for the dinner presentation. Rob's an in-demand composer of classical and jazz music, and I'm thinking of commissioning him to write a theme for me, the mistersugar montage, perhaps. In the mail today, a thoughtful and handwritten card from "Kevin Hale":http://www.flickr.com/photos/zenoc/1172538223/, a developer at "Wufoo.com":http://wufoo.com thanking me for being a loyal customer (I use Wufoo for the registration and feedback forms for BlogTogether, DeKalb88 and Duke Medicine). Previously, Wufoo sent me a holiday card, and this company is still the only one -- of online or off-line companies -- that's ever bothered to personalize its gratitude for my business. Thank you, Wufoo. My aunt and uncle and cousins are visiting this weekend, up from South Carolina to check out the schools and jobs and homes of the Triangle. And, a few paragraphs ago, a call from Erin's brother, Tim, who's in Durham this weekend with his family; they live in Charlotte, but we rarely see them, so we'll try to juggle lunch with them tomorrow. The July issue of Inside Duke Medicine is online "here":http://www.scribd.com/doc/3676768/Inside-Duke-Medicine-July-2008-Vol-17-No-7. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: DHS '88 reunion AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/22/2008 09:15:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm back from a weekend trip to DeKalb, Illinois for the 20th anniversary reunion of the DeKalb High School Class of 1988. It was a fabulous set of events, and I'm overwhelmed with all the conversations I had with my old friends and classmates. Pictures and a longer post to come (after I dig myself out from under a mountain of tasks and work assignments). ----- -----

    Nice web page

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cowboyhooks@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 06/22/2008 09:15:49 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Run, Alice, run AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/08/2008 08:57:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I stepped out of the kitchen tonight to see sports on the television, and as "Maria Mutola":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Maria_Mutola won "her 16th straight":http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/2008/olympics/wires/06/08/2090.ap.oly.ath.prefontaine.mutola.1st.ld.writethru.0491/ 800-meters race at the annual Prefontaine Classic, I recognized the runner behind her: "Alice Schmidt":http://www.usatf.org/athletes/bios/Schmidt_Alice.asp. Alice graduated from the "UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication":http://jomc.unc.edu, where I taught her how to make Web pages in the J-50 lab class. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cleveland connections AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/08/2008 08:42:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On "The Splendid Table":http://splendidtable.publicradio.org/listings/ last week (May 31, 2008 show), Raleigh writer and friend "Scott Huler":http://www.scotthuler.com/index.cgi reported from Cleveland about the story behind the feuding Stadium Mustard and Ballpark Mustard. My good friend *Richard Gildenmeister* is to be honored June 26th by the "Cleveland Arts Prize":http://www.clevelandartsprize.org/ for his 55+ years of selling books and promoting writers in Northern Ohio. One of the writers he's promoted is also being honored that night-- "Michael Ruhlman":http://www.ruhlman.com (who I brought to Durham last fall for the "BlogTogether food blogging dinner":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner) and chef "Michael":http://www.lolabistro.com/ "Symon":http://www.symonsays.typepad.com/ will share an award. I checked in with *Dennis Dooley*, my editor-mentor at "Northern Ohio Live":http://northernohiolive.com/, about the Arts Prize (I'd nominated Richard six years ago, when Dennis was a member of the jury), and learned that he's looking forward to retiring as a writer-for-hire so he can get to some of his own writing projects. Dennis co-edited a book about Superman, "Superman at Fifty: The Persistence of a Legend":http://www.amazon.com/Superman-at-Fifty-Persistence-Legend/dp/0940601001. Dennis taught me a valuable lesson about writing and editing one afternoon at Live when we sat down to rewrite a feature article that just wasn't ready for print. "Brian K. Vaughan":http://bkv.tv/pages/news.html, another Live connection (he was an "intern with me":http://mistersugar.com/article/4495/presidential one summer), is rocketing to well-deserved fame and glory -- he's writing the television show "Lost":http://abc.go.com/primetime/lost/index?pn=index these days, and just "sold a screenplay":http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/hr/content_display/news/e3i7e868997eb1bc7b4f6fabf7b407bfebd that he'll help produce into a film about a modern-day knights of the roundtable. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Have fun storming the castle AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/31/2008 08:57:02 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My father just drove off to the airport, where he'll start his return journey to his home in Hawaii. "I miss my daddy already," I said to Erin and the girls as we stood in the driveway, watching his car disappear. "But you're a grownup already," said Anna. "Grownups can miss their daddies, too," said Erin. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spud man AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/28/2008 09:53:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I came home tonight to see today's issue of the NYTimes -- my visiting father has been buying the paper from our grocery store -- opened to the obits page, topped with the name "J.R. Simplot":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/28/business/28simplot.html?ex=1369713600&en=0a6b27a382302af2&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink, the billionaire spud man who supplied French fries to McDonald's and sponsored my baseball team when I was 12 years old in Caldwell, Idaho. (Picture to come when I can get to the storage unit.) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Dad and Dot visiting AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/28/2008 09:12:45 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My father, Joseph, and his wife, Dot, are visiting us here in Durham this week, first time we've seen them since the big Zuiker Family Reunion at Oglebay Resort in July 2006. Dad cooked up a huge pot of his famous meatball sauce last night, and we ate on the patio, the humid air reminding me of the meals we shared around our table in Liro Village when dad and Dot came to visit us in Vanuatu. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: South Pacific AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/26/2008 11:09:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the "NYTimes yesterday":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/05/25/opinion/25rich.html?ex=1369454400&en=d43927f13cad75cc&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink, and on "NPR today":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90829865, Frank Rich explains how a revival of the musical "South Pacific":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/South_Pacific_%28musical%29 is touching a nerve in present-day America. As I read Rich, I remembered Chief Louis on Paama Island (in Vanuatu, formerly the New Hebrides, setting of the musical South Pacific) handing me a dollar bill overprinted with the letters HAWAII. He'd been given the bill when he was part of the Melanesian work crew that during WWII helped the Americans build the runway at Bauer Field on the island of Efate. Cheif Louis didn't remember ever meeting James Michener, author of the book that inspired the musical, but he did remember Frank, a GI from Florida, and he wondered if Erin and I knew him. We didn't , of course, but we mentioned that we had relatives who had served in the Pacific during the war. Today was Memorial Day here in the U.S. With my dad and Dot visiting from Hawaii, we spent the day outside, enjoying the freedom to pick strawberries, cook jam, nap in the hammocks, swim at the Farm and listen to Big Fat Gap singing bluegrass tunes. I'm off to bed now, weary, and grateful for Chief Louis and Frank from Florida and uncles who shipped out and soldiers buried at home and abroad. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Spades and spears AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/18/2008 10:06:42 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the mail this week: an invitation from "Garden & Gun":http://www.gardenandgun.com/ magazine -- "21st Century Southern America" -- to become a subscriber. Made me chuckle, and remember the "Notting Hill":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0125439/ reference to Horse & Hound. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Erin Shaughnessy Zuiker, J.D., MPH AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin Shaughnessy Zuiker graduates from UNC Law My darling and amazing and intelligent Erin graduated from "UNC Law":http://www.law.unc.edu/ on Sunday, alphabetically the last one to get a diploma but the first and only doctor of jurisprudence for me. Congratulations, Erin. ----- -----


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: Coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats Erin! That is an impressive group of degrees. Now get out there and kick but for folks who need help. I’m sure they’ll be in good hands. :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    YEA! Now what are you going to do with all that free time?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats Erin!!!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jim@jiparker.com URL: http://attentiongrab.com DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Way to go!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Yay! Congratulations. I never did the ceremony for my Ph.D., and I have always regretted it. I met her the day after she finished law school. If it’s like getting a Ph.D., I bet I met her in a REALLY good mood!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abby@proactivebusybody.com URL: http://proactivebusybody.com DATE: 05/13/2008 10:52:23 PM -----
-------- TITLE: There are so many colors in the rainbow AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/07/2008 09:58:32 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Media CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On NPR's All Things Considered today, a very long feature, "Two Families Grapple with Sons' Gender Preferences":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=90247842, compared the stories of two young boys whose families struggle to help through gender identity crises. It's a fascinating story, but even though NPR labels it a Health & Science story, the lack of any research evidence, or even the perspective of an endocrinologist or pediatrician, is glaring. Bravo to NPR for devoting so much time to a sensitive, but watch and listen as the debate about what's missing from the story goes full throttle over the next few days. (The title for this post is a reference to a "Harry Chapin song":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flowers_Are_Red.) ----- -----

    I agree with you that it shouldn’t have been labeled “Health and Science.” To me, it was a story more about what a set of parents did to help their child rather than a study of this phenomenon. (Actually, I didn’t hear one of the families’ stories. Just the one who started medicating their child.) I wonder what I would do, faced with a child in so much pain, and given the opportunity to relieve it.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: toddf9@gmail.com URL: DATE: 05/07/2008 09:58:32 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Box of hungry AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/27/2008 10:06:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A family in my neighborhood sometimes sends their daughter to our home to borrow milk, or to use the phone, or to ask help in some other way. Sometimes, we ask the girl to stay for dinner, or to go with us to the park. Recently, we heard, the family was on even tougher times. Other neighbors, friends of ours, have mentioned that they receive a weekly box of produce, part of a community-supported farm subscription. (Here's "an example CSA":http://www.harlands-creek-farm.com/durhamfarmersmarketcsa.html for Durham.) A box of food is a welcome gift, I know. When my family lived in the Virgin Islands, we befriended a priest from the other end of the island. Whenever this man visited our home, he would bring a box filled with frozen meat, cans of vegetables, fresh bread and other nourishment for our family of five active sons. I didn't consider our family poor, but I recognized the importance of the extra food. That's one of the reasons that the reading at my wedding was from the Gospel of Matthew: "For I was hungry and you fed me." While I consider putting together a box of food for the neighbors, Erin, for her part, has begun to visit a man on death row. "I was in jail and you visited me." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Recipe reading AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/23/2008 08:52:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A pile of cooking magazines -- "Gourmet":http://www.gourmet.com/, "Bon Appetit":http://www.epicurious.com/bonappetit/ and "Saveur":http://www.saveur.com/ -- offered just the diversion I needed last night. The May 2008 issue of Gourmet includes a recipe for strawberry leather, so you know what I'll be doing Saturday morning after the family returns from berry picking at "Jean's Berry Patch":http://www.ncfarmfresh.com/FarmMarketDisplay.asp?FarmID=1326. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Simplify your weekly shopping trip AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/20/2008 10:25:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

What I'm reading: Simplify your weekly shopping trip

----- ----- -------- TITLE: Farm tour report AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/20/2008 10:04:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ----- -----

    I feel like I’m watching a video of Erin and I—the resemblance is amazing!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 04/20/2008 10:04:54 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Thanks for the call the other day. I cannot believe how big the girls are now. Check out lifewithekr.blogspot.com for some videos of Eva. Not a high level blog but it keeps the family and friends in the loop.

    Hope to talk with you soon.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jblainerogers@gmail.com URL: DATE: 04/20/2008 10:04:54 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Sauna seclusion AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/16/2008 10:45:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sitting in the sauna tonight, enjoying the solitude and the sweat, I was reminded of how, during college, I would steal away to the heated wood-paneled cell for a momentary retreat from all the work and studying and newspaper editing on my plate. Again today more than one person mentioned how busy I must be with so many work responsibilities and personal projects (I've just confirmed that Duke Divinity School will host the North Carolina Faith Blogging Conference on November 10). "You need a day off," Erin said to me tonight. Great idea, and with birthdays the next two days (Anna, Erin), I think I'll take Friday to celebrate with my family. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 95 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/15/2008 07:11:08 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: *Grandpa Louis Sisco* celebrated his 95th birthday on Saturday in DeKalb, Illinois. He's a great example for how daily exercise and activity can help you live longer. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sixth sense AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/15/2008 06:58:29 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I fell asleep at 9pm last night, a rarity for me. Just before I woke up this morning, I was dreaming that I was in a salon to get my hair cut -- after first getting fitted for a suit -- but the stylist was so slow, chatting with her coworkers the whole time. As she readied the chair for my shampoo, I felt a huge pain in my back. That woke me, and as I entered consciousness, I had the realization that in that dream, I was really being readied for my funeral. Yikes. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: How do I use this thing? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/12/2008 02:44:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm just getting around to viewing Erin's many pictures and videos from her trip to Tanzania last December. Here's a funny clip of a baby elephant learning to use its trunk: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Dying to blog more AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/07/2008 10:51:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This NYTimes "article about bloggers who die":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/04/06/technology/06sweat.html naturally got lots of bloggers working their fingers to death to pick apart the article's fallacy -- bloggers who blog a lot are starting to die! "See Bora's post.":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2008/04/moms_dont_let_your_daughters_m.php, for one. "danah boyd":http://www.zephoria.org/thoughts/archives/2008/04/06/does_worklife_b.html, among others, rightly sees the real issue: bloggers, like anyone else, can get out of balance. Which is what I've been thinking about lately. I've not been blogging much these last months -- my job at Duke Medicine has been heating up, occupying more and more of my time and waking mind. I love my work. Today, our "newly redesigned Inside Duke Medicine newspaper":http://www.scribd.com/doc/2449738/Inside-Duke-Medicine-April-2008-Vol-17-No-4 hit the newsstands around the medical center. Soon we'll be launching a new daily news website. My family and my health are still my top priorities, and as I've begun to obsess about work, I've had less and less time to work on my other projects. My challenge this summer is to figure out the best work/life/blogging/projects balance. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 38 Special AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've got the XM Radio Eighties Channel programmed on the car radio, and, naturally, .38 Special came on as I was driving to the gym this evening. Tonight's my last night at 37, and I'm feeling special indeed: I'm healthy, happily married, dad to two darling daughters, gainfully employed and surrounded by friends and family. Thank you one and all, but especially beautiful Erin and Mom and Dad. ----- -----

    Happy birthday!!!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Happy Birthday, Anton!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Happy Birthday Brother!!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: niuhuskie2001@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I’ll add my voice to the chorus…. happy birthday!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brian@yesh.com URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    You are indeed special at 38. Happy Birthday. All my love.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: erin@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Happy Birthday Anton. I would also include Anna and Malia.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: hrm350694@gmail.com URL: DATE: 04/01/2008 11:04:02 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Presidential AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/22/2008 11:14:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin and the girls are playing in the snow in Cleveland this weekend, and I've stayed in sunny North Carolina to attend to a long to-do list, which today included yard work, the final report for the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com and a trip to Chapel Hill for tea at "3CUPS":http://3cups.net and comics at Chapel Hill Comics. For five years I've been visiting that comics store to buy *Y-The Last Man* by "Brian K. Vaughan":http://bkv.tv. Back in -1992- 2002, Brian sent me black-and-white copies of the story that was shaping up to be the first issue of his award-winning series. I wrote a story for Northern Ohio Live about Brian, who'd been a summer intern for me when I was editor there in 1997. Tonight, after a conference call to plan the twentieth anniversary reunion of my high school class (DeKalb High School Class of 1988), I took a trip to the local supermarket, where I discovered "Presidente":http://www.presidente.com.do/filtro.aspx beer, the cold brew I enjoyed during my visit to the Dominican Republic in 2004. Tomorrow, a hike at "Eno River State Park":http://www.ncparks.gov/Visit/parks/enri/main.php, dinner with my mother, and more to-do list projects. ----- -----

    Ruby and I are HUGE fans of the graphic novel Y-The Last Man. Is the final book out? We really want to know what happens. :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 03/22/2008 11:14:18 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Wait. You know Brian K. Vaughan? Cool :) I’m not only about half-way through, but so far I love Y.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.org DATE: 03/22/2008 11:14:18 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Jackson, Brian’s family are close friends of Erin’s family. That one summer, Erin’s sister Mary and Brian were interns at the magazine.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 03/22/2008 11:14:18 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Quoteboard AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/22/2008 10:52:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Anna to Erin, who had the NYTimes in hand: "I didn't know you read the newspaper, mom. I thought only Dad read the newspaper." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Backyard musings AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/20/2008 06:03:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A gorgeous day in Durham, and after a treadmill-like schedule, I've come home to sit on the porch with a pint of Guinness, a handful of Hershey kisses, and an Apple laptop. The girls are hiking around in their tap shoes, feeding the neighbor's dogs and planning for their Easter weekend in Cleveland. Erin, she's in the house trying on different outfits, and each time I glance in my breath gets taken away by her beauty. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: TGIF AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/14/2008 05:46:48 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A very good week at work, with good progress on the redesign of our newspaper and development of a new website. Today, very good sandwiches for lunch at "Toast paninoteca":http://toast-fivepoints.com/ with my friend, Stephan Liozu. Now at home, about to open the "OLPC XO":http://www.laptop.org/ computer I ordered in December. ----- -----

    Harpers June 07 p19. I’ll send it.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 03/14/2008 05:46:48 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Science blogging conference to change names AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/09/2008 09:17:50 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This afternoon, "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock and I met for coffee at Open Eye Cafe, the place where we previously hatched the idea to create the annual "North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com. We've spent the last month reviewing the feedback from the January event, and thinking about what we'd do differently a third time around. It's time to start planning. We've already "announced":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2008/02/get_your_calendars.php the date and location: *January 16-18, 2009 at the Sigma Xi Center*. The next piece to announce is that we'll be broadening the conference to more than just science blogging. Our goal all along has been to promote the public understanding of science through online tools, so we're renaming the conference to *ScienceOnline'09* and inviting more of the Triangle's science communicators to help us build a 3-day event to help scientists, educators, students, journalists, bloggers and others share their strategies. Over the next few weeks, we'll launch a new site at *scienceonline09.com* and create a new (more stable) wiki for the planning of this conference. Stay tuned ... ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Musical notes AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2008 11:34:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the car this afternoon, listening to "this review of the band Vampire Weekend":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=87942938 on NPR, I smiled at this line: bq. They make sense of how the thrill you get from seeing your crush walk to class is just about the same as discovering an obscure band that changes everything you thought about music. I still get that thrill when I see my college crush -- she's sitting across the room right now. ----- -----

    they’re playing on SNL tomorrow night, FYI. Amy Adams (Junebug, Enchanted) is the host. should be a good one.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: shadle@katzenfisch.com URL: DATE: 03/06/2008 11:34:18 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Carolina on my mind AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 03/06/2008 11:07:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My former professor, *Deb Aikat*, invited me back to campus today to speak to his j-school class about blogs and other current issues in online communication. I found myself in a basement room of Carroll Hall, the very place where the Tar Heel Bloggers got its start in 2003. That group of UNC bloggers was the precursor to 'BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org. As class was ending, news was breaking across campus that the student body president, "Eve Carson":http://universityrelations.unc.edu/alert/carson/, was the young woman found murdered the day before in a quiet, residential part of Chapel Hill. ADD: Dave DeWitt of WUNC put together this "report about the campus response":http://wunc.org/programs/news/archive/NDD030708CARSON_OBIT.mp3/view to Carson's murder. It's a beautiful and fitting tribute to Carson, who seems to have been simply angelic. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Zip your Twitter AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/28/2008 10:56:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last night, just before I checked out, I sat down on the bed to post the last couple of items. In between those entries, I updated my "Twitter":http://twitter.com/mistersugar account to answer a friend's question about which camera we purchased for Erin's trip to Africa (we've yet to post her great photos, but a few are on our "Flickr":http://flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157603538343815/ space). A few minutes later, though, I noticed my Twitter account was getting updated by someone else -- the first post was just one generic word, but the next post was somewhat obscene (about a body part). Twitter, if you don't know, is a microblogging tool for sharing short updates with a cohort of friends, or followers. As with my blogging and other online communication, I've been very careful about choosing my words and activities to reflect a professional, humble identity. So, the obscenity was completely out of character for what I'd post. Not to mention, *someone else was posting on my account!* I quickly deleted the obscenity, and then the Twitter service went down. Turns out I "wasn't the only user to experience posts not their own":http://blog.twitter.com/2008/02/timeline-oddity-update.html. This was a very serious error, in my opinion -- the Twitter mistake, albeit small and quickly remedied, jeopardized my carefully managed identity. Which is to say, if you have an online identity, you've got to be vigilant in how others are seeing it and mediating it. Anyway, just as I needed a couple of months to retreat and recuperate after the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com last year, I've been slowly getting my priorities balanced and projects realigned. Today, I decided I needed to step away from Twitter, and a few other activities and projects, so that my family, my home, my health and my work can get the attention they need. ----- -----

    I am still resisting twitter. We’ll see how much longer I can survive before it becomes so necessary that I will have to start….

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 02/28/2008 10:56:20 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Snake oil AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/27/2008 10:50:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At lunch on Ninth Street today -- Vietnamese soup at Banh's -- I looked out to see a truck pull up and park across the street. The back of the truck was an enclosed room pimped out as a beach scene to advertise a "campaign by the oil giant BP":http://alittlebettergetaway.com to get people to buy more gas with chances to win a tropical vacation. As I sipped my soup, I watched as a young woman and young man inside the truck stripped down to bathing suits and frolicked as if they were at the ocean. "What, BP needs to remind people to buy gas?" my friend, Mark Schreiner, wondered, understanding right away that the high price of gas might be getting to Americans, finally. As it happens, "Exxon Mobil":http://www.exxon.com was before the U.S. Supreme Court today to argue that punitive charges of $2.5 billion -- just three weeks of Exxon's current net profits -- is way, way too much a penalty for its negligence in the Exxon Valdez oil spill. (Listen to "this report by NPR's Nina Totenberg":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=48308288.) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Expectations AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/27/2008 10:28:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The other night at dinner, talking about the new car with the girls, I told Anna we'd bought it for her to have when she turns 16. She wasn't much interested in the vehicle, but instead said she expected to get her own cell phone -- "That's what grown-ups have," she said. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: New wheels AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/26/2008 10:21:15 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Here's a picture of our new vehicle, a shiny black Nissan Sentra SL, purchased last night from Michael Jordan Nissan in Durham:
The new car
I drove the Sentra to work today, and tested the Bluetooth capability -- for hands-free talking on my cell phone -- and the XM satellite radio -- Eighties music, baby! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Predictably, Ariely book gets noticed AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/26/2008 09:59:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Back in September, "I had the privilege":http://mistersugar.com/article/4427/sharing-time-with-writers of sitting (with "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com) in the office of "Dan Ariely":http://www.fuqua.duke.edu/faculty/alpha/ariely.htm, a professor at Duke's Fuqua School of Business and author of the just-released book "Predictably Irrational":http://www.predictablyirrational.com/. Ariely had lent me an advanced reader's copy of his book, and I found it fascinating. This week, his book gets some great press from "The New Yorker (Elizabether Kolbert)":http://www.newyorker.com/arts/critics/books/2008/02/25/080225crbo_books_kolbert and "The New York Times (John Tierney)":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/26/science/26tier.html?_r=1&ref=science&oref=slogin. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sign of the ties (sic) AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/26/2008 10:14:53 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've been at Duke Medicine for six months now, which means I've worn a tie nearly every work day since I started, a distinct departure from the Hawaiian shirts I used to wear at UNC-CH. (Dad, my birthday is coming up: send a new Aloha shirt, please, and I'll find an occasion to wear it.) This morning, Malia surprised me by asking to pick out a tie to go with my purple shirt. She chose the pink-and-purple polka dotted tie. Anna, meanwhile, was worried that buttoning the top button was going to make the shirt too tight around my neck. ----- -----

    Ditch the ties. Wear more Hawaiian shirts. Mad Gringo says so.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: greg@madgringo.com URL: http://www.madgringo.com DATE: 02/26/2008 10:14:53 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Clarice (Martcie) Zuiker 1911-2008 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/19/2008 08:00:23 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My paternal grandmother died in the night. l will miss her tremendously -- she was a special woman and a humble matriarch. "Listen to her story":http://mistersugar.com/sounds/index.php?id=9 (an interview conducted by my cousin, Jeff Nolan). Tributes will be posted to "Zuiker Chronicles Online":http://zuiker.com. ----- -----

    Anton, I am so sorry to have missed the announcement of this sad news. Our family sends our condolences to you and the entire Zuiker family. It sounds as though she has left you with very warm memories.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: krollfamily@gmail.com URL: DATE: 02/19/2008 08:00:23 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Tragedy in my home town AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/14/2008 11:02:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: ----- BODY: DeKalb being the place I grew up (and walked the streets; see previous post), I'm saddened by tonight's "news of a gunman killing students":http://www.nytimes.com/2008/02/15/us/15shoot.html?ex=1360731600&en=60003de30285eb03&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink at "Northern Illinois University":http://www.niu.edu. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Walkathon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/12/2008 11:07:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After more than six months of near inactivity, I've rejoined "Fitness World":http://www.fitnessworldnc.com/ (through the "Duke Fitness Club":http://hr.duke.edu/fitness/), although I still haven't figured out just when I'm going to get to the gym. Maybe in the evenings, like last night. For my first visit, I started out with a brisk walk on the treadmill. Trying hard to ignore the flat-screen television showing the kennel-club prancing, I daydreamed about all the walking I used to do in my hometown, DeKalb, Illinois, where I regularly walked up Second or Third streets the few miles from the high school to my grandparents' apartment. I may be headed back to DeKalb in April to celebrate Grandpa Sisco's 95th birthday. He's lived so long partly because he took a walk each morning for more than 70 years. I'll be going back to the gym tomorrow, you can be sure. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: On our way to a third AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/10/2008 02:44:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm just back from "Weaver Street Market":http://www.weaverstreetmarket.coop/ in Carrboro -Chapel Hill-, where "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock and I started planning for the third "science blogging":http://scienceblogging.com event. We hope to announce a date and location early this week, and soon thereafter details about how the conference will grow and change to reflect some fantastic ideas and suggestions from this year's participants. [Apologies to family and friends who may have mistook the headline on this post for news of another kind.] ----- -----

    Correction… Weaver Street Market is in Carrboro. :)

    This detail is really important to folks in the western part of the Triangle. WSM is Carrboro’s creative center. It represents the forward thinking of MANY creative people over decades of hard work.

    Much respect to you Anton. :) Happy to hear there will be a third NCSBC.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 02/10/2008 02:44:01 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Well, there are two Weaver Street Markets: one in Carrboro and one in Chapel Hill. Actually, we were in the Carrboro one today and the Chapel Hill one last time. We like to spread the love …..

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock DATE: 02/10/2008 02:44:01 PM ----- COMMENT:

    You’re both right – I’m used to meeting Bora at WSM Southern Village, but they don’t sell my favorite cinnamon rolls, so this time we met at the Carrboro location. My apologies to my co-op (I’ve been a member since 2001).

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 02/10/2008 02:44:01 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Coffee Interns AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/06/2008 08:31:44 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "Duke Today":http://duke.edu/today, there's "this story":http://news.duke.edu/2008/02/coffee.html about two students who made this fun video: ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Guest blogger: Mark Schreiner AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/03/2008 08:19:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Over the coming days, *Mark Schreiner*, my friend and Duke Medicine colleague -- and fellow former John Carroll Blue Streak -- will begin to blog here at mistersugar.com. I'm delighted to welcome him and eager to read his entries. Mark is a veteran news reporter and an inveterate storyteller, and I learn something from him every time I chat with him. I hope you'll enjoy his storyblogging here. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sprinting away, pulled back AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 02/02/2008 04:42:16 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've been a cell-phone carrier since 2000, when I signed up with "Sprint":http://www.sprint.com/index.html. Through the years, I've paid thousands of dollars for my mobile phone number, although I've rarely used even half of the minutes on my account. Still, I've been happy with Sprint. With my new job, I now carry a "Verizon":http://verizon.com Blackberry phone, and I use my Sprint phone even less. I had been reluctant to part with my long-time mobile number (919.225.0969), especially since most of my calls on that phone are from my family, all of whom are Sprint customers, and mobile-to-mobile minutes are nominally free. Recently I've started to use "Grand Central":http://www.grandcentral.com/, a Google service that gives me one phone number to ring all my others. So if you call 919.724.4220, Grand Central rings my Sprint cell, my Verizon cell, my home phone and my office phone. Presumably, I'll pick up one of those and not miss your call. And, Grand Central gives me the ability to record phone calls and immediately get an mp3 file. But with an economy on the brink -- my thoughts on the lunacy of the Bush-Congress stimulation package later -- I decided to save the money on my little-used mobile phone. This morning I called Sprint to cancel my account; I barely had the words out of my mouth when Marcella was offering me a deal I couldn't refuse: keep my phone active, share minutes with Erin's line, pay less than than we've ever paid, and stay a loyal customer. Agreed. To recap: if you need, or want, to contact me, use any of the following: * Personal mobile: 919.225.0969 * Work desk phone for Duke-related business: 919.668.7837 * Work mobile for Duke-related business: 919.451.7661 * Grand Central number for paging me at any of the above: 919.724.4220 * Contact me by email, which I check on on my Blackberry: zuiker[AT]gmail{dot}com ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Waikiki Afternoon AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/30/2008 07:17:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

via Flickr

I miss this place something terrible.

----- ----- -------- TITLE: Thank them! The people behind @scienceblogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/27/2008 09:22:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom ----- BODY: The second annual "North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com, held January 18 and 19, 2008, was an unqualified success. Find a "comprehensive listing of links":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Blog+and+Media+Coverage (compiled by the tireless "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock) to the many blog entries and video clips posted before, during and after the conference to learn about the conversations and networking at the conference. Like our inaugural event, this second conference was a collective activity -- many, many organizations, companies and individuals pitched in, in ways large and small, to keep this conference free, attendees fed and the discussion lively. Please join us in thanking them. (We thanked the sponsors of the first event "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4259/conference-thank-you.) *Leaders* As before, "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock is the inspiration for the event, and his daily cheerleading in spreading the word was simply awesome. "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com was behind the scenes all year, providing us important support and technical advice. "Wayne Sutton":http://wayne-sutton.com, newly appointed to his job as online community organizer for "NBC-17":http://www.wncn.com, crisscrossed the Triangle, all the while trying out every new online networking tool that came to his attention. Wayne and Brian streamed or recorded many of the conference sessions, broadening the audience of the conference. "Tola Oguntoyinbo":http://www.socialmediatoday.com/blog/babacom13/site/profile/ set up the "Conference Commons":http://sciencebogging.com/commons that aggregated blogs posts, Flickr pics and other content tagged scienceblogging.com. "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog was our institutional contact, offering "ibiblio.org":http://ibiblio.org support; with his help, UNC-CH "School of Journalism and Mass Communication":http://jomc.unc.edu once again provided a home base for our finances and accounting (by *Ken Hales*), and the UNC "Health Sciences Library":http://www.hsl.unc.edu/ allowed us the use of its fantastic computer lab for the "blogging skills":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/904845 session. *Donors* Even before our 2007 event was over, *Russ Campbell* of "Burroughs Wellcome Fund":http://www.bwfund.org was urging us to think bigger, and helping us win the funds to do so. The substantial grant from Burroughs Wellcome anchored the rest of our fundraising. "Roger Harris":http://www.junglephotos.com/wp/nature-photos, *Chris Brodie* and *Rosalind Reid* of "Sigma Xi":http://sigmaxi.org also pledged their support at the first conference, and that led to Sigma Xi offering its beautiful building for the event. Interim Executive Director *Linda Meadows* gave us a "nice welcome":http://blip.tv/file/616802 (and sent a touching congratulations note). *Meg Murphy* worked with us over many months to plan the best use of the space, and she calmly took in our mercurial program changes. "JMP Software":http://www.jmp.com, was another repeat sponsor and cash donor. New donors this years were the "North Carolina Biotechnology Center":http://ncbiotech.org, "The Hamner Institute for Health Sciences":http://www.thehamner.org/, "CrossRef":http://crossref.org/ and "WNCN NBC-17":http://www.wncn.com -- their generous gifts allowed us to guarantee an ample supply of coffee, good food throughout the day and travel grants to many of our discussion leaders. *Science lab tours* This year, we introduced pre-conference activities including visits to local science labs. *Karl Bates* at "Duke University":http://www.duke.edu (he's just unveiled a cool new site, "Research at Duke":http://research.duke.edu/) helped to line up three popular "lab tours":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Lab+Tours. (Full disclosure: Duke is my employer.) *Erin Knight* at the "Hamner Institutes":http://www.thehamner.org/, *Cyndy Yu Robinson* of the EPA, and *Roy Campbell* at the "NC Museum of Natural Sciences":http://www.naturalsciences.org/ also set up and facilitated tours of labs at their organizations. *Grab bag of science swag* Once again, we worked hard to put together a grab bag filled with useful, interesting and fun resources -- not just stuff, but science-related materials that could inform conference attendees and then be shared with the libraries, schools and newsrooms in the communities of the attendees. The "Museum of Life and Science":http://www.ncmls.org/ (cool new website) and "American Association for the Advancement of Science":http://aaas.org, at the instigation of *Troy Livingston*, VP for innovation & learning, stepped up to provide awesome canvas tote bags. And into those bags we stuffed materials from "ACD Labs":http://acdlabs.com/, "American Scientist":http://americanscientist.org/, "The HMS Beagle Project":http://www.thebeagleproject.com/, "Campbell-Kibler Associates":http://www.campbell-kibler.com/, "Columbia University Press":http://www.columbia.edu/cu/cup/, "Coral Reef Alliance":http://www.coralreefalliance.org/, "Discover":http://discovermagazine.com/, "HarperCollins":http://www.harpercollins.com/, "Michigan State University":http://www.msu.edu/, "MSNBC":http://www.msnbc.com, "National Evolutionary Synthesis Center":http://www.nescent.org/index.php, "National Geographic Society":http://nationalgeographic.com, "Nature":http://nature.com, "OpenHelix":http://openhelix.com/, "Oregon Public Broadcasting":http://www.opb.org/, "PLoS-One":http://www.plosone.org/home.action, "Project Exploration":http://www.projectexploration.org/, "Science News":http://sciencenews.org, "Scienceblogs":http://scienceblogs.com, "Scientific American":http://www.sciam.com/, "Seed Publishing":http://seedmagazine.com/, "Shifting Baselines Ocean Media Project":http://www.shiftingbaselines.org/op_ed/index.html, "The Scientist":http://www.the-scientist.com/, "Wired":http://www.wired.com/ and "Wired Science":http://www.pbs.org/kcet/wiredscience/. *Discussion Leaders* The conference offered 14 sessions in all, and each session was led by one or more individuals. See the "program page":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Conference+Program+08 to see who did what. Special thanks to *Adnaan Wasey* and Abel Pharmboy for very ably filling in as discussion moderators at the last moment. The rest: Dr.Hemai Parthasarathy, Janet Stemwedel, Adnaan Wasey, Kevin Zelnio, Karen James, Rick MacPherson, Peter Etnoyer, Jason Robertshaw, Vedran Vucic, Suzanne Franks, Karen Ventii, Patricia B. Campbell, ScienceWoman , David Warlick, Martin Rundkvist, Shelley Batts, Sarah Wallace, Anne-Marie Hodge, Anna Kushnir, Brian Switek, Xan Gregg, Jean-Claude Bradley, Tara Smith, Becky Oskin, Dave Munger, Chris Mooney, Jennifer Jacquet, Sheril Kirshenbaum and Jennifer Ouellette. *Volunteers* My mother, *Cheryl Zuiker*, wanted to see me in action, so she volunteered to work the registration table at the conference. "Elle Cayabyab Gitlin":http://arstechnica.com and "Abel Pharmboy":http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig also helped greet people, and "Brian Switek":http://scienceblogs.com/laelaps/ and "Martin Rundkvist":http://scienceblogs.com/aardvarchaeology/ passed out T-shirts and grab bags. "Rob Zelt":http://www.robzelt.com/blog/ picked up the morning pastries and got them to the hall on time. Rob and Wayne and Brian and Bora assisted during the Friday skills session. All those heavy grab bags of science swag? It took a crew to pack those: Ernie Hood, John Rees, Wayne Sutton, Bora Zivkovic, Andrea Novicki, Troy Livingston, Brian Russell and Jonathan Tarr. *The Food* Meals were catered or ordered from "Fetzko Coffees":http://www.fetzkocoffees.com/ (Brian and "Ruby":http://lotusmedia.org suggested this), "Weaver Street Market":http://www.weaverstreetmarket.coop/, "Saladelia Cafe":http://www.saladelia.com/home/index.aspx, "Locopops":http://ilovelocopops.com/ and *Bullocks Barbecue*. The Friday dinner was held at "Town Hall Grill":http://www.townhall-restaurant.com/. So, thanks again to all the individuals and organizations supporting our free, public-understanding-of-science conference. If I've missed you, please tell me so that I can acknowledge your role in making this event so successful. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Weekend food blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/27/2008 01:24:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On "Weekend America":http://weekendamerica.publicradio.org/ yesterday, dispatches from North Carolina, including an "anti-BBQ tour of Chapel Hill":http://weekendamerica.publicradio.org/display/web/2008/01/25/n0obbq/ led by food writer Kelly Alexander. She took WA host Bill Radke to "3CUPS":http://3cups.net, "Sandwhich":http://sandwhich.biz, "Lantern":http://www.lanternrestaurant.com and "Locopops":http://www.ilovelocopops.com/ (some of our favorite places here in the Triangle). When the segment was done, I looked across the car to Erin and smiled a "glad-we-decided-to-stay":http://mistersugar.com/article/4454/choosing-our-home smile. Later, we met up with friends *Robinson and Elizabeth Everett*; we left the children with other law-school friends, and the four of us headed out for dinner, a bottle of "Darioush":http://www.darioush.com/index.html Russian River Valley Cardonnay 2005 firmly in Elizabeth's grasp. We first stopped at "Rue Cler":http://www.ruecler-durham.com/, where the wait was about an hour (Rue Cler takes no reservations). A few blocks away, "Piedmont":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/ was also booked up (Piedmont now uses a blog to post the daily menu). Then, "Tosca":http://www.bluecorn-tosca.com/tr_home.asp, to find it taken over by a wedding reception. So, back to Rue Cler for us, where we stood at the bar for an hour and a half, enjoying the delicious Darioush chardonnay, which Elizabeth had saved since a Thanksgiving visit to that California winery. Finally seated, we rushed right into the Rue Cler prix fixe menu, at $25 per person a nice value. My meal: roasted beets, peppered chevre and mixed greens; pork-belly and apple tartlet; and crusty sea scallops on a bed of mushrooms. All in all, a tasty meal, even though the scallop dish was surprisingly spicy. Then, we treated the babysitter-friends to dessert and wine at "Six Plates":http://sixplates.blogspot.com/. The Sant Evasio Brachetto D'Aqui 2005 was a sweet, fizzy red wine that, had I not been the driver for the night, could have seduced my palate. Today, I'll cook comfort food, back to my Sunday regular: hearty lentil soup. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Next projects AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/20/2008 10:42:07 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom CATEGORY: Family ----- BODY: The second annual "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com went quite well yesterday -- see the "blog and media coverage page":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Blog+and+Media+Coverage for links to all the online discussion about our off-line event. I'll post more notes and wrap-up observations here over the next few days, and we'll start to think about what happens next for scienceblogging.com. A few of us are also beginning to plan a faith blogging conference. And there's always "StoryBlogging":http://storyblogging.org waiting for attention. But before all that, I have to turn my focus to family and work: there are school decisions to make, home buying to consider, Erin to get to the law-school finishing line (and then there's the bar exam!), mother to get employed, a return trip to Vanuatu to plan, and some big projects at Duke to launch. ----- -----

    I found out about this too late, just today, but please put me on the list for next year-I really hate that I missed it!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: info@johnstoncountyarts.org URL: http://blogs.wncn.info/jcarts DATE: 01/20/2008 10:42:07 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Don’t forget you have your wife to murder and Guilder to frame for it—You’re swamped!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 01/20/2008 10:42:07 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Mary, if I don’t have my health, I don’t have anything.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 01/20/2008 10:42:07 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Countdown to second science blogging conference AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/11/2008 09:15:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Less than a week now to the second annual "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com. Here are a couple of recent interviews I've given about the event: * At ncbiotech.org, an "exchange about science blogging":http://www.ncbiotech.org/news_and_events/bt_catalyst/in_focus/20080110_zuiker.html. * At pjnet.org, a "video of me":http://pjnet.org/post/1616/ talking about creating an online science news magazine. ----- -----

    stray florida science blogger looking for like-minded community. can i PLEASE come to the conference??

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: spacebirds@gmail.com URL: DATE: 01/11/2008 09:15:16 PM ----- COMMENT:

    You’re in. See you next Saturday.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 01/11/2008 09:15:16 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Finally found the Health Science Library. Thanks for the blogging skills session.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cephalopodcast@gmail.com URL: http://cephalopodcast.com DATE: 01/11/2008 09:15:16 PM -----
-------- TITLE: What's around the corner? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/11/2008 03:20:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Malia last week and soon after her fourth birthday: bq.. Me: "Malia, why did you wake up in the middle of the night and crawl into our bed?" Malia: "Because I was frightened." Erin: "What are you frightened of?" Malia: "Of four years old." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 2007 busy. 2008 doubly. AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 01/05/2008 10:57:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Erin's back from Tanzania, and we'll be posting her pictures to my Flickr account tomorrow. Perhaps she'll finally guest blog here after seven years! Expect light blogging for the next couple of weeks, as the second annual "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com is less than two weeks away and my Duke Medicine job is quite busy. 2007 was an a very successful year for me and my family. I hope to post an annual report here by the end of the month. This year promises to be just as much of a ride as last, with Erin finishing law school and starting her Raleigh firm job, a possible return trip to Vanuatu in August, and lots of blogging events and writing projects. ----- -----

    I think it’s a great idea to have Erin guest blog. I’d love to hear all about her trip! A trip back to Vanuatu would be amazing – any chance you’d combine it with a trip to see us in Indonesia???!!!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: britonb@hotmail.com URL: http://indoprism.blogspot.com DATE: 01/05/2008 10:57:00 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Another job opp AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/23/2007 09:11:49 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My friend "John Ettorre":http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com alerted me to "this cool job":http://jobs.cyberjournalist.net/a/jbb/job-details/13647 bq.. Do you live and breathe the blogosphere and practically live on the Net? Do you have a track record of creating and growing online communities? Do you have a talent for engaging and retaining readers online? Do you excel in communications and technology? Knight Foundation seeks an Online Community Manager based in our Miami, Florida office, reporting to the VP of Communications. p. Just as "Bora got a job as online community manager":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/05/its_official_1.php and "Wayne Suttton":http://www.wayne-sutton.com/ got his new gig with "WNCN NBC-17":http://wncn.com, maybe we can help another of our "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org friends get this job. ----- -----

    Yes, things are happening for the local blogging community, I hope this blogtogether friend can get this job too.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: wsutton@wncn.com URL: http://blogs.wncn.info/wsutton/ DATE: 12/23/2007 09:11:49 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Science blogging conference AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/11/2007 09:24:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: sciencebloggingcom CATEGORY: ----- BODY: !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/146.png(scienceblogging.com)!:http://scienceblogging.com Get details about the NC Science Blogging Conference at "http://scienceblogging.com":http://scienceblogging.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Watts Grocery AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/11/2007 09:01:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last month, I met my college friend, *Stephan Liozu*, for lunch at Durham's hot new restaurant, "Watts Grocery":http://www.wattsgrocery.com/. (Another college friend, *Mark Schreiner*, works with me at Duke.) This afternoon, I found myself in the original Watts Street Grocery, a standalone wooden building at the corner of Watts and Englewood streets. That's where a writer friend, "Mary-Russell Roberson":http://www.google.com/search?q=mary-russell%20roberson works with three other women -- a landscape designer, a women's center founder and another writer -- in a fantastic example of co-working. Each December, they invite their friends, family and clients (and the owner of the building, the lady who used to operate the grocery store with her husband) to a tea party. This was a nice connection to Durham's history, and I'm glad to be learning about the city that we "continue to call home":http://mistersugar.com/article/4454/choosing-our-home. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 16, 848, 6:12:31 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/09/2007 08:28:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: He did it again -- my father ran his 16th marathon, "wearing number 848 and finishing the Honolulu Marathon today in six hours and 12 minutes":http://results.active.com/pages/oneResult.jsp?pID=29920506&rsID=50629. Way to go, Dad! ("Read my essay our Dad's and my first marathon.":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=729) ----- ----- -------- TITLE: First thanks to NCSBC '08 sponsors AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/08/2007 03:05:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Our inaugural "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com was such a great success that we're doing it again next month - and if you haven't signed up, don't delay another moment. We're nearing our 175th registrant, and will only have room for 200. Register "here":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Register. And don't miss "Bora's daily mention of the Who's Who":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/sbcnc08/ of our expected participants. The conference is free, by the way. Like our first event, this second is a collective activity. Many sponsors are returning, and others have joined in donating funds and resources for the conference. I thanked the people and groups of the first one "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/4259/conference-thank-you. Now I want to get a jumpstart on thanking our sponsors and volunteers for round two. As before, "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock is the inspiration for the event, and his daily cheerleading in spreading the word is simply awesome. "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog and "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com continue to provide important support and advice. If you heard mention of the conference on WUNC this week, that's Paul's doing. The UNC-CH "School of Journalism and Mass Communication":http://jomc.unc.edu is once again providing a home base for our finances and accounting. Even before our first event was over, *Russ Campbell* of "Burroughs Wellcome Fund":http://www.bwfund.org was urging us to think bigger, and giving us the funds to do so. Thank you BWFund! *Chris Brodie* and *Rosalind Reid* of "Sigma Xi":http://sigmaxi.org also pledged their support, and that led to Sigma Xi offering their beautiful building as the host for next month's event. *Karl Bates* at "Duke University":http://www.duke.edu (he's soon to unveil a new online research magazine; see "here":http://news.duke.edu/) has helped to line up some interesting "lab tours":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Lab+Tours for the first day of the conference. (Full disclosure: Duke is my employer.) *Erin Knight* at the "Hamner Institutes":http://www.thehamner.org/ also helped with a lab tour. "JMP Software":http://www.jmp.com, is another repeat sponsor and cash donor. The "North Carolina Biotechnology Center":http://ncbiotech.org is giving us a grant to support the conference. "CrossRef":http://crossref.org/ and "WNCN NBC-17":http://www.wncn.com are making cash donations, too. These generous donations will allow us to guarantee an ample supply of coffee, good food throughout the day (including vegetarian options) and travel grants to many of our discussion leaders. These organizations have pledged publications or resources for the "grab bag of science swag": * "Museum of Life and Science":http://www.ncmls.org/ (cool new website) and "American Association for the Advancement of Science":http://aaas.org are providing awesome tote bags * "Public Library of Science":http://plos.org (Bora's employer) are providing the T-shirts. * "Seed Magazine":http://www.ncmls.org/ * "The Scientist":http://www.the-scientist.com/ * "National Geographic":http://nationalgeographic.com * "Nature":http://nature.com * "Wired":http://www.wired.com/wired/ * and more to come. So, thanks to all the individuals and organizations supporting our free, public-understanding-of-science conference. It's stacking up to be a fabulous event. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: 3 minutes with Joe AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/08/2007 01:41:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The future congressman, *Joe Cimperman* -- he announced this week that he's running for the Ohio 10th District against the incumbent, Dennis Kucinich -- just called for a quick chat, a follow-up to our breakfast in Tremont last month. Always nice to talk to my friend. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A chocolate crisis? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 12/06/2007 10:25:24 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

Bora alerts us to a serious crisis: "Workers in the Ivory Coast, producer of about 40% of world cocoa, are on strike.

As you know, I'm a chocolate addict. Send chocolate. ----- -----

    the new New Yorker has a cartoon that reminded me of you. The chef is in front of a judge pleading “not guilty, the menu clearly says Death by Chocolate!”

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: smallsafterall@gmail.com URL: http://www.davidbarger.net DATE: 12/06/2007 10:25:24 AM ----- COMMENT:

    fyi: Wired founder starts chocolate company

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 12/06/2007 10:25:24 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Justin, I’m about to prepare my Trader Joe’s chocolate croissants, purchased at your inspiration. Thanks for your awesome post about the baker who makes these.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 12/06/2007 10:25:24 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Interestingly, I first (and only) learned about the crisis from my friend who showed up for an internship in Cote d’Ivoire the day before the shit hit fan, apparently! http://www.insolenttomato.com/?p=811

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ruby@lotusmedia.org URL: http://lotusmedia.org DATE: 12/06/2007 10:25:24 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Stories about blue AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/30/2007 06:01:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On my way to work this morning, right about the time I was unwittingly passing the ribbon cutting for the new "Trader Joe's":http://www.traderjoes.com/ store in Chapel Hill, I was listening to "NPR":http://npr.org on "WUNC":http://www.wunc.org, and "StoryCorps":http://www.storycorps.net/ was bringing me the voice of "Charles Jackson":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=16748176 talking about Alzheimer's disease in his mother and now in him. That poignant and personal story charged me up for the day, and in between article editing and internal communicating, I stitched a few more ideas to the "oral history + blogging project":http://storyblogging.org that I've been mulling for too long now. One idea I'd like to explore is an oral history booth at Duke Medicine, a way to capture the life stories and health experiences of the patients, staff and visitors. Meanwhile, I spoke with "Wayne Sutton":http://wayne-sutton.com/ about starting to plan for a faith blogging conference sometime next year (once the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com is done). This will be an event to gather people together to explore how blogs can be used to communicate faith and how that faith can build community. By next March and in time for the "Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism":http://www.nieman.harvard.edu/events/conferences/narrative2008/index.html (an event I've attended three times before), I hope to relaunch Storyblogging, maybe even have an organization formed to support the effort. At the end of the day, my mother joined me at "Six Plates":http://sixplates.blogspot.com/, a new Durham wine bar just opening -- we walked up as the big sign dangled above the front door, the cherry picker holding it in place while a couple of guys fastened it to the wall. Co-owner Matthew Beason beckoned us in. I ordered the "cinnamon-crusted scallop with pumpkin risotto and tender braised arugula":http://sixplates.blogspot.com/2007/11/it-is-time.html and a glass of Gurrutxaga Bizkaiko Txakolina, and as I enjoyed the delicious food and wine, I told my mom about my passion for storytelling and community building. *Sherry Honeycutt* and *Luke Everett*, backers of Six Plates and law-school classmates of Erin, joined us at our table. Sherry and Luke attended the "food blogging dinner with Michael Ruhlman":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner back in September, and we talked about food and cooking, and how I grew up with mom not being able to smell or taste. She didn't use spices, for sure, but she did make a mean batch of chocolate chip cookies. We also talked about blue jeans. Sherry had read an article about pricey designer jeans, so we shared stories about our first pair of jeans. I looked to my mother sitting next to me and recalled how she'd taken me to Farm and Fleet in DeKalb at the start of my freshman year of high school. "You need pants," she said, and I was able to get two pairs of Lee jeans. When we returned home and told Erin about the swank new wine bar and our conversation with her friends, she had an immediate answer to the jeans questions: "Eighth grade, purple flowered jeans from The Limited." ----- -----

    John Shadle introduced me to your blog and your storyblogging project. So interesting! My husband and I are doing a similar thing – www.heartlandinnovators.org. We have all of this great info from these orgs (sometimes in audio), and their stories are so great (although it’s hard to tell them). Also, I like the faith blogging idea. My husband (and I sometimes) blog about the intersection between faith and politics at revolutioninjesusland.org. Thanks for your work! It’s great!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ewiley@email.unc.edu URL: http://heartlandinnovators.org DATE: 11/30/2007 06:01:52 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Elizabeth, thanks for visiting. I recently corresponded with your husband and asked if he’d be a speaker at our faith blogging conference. Hope we get to meet soon.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 11/30/2007 06:01:52 PM -----
-------- TITLE: I'd love this job AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/30/2007 01:36:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: If I weren't committed to Durham and weren't having so much fun in my new Duke job, I'd go after this opportunity: "Global Voices Seeks Mr./Ms. Right":http://www.ethanzuckerman.com/blog/2007/11/28/global-voices-seeks-mrms-right/. ----- -----

    Ha! I knew it. When I saw that the other day I thought that you are the perfect person for the job, but they came too late to the party … ;-)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: Coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 11/30/2007 01:36:02 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Interesting events by interesting friends AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/29/2007 10:04:50 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: After work today, I swung by the house to pick up Erin. We drove to Carrboro to attend a bloggers meetup, organized by "Ruby Sinreich":http://lotusmedia.org and "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com, with "U.S. Representative Brad Miller":http://www.bradmiller.org/. Very cool to chat with the congressman, and see friends "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock, "Jackson":http://jacksonfox.com and "bc":http://oliveridley.org/. From Milltown, Erin and I drove to Chapel Hill's Meadowmont neighborhood to attend the "Giving Party":http://givingparty.wordpress.com/, an event organized by our friend "Perri Kersh":http://neatfreak.wordpress.com/, who teamed up with others to create a way for us to give gifts to worthy organizations (we made donations to the "Family Violence Prevention Center of Orange County":http://fvpcoc.org/ and to a Siler City teacher through "Donor's Choose":http://www.donorschoose.org/homepage/main.html). And, yesterday, two-time travel writer of the year "Tom Haines":http://www.boston.com/travel/blog/ left a "thoughtful and kind comment":http://mistersugar.com/article/4458/saturday-in-the-city on this blog. Thank you, friends, for inspiring me to a life of giving. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Saturday in the city AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/24/2007 11:01:34 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "Lucky's Cafe":http://www.luckyscafe.com/ in Tremont this morning to meet my friend Joe, Morgan the owner stopped by the table and remarked to me, "For someone who lives in North Carolina, "you're in here a lot":http://mistersugar.com/article/4391/tremont-tips." On my way out, Joe introduced me to the filmmakers of the mockumentary "Filmic Achievement":http://www.filmicachievement.com/. In the Aloha State, there's an expression -- "Lucky you live Hawaii". Today, I'm feeling fortunate to have friends and family in Cleveland, even if I've chosen to continue making North Carolina my home. ----- -----

    Sent this to you in an email yesterday, then realized in the spirit of blogging, it ought to be put here… (Apologies for the length.)

    Hey Anton,

    Drifting at the desk at work today between projects and ended up on mistersugar.com catching up on a month’s worth of posts. Fun to read about Lucky’s Cafe and more about the big news for you and Erin to stay put in Durham and have it all work out. Good stuff. Very happy for you both, and the girls, too, of course.

    More though, wanted to comment on the overall effect of reading your blog. I clicked my way to your essay about grandfathers and grace in writing and thought of a French film I saw recently. A big market film starring Daniel Auteil called My Best Friend, which despite a kind of comedy light style actually had some profound moments and message. He befriends a cab driver who is a very complex guy but who treats people with respect and kindness. Repeats the old mantra: Smile and the world smiles with you. You do much more than that on your blog, of course, but the point is it is putting to action the idea of a connected life embracing shared humanity.

    Now I think of my train commute this morning and the tension. One woman before exit – continuing an exchange that must have happened while boarding a few stops before me, more than an hour before – leaned over a woman and said: “Hey, you talk like that to the wrong person one of these times and you’re going to find yourself hurt. F—- off!” They were both about 50. Then walking out of North Station some young guy coming toward me with friends is saying “No f——— way. Uh-uh. No f——— way.” And I’m thinking how easy it is to give over to isolation and anger and how cool it is when we can break through that and focus on the good. The substance. The exchange. And you do that in heaps online everyday, so thanks for sharing. Not to mention that you make me hungry and thirsty with all this talk of 3 Cups and 6 Plates and such… :)


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: thomaswhaines@gmail.com URL: DATE: 11/24/2007 11:01:34 AM ----- COMMENT:

    Anton, thanks for introducing me to Lucky’s this summer. Good sandwich, strong coffee.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 11/24/2007 11:01:34 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Intent on conversing with Jack AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/23/2007 07:51:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: Blogging ----- BODY: I was back in Tremont tonight, this time to meet my friend "Jack":http://designinglife.com/ "Ricchiuto":http://www.jackzen.com/ at "SouthSide":http://www.southsidecleveland.com/. As I expected, the conversation was enjoyable and enlightening -- Jack is always full of wonderful observations about organizations, communities and leaders. I'll be watching with interest as Jack's new project, "An Intentional Model":http://www.intentionalmodel.com/ (a collaboration with "George Nemeth":http://www.brewedfreshdaily.com/), get's going. Their "model":http://www.intentionalmodel.com/index.php?n=Main.TheModel captures some of the key steps that "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock and I took to planning the "North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com. Toward the end of our meetup -- my pint of "Great Lakes Brewery Dortmunder Gold":http://www.greatlakesbrewing.com/beerProfile.php?beer_id=00000001 drained -- we chatted about the etiquette of online conversation, and how that would make for an interesting conference. Put that to the model, and we may be gathering in Cleveland some time next year. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Choosing our home AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: It's Thanksgiving Day, and I'm at my in-laws home in Cleveland, where I was in 2000 for the turkey meal on "my first day of blogging":http://mistersugar.com/article/63/thanksgiving-day-im-in-my. Within months of that first post, Erin and I had decided to move south to pursue graduate school at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. We've earned masters degrees, welcomed Malia to the world, met new friends and made a home in Durham. With Erin's law school almost finished, it was time to make a decision -- do we stay or do we return to Cleveland? One night last week, with the girls in bed, we flopped onto the sofa with our laptops and magazines, but we happened upon "The Kennedy Center Mark Twain Prize for American Humor":http://www.kennedy-center.org/programs/specialevents/marktwain/ on PBS, and for the next two hours Erin and my mother and I laughed and laughed and laughed as *Billy Crystal* was honored for his hilarious career. "That was a pleasant surprise," said Erin when the award ceremony was finished. After all that guffawing, I felt great. After four weeks of fighting a cold and cough and the stress of a new job, I was finally feeling strong. At work, I had hired two talented writers to work on my team: Kelly Malcom is a Duke grad and science writer, and Mark Schreiner I've known since we were editors together on The Carroll News at John Carroll University. Their presence is already a huge relief, and I'm looking forward to working with them. Over the past six months, Erin and I had spent countless hours discussing our career options and living possibilities -- go or stay? was the subtext of each night's talk as we debated whether to go back to Cleveland, where Erin had a job offer with a law firm and I had plans for a writing project and where we have family and a network of friends, or to stay in North Carolina, where we have another network of friends and colleagues and bloggers, and a home we love. Earlier this year, with funding questions at my previous job, I started looking for other work, and the Duke Medicine opportunity came knocking, with an offer to lead an online communications effort like I've been talking up for the last few years. Soon after I started at Duke, though, Erin got her Cleveland offer. What to do? Our evening discussions got more difficult, intense, exhausting. We both wanted the best opportunity for the other, and the best setting for our daughters. Each night of our talks, as the answer seemed harder to come by, I felt ever deeper in love with Erin and committed to our life together. Early on, I told her I was confident she could find a good job wherever she looked. In the end, we decided Erin would decline the Cleveland job, I'd stay in my Duke job, and we'd go with the flow. And, sure enough, within two weeks Erin had another great offer from a law firm - in Raleigh. This she accepted. And so North Carolina will remain home. But what to do about Erin's childhood dream of living in Africa? We compromised on this: Erin's going to Zanzibar next month for a law class and a safari. ----- -----

    I know this could not have been an easy decision, but as new friends, db and I are glad you’ll stay in Durham. Congrats to Erin on her new job and here’s to a fantastic month in Zanzibar!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats on working together to to find the best solution for your whole family. I’m thrilled to hear that you will be staying with us here in NC – and going to Africa!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ruby@lotusmedia.org URL: http://lotusmedia.org DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM ----- COMMENT:

    We are all so lucky ya’ll decided to stay. :)

    I’ll find the proper words to speak sometime soon. I’m having a hard time expressing my joy in writting just now…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM ----- COMMENT:

    You and Erin are so fortunate to have one another. I know the emotional trauma of making job decisions for the best of the relationship and family so I can being to approach understanding what you two have gone through.

    Selfish me is ecstatic you are staying in NC. You have no idea how blessed we are to have you in our community. But I’m glad you are getting some time in Cleveland for the holiday.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations! Now that you’re both in the private sector we’ll miss you here in public service – but if we know you, you’ll stay connected.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 11/22/2007 10:49:50 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Grandpa at 94 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/18/2007 02:12:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Word came last night that my maternal grandfather, *Louis Sisco*, age 94, was taken to the hospital short of breath and with a racing heart. My mother flew to Chicago today to be at his bedside. If you're a regular reader of this blog, you know that Grandpa Sisco has been an important person in my life -- from him I've learned to be punctual, generous and loyal, and to share life with my family (see my "N&O blogging ethics essay":http://mistersugar.com/article/4214/when-blogging-face-the-conversation to understand why I'm a blogger because of him). UPDATE 11/19: I talked with Grandpa today. He sounded tired, but upbeat, ready to get home for Thanksgiving. The doc says his ticker is clogged a bit. Mom read him my N&O essay. "That made my day," Grandpa said to me in a second phone call. ----- -----

    Wonderful to read this piece again, and to be reminded how all writers begin as readers. And if it’s as a reader of someone we know and love, so much the better.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: john.ettorre@gmail.com URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 11/18/2007 02:12:06 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Much love to Grandpa Sisco. My nana is 91 and I learned more from her than I ever did from my parents, I think.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ldrake@pobox.com URL: http://ldsm-soccer-mom.blogspot.com DATE: 11/18/2007 02:12:06 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Day of remembering AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/15/2007 11:07:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At work today, I started the morning in a meeting devoted to role playing a campus crisis with casualties. Later in the day, an email from a friend told me of the passing of a former colleague. In the evening, Erin and I attended a group session about death and grieving. My first memory of death was in third or fourth grade. Each morning I'd get to school early -- my mother was a teacher at the school -- and I'd go to the cafeteria to help the lunch lady's son, a first grader, put the chairs down for the day. One weekend that winter, the boy and his father went fishing on the reservoir and never returned. Their bodies turned up a few weeks later. Over the years, I've attended the funerals of classmates and teachers, the parents of friends and a few relatives. I started my first website, Zuiker Chronicles Online, just before my grandfather, "Frank the Beachcomber":http://zuiker.com/chronicles/frank.html, died. At that funeral, in Chicago, my friend "John Ettorre":http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com/ drove up from Cleveland to show his respect. In this country, said the grieving session leader tonight, we give people three days to deal with death. In Vanuatu, death gets a year: in the first few days, the village gathers at the deceased person's hut and wails for an hour or so. A church service, a simple coffin or body wrapped in pandanus mats, a hole in the ground. "Male family members don't shave for 30 days":http://mistersugar.com/article/3668/denver-nuggets, at which point there's a village feast. At a year, another feast, and the grieving is over. But the missing remains. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: busy airport AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2007 09:51:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

via Flickr

As I've posted before, since I was a kid I've loved to watch airplanes at the airport. Great photoshopped image here.

----- ----- -------- TITLE: TTHT on water AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2007 09:07:09 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Well, darn, if my blog drought isn't metaphor enough for this water drought in North Carolina (and throughout the Southeast). My apologies to those of you who responded to the "call for entries":http://mistersugar.com/article/4439/the-tar-heel-tavern-114-blogging-on-water for "The Tar Heel Tavern":http://thetarheeltavern.blogspot.com/. Here's what rained my way: In anticipation of his move to Raleigh, "Michael Manfre":http://manfre.net/article/715/watering-raleigh wrote about his inflatable sailboat and his brother's landscapting business suffering from a lack of business. "Rachel Pollack":http://labricoleuse.livejournal.com/40063.html tells how she's brought water conservation efforts to the costume facility of the PlayMakers Repertory Company. "Michele Le Doeuff":http://chaos.wordpress.com/2007/10/17/h20/ stopped using cloth diapers on her baby, and hears ugly rumors at the playground. Pictures tell the story -- Valerie posts "photos of a drying Lake Jordan":http://we-love-durham.com/news/2007/10/01/drought-still/. "Lenore Ramm":http://eronel.blogspot.com/2007/10/grass-wastes-water-and-energy.html rants about water used to green our grass. He's running for mayor of Greensboro, so "Billy the Blogging Poet":http://www.musecrafters.com/bloggingpoet/2633/Billy+For+Mayor%3A+Saving+Water+In+Greensboro.html tells us how he'll make the city conserve water. "Olive Ridley":http://oliveridley.org/2007/10/25/the-oceans-cannot-absorb-infinite-amounts-of-co2/ looks into the fact that the oceans aren't absorbing CO2 at the rate expected, and how that's contributing to climate change. More pictures from "Steve Sbraccia":http://blogs.wncn.info/betweenthelines/2007/10/17/waters-it-going-to-take/ and an argument for conservation efforts that go beyond what the governor has requested. At "New Raleigh":http://www.newraleigh.com/articles/archive/boylan-heights-taps-secret-water-supply/, a picture of water a wasting sparks discussions in the comments. I'm sure there have been other blog posts about the drought -- and since there's no end in sight, this is a topic we should keep writing about. Who wants to host the next edition of TTHT? ----- -----

    Posts about water aren’t really limited to the drought : not even just talking shortage. I started a list

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: opit@operamail.com URL: http://opit.wordpress.com/ DATE: 11/11/2007 09:07:09 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I had to look up who Michele Le Doeuff was…I feel like an honor hath been bestowed upon me..

    Thanks mr sugar! u rule

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jbucket3@yewess.us URL: http://chaos.wordpress.com DATE: 11/11/2007 09:07:09 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Ruhlman's Elements on sale AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2007 12:43:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cookbooks CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Michael Ruhlman's":http://blog.ruhlman.com new book, "The Elements of Cooking: Translating the Chef's Craft for Every Kitchen":http://www.amazon.com/Elements-Cooking-Translating-Chefs-Kitchen/dp/0743299787 is now available at your local bookstore. I'm headed this afternoon to the Bulls Head Bookshop at UNC to get my copy. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Blogger meetup in a wine shop AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/11/2007 12:39:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: This coming Wednesday, Nov 14th, the *Durham Bloggers Meetup* will take place at the tasting table in the back of the new wine shop, "Wine Authorities":http://wineauthorities.com/home.php starting at 6pm. Join us -- buy a card when you come in, and then choose which wine(s) you want to taste, sip or quaff while we talk about blogging, Durham's renaissance and more. ----- -----

    Sounds very cool. I will try to make this event myself. I can’t resist a good wine tasting event :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: admin@rtpclassifieds.com URL: http://www.rtpclassifieds.com DATE: 11/11/2007 12:39:35 PM -----
-------- TITLE: The downside of microblogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/10/2007 09:45:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I posted to "Twitter":http://twitter.com/mistersugar that I'd been to a neighborhood park in Chapel Hill this morning, and was politely cajoled for not calling on my friends who live in the area. Next time, I'll drop in and say hi, or I'll twitter from the park, and Ruby and Brian can invite me (and Malia) up the hill. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Run-on sentence blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/06/2007 11:50:05 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's late again, I've frittered away the evening hours preparing pomegranate seeds for homemade grenadine syrup and watching the first few episodes of "Aliens in America":http://www.cwtv.com/shows/aliens-in-america, and I'm already tired from staying out late last night to catch a fantastic show by Josh Ritter, so I'll have to put off once again an oft-promised post about the long road and many discussions that have led to Erin declining a good law-firm job in Cleveland so I can stay in North Carolina to accomplish my goals at Duke Medicine. Whew. Tomorrow, then. ----- -----

    anton, I am glad to hear we are going to still be neighbors!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: smallsafterall@gmail.com URL: http://smallsafterall.blogspot.com DATE: 11/06/2007 11:50:05 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Deep in the belly AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/05/2007 07:01:44 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm off to "Cat's Cradle":http://catscradle.com to listen to "Josh Ritter":http://joshritter.com/, who I first "heard at NPR.org":http://www.npr.org/blogs/bryantpark/2007/11/josh_ritter_shades_of_blonde_o.html, which has a "cool new music site":http://www.npr.org/nprmusic/index.html. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: I will be back AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 11/01/2007 10:49:59 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Expect a long post tomorrow about my impressions after two months on the job, our decisions about Erin's career directions, multitasking and multivitamins. ----- -----

    This must be some post :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 11/01/2007 10:49:59 PM ----- COMMENT:

    The suspense is killing me. :-O

    Seriously, I have been thinking about y’all and your dilemma a lot. I’m sure you will find a way to make it work.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ruby@lotusmedia.org URL: http://lotusmedia.org DATE: 11/01/2007 10:49:59 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Anton is always worth waiting for.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: john.ettorre@gmail.com URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 11/01/2007 10:49:59 PM ----- COMMENT:

    We’ll wait…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 11/01/2007 10:49:59 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Talkin' up tasty birds AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/21/2007 09:41:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In the November issue of "Saveur":http://lanternrestaurant.com/, Chapel Hill's "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com/ chef *Andrea Reusing* shows up in an article about "heritage chickens":http://www.heritagefoodsusa.com that are supposed to be juicier, tastier and, well, better. And in the November issue of Fast Company, heritage turkeys -- also promoted by the "American Livestock Breeds Conservancy":http://www.albc-usa.org/ -- are featured in "Old Bird, New Feathers":http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/120/old-bird-new-feathers.html. I hope to get a heritage turkey for our Thanksgiving meal next month. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Saturday morning at ConvergeSouth AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/20/2007 10:38:49 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I had a rough night, and tossed and turned with headache and nausea from 6pm to 7am. Guess the stress and lack of sleep and minor bug caught up with me last night. But now I'm back at "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com listening to speakers about social networking, "BlogHer":http://blogher.com/ and more. Later, I'l lead a discussion about "storyblogging":http://storyblogging.org/talks, then help my mom pack up a U-Haul truck for her move to Durham (she'll be with us for a few months). ----- -----

    hey anton,
    ae tells me your storyblogging panel was great and that I really missed a good discussion. Also, glad to hear your mom is coming in and that you guys are staying. I got worried when I was walking the dogs and saw the U-Haul

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: smallsafterall@gmail.com URL: http://smallsafterall.blogspot.com DATE: 10/20/2007 10:38:49 AM -----
-------- TITLE: ConvergeSouth third time around AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/19/2007 09:10:22 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm back in Greensboro for the "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com conference for the third year in a row, and ready for two full days of great presentations, discussions and introductions to interesting, talented people. Sue is welcoming us, and just announced she's already got foundation pledges to fund ConvergeSouth next year, and that event will be held in conjunction with a "BlogHer":http://www.blogher.org/ roadshow. "Ben Hwang":http://www.seancoon.org/2006/10/convergesouth_interview_co-founder_ben_hwang.html short introduction of "Jason Calacanis":http://calacanis.com, and now Jason and "Ed Cone":http://edcone.com up front for a conversation. [notes from Calacanis/Cone to come] Now, "Will Bunch":http://www.attytood.com/ and "Dan Conover":http://www.conovermedia.blogspot.com/ talking about journalists taking to blogging, and how newspapers move to online. "Ruby":http://lotusmedia.org "Sinreich":http://orangepolitics.org and "Chris":http://www.afro-netizen.com/ "Rabb":http://www.chrisrabb.com/ for a panel titled "We agree to disagree." ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Knowing you in life AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/18/2007 10:48:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Last week, Megan Lambert died in Chapel Hill, and I've been so damn busy at work and at home that I haven't yet observed her passing ("obituary is here":http://www.chapelhillnews.com/obits/story/10355.html). Megan was the mother of a child at my daughter's day care, and on the mornings that I was dropping off Malia, Megan and Tristan were usually a few steps ahead of us. Our greetings were brief, usually as we passed in the tight hall between the restroom where the kids wash their hands and the classroom where they spend their days learning and playing, and I was hurrying out of the center and on my way to work. Until Megan was struck down in her youth, I did not know her name. I did not take the time to know her story, and here I am on the eve of the ConvergeSouth conference where I am to lead a session on storyblogging and oral history and memoir writing. Sobering, to be faced with my inadequate connection to a human being so close, and now gone. Megan Lambert, I'm sorry. May your soul rest in peace. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Science Blogging Conference uptick AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/16/2007 07:17:25 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We're about three months away from the second annual "North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com, and we're nearing "100 registrants" :http://mistersugar.wufoo.com/reports/science-blogging-08/. Don't delay in getting yourself onto that list. It's going to be a great event. For a preview, catch "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock at "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com/schedule/friday.php this Friday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Times three AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/15/2007 07:50:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The "word is out":http://www.bullcityrising.com/2007/10/h-s-six-plates-.html and their shingle is up: *6 Plates* will be a wine bar and tapas restaurant near Duke. Luke Everett and Sherry Honeycutt, who both attended the "food blogging dinner":http://mistersugar.com/article/4425/blogging-about-the-food-blogging-dinner last month -- and who attend UNC Law with Erin -- are partners in the restaurant. I'm sure I'm to become a regular here. Then it will be tea at "3CUPS":http://3cups.net and wine at 6 Plates, and if I'm lucky, I'll have nine lives to enjoy it all. ----- -----

    So, let’s have the next MeetUp there!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 10/15/2007 07:50:35 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Hi Anton! Thanks for the mention. We’re working mightily to get things up and going as soon as possible, and looking forward to welcoming the food blogging community soon thereafter. -Sherry

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: srhoneycu@yahoo.com URL: DATE: 10/15/2007 07:50:35 PM -----
-------- TITLE: The Tar Heel Tavern #114: Blogging on water AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/13/2007 01:32:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's been nearly six months since "The Tar Heel Tavern":http://thetarheeltavern.blogspot.com/ blog carnival presented a round-up of blog posts on a theme[1]. Time to get it started again. *Let's reconvene the Tavern for a special edition dedicated to raising awareness about the severe drought here in North Carolina.* I'll host it here at mistersugar.com, and we'll keep the submission period open for two weeks so we can encourage bloggers at next weekend's "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com to participate. How can you contribute? Write an entry about water, rain, lakes, water conservation, drought, North Carolina development policy or other related topic, post it to your own blog, and send a message with your entry's permalink to zuiker+TTHT@gmail.com by 6pm on Friday, October 26, 2007. I'll post the Tavern roundup that night. fn1. "Read this":http://sciencepolitics.blogspot.com/2005/10/convergesouth-blog-carnivals.html to learn more about blog carnivals. ----- -----

    The last TTHT was #110, I believe.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 10/13/2007 01:32:51 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Did we not get enough submissions for the Tavern to go up? (Or real life may have intervened, so no big deal, just wondering.)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ladybee@gmail.com URL: http://labricoleuse.livejournal.com DATE: 10/13/2007 01:32:51 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Blogging101 updates needed AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/11/2007 08:56:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Soon as "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com/index.php is done (I'm participating in two sessions), I'll look to updating the "Blogging101":http://www.unc.edu/~zuiker/blogging101/ resource. Look for a post or wiki page soon so you can help me improve that. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: SCONC AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/11/2007 08:35:14 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The "Science Communicators of North Carolina":http://www.sconc.org/ group has a website, and a slew of activities this fall. With SCONC, the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com, the Chapel Hill-based hyperactive efforts of "Bora":http://scienceblogs.com/clock to build "PLoS One":http://www.plosone.org/home.action and to publish "The Open Laboratory":http://www.lulu.com/content/631016 anthology, the a new Duke research site and my own percolating "Triangle Science Times":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/1060982 project, this region is sizzling with the science. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Beck Tench AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/11/2007 08:21:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Duke CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At Duke today, I encountered the very talented and creative "Beck Tench":http://becktench.com/, web director for the "Duke Pratt School of Engineering":http://www.pratt.duke.edu/. Just check out "this claimid page"::http://claimid.com/beck! ----- -----

    What a great name too!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 10/11/2007 08:21:57 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Beer tasting in the torrid zone AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/06/2007 10:51:11 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: Readings ----- BODY: It's been six years since I last attended the "World Beer Festival":http://www.allaboutbeer.com/wbf/home.html in Durham (my 2001 post is "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/268/erin-and-i-have-been), so it was time again to descend into the threadbare Durham Athletic Park with a couple of my neighbors and a thirst for good brews. I tasted a dozen beers (and stopped there, since I was the driver for the day), and especially enjoyed the "Grimbergen":http://www.scottish-newcastle.com/snplc/brands/interbrands/grimbergen/ double -- which I learned about in a tasting session led by beer blogger "Lew Bryson":http://lewbryson.blogspot.com/ -- and "Shipyard":http://www.shipyard.com/ Sea Dog Blueberry Ale. Later, back home, the kids in bed and the kitchen cleaned, I showered, wrapped myself in a lavalava and sprawled on the bed under the fan to finish Alex Frater's fantastic paean to the tropics, Tales from the Torrid Zone. (See "my earlier post":http://mistersugar.com/article/4301/torrid-tales-from-alex about my delight in finding my name in the book.) In Tales, Alex mentions drinking cold Vanuatu "Tusker":http://www.news.vu/en/news/national/842.shtml beer at Tasso's guest house at Lamen Bay on Epi, the next island over from Paama. Somehow, some way, my world beer tasting next year will be there. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: This is Durham AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/05/2007 09:17:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: You here because of "Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2007/10/on-going-where-.html? Welcome, then, and have a look around. The "About":http://mistersugar.com/about page has a collection of facts and links, including why my nickname is mistersugar, why a pig is my mascot, where I've traveled and what it is I do to feed my family. ----- -----

    What a great blog post (or should I say testimonial?) from Michael. You deserve it. I’m just returning from a week’s abstinence from work and blog reading. So nice to slowly absorb all that I missed. Also came back to discover the book you sent and all the ultra-kind notes from everyone involved in Ruhlman’s visit. Thanks for keeping me involved, if only virtually.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 10/05/2007 09:17:49 PM -----
-------- TITLE: A dive into love AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/05/2007 08:54:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: Duke ----- BODY: Last week, Duke computer science professor "Rachael Brady":http://www.cs.duke.edu/people/faculty/?csid=0000943 introduced me to the "Duke Immersive Virtual Environment":http://vis.duke.edu/Facilities/visroom/visualization_room.html, a six-sided cube that can be transformed into make-believe worlds (think Star Trek Next Generation). Walk in, put on the 3D glasses, and the cube takes you places. Brady has agreed to host one of the pre-conference science lab tours the day before the "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com next January, and the five individuals who get to go to this tour are in for a treat. Brady will demonstrate a variety of experiments, including one that tests a person's expectations of pain using virtual snakes and spiders that bite your feet. Another demonstration displayed the image of a human brain, made from three dozen MRI scans of one individual's noggin. With a joystick in hand, I could rotate the brain, bring it closer, peer beneath and above and into it. As Brady clicked through the program, the gray matter peeled away and I was seeing the shapes of various regions of the inner brain. Aha, I murmured. "This helps me understand an article I wrote about deep brain stimulation," I told Brady (see "Probing Minds":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=678). I was amazed by the brain, amused by the spiders, and tickled by the virtual footbridge Brady had me walk off, sending me falling into a chasm. I thought of that again today as I walked through the "Duke Gardens":http://www.hr.duke.edu/dukegardens/, smelling pink ginger flowers and listening to my iPod. "I want somebody to share, share the rest of my life ..." came through the headphones, "Depeche Mode singing a story":http://www.lyricsfreak.com/d/depeche+mode/somebody_20039351.html that is one of two songs I most associate with my headlong falling in love with Erin in 1991 (the other: "Storybook Love":http://www.lyricsfreak.com/m/mark+knopfler/storybook+love_20089276.html), our first week of dates including a blissful walk and first kiss at the "Shaker Lakes":http://www.shakerlakes.org/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A family portrait AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/02/2007 09:45:21 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I found this picture of the family, drawn by Anna, taped to the refrigerator. Anna's picture of her family ----- -----

    I love this!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com/ DATE: 10/02/2007 09:45:21 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Lighting up the climate AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/01/2007 09:00:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On NPR this today, a fantastic piece by David Kestenbaum, "In Japan, Going Solar Costly Despite Market Surge":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=14031247 about the Japanese solar-panel company, "Kyocera":http://global.kyocera.com/index2.html. I listened with interest, because the solar panel that gave light to our Peace Corps house -- I wrote about that "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/3257/lights-out -- was a Kyocera model. It worked great, and I've been wanting to get a few panels for our Durham home. ----- -----

    As part of a series of home renovations, my parents are installing a series of solar panels on their roof. Apparantly, not only do they get a tax credit, but they can sell back any power they make as “green power” for more than regular power from Duke costs (though this last point undoes any environmental benefits the solar panels bring—just like selling blood isn’t the same as donating it). In the 1950s when my mom was growing up in Florida, all of the houses had solar panels to heat the water system. This was before the environmental movement took off—it was seen as practical, not progressive.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: williamjamesalexander@gmail.com URL: DATE: 10/01/2007 09:00:16 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Of drink and Durham AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 10/01/2007 05:18:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just stopped into Durham's new wine shop, "Wine Authorities":http://www.wineauthorities.com/, and got the welcome and intro talk from co-proprietor Seth Gross. Cool shop, and the cool wine dispenser at the back will make for a fun BlogTogether meetup space. Now I'm in "Sips Coffee & Tea":http://www.sipscoffeeandtea.com/, a few doors down from the wine shop, planning the three-month development of a new website for my job. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Duke's Zupon in the NYTimes Magazine AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/28/2007 08:15:47 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Bryan Zupon":http://zkitchen.net, a Duke undergrad and dorm-room chef, gets profiled in the NYTimes Magazine in "Too Cool for School":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/30/magazine/30food-t.html?ex=1348632000&en=22462ae462efdd23&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink. Bryan attended Michael Ruhlman's reading at The Regulator last Sunday, and met us for Locopops popsicles. Congrats to Bryan. ----- -----

    Sounded good until the recipe with Red Snapper. Being a responsible foodie requires being environment-friendly.
    Check your monterey card:

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: corey.reece@gmail.com URL: http://cc511.info/ DATE: 09/28/2007 08:15:47 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Sharing time with writers AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/25/2007 11:28:28 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: Last night's food blogging dinner was amazing, and it topped off a wonderful day spent touring Durham with Michael Ruhlman. We started the day with a visit to "Professor Dan Ariely":http://web.mit.edu/ariely/www/MIT/, who has recently returned to Duke's Fuqua School of Business. It was quickly apparent that Ariely was brilliant and an amazing educator, and both Michael and I were impressed with his ideas and stories and research results. You'll have to get his new book, "Predictably Irrational":http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/006135323X?ie=UTF8&tag=danari-20&linkCode=as2&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=006135323X, out in February, to learn what happened when he gave people beer laced with balsamic vinegar (you might try it yourself if you're in the mind for it). After Ariely, we walked through Duke's gorgeous campus, Michael leading the way with brief nods to his time as a student there in the 1980s and a tribute to the roasted chicken. Then, lunch at "Cafe Zen":http://www.cafezensushi.com/ in the American Tobacco Campus. Over sushi, we talked about writing and food and blogging and lessons we both have learned in the practice of journalism. "As I was packing to come here, I thought, why am I going?" he said to me, noting he's swamped with writing assignments and projects, the work that feeds his family. "And I thought, I'm going because Anton came to my "house":http://www.ruhlman.com/books/house.html and sat on my porch and asked nicely." After sushi, we walked over to the WUNC studio, and Michael talked with "Frank Stasio":http://wunc.org/tsot about his new book, "The Elements of Cooking":http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0743299787/ref=nosim/ruhlmancom. Listen the week of Thanksgiving to hear that interview. We split up, Michael working at his hotel and me back home. Later, dinnertime nearing, Erin and I drove out to novelist Reynolds Price's home to retrieve Michael, where he had had the fortune to spend an hour in the company of his mentor (House is dedicated to Reynolds). I felt bad spiriting Michael away from Reynolds, but also extremely fortunate that I'd gotten to spend a whole day -- and soon a delightful meal -- with a writer who means the world to me. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bora and Michael AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/25/2007 11:05:33 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Bora Zivkovic and Michael Ruhlman ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Blogging about the food blogging dinner AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/25/2007 10:47:36 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: So, last night's food blogging dinner with "Michael Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com and "Piedmont Restaurant":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/home.html. It was a blast, and all seemed to enjoy the balcony setting, special guest, food and wine, and conversation with old friends and new acquaintances. As I mentioned a few times during the evening, I'm grateful that Michael took time from his busy schedule to visit Durham, and grateful that chefs *Drew Brown* and *Andy Magowan* took an interest in the event, and delighted that 28 others agreed to pay $65 to share evening with us. (We also made sure to thank the excellent waitstaff at Piedmont). As I had hoped, Michael and Drew were able to tie together our themes of eating locally grown food -- the menu was mostly derived from a single pig raised by Eliza McLean of "Cane Creek Farm":http://www.canecreekfarm.us/, with cheeses from "Chapel Hill Creamery":http://www.southerncheese.com/Pages/chapelhill.html -- and supporting local chefs, as well as learning to talk and write about good food. What did we eat? Here's the menu: bq.. *First* housemade charcuterie and local cheeses: pate, lomo, rillette, head cheese, new moon, chevre camembert and accompaniments _Le Colture Fagher Prosecco_ *Second* white sweet potato puree with pancetta _Pierre Henri Chardonnay 2006_ *Third* arugula salad with cherry tomatoes, pickled oak-grown shiitakes and herbs *Fourth* pork loin with butternut squash polenta, braised chard and jus _La Gironnere Cotes do Bordeaux 2003_ *Fifth* scupernong granita with moscato d'asti, cookies p. It was delicious from first bite to last. My highlights included the pate and head cheese -- firsts for me -- and the intense iced grape juice. The pork was full of flavor, the soup smooth and topped with crunchy pork, and the wine just perfect. I hope the other guests will share their thoughts about the meal, either on their own blogs or here in the comments. And who were the lucky diners? "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com, "Ruby Sinreich":http://lotusmedia.org, "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock, "Melissa and Jeff King":http://blackwoodeats.blogspot.com/, "Anna Kushnir":http://www.sunday-night-dinner.blogspot.com/, Rob and Elizabeth Everett, Luke Everett and Sherry Honeycutt, Ross Grady and two friends (help me with their names, please), Erika and "Rob Zelt":http://robzelt.com/blog, "Dean McCord":http://varmintbites.com/, Alice Lin and Chris Lin (same last name, and to be married to each other next month), Meg Ryan O'Donnell, Mark and Morgan Lamphere, Jennifer Curry, Gary Gartner and his wife (help me with her name, please), Fleming and "Kirk Samuels":http://www.365cheeses.com/, Erin Zuiker, me and Michael Ruhlman. *Some tidbits picked up during the night:* Brian celebrated his birthday last night. Alice is a pediatric ophthalmologist who worked with Erin's brother, an eye surgeon in Cleveland. Ross's friend grew up in Berlin Heights, Ohio and knew Erin's Sandusky cousins. Dean is a lawyer who leads the cooking for a big summer dinner party for the summer associates who work at his firm. Luke and Sherry are soon to open a wine bar near Duke University. Jeff and Melissa are also getting married soon. Chef Drew worked at Thomas Keller's Bouchon in Las Vegas, and made his way back to Durham to open Piedmont with Chef Andy. "Lantern":http://lanternrestaurant.com/ chef Andrew Reusing (lauded in the Oct07 issue of Gourmet for her own use of local ingredients) was dining at Piedmont with her family, including a newborn son. "See pictures of the dinner.":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/sets/72157602153032180/ Turns out I didn't snap many food shots, mostly because I was savoring every bite and spoonful. If others took pictures, I'll link to their images. All in all, a perfect night ... well, when I find my checkbook, then I'll declare perfection. But from Piedmont and Michael and my fellow dinner guests, everything I expected. UPDATE: The food blogging event on other blogs: * Bora: "Foodblogging - the dinner last night":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/09/foodblogging_the_dinner_last_n.php * Kirk: "Chape Hill Creamery's New Moon":http://www.365cheeses.com/2007/09/150_chapel_hill_creamerys_new.html * Dean: "When Computer Geeks and Foodies Collide":http://varmintbites.wordpress.com/2007/09/26/when-computer-geeks-and-foodies-collide/ * Ross: "Piedmont (Durham) blog dinner":http://www.chowhound.com/topics/446014 * Anna: "On the Road to Improvement":http://sunday-night-dinner.blogspot.com/2007/10/on-road-to-improvement.html * Michael: "On Going Where You Don't Want To Go":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2007/10/on-going-where-.html ----- -----

    I wish I hadn’t had to work that night—I’d have gladly braved the ire of my husband and dropped the $65 to be at that dinner. I’m even more sad that Michael had to leave early the next morning, because I could easily have made the kaffe klatsch.

    Ah well, there’ll be other opportunities I hope.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: acidqueen5426@gmail.com URL: http://acidqueen.projectremains.com/ DATE: 09/25/2007 10:47:36 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Tell me your story AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/24/2007 11:47:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Storyblogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At lunch today with "Michael Ruhlman":http://blog.ruhlman.com, we talked about talking with people. I mentioned how much I learned from *Jack Ricchiuto*, author of (among other things) the "jack/zen":http://www.jackzen.com/2007/09/24/love-of-stories/ blog. Today Jack writes about how storytelling talents are diminishing: bq. I suspect that the literacy of story telling declines with the emergence of public media. I saw this with my grandfather, 19th century born Italian shepherd, whose story telling diminished in direct proportion to the amount of TV he watched. And earlier today, I got confirmation that I'm on the program for the third annual "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com/schedule/saturday.php conference, to talk about how blogs and new media can be used to collect and promote storytelling. Join me for that discussion, please, in the comments and at the conference. ----- -----

    I don’t own a TV, but I do spend an awful lot of time on the internet in one way or another—-a lot of it spent engaged in blogging-related activities, which in my opinion (and yours too I’m assuming) represents a renaissance of storytelling. Disclaimer: I’m also an optimist.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 09/24/2007 11:47:24 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Justin, your blogging offers some great stories.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 09/24/2007 11:47:24 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Anton, I cited you and your StoryBlogging effort in stimulating me to finally tell a story about the storytellers, Stetson Kennedy and Woody Guthrie, stemming from my visit to Kennedy’s place in Jan 2006. The repost and some further explanation is at my current blog, with links to the original post. Although I’m a scientist, this trip touched me deeply personally. Anyone can (and should) write a story about anything that moves them, regardless of the primary focus of their blog.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig DATE: 09/24/2007 11:47:24 PM ----- COMMENT:

    The URL hyperlink didn’t make it in my previous comment but here it is:


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig DATE: 09/24/2007 11:47:24 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Home from Piedmont AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/24/2007 11:30:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Food blogging dinner with Michael Ruhlman at Piedmont is done, was a wild success, the chefs prepared a delicious meal, and I couldn't be happier. Thank you to Michael, chefs Drew Brown and Andy Magowan, the courageous folk who attended, and my lovely wife, Erin. It's late now, so I'm off to bed. Full post on the event tomorrow. ----- -----

    And what a success it was! Thank you, Anton, for organizing such a festive and enjoyable event. If anyone didn’t have a great time last night, it’s your own damn fault! And I believe Michael made it back to his hotel safe and sound, which is no small task.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: dmccord@gmail.com URL: http://varmintbites.com DATE: 09/24/2007 11:30:46 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Anton, thank you so much for a wonderful, food-centric two days. It was great fun and I am so glad that I could be there!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anna_kushnir@hms.harvard.edu URL: http://www.sunday-night-dinner.blogspot.com DATE: 09/24/2007 11:30:46 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Michael Ruhlman in Durham AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/23/2007 10:44:58 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Michael arrived today, and gave a great reading at The Regulator, with about 35 people in the room. Front and center was "Reynolds Price":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reynolds_Price, who taught Michael when he was a student at Duke. During the Q&A session, someone asked whether blog writing might distract a writer of books from the task at hand. Price said that 95 percent of his writing is done by his unconscious mind, and that he needed to focus on writing his novel. Michael, referencing the chapter he'd just read that talked about how his experience in the restaurant kitchen taught him to multitask, suggested Price could write novels _and_ blog. "I _have_ written 38 books," Price replied, as we all had a good laugh at the give and take between teacher and student. Pretty awesome to witness the two distinguished writers together. Michael also talked about his forthcoming book, "The Elements of Cooking":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ruhlmancom/2007/09/jimmy-olsen-in-.html. Looks to be a perfect holiday gift for anyone you know who likes to cook. After the reading, a few of us (Michael, "Bryan Zupon":http://zkitchen.net/, "Drew Brown":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/home.html and "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com) walked over to "Locopops":http://www.ilovelocopops.com/ for a cold treat. Then, Michael, Brian and I went to "The Q Shack":http://www.theqshackoriginal.com/, it being the only bbq joint open on a Sunday night. Michael Ruhlman signs his books at The Regulator ----- -----

    Q-Shack and Locopops? Mmmm…. I think I should have ditched my homework and gone to the reading.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.org DATE: 09/23/2007 10:44:58 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Gourmet on eating local AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/22/2007 07:10:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just in time for our food blogging dinner with Michael Ruhlman and Piedmont Restaurant -- an event to celebrate eating local and learning to write about it -- "Gourmet: The Magazine of Good Living":http://www.epicurious.com/gourmet/features/restaurant_guide_2007 drops into my mailbox with its October Restaurant Issue. bq. If you've been waiting to experience the farm-to-fork movement, here's the place to start. After spending the past year eating our way from coast to coast, we've put together a list of the best places in America where true local flavor is always on the menu. I see North Carolina represented by Crook's Corner, Lantern, Inn at Fearrington and Guadalupe Cafe. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: In the N&O AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/22/2007 01:50:31 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: *Dan Barkin*, News & Observer deputy managing editor, gives a shout out to my and Bora's efforts to organize the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com. bq.. The Web 1.0 didn't work out so well for Anton Zuiker. No surprise there. The crash of the dot-coms at the end of the past decade took down a lot of companies, including the startup where Zuiker was working. Web 2.0 has been a different experience for him. Zuiker hasn't become a bazillionaire and has a rather traditional day job -- manager of internal communications at Duke's medical complex. But if that's all he did, you wouldn't be reading about him here. p. "Read the rest here.":http://www.newsobserver.com/news/story/712504.html Btw, "Paul Jones":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/blog and "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com are also very involved with the planning of the conference, as well as the BlogTogether group. Also, N&O food critic *Greg Cox* "posted about the food blogging events":http://blogs.newsobserver.com/epicurean/index.php?title=michael_ruhlman_in_town_this_weekend&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1 in his blog today. ----- -----

    Does that mean riff-raff need not attend? I was looking forward to another great event ;-)

    Well done – and expect me to pitch in once again….

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: campaign@willraymond.org URL: http://citizenwill.org DATE: 09/22/2007 01:50:31 PM ----- COMMENT:

    From our first salon in Lakewood to your blogger meetups in Durham, you have innovatively and earnestly created a community. The N&O article is a well deserved recognition of your unique and valuable community service.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: erin@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 09/22/2007 01:50:31 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Are you a blogger in the Triangle? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/21/2007 11:24:31 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org, a group of bloggers and blog readers in the Triangle region of North Carolina, has a mailing list through which we post announcements of our meetups, conferences and special events. If you are a blogger in the area (or farther afield), please "subscribe to the list":http://lists.mistersugar.com/mailman/listinfo/blogtogether today. ----- -----

    Food writer for local lifestyle and business magazines. www.turtlemuse is my motivational blog based on my public speaking

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: s.ely@earthlink.net URL: http://www.daintymorsel.com DATE: 09/21/2007 11:24:31 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Savoring Chicago eating AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/20/2007 09:54:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: At my heart, I'm a Chicago boy, an old-Comiskey-loving, Royko-reading, 16-inch softball-catching, WLS-listening lover of the city. So my heart leapt for joy when I sat down to read the October issue of "Saveur":http://www.saveur.com/, devoted entirely to food in the Windy City. Ed Debevic's? Been there. Even took Erin there on her first visit to Chicago. Berghoff's? Stopped in many times for the schnitzel. Taste of Chicago? Regrettably, never made it. Reading Saveur tonight has me itching to get back. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: The menu is set AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/20/2007 09:40:18 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: A fortuitous work lunch meeting today at Piedmont, and chef *Drew Brown* stopped by the table to share the updated menu for Monday's "food blogging dinner with Michael Ruhlman":http://blogtogether.org/article/293/food-blogging-with-michael-ruhlman. All of our seats are reserved (there will be about 30 of us in the restaurant's balcony), but everyone's welcome to come to Michael's reading at The Regulator Bookshop on Sunday. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Eat to blog AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/18/2007 12:07:43 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The "food blogging event with Michael Ruhlman":http://blogtogether.org/article/293/food-blogging-with-michael-ruhlman is getting close, and we still have a handful of seats at the Piedmont dinner table. Contact me post haste (zuiker@gmail.com) if you'd like to join in on the fun. "Anna Kushnir":http://www.sunday-night-dinner.blogspot.com/ is flying in from Boston for the event. And we almost coaxed "Justin":http://justinsomnia.org to head East for this. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sunday photo blogging: The defenders AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/16/2007 11:07:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My mother cleaned out her closet and found a lot of family photos, my first grade report card, a 1978 US Virgin Islands license plate, and other stuff. One of the photos was this snapshot of my brothers *Nick* and *Matt* dressed in their homemade knight's armor and ready to defend our corner of DeKalb, Illinois. Nick and Matt, defenders of justice and peace As it happens, Nick and Matt are still brothers in arms. Nick is an emergency medical technician in Phoenix (and applicant to area fire departments), while Matt is a Mesa police officer. My mother is proud of them, and rightly so. ----- -----

    These are my guys… ever ready to defend and rescue. I AM proud of them.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: czuiker5@earthlink.net URL: DATE: 09/16/2007 11:07:03 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Nice memory! I was lucky to have 4 great role models for brothers.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: matt@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 09/16/2007 11:07:03 PM -----
-------- TITLE: A weekend to smile AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/16/2007 04:54:09 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: A gorgeous weekend in North Carolina, and I'm feeling great. With Erin and the girls and my mom away at the beach yesterday, I worked on publicizing the "food blogging":http://blogtogether.org/article/293/food-blogging-with-michael-ruhlman event and the "science blogging conference":http://scienceblogging.com, and caught up on a consulting project. The food blogging event, starring Michael Ruhlman, is going to be a blast. I have 21 people signed up for the dinner, and can accept nine more. Drew Brown and Andy Magowan are planning a delicious meal for us. Contact me ASAP if you want to join in on the fun. For the science blogging conference, we have our first 50 registered, and more than half are coming from outside the state, from as far away as California, Toronto, the UK and even Sweden. Just look at the stellar individuals "who have signed up":http://mistersugar.wufoo.com/reports/science-blogging-08/. And Bora's put together a dynamite "program":http://wiki.scienceblogging.com/scienceblogging/show/Conference+Program+08 for the day. So anyway, a quiet house cooled by a blast of autumn air -- heavy rains on Friday were a godsend -- coaxed me to sleep by 7pm last night. I woke up at 7 this morning, refreshed with the 12 hours of slumber. Guess I don't sleep enough during the week. The highlight of my first few weeks at Duke came this past Tuesday at a meeting of all the Duke communicators -- more than 100 people who variously tell the stories of the students, teachers, researchers, doctors and nurses throughout the institution. Duke President "Richard Brodhead":http://www.duke.edu/president/ talked about the university's commitments to promoting scholarship in service to society, and as an example he mentioned his pride in reading the "blog of basketball star and pre-med student Emily Waner":http://www.goduke.com/ViewArticle.dbml?DB_OEM_ID=4200&ATCLID=1136544, who spent the summer working in the highlands of Guatemala. That seemed to relate closely to the "BlogTogether event we had back in February":http://blogtogether.org/article/238/triangle-bloggers-happy-hour-22107-notes, in which my fellow bloggers introduced social media to the head of the Duke Engage program. In my new role at Duke Medicine, I have the opportunity to build some innovative organizational communications tools. Just one of the exciting responsibilities keeping me up at night. Erin and the girls are on the way home, a big pan full of paella is on the stovetop, and the neighborhood is quiet and still. I think I'll go outside and rake some leaves, breathe deeply, and smile. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Life blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/10/2007 01:37:31 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY:

At Techcrunch, Writing, Sharing And Protecting Your Life’s Story reviews a handful of new services for building family websites, something I've done since July 2000 over at Zuiker Chronicles Online, although admittedly not much has happened at the site in the last year or so. Turns out the family listserv and our big reunion at Oglebay Resort last year worked quite a lot better than the attempt at an online community. You can read an analysis of my family blogging in this graduate school presentation: How personal publishing software fosters online family. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Full steam ahead on food blogging event AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/05/2007 05:19:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Full details on the "Michael Rulhman":http://blog.ruhlman.com/ food blogging event in Durham later this month are at "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org/article/293/food-blogging-with-michael-ruhlman. Please join me for what promises to be a fabulous dinner at "Piedmont Restaurant":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/home.html. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Work with me AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/05/2007 09:45:36 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Work CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've only recently started my job at Duke Medicine as manager of internal communications, but I'm already hiring an editor to work with me. If you have journalism, editing, science and/or online communication experience, see the job description by searching for Req#400134404 at the "Duke HR":https://www.hr.duke.edu/secure/jobs/external.html site. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: About my sources of income AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/03/2007 08:45:04 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Work CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've updated my "About":http://mistersugar.com/about page to clarify my current employment and current and past consulting arrangements. bq. I currently work for the Duke University Health System as manager of internal communications. The views on this website are solely my own, and should not be associated with Duke University or Duke University Health System. See that page for the various companies from which I've accepted payment, gifts or student grants. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Blog for science AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/03/2007 08:41:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We've opened registration for the "2008 North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com and have already filled 25 of our 200 seats. Don't delay in registering. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Life list AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 09/02/2007 10:19:26 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: An article in last week's Sunday NYTimes -- yes, I'm a week behind, happens when you start an intense new job -- is about life lists: bq. Two years ago Ms. Hubbard compiled what is known as a life list, a contract with herself enumerating dozens of goals she hoped to accomplish before she died (build a house for Habitat for Humanity, read ''Pride and Prejudice,'' etc.) and posted it online. Which reminds me to check on my own list, which I posted "here":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/271306 a while back. ----- -----


    Can I disagree, respectfully? :)

    I fear that lists such as these turn the spontaneity of life into a checklist of chores. Why not just live life to the fullest and do something crazy adventurous every day/week/month? Something that makes sense in the context of your life as it’s happening rather than pulled from a list of dreams written down at some arbitrary point in the past.

    That said, keep a list if you must. I myself love lists. But maybe throw it out start a new one every year/month.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 09/02/2007 10:19:26 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Right on, Justin. One of the reasons I write this blog is to record and capture the spontaneity of my life, and to show how these activities are the mortar between the bricks of my larger life and career goals.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 09/02/2007 10:19:26 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Food issue = joy AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/30/2007 06:41:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: Blogging ----- BODY: Can't wait to dig into the "New Yorker's September food issue":http://www.newyorker.com/magazine/toc/2007/09/03/toc_20070827. But first I have to solidify the details for the food blogging event with Michael Ruhlman. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Shared conversations AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/29/2007 09:23:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I finally made a long-overdue phone call to "Ed Cone":http://edcone.com to chat with him about shared interests in online community -- "ConvergeSouth":http://convergesouth.com, "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org. Later, I met "Barry Yeoman":http://www.barryyeoman.com/ for coffee at "Broad Street Cafe":http://broadstreetcafe.org/. I met Barry in Boston at the 2005 Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism, and it's taken us this long to finally meet in the city we both call home. Great chat with him today about journalism and technology and offline community. Then, I finished the day with open house at Anna's school, where I met her teachers. One of the teachers is a Dutch immigrant, and we chatted about our shared heritage. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Wildflowers and my princesses AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/25/2007 11:02:39 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: Anna, Erin and Malia in a field of wildflowers Anna, Erin and Malia shining in a field of wildflowers in Ashe County, North Carolina. More photos from our vacation are at my "Flickr page":http://flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Recuperation in the RV park AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/25/2007 08:51:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: When I first moved to North Carolina in 2001 and was searching for stories to pitch to the local media, I found myself in the *Birchwood RV Park* talking to *Thanh Pham* about the many families who make the park home while a relative receives care at nearby Duke Hospital. Even after a couple of interviews, I never did pull together a story, and I've long rued my procrastination. Nevertheless, it was nice to see Elizabeth Shestak tell the story in a front-page article in today's "Durham News":http://www.thedurhamnews.com/front/story/81742.html. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Status check AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/24/2007 02:25:27 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Site Updates CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm alive, I'm well, and I'm blogging. Much more to post tonight and through the weekend. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: August respite AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/19/2007 02:51:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Down from the mountains of Ashe County, NC after a week of Internet-free relaxation. Soon, a longer report about canoing on the New River, bluegrass at the "Ola Belle Reed Festival":http://www.olabellefest.com/ in Lansing, and wildflowers and cottontail rabbits. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: BlogTogether Backyard Barbecue AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/11/2007 03:12:13 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Over at the "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org/article/288/time-for-a-party blog, I've announced the annual backyard bash at my home. If you're a blogger (or blog-reading friend), please join the party on Friday, August 31st after 7pm. ----- -----

    Anton and Erin,
    Many thanks for opening up your home to all of us. PharmK’er had such a great time with Anna and Malia that she wants to know when she can see them again. (Erin, special thanks for the hydrocortisone for the mosquito bites.) Thanks for being such great leaders in our little community!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig DATE: 08/11/2007 03:12:13 PM ----- COMMENT:

    So glad you and yours could join us Friday night. We all had a blast, especially Anna and Malia with their newfound friend.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 08/11/2007 03:12:13 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Goodbye Friday AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/11/2007 03:09:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I fell asleep last night while sitting on the couch, the girls beside me as we watched one of their favorite movies, and I was out until 8 this morning. Yesterday was hot, intense, exhausting. The temperature was up around 104 yesterday, and I was supposed to spend the day leisurely enjoying my final day in the cool offices of at "MEASURE Evaluation":http://www.cpc.unc.edu/measure, saying good-bye to my colleagues. But the night before, Erin was severely ill (giardia, she thinks), and so I had the girls in tow for the day. They behaved remarkably well, given the heat and the change of plans. Some unexpected help from coworkers -- thanks, Webb and Julie -- kept the girls entertained while I finished cleaning my office and sending the last of the wrap-up messages. By 4 the van was packed with the boxes, I'd handed in my keycard and desk key, and we were picking up Erin at the student health clinic. I'd had no time to really concentrate on my departure, although the two months of transition did give me time to reflect. I've just left an excellent and comfortable job, and I'll miss the people with whom I worked. Since I'll be just 10 miles up the road, I suspect I'll get back to see them soon. For the next week, I'm officially unemployed. We'll be in West Jefferson, North Carolina to enjoy cooler temperatures and long conversations with our "Peace Corps Vanuatu":http://storian.org friends "Erika Rundiks":http://girlfridaydes.com/index.html and "Kevin Anderson":http://www.arcwestarchitects.com/kevin.html. And on August 20th, I embark on my next gig. I'm looking forward to the challenges and opportunities and people at Duke. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bora clocks in AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/09/2007 04:30:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Met up with "Bora Zivkovic":http://scienceblogs.com/clock at 3CUPS to get a report on his month-long sojourn to San Francisco, where he was orientated to his new job with "PLoS":http://www.plosone.org/home.action and where he attended Science Foo Camp on Google's campus. Bora has tons of energy, and it's wonderful to hear about all the great experiences he's having. Bora and I are planning the "2008 North Carolina Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com, and have some details to iron out before we open registration on September 1st. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: A classic in the courtyard AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/09/2007 09:03:03 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: Restaurants ----- BODY: This summer, while Erin and I and the girls have been back and forth to Cleveland, our friend *Jonnelle Allen* has been staying out at our home while she tackles her dissertation proposal. Knowing that our anniversary is this week -- 11 on Friday -- Jonnelle sent Erin and me to the fabulous "Franklin Hotel":http://www.franklinhotelnc.com/ in Chapel Hill for a night away. After we checked in and admired our swank balcony room, we walked in the heat (record high of 102 yesterday) to the intimate "Bonne Soiree":http://www.newsobserver.com/1130/story/471454.html, in the Courtyard complex where "3CUPS":http://3cups.net and Locopops are. The service was perfect (the check arrived late, but only because our server -- a former Londoner who traded "Thames River barge stories":http://mistersugar.com/index.php?id=696 with us -- waited for chef *Chip Smith* to visit our table) and the food delicious: a smooth and velvety gazpacho, a souffle of Celebrity Dairy goat cheese on a bed of greens, baked halibut, stuffed quail on succotash, a delightful French chardonnay, chocolate gelato with toasted almonds topped with Italian meringue. As we were ordering our meal, co-owner *Tina Vaughn* brought two flutes of champagne to our table. "These are courtesy of the gentleman sitting at the corner table." I looked behind me to see *Phill Lyons*, the financial guru who keeps the MEASURE Evaluation project humming. When I told him Erin and I were celebrating our wedding anniversary, he was doubly happy that we were there to experience the fine, fine dining of the restaurant. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Call them Al fans AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 08/06/2007 01:39:38 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Sally":http://greenespace.blogspot.com/2007/08/weird-al-in-full.html and "Paul":http://ibiblio.org/pjones/wordpress/?p=2221 blog about attending a "Weird Al Yankovic":http://www.weirdal.com/ concert. I was a Weird Al fan in high school, but missed a concert he gave at a county fair near my home in DeKalb, Illinois. I love it that Sally and Paul are fans, too. ----- -----

    He’s brilliant! Catch him sometime if you can.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: sally@ibiblio.org URL: http://greenespace.blogspot.com DATE: 08/06/2007 01:39:38 PM -----
-------- TITLE: In the news AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/29/2007 12:37:56 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: An editorial cartoon by Dennis Draughon in the Durham News yesterday (not online yet) laments the potholes and missing storm drains in the city. Compared to the streets of Cleveland, Durham's got nothing to complain about in terms of potholes. But storm drains? In my neighborhood, someone keeps stealing the heavy iron bars on Penrith Ave. Takes chutzpah to heist those things, and does leave quite the hazard. And "reports yesterday":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/07/28/washington/28weapons.html?ei=5090&en=62c72e1bc7e31f13&ex=1343275200&adxnnl=1&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss&adxnnlx=1185684051-87nV9izB0BFSNcaIsvrFsw that the Administration wants to give billions of dollars in weapons to countries in the Middle East. Exactly what you'd want to do to promote peace. Brilliant, if it weren't so baldly and cynically an example of the military-industrial complex at work. ----- -----

    People steal storm drain covers? What for?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 07/29/2007 12:37:56 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Memory lane AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/28/2007 11:06:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: Big rains rolled through Chapel Hill and Durham last night, delaying the start of a dinner party at my home, but my "MEASURE Evaluation":http://www.cpc.unc.edu/measure colleagues made it. This meal was my way to thank them for helping me enjoy my time at that job. As I fell asleep last night, I remembered a dinner party that Erin and I were invited to back in December 1996. Ann Sethness and Jack Smith had hosted us in their Bratenahl condo, along with former Ohio Governor "Dick Celeste":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Richard_Celeste and his wife, Jacqueline Lundquist, and Progressive Insurance's art curator "Toby Devan Lewis":http://www.newmuseum.org/newsletters/PRESS/2007.3.30tobylewis.htm. Ann knew that Erin and I were planning on applying to the "Peace Corps":http://peacecorps.gov, and since her friend Dick Celeste had been director of the agency under President Carter, she arranged for us to spend a few hours talking about international service and travel -- President Clinton had just appointed Celeste to be ambassador to India. He promised to put in a good word about us to the Peace Corps director at the time, Mark Gearan (Celeste's protege). Readers of this blog know that we got in, and had a fantastic experience in the Republic of Vanuatu. A few weeks after that dinner, Toby Lewis gave us a personal tour of Progressive's new building and the fabulous art spread throughout ("view the art":http://art.progressive.com/art_popup.asp?js=OFF). My favorite was the "Frank Gehry fish lamp":http://www.netropolitan.org/gehry/fishlamp.html in the office of Progressive CEO (and Toby's former husband) "Peter B. Lewis":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Peter_B._Lewis. That was last night's recollection. Tonight, driving home from a visit with my mother in High Point, I stared into a full moon obscured at times by streaking strands of rainclouds. That vision reminded me of a night nearly 15 years ago. This was the summer after I graduated from "John Carroll University":http://www.jcu.edu, and Erin had come to visit me in Illinois one last time before I moved out to Hawaii. We didn't know if and when we'd ever see each other again, and when it was time for Erin to fly back to Cleveland, we simply sat at the gate -- a time when family and friends could freely walk the concourses -- holding hands. When Erin boarded her plane, I walked out of the airport into a stormy night. Looking up, I saw the full moon erupt out of the clouds, and I knew I'd see Erin again. Here's the poem I wrote a few days later (it makes references to my friend, Stephan, and my mother, who also had departed recently via the air): bq.. airport goodbyes, an uncertain moment hanging between an instancy and eternity. what to say, sitting here, no words to articulate the feeling inside, a smile suffices. soon, to be left, alone, to walk empty concourses which echo which echo sandalled feet. one left with tears to Toulouse, another with eyes twinkling love, mother gone with exhaustion, seeking. airport goodbyes, uneasy but necessary, runways that take can also return. p. As I was enjoying moonlit memories, "Joan Jett and the Blackhearts":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Joan_jett came on the radio, singing "I love rock n' roll." And that had me back in 1982 sitting in a diner booth in Caldwell, Idaho, where my dad would take me for pancakes. Each booth had a flip-case connected to the diner's jukebox, and as I was flipping through the names of the records one Saturday morning, I recognized a song I'd heard on the school bus that week. Any time I hear Joan Jett's anthem, I sing along as loudly as I can. Maybe that's why, earlier in the day on my way to High Point, I had enjoyed "Sound Opinions":http://www.soundopinions.com/, that cool public radio talk show about rock and roll music (I listen on "WUNC":http://wunc.org). *In the car tonight/moon shining, dinners dancing/loving my mem'ries* ----- -----

    I did not realize you went to Peace Corps together. For some reason I thought you met on Vanuatu.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 07/28/2007 11:06:16 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Good conversations AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/26/2007 11:29:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Out on the campaign trail today, talking up the "2008 NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com and the related proposal for a "clearinghouse of statewide science news":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/1060982, with mentions of the "Michael Ruhlman food blogging event":http://wiki.blogtogether.org/blogtogether/show/Food+Blogging+with+Michael+Ruhlman in September and the possible census of Triangle bloggers in October. I had chats today with "Cord Silverstein":http://www.marketinghipster.com/ and *Tola Oguntoyinbo* of "Capstrat":http://www.capstrat.com/cs/index.cfm, at "Carmen's Cuban Cafe":http://www.carmenscubancafe.com/ (I had a moist and garlicky pork sandwich); *Jim Shamp*, *Boris Hartl*, *Barry Teater* and *Robin Deacle* at the "North Carolina Biotechnology Center":http://ncbiotech.org/; and "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com at "Panzanella":http://www.panzanella.com/ (seared scallops, white beans, escarole, braised Fennel & tomato-basil sauce). ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Look out for stolen milk crates AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/24/2007 11:51:27 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On my drive home yesterday along I-77, I listened to Don DeLillo's new novel, "Falling Man":http://www.amazon.com/Falling-Man-Novel-Don-DeLillo/dp/1416546022. When that was finished, I tuned into Virginia public radio and caught Marketplace, which had an "interview with a dairy exec about the cost of stolen milk crates":http://marketplace.publicradio.org/shows/2007/07/23/PM200707237.html. A few minutes after that interview was done, I looked over as an SUV, pulling an open trailer, passed. And among the trailer's contents? A milk crate. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Tremont tips AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/21/2007 01:41:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As has become my custom when visiting Cleveland, I headed to Tremont this morning, taking along with me Anna and Malia and Tom Michael and his daughter. We stopped by the small but green "Tremont Farmers Market":http://www.tremontfarmersmarket.com/, looked at the gorgeous woodworking by furnituremaker P.D. White, ordered sandwiches to go from "Lucky's Cafe":http://www.luckyscafe.com/ and then set up at Tremont's delightful Lincoln Park, where the girls played on the swings and slides and I enjoyed my sandwich and glimpses of the downtown skyscrapers through the leafy trees. Then *Joe Cimperman* stopped by, and then Erin, and so we had a little reunion in the park. Joe told us about Cleveland's new "garden zoning":http://www.clevelandcitycouncil.org/Home/News/February220072/tabid/176/Default.aspx, and invited us to the "Taste of Tremont":http://restoretremont.com/events/tremont/ tomorrow. It's a beautiful day here in Northeast Ohio. The annual "Ingenuity Festival":http://www.ingenuitycleveland.com/ is this weekend. I won't be able to get there, but I will be reading "Brewed Fresh Daily":http://www.brewedfreshdaily.com/ for highlights of the festival. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Notes from SCoNC meeting 7/19/2007 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/19/2007 09:18:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At work this afternoon, my colleagues gathered for a send-off party for me and another (she's going to Duke for another master's degree), and they said some very nice words about my time and efforts at the Carolina Population Center. I'll miss working with these people. Then, I was off to another great networking meeting of the new Science Communicators of North Carolina group, held tonight at "The Hamner Institutes for Health Sciences":http://www.thehamner.org/. I met *Frank Taylor*, who lives in Cary and writes the popular "Google Earth Blog":http://gearthblog.com/. He's interested in participating in the "2008 NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com, and speaking about his blog at a future Chapel Hill bloggers meetup. *Rober Panoff* of the "Shodor Educational Foundation":http://www.shodor.org/ told me about the "National Science Digital Library":http://nsdl.org/ and that organization's "Expert Voices":http://expertvoices.nsdl.org/ blogging experiment. (I wrote about Shodor for the 2004 annual report of the NC Science, Mathematics and Technology Education Center; "pdf here":http://www.ncsmt.org/2004AnnualReport.pdf.) *Carr Thompson* of Burroughs Wellcome Fund told us about the "North Carolina Science Summit":http://www.hunt-institute.org/HIELPEvents/Events/ShowEvent.aspx?RecordID=14 that the Hunt Institute convened in May. I chatted with *Roger Harris* from Sigma Xi. He invited me to the Techie Tuesday event next week for RTP employees ("Facebook event details":http://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=3334800656&ref=mf). Roger's a "photographer":http://www.junglephotos.com/, and mentioned another of his projects is a resource to help celebrities get better info for their pet topics. And *Helen Chickering* and I talked about a science blogging project that we'll be proposing soon. ----- -----

    ROTFLOL. Used to work for Frank at Interpath. Was the 13th employee there…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: gina@lintqueen.com URL: http://www.lintqueen.com DATE: 07/19/2007 09:18:10 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Sent you an email, great summary of the SCONC meeting. We’ll talk soon.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: caroline.kornegay@gmail.com URL: DATE: 07/19/2007 09:18:10 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Oh, so small world – got here via pjones and read about Helen (I worked as a web consultant for a communications group she was involved with…) ... ah, the world is tiny making!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: kelly@hungryphotographer.org URL: http://www.hungryphotographer.org/pixelpost DATE: 07/19/2007 09:18:10 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Thanks for writing this up. Hope you enjoyed Techie Tuesday! We’re working on another blogging project, and would love your feedback.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: rharris@sigmaxi.org URL: http://www.sigmaxi.org DATE: 07/19/2007 09:18:10 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Three dot 7/19/2007 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/19/2007 05:20:35 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blog CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Winding down at the current job, looking forward to the new challenges at Duke ... Finished "Reach of a Chef":http://mistersugar.com/article/4309/spring-in-my-step?asin=B000NA6U2E&tld=com&wet_amazonassoc=zuikerchron-20 last night, and just now settled on dates for the food blogging event with "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com -- Sept 24th for a reading and book signing at "Regulator":http://www.regbook.com at 7pm -we hope-), Sept 25th for dinner, details to follow at "BlogTogether":http://blogtogether.org ... Listening to former coworker *Stephen Barrett* on "The Story":http://thestory.org/ later today (my former intern, *Yasmeen Khan*, wrote an article about Stephen for our project newsletter) ... Driving to Cleveland tomorrow to see Erin and the girls and welcome the new cousin born last night to "Katherine":http://woolandhoop.com/ and "Tom":http://marfapublicradio.org (Tom was a guest blogger here in May). ----- -----

    Have fun in Cleveland! We were hoping to have you join us for bbq tomorrow night but sounds like you’ll be on the road. Say hi to Erin and the girls.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: perri@neat-freak.com URL: http://neatfreak.wordpress.com DATE: 07/19/2007 05:20:35 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Water, water AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/09/2007 09:42:29 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Readings ----- BODY: Last week, *Ethan Zuckerman* wrote "an enlightened post about Fiji Water":http://www.ethanzuckerman.com/blog/2007/07/03/fiji-water-endlessly-fascinating/, and tonight I finally got around to reading the Fast Company article that prompted his post (I subscribed to Fast Company a few weeks back, and the first issue was in pile of mail when I got home yesterday): "Message in a Bottle":http://www.fastcompany.com/magazine/117/features-message-in-a-bottle.html by Charles Fishman. I urge you to read this, too. I'll admit I've purchased and savored my share of Fiji Water over the last few years. I don't often buy bottled water -- I don't drink much water, and I usually just find the nearest water fountain or a glass of tapwater -- but when I do, I search out Fiji Water. I have an affinity for that water, for it connects me to my time on Paama Island in the Republic of Vanuatu. During my Peace Corps service on that island, whenever I'd hike up and over to the east side, I could gaze out over the wide Pacific, and if I'd paddled away from Paama, past Lopevi volcano and eastward, the next stop would be Viti Levu Island, Fiji. I didn't know it at the time, but as I was gazing in that direction, the Fiji Water bottling operation was just getting underway. The water we drank on Liro was rainwater collected in a large cistern in the middle of the village, and we filled our bottles a few times each day (ignoring the occasional mosquito larvae). Halfway through our service, we paid a man to build a cement catchment behind our house, our own supply of water that would also help supply the growing school we served. The project was delayed when Avok, the carpenter, got a bad case of malaria. ("Read this new National Geographic feature on malaria.":http://www7.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0707/feature1/) I've thought about water a lot. Exactly 15 years ago, just out of college and soon to be headed to Hawaii, I holed up in the DeKalb Public Library for a few nights, researching water politics of the Middle East and predictions for the role of water in the 21st century. Erin laughed at me at the time, but came to understand. In Hawaii, water was everywhere. When I wasn't out on a surfboard or bobbing in the swimming pool, I was enjoying the delicious water that's taken from the Oahu aquifers. Today, with climate change worries, water is an important topic. NPR's Richard Harris had two good reports today about drought in Arizona ("here":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=11826985 and "here":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=11794040), and in New York, the health commissioner "wants more people to drink tap water":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=11797409. Anyway, after reading Fishman's article, I'll be buying less bottled water -- an infrequent bottle of Fiji Water for memories of the South Pacific, and to support the locals there -- and drinking more of the free stuff at my easy disposal. You? ----- -----

    To complicate matters, apparently we shouldn’t be drinking out of plastic at all (even our reusable Nalgene). Here’s the latest from IdealBite:

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: perri@neat-freak.com URL: http://neatfreak.wordpress.com DATE: 07/09/2007 09:42:29 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Don’t forget that the water in your area of Durham has lead in it. What dilemmas we are facing in our times!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 07/09/2007 09:42:29 PM ----- COMMENT:

    We drink from the tap, via a Brita filter. I never remember whether Durham’s using chlorine or chloramine, but I can taste it when I don’t filter the water.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: vankloten-122@yahoo.com URL: http://home.earthlink.net/~thatcherforest DATE: 07/09/2007 09:42:29 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Cleveland tidbits AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/08/2007 09:10:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: A few nights ago, pizza at Mama Santa in Cleveland's Little Italy, then up the hill to enjoy the delicious gelato at "La Gelateria":http://lagelateriacleveland.com/. A few doors down from that dessert heaven, there's *Osiyo Tea House* (no website that I can find), which was closed when I went by. Next time I'm back in the area, I hope to sip a cup of tea there. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Salsa on a hot day AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/08/2007 08:50:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I was finishing up some yard work, sweat dripping down my face, when neighbor-friends Justine, Gabe and Jay walked by on their way to the *Welkin Court Salsa Walk*. Sounds interesting, I thought, so I went inside, showered and dressed, and walked through the neighborhood to that nearby street. Seems the residents of Welkin have taken to gardening in their yards, and even have a shared community garden. To showcase their communal food-growing spirit, they organized a block party in which more than two dozen varieties of salsa were out for the tasting. And some of them were quite good. What a fantastic way to bring a neighborhood together. Bravo, Welkin Court families. "See pictures on my Flickr page.":http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/tags/salsawalk/ ----- -----

    Wow — looks like you know some folks I do (Ruby, the Paul Jones)... wonder if we’ve met IRL? (I was the winner of the yummy veggie basket at the salsa walk: http://www.lintqueen.com/gallery/album07/1_2_006)


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: gina@lintqueen.com URL: http://www.lintqueen.com DATE: 07/08/2007 08:50:02 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Gina, you and I sometimes chat when you walk your dog down Loyal. Next time I see you, I’ll call out and we can share stories about our mutual acquaintances.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://blogtogether.org DATE: 07/08/2007 08:50:02 PM -----
-------- TITLE: At home in a tent AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/08/2007 08:20:12 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Back home in North Carolina now, and happy to be here. I left Cleveland yesterday afternoon and drove into West Virginia, where I stopped at "Camp Creek State Park":http://www.campcreekstatepark.com/, where I got the last campsite. I pitched my tent and sat at the picnic table, Michael Ruhlman's Reach of a Chef illuminated by a small book light. As the sunlight faded and the lightning bugs pulsed throughout the camp, the families next to my campsite gathered in a circle to look at the stars, and then softly sang and chanted in Hebrew. I don't know if they were praying or singing camp songs, but their voices made me feel as if I were in a kibbutz, and I felt safe. (In the morning, I learned that the families were related, with siblings coming from Atlanta, Israel and Washington, D.C.) Before I left Camp Creek, I took a brisk hike on the Piney Ridge Trail, dwarfed by the tall trees and enveloped by the peace of the forest. This was one of the most beautiful hikes I've ever taken. Last week, on my way up to Cleveland, I overnighted at the "Stony Fork Campground":http://www.fs.fed.us/r8/gwj/mr/recreation/camping/stony_fork.shtml in the George Washington and Jefferson National Forests, the place I proposed to Erin back in 1995. And since I had the camping gear, we had an impromptu campout in the far backyard of the Shaughnessy home, joined by my brother-in-law and his children. In a few weeks, when I return to Cleveland to retrieve the girls, we'll return to Camp Creek. Just as I learned my love of outdoors from my father, I hope Anna and Malia enjoy sleeping in a tent in "wild and wonderful" West Virginia. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Summer report AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/06/2007 01:13:01 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: It's been another week of glorious weather here in Cleveland, and I've kept busy with my daughters, touring the city and its suburbs -- "West Side Market":http://www.westsidemarket.com/ today, "Cuyahoga County Public Library":http://www.cuyahogalibrary.org/ in Fairview Park yesterday, downtown by train on Tuesday looking for the "Solar 2007":http://www.ases.org/solar2007/ conference that doesn't start until tomorrow). I'm looking forward to returning to North Carolina, though. Plenty to attend to as I wrap up work at the "Carolina Population Center":http://www.cpc.unc.edu and get ready for my new job at "Duke University":http://www.duke.edu. The redesign of mistersugar.com is almost complete, to be unveiled shortly. I've also created a website for the 20th reunion of my high school class at "dekalb88.com":http://dekalb88.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cleveland observations AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 07/01/2007 10:45:30 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: Cleveland ----- BODY: Fabulous weather again for my time in Cleveland, and I've been getting out and about. The other night, I met up with my OneDomino partners "Jack":http://www.jackzen.com/ "Ricchuito":http://www.designinglife.com/index.php/Main/CheckOutJack (he's got a new book out soon: "Conscious Becoming":http://designinglife.com/index.php/Main/ConsciousBecoming, Jack Solpa, Tim Turritin and Rich Bonitz. It was good to see them again to talk about our model for a fast, flexible network of consultants, a business plant that will continue to percolate. Around Cleveland, I've noticed a lot of smokers, but also headlines that the Cleveland Clinic is implementing a new hiring policy that will not give smokers jobs at the massive hospital system. Maybe helmets are next? Few riders of motorcycles or bicycles seem to wear helmets here. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: About that job AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Work CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Since I left my solar-powered-fan-cooled hammock on the island of Paama in the South Pacific nation of Vanuatu in late 1999, I've been on a singular mission: to merge my childhood dream of being editor of a national magazine, my college and early career training as a journalist and editor, and my newfound interest in new media and online community building into a new mix of writing, reporting, publishing and communicating. When I found myself in North Carolina in 2001, I happened upon the medical journalism program at UNC-CH. My studies there gave me an additional background in science and health communication. And my blogging activities have kept me up late at night as I explore new tools, plan "conferences":http://scienceblogging.com and ponder new strategies. After a brief interlude at NC State University, I took a job as senior communications and publications research associate (read communications director) for the MEASURE Evaluation project at the Carolina Population Center. This has been an across-the-board enjoyable experience, and I have gained valuable management skills. But it's time to change colors again, to hit the third corner of the triangle of universities in this part of North Carolina. *In August, I will take a new job at Duke University Health System as manager of internal communications.* This will be a chance for me to mold a communications strategy that uses traditional tools (magazines, newsletters, posters) with new media tools (blogs, videocasts, wikis). I'm looking forward to the opportunities and challenges. I will sorely miss Franklin Street and Chapel Hill, where I've spent the last six years feeling at home. But Duke is a welcoming campus, Durham is my hometown and Ninth Street has its own character. ----- -----

    Congrats Anton! Sounds like a great opportunity!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: robzelt@robzelt.com URL: http://www.robzelt.com/blog DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Fantastic! They need you!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix1@aol.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    What fabulous news, Anton! I’m really excited for you and this great opportunity to improve communications at Duke. Congratulations!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: abelpharmboy@gmail.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/terrasig DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congratulations, and good luck in the new gig! Don’t worry about leaving Franklin St, you’re really just trading one Cosmic Cantina for another ;)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.og DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Wow, Anton. That sounds incredibly exciting! Congrats!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ksims@anotherbrightidea.org URL: http://anotherbrightidea.org DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats, and best of luck! :)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: joshstaiger@gmail.com URL: http://joshstaiger.org DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Does this mean more free beers? Duke is getting a great deal. Well done.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: campaign@willraymond.org URL: http://citizenwill.org DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats! Duke is truly lucky to have you. I hope you enjoy it and can grow there.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    ok, ok, enough congratulatory blather, what we really want to know is which b-ball team will you be rooting for!???
    (but seriously, Congratulations!)

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ibis4@mindspring.com URL: DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Awesome! If you need a medical perspective, let me know…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: davak@carotids.com URL: http://www.trianglehiking.com DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Hey congrats, only a out of state person could leave unc and go to duke and get away with it! lol. I wish you well.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: waynesutton@Gmail.com URL: http://www.wayne-sutton.com/blog DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    this sounds really exciting, anton! congratulations!!!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: shadle@katzenfisch.com URL: DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Way to go Anton! We continue to be proud of all of your accomplishments. See you in Hawaii soon I presume?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: saipanjbr@hotmail.com URL: DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Congrats, Anton. This seems like a bit of shift in direction, but it makes sense in the context you explained above. I hope you enjoy your new workplace and still come see us in Chapel Thrill…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ruby@lotusmedia.org URL: http://lotusmedia.org DATE: 06/27/2007 02:19:17 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Summer changes AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/26/2007 02:55:30 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Short mention here, with longer post tonight, to say that I will soon be changing jobs, leaving my beloved Franklin Street location for a role at Duke University. Also a note that mistersugar.com will be getting a new look in the next week. ----- -----

    Don’t tease us Anton, what’s the new gig?!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jacksonfox@gmail.com URL: http://jacksonfox.og DATE: 06/26/2007 02:55:30 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Another reunion AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/22/2007 08:01:39 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Speaking of classmates, my college friends are gathering this weekend for the "15th anniversary reunion":http://www.jcu.edu/alumni/reunion07/92reunion.htm of the "Class of 1992 of John Carroll University":http://jcu92.org. I regret that I can't join them. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Caught while working AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/21/2007 11:31:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: One morning last week in Cleveland, I noticed a work crew along the highway. They were slowly picking up trash, and seemed to be chatting. It was an remarkably beautiful late Spring day for Cleveland, the Cavs were in the playoffs, and the city was feeling good in its Rise Up! campaign. The languid pace of the men's work reminded me of a hot afternoon in which I was part of a work crew, raking rocks to make a rich man's private golf course in Illinois. Mr. Rich walked up on us, and, finding us in conversation, upbraided us for being slackers. We took our lumps, but when he walked away, we griped and bitched for the rest of the day, frustrated that we'd been caught in a lull and not earlier when we had dust in our teeth and rocks at our feet. ----- -----

    That guy sounds like a real jerk.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 06/21/2007 11:31:24 PM -----
-------- TITLE: All China Daily AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/21/2007 10:16:06 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Seems it's time to focus on that country across the ocean: China is the subject of a special issue of "The Atlantic Monthly":http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200707, and in the June 2007 National Geographic there's "this great article":http://www7.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0706/feature4/index.html about how quickly one of China's boomtowns is growing; former Peace Corps Volunteer "Peter Hessler":http://www.rolfpotts.com/writers/hessler.html, who wrote that article, also wrote a fantastic article about the great walls of China for the New Yorker, "Walking the Wall":http://www.newyorker.com/reporting/2007/05/21/070521fa_fact_hessler. There's also been quite a bit of coverage in the newspapers about the poisons and toxins that are making their way from China to the U.S. in the multitude of products coming from that country. An important story. Keep in mind that a hundred years ago, our country produced dangerous foodstuffs and consumer products. Then government regulation and oversight kicked in. China's got the same rules, but is having trouble enforcing them. Let's hope we don't have to wait a hundred years for that, though. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Is it that time already? AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/21/2007 09:46:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: DeKalb-Illinois CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'm coming up on the 20th anniversary of my graduation from DeKalb High School in DeKalb, Illinois, and while I never got around to my "grand experiment":http://mistersugar.com/article/4095/where-are-you-now of searching for each of my classmates, I've been thinking of our reunion next year. Yesterday, Amy (Van Mol) Bertram, Marlena (Westerman) Solomon and Rob Deemer contacted me. The three of them, along with Jeanne (LoCascio) Sacks, are beginning to plan the reunion events. I signed up to lend my online organization and communication skills. I'm looking forward to seeing these old friends. If you're part of our class, "contact":http://mistersugar.com/contact us today. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cleveland chronicles: food blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/16/2007 09:51:40 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: Two great days here in Cleveland, focused on food. Yesterday, once the babysitter came to take charge of the girls, my mother-in-law and I drove to Cleveland's busy, colorful "West Side Market":http://www.westsidemarket.com/, where I bought a small tub of "Lake Erie Creamery":http://www.freetimes.com/stories/15/6/blessed-are-the-cheesemakers chevre, cloves, a cinnamon-filled crepe, a chicken-and-tomatillo tamale with pineapple-coconut-jalapeno salsa, figs and a papaya. Joanne bought cherries, morels, lamb loin and a cherry strudel. The papaya I took with me later in the day when I drove to the east side, where I had a delightful chat with "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com/ on his front porch. He inscribed a nice note to me in my copy of The Reach of a Chef. We talked about his "blog":http://blog.ruhlman.com/, and about his future visit to Durham to headline a BlogTogether food blogging event -- we had almost confirmed his July 23rd participation in The Lantern Table event, but Michael is getting called away for a television gig, so we'll be shooting for a September visit instead. (Mark your calendars: Cleveland gets the "Bourdain treatment":http://travel.discovery.com/tv/bourdain/bourdain-season3.html Labor Day weekend.) From Cleveland Heights, I drove west on Superior Avenue, through East Cleveland and some of Cleveland's poorer, more decrepit neighborhoods. I pulled up around East 29th Street for a haircut at Stefanek Barbershop (whenever I'm back in Cleveland, I always stop by for a cut, the best I've found for my head of hair anywhere in the world -- and only $10). Adequately groomed, I went with Erin for a dinner date at "Three Birds Restaurant":http://www.3birdsrestaurant.com/ in Lakewood, Ohio, and we talked nonstop, trying to chart a course for our next years to best balance our careers, family needs and travel desires. This restaurant was fantastic and hip, with beautiful people, excellent service and delicious food. My appetizer -- oven-roasted stuffed pablano [sic] pepper, pulled pork, butternut squash mole sauce and creme fraiche -- was on par with the "best appetizer I've ever had":http://mistersugar.com/article/180/whats-the-best-meal-youve. My entree was also perfect: pan-seared sea scallops, Pecorino Romano grits, grilled asparagus, sorrel sauce and julienne lemon, with two glasses of "Willamette Valley Vineyards pinot gris":http://www.willamettevalleyvineyards.com/?s=wine&ss=10. Yesterday afternoon, I was finally able to speak with Bob Jones, a farmer in Huron, Ohio. Bob and his family run "The Chef's Garden":http://www.chefs-garden.com/, which caters almost exclusively to chefs across the country, providing them top-quality, hard-to-find vegetables and herbs. Their farm is across the street from where my mother-in-law grew up; she and Bob were one year apart in school, and Bob took over the farm of Charlie Nickels (Joanne's father) when he passed away. For 15 years, Joanne has been telling me stories about her father's innovations -- ice-chilling corn, growing asparagus for market, gathering local farmers into a cooperative of sorts to supply the Cleveland market -- and pointing out the Jones farm. We've talked about visiting The Chef's Garden for many years. So I called. "My mother-in-law is Joanne Nickels Shaughnessy," I said. "Can we stop by for a short visit to say hi and see your operation?" Sure thing, said the farmer. We showed up this morning at our scheduled time, 9:30, and Bob and one of his sons, Lee, were sitting at a picnic table waiting. Lee was in his trademark overalls, pressed short-sleeved shirt and red bowtie. Right away, Bob and Lee were reminiscing about farmer Charlie and his beautiful daughter, who, when she drove the tractor through the fields of sweet corn, caused every teenage boy in Erie County to have a crush on her. Lee also mentioned how Charlie's forward thinking, and the county's one-time claim to having the most vegetable farmers in the country, were foundations to the mission of The Chef's Garden. For the next four hours, we got the royal tour of the farm, just as a celebrity chef would. First Lee took us through the marketing, seeding, packing and shipping areas -- pointing out the pictures of "Alain Ducasse":http://www.alain-ducasse.com/public/index.htm, "Charlie Trotter":http://www.charlietrotters.com/index-old.asp and even Michael Ruhlman -- and giving us leaves and shoots to taste along the way. The highlight? Shoots of sweet popcorn grown from "Schlessman Seed":http://www.schlessman-seed.com/. The tender shoots of lemongrass were also quite tasty. Then, Lee's brother Bobby drove us through the fields, pointing out a dizzying array of vegetables and herbs in various stages of growth; The Chef's Garden harvests most of their produce when it is small or even just as blooms. Bobby passed us back to his dad, who took us over to the "The Culinary Vegetable Institute":http://www.chefs-garden.com/cvi-1.htm for a tour of that gorgeous building, and more stories from the past. I learned from him that white asparagus is white because a shade over it prevents the sun from hitting it, while also keeping the sand and dirt from getting blown into the tips. Before he bid us farewell, he handed Joanne a box of freshly picked produce, which, once opened back in Cleveland, prompted a big smile from Joanne. !http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1260/558016081_3c48e38944_m.jpg!:http://www.flickr.com/photos/mistersugar/557774374/ This was an amazing day, a fertile day, and I feel honored to have been along for the ride. Joanne, meanwhile, crafted a delicious meal from the lamb loin and morels, veggies from Huron and gnocchi from Ohio City Pasta. !http://farm2.static.flickr.com/1091/558491902_7e504e00c8.jpg! _I see that my friend and fellow Tar Heel Blogger "Justin Watt":http://justinsomnia.org/2007/06/on-cooking-and-learning-with-others/ published a post today about food._ ----- -----

    thanks for that post, so interesting. i’d like to visit huron again to see ‘the chef’s kitchen.’

    alas, five states away, i feel like a failure as a farmer in my small way tonight when i came home to find all of our young chicks dead in the coop by some invading marauder.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 06/16/2007 09:51:40 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I am so jealous to have missed that dinner!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 06/16/2007 09:51:40 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Up on a pedestal AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/14/2007 01:23:02 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Anna and Malia on their pedestals ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cleveland chronicle: walking along AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/13/2007 03:18:03 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Cleveland CATEGORY: ----- BODY: So far, beautiful weather here in Cleveland. I've been waking early in order to walk along Riverside Drive and down into the "Metroparks":http://www.clemetparks.com/index.asp and up to the Stinchcomb Memorial. The cool air, singing birds, honeysuckle scents and valley vistas have made these walks very enjoyable, and as I've walked along, I think about all the mornings my Grandpa Sisco strolled the streets of DeKalb, looking for loose change that he would later sort into old pill bottles to be divvied up among his children and grandchildren whenever they were about to drive on the tollway. Yesterday I drove Erin to work (she's a summer associate at "Roetzel & Andress":http://www.ralaw.com/), and the girls and I then took a short walking tour of downtown. The streets were clean -- no loose change -- and flowerbeds were abundant, preparations for a big midday pep rally for the Cavs were filling the Mall B plaza, yellow-clad information officers on bicycles stopped to give me directions to "Arabica Coffeehouse":http://www.arabicacoffeeinc.com/, a big turbine was spinning behind the "Great Lakes Science Center":http://www.arabicacoffeeinc.com/, and "painted guitars":http://www.cleveland.com/guitarmania/ adorned most of the street corners. If felt good to be in a big city, and Cleveland looked great. Later, driving along the "Shoreway":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cleveland_Memorial_Shoreway west, I caught a glimpse of the "Cleveland Soapbox Derby racetrack":http://www.clevelandsoapboxderby.com/. With sadness, later in the day we all headed east to Erie, PA to attend the wake of *Joseph Lafuria*, the father of Patti, who is married to Erin's brother, Pat. Mr. Lafuria was a wonderful man (an Italian immigrant who reminded me of Grandpa Sisco), and he will be missed. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Eat local, Triangle AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/08/2007 11:17:24 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Lunch yesterday was at "Panzanella":http://www.panzanella.com/, where I had a delicious grilled cheese sandwich ("mozarella, fontina, tomato, with torn basil on sourdough") and a chunky gazpacho. Mmm, mmm. Nothing beats fresh local ingredients. As it happens, June is "Eat Local Triangle":http://slowfoodtriangle.org/eatlocal/ month, sponsored by "Slow Food Triangle":http://slowfoodtriangle.org/community/. This will be a perfect time to blog about food, and as soon as I return from Cleveland, expect more food blogging here at mistersugar.com. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Stories have layers, so dig deeper AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 06/07/2007 10:03:10 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I've hinted at my exasperation before, but I'll say it more clearly: hearing the news out of Israel and Palestine for the last 20 years has inured me to the struggles in the Mideast, since the factions there don't seem very interested in peace. (I've even entertained the notion that every nation send its best bulldozer to level the Temple Mount, and then see what's worth fighting for over there. But of course that's an ignorant and idiotic idea -- every oil company sending a rig, now there's an idea). This week marks the 40th anniversary of the Six Days War between the Arab nations and Israel. Listening to the "NPR series on the Six Day War":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10738897, watching the documentary Six Days in June on UNC TV, and reading through the "BBC News feature on the 1967 Middle East War":http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/shared/spl/hi/guides/457000/457035/html/default.stm has given me insight into the layered history of the region and renewed my interest in news from there. Meanwhile, on NPR yesterday, author "Ann Fadiman discussed the familiar essay":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10785932. "The hallmark of the familiar essay is that it is autobiographical, but also about the world," Fadiman says. She was asked whether blogs are the next stage in the familiar essay. "There are a lot of terrible blogs," she answered, but many bloggers "write beautifully." The *StoryBlogging* idea is still percolating -- storyblogging blends oral history, memoir blogging and family stories -- and so I was interested in hearing what Fadiman would say about the type of blogging I've been trying to do for the last seven yeasr. "The hallmark of the familiar essay is that it is autobiographical, but it's also about the world. A lot of bloggers I read do just one or the another and don't combine the two." Next week, I'll be in Cleveland, and I'm planning on writing a few familiar essays -- storyblogging entries -- here at mistersugar.com. I'll call them Cleveland Chronicles. Watch for them starting Monday. And, on The Story yesterday, "Dick Gordon talked with hockey coach Neil Henderson":http://thestory.org/archive/the_story_266_Gitmo_Attorney_Update.mp3 (starts at 31:30), and whether you like or understand hockey, this is a fantastic conversation to hear. Henderson, in his Canadian accent, imparts wonderful lessons about playing hard, ignoring insults and working for your achievements. ----- -----

    If anyone truly wants to understand the situation in, around, and about Israel, I strongly urge you to read 1) The Bible, and 2) Joel Rosenberg’s books- IN PARTICULAR his last book, Epicenter, which is non-fiction. As Natan Sharansky is quoted: “Joel understands the real problems and threats to the Middle East better than any American novelist I know.” His non-fiction books are The Last Jihad, The Ezekiel Option, The Last Days, and the Copper Scroll.

    It is virtually impossible to understand the events in the Middle East UNLESS one looks at them through the lens of the Bible. AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 06/07/2007 10:03:10 AM -----
-------- TITLE: Linked to Franklin Street AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/30/2007 07:46:50 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Went for my noon-time stroll up Franklin Street, with a hard-back copy of "The Reach of a Chef":http://www.amazon.com/Reach-Chef-Professional-Cooks-Celebrity/dp/0143112074/, by "Michael Ruhlman":http://ruhlman.com, in hand -- it's out in paperback, as of yesterday. Ruhlman is waiting to confirm his July television schedule, but we're fairly certain he'll come to the Triangle to participate in "The Lantern Table":http://lanternrestaurant.com/lanterntable.html on Tuesday, July 24th, for a Japanese-style "kaiseki":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kaiseki dinner featuring meat and produce from Castle Rock Gardens. (See "this article":http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/Content?oid=oid%3A154422 from the Indy last week.) I'll plan a reading at a local bookstore, and maybe a breakfast roundtable for local chefs, too. Details will be posted at the "BlogTogether wiki":http://wiki.blogtogether.org/blogtogether/show/Food+Blogging+with+Michael+Ruhlman. I stopped into Chapel Hill Comics to pick up *Y: The Last Man* and *Ex Machina* (read Brian K. Vaughan's blog at "BKV.tv":http://bkv.tv/pages/comixography_new.html), and on an impulse also bought "Fell: Feral City":http://www.amazon.com/Fell-Vol-1-Feral-City/dp/1582406936. Outside, on one of the bulletin boards along the street, I noticed a poster for a CD-release part at the Cat's Cradle for "Big Pretty and the Red Rockets":http://www.bpandrr.com/, but visiting the band's website shows they've changed their name since the poster went up. New name is "Bus":http://www.bustheband.com/. The new "Independent":http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/ is out, and features a summer guide to the region's waterways -- rivers, lakes and other wet excursions. At the Courtyard, new trees going in, and new tables and chairs waiting for the shade. I went into "3CUPS":http://3cups.net/ for a glass of iced tea and a "WSM":http://weaverstreetmarket.com/ cinnamon roll. In the Indy I'm intrigued by an ad for the "Triangle Pen Show":http://www.raleighpenshow.com/ June 7-10 in Cary. On my way back, a delicious passionfruit margarita Locopop. Back at "work":https://www.cpc.unc.edu/measure now, and lunch break is over. ----- -----

    anton, this sounds like a perfect day.

    of course, any mention of Locopops makes me crave them. maybe a trip there tonight is in order!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: shadle@katzenfisch.com URL: DATE: 05/30/2007 07:46:50 AM ----- COMMENT:

    I thought I’d left this comment already, but thanks for the heads up that “Reach of a Chef” was out in paperback. I ordered it on Amazon straightway (after some confusion on the subtitle change), read half on my way home from Buffalo, and just finished it this weekend. Totally cool that you hung out with Ruhlman this weekend.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: justincwatt@gmail.com URL: http://justinsomnia.org/ DATE: 05/30/2007 07:46:50 AM -----
-------- TITLE: A hockey legacy AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/28/2007 08:38:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Sunday evening photoblogging (posted a day late because of the holiday): Me and my brothers (Joel's missing) at the NIU pond for hockey in the late 80s. This weekend was a splendid Spring day in North Carolina, with warm, dry, sunny days and cool nights. Our flower gardens are tinged with color and promises of a vibrant Summer show. So, naturally, when searching my photo archives for a photoblogging entry, I gravitated to this image of a cold, Midwestern afternoon during my high school days in DeKalb, Illinois. In this picture, my brothers Nick, Matt, Chris and I pose before we head out onto the NIU pond for a few hours of pickup hockey. Beneath my jacket I'm wearing a hockey jersey my dad made up for me; it's embroidered with the name The Ramblers, a hockey team my grandfather (Frank the Beachcomber) was on when he was younger -- he and his brothers skated on Lake Calumet and other southside Chicago ponds. And that pad on my knee belonged to my father when he played hockey in suburban Chicago. ----- -----

    What a great, classic photo!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jettorre@voyager.net URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 05/28/2007 08:38:49 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Agreed! Wonderful. I really like this series.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com DATE: 05/28/2007 08:38:49 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Catch-up blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/23/2007 11:34:41 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: So much to report, so I'll put it all together. A couple of weeks ago, I had lunch with "Terrell Russell":http://claimid.com/terrell, a co-founder of "claimID":http://claimid.com and a doctoral student at "SILS":http://sils.unc.edu/. He's researching how expertise might be identified and amplified through online social networks, and he's inspired me to find a way to give my family, friends and blog readers a way to tell me what I know -- I already have my "resume":http://mistersugar.com/resume online to tell what I think I know and can do, but look for a form and a invitation to review me, coming soon. My friend and fellow "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://scienceblogging.com organizer *Bora Zivkovic* is benefitting from a similar, ad hoc experiment: when he found out about a "cool job":http://www.plos.org/jobs.html#pocm at "PLoS":http://plos.org, he wrote a post titled "I Want This Job!":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/04/i_want_this_job.php. He tells me that the many adoring comments that his readers posted to that entry made quite an impression with PLoS. I hope Bora will be able to write soon about how his blogging led to a new job. UPDATE: "Bora got the job!":http://scienceblogs.com/clock/2007/05/its_official_1.php Meanwhile, another Chapel Hill friend and blogger, *Ruby Sinreich*, has announced through her blog that "she's on the job market"::http://lotusmedia.org/. Look for more and more stories about how and why blogging is good for getting a new job. Here are just two I came across this week: at "Darowski":http://www.darowski.com/tracesofinspiration/2007/03/06/the-blog-is-the-new-resume/, Adam Darowski writes "The blog is the new resume", and Joshua Porter at "Bokardo":http://bokardo.com/archives/the-blog-is-the-new-resume/ amplifies the idea. Yesterday, in between my annual physical exam (I'm healthy as a horse, mom!) and tracking down a few blogging opportunities of my own, I got a call from my college buddy *Mark Schreiner*, who is chasing leads on a "story about corruption in the state legislature":http://www.wilmingtonstar.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20070523/BREAKING/70523002. A couple of hours later, another college buddy, "Jim Parker":http://www.attentiongrab.com/, called. He's working on an essay about an experience he had in India last year, and I hope he posts it soon, because it reminded me to celebrate the fact that Malia and Anna love to play in the morning, regardless of how rushed we may be to get to schools and work. Earlier, I left a message with yet another college friend to check on her pregnancy, but tonight when I got home, there was a message in my inbox that Bridget now has a son to go with her three darling daughters. Congrats to Bridget and Dennis. And another friend from "John Carroll University":http://jcu.edu -- Stephan and I met for lunch last week at "Foster's Market":http://www.fostersmarket.com/ in Durham, midway between his intense job as V.P. of a manufacturing company and my UNC work. We talked about the importance of mentorship, and how good supervisors groom their replacements. Stephan mentioned that at a training workshop he once attended, the instructors led an exercise that involved writing down all the important stages in one's life and noting the individuals who had had an impact, good or bad, during those stages. That made me remember a key incident when I was a young editor at "Northern Ohio LIVE":http://www.northernohiolive.com/, where one day I felt betrayed by my mentors, but when they saw me on the verge of tears, they sat down and gave me the best three-hour editing tutorial of my life. !COMMENT:

Thank you. Without you this would not have happened.

AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix1@aol.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 05/23/2007 11:34:41 PM ----- COMMENT:

We’ll drink wine together. Unless you have some of that slivo still available. :)

AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://blogtogether.org DATE: 05/23/2007 11:34:41 PM ----- COMMENT:

I still have some – let’s do it. Call me, I’m at home today.

AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix1@aol.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 05/23/2007 11:34:41 PM ----- -------- TITLE: Sleeptalking AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/21/2007 10:42:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Anna just woke up to go the bathroom, and she crawled into Erin's side of the bed. "Why aren't you sleeping, Dad?" she asked me. "I'm folding clothes and paying bills and other stuff," I answered. "You're not having fun," she said as her eyes closed again. Edited 4/22/07: changed "are" to "aren't" ----- -----

    anton, do you fold clothes and pay bills while you sleep??? or did she ask why you were not sleeping? If the former, feel free to come down and sleep mow my lawn at any time!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: smallsafterall@gmail.com URL: http://smallsafterall.blogspot.com DATE: 05/21/2007 10:42:49 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Shoot. Typo changes the whole meaning of the dialogue!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/21/2007 10:42:49 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Anna’s got the right idea.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 05/21/2007 10:42:49 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Corner of paradise AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/20/2007 04:28:55 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: Readings ----- BODY: Sunday evening photo blogging: The patio of the St. Croix house in Carlton Estate A few days before I turned 13, my family moved from Idaho to St. Croix, the largest of the U.S. Virgin Islands. After a couple of months in a cramped apartment over a bank in Frederiksted, we moved to a big house in Carlton Estate. Around the house were acres of sometimes-green grass that I tended with a riding mower that often stopped until I crawled beneath it and reattached the belts. My brothers and I spent a lot of time climbing the trees in the back, gathering limes and mangoes and building forts. When I wasn't on the mower or in the trees, I was usually on the back porch, sitting at the table (it's my grandmother sitting at the table in this photo, I think) or in one of the chairs reading a novel about submarine warfare or a thick "James Clavell":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_Clavell epic. I read voraciously on that porch, and I can still remember how my back would stick to the plastic cushions but the rest of my would be cooled by the tradewinds sweeping the island. I have a fondness for reading novels in the tropics. Then again, if you've been reading my blog, you'll have picked up that nugget. ----- -----

    Thanks for the memories… the times we used to share … you sitting in the chair.. the high sun gave a glare … off waters without out tears … thanks for the memories…


    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuikerhi@aol.com URL: DATE: 05/20/2007 04:28:55 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Thank you. We have wonderful, wonderful memories of that home, don’t we? The 9 hole golf course, Trigger (Great Dane) and Sheba, the Frye’s (5 boys each of the age of you and your brothers. This porch gave us all a moment of respite. It is good to remember.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: cheryl@zuiker.com URL: DATE: 05/20/2007 04:28:55 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I just love your family and the love and care you are showing each other…And my belated B’day wishes to you!!!
    European Breakdown Cover

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: allabtads@gmail.com URL: DATE: 05/20/2007 04:28:55 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Eat local AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/20/2007 09:03:21 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "NPR":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10219029 and "NYTimes":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/05/20/fashion/20books.html?ex=1337227200&en=b93aa123dce415cb&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink, among other media outlets, no doubt, today feature "Plenty: One Man, One Woman, and a Raucous Year of Eating Locally":http://www.amazon.com/Plenty-Woman-Raucous-Eating-Locally/dp/030734732X/ref=sr_1_1/002-9302983-2988040?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1179665823&sr=8-1, by Alisa Smith and J.B. MacKinnon. On Tuesday, I'm taking the girls to the "Farm-to-Fork":http://www.cefs.ncsu.edu/petrini.htm picnic at "Chapel Hill Creamery":http://www.weaverstreetmarket.com/article/display.php?id=381, just one of the many efforts here in the Triangle to promote eating locally produced meats and vegetables. (This week, with luck, I'll announce a BlogTogether food blogging event with Michael Ruhlman.) "Eat food. Not too much. Mostly plants.":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/28/magazine/28nutritionism.t.html?ex=1327640400&en=a18a7f35515014c7&ei=5090&partner=rssuserland&emc=rss ----- -----

    Good links here. Thanks for the link to the book, it ties in with our talking here in the family lately.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: ksims@anotherbrightidea.org URL: http://anotherbrightidea.org DATE: 05/20/2007 09:03:21 AM -----
-------- TITLE: A Saturday in Durham AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/19/2007 09:10:46 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: North-Carolina CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I was supposed to join the science writers book club for a hike up "Occoneechee Mountain":http://ils.unc.edu/parkproject/visit/ocmo/home.html, led by book club member *Mary-Russell Roberson*. She's coauthor of the excellent new book, "Exploring the Geology of the Carolinas":http://www.amazon.com/Exploring-Geology-Carolinas-Favorite-Charleston/dp/0807857866/ref=pd_bbs_sr_1/002-9302983-2988040?ie=UTF8&s=books&qid=1179622672&sr=8-1. Instead of enjoying a hike with friends (Anna and Malia were excited for the excursion, too), I spent the morning at "Wasp Automotive":http://www.waspauto.com/, where the super-nice *Pete Richardson* checked to see why the Sienna check-engine light was on and why the transmission was slipping. Low transmission fluid was the answer to the latter problem, but no apparent reason for the warning light. Wasp has a nice waiting room, kid-friendly and with two Internet-connected iMacs, as well as free wifi, and friends rave about the auto repair there. With two Toyotas, we'll make it our garage. While we waited on the car, I took the girls across Hwy 55 to "Brigs Restaurant":http://www.brigsrestaurants.com/ for pancakes. Back at Wasp, one of the iMacs had a local blog on screen; "Bullsh@t":http://bullshat.wordpress.com/ looks to be an irreverent if caring look at my city, Durham. ----- -----

    I love WASP automotive! My first visit there they talked me out of spending $400 dollars. “Live with the tiny leak” they said. Love them!

    However, we did get to go hiking yesterday. Much fun, much fun. Sorry you missed it…

    Buying the geology book now. I am looking for the ultimate book that will solve my daughter’s never ending question: what kind of rock is this, daddy?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: davak@carotids.com URL: http://www.trianglehiking.com DATE: 05/19/2007 09:10:46 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I hope you make it to Occoneechee Mountain sometime. It’s a fun hike. The odd thing is that the peak of the mountain is actually outside of the park grounds. You can still walk there, though. It’s the highest point from here to the coast in NC!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: shadle@katzenfisch.com URL: DATE: 05/19/2007 09:10:46 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Bugle call AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/19/2007 08:46:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Another great horse race this evening. During that thrilling two minutes of the "Preakness":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Preakness_Stakes, I was down on all fours, bouncing like the jockey I was cheering on. Alas, my yelling couldn't make the nose of "Street Sense":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Street_Sense_%28horse%29 the extra inches he needed to win. "Do that again, Dad," said Anna, thrilled by my antics. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Library corps AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/15/2007 09:01:56 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: On "The Story":http://thestory.org/archive/the_story_250_Shooting_History.mp3/view today, Dick Gordon hears from a Peace Corps Volunteer who started a library in Togo in the 1990s, and how one reader from that village made it to the States. Erin created a library at the Liro Primary School when we were in Vanuatu, and that's one of our proudest achievements of our service. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Facing Facts AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/15/2007 03:20:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The Spring 2007 issue of "Endeavors":http://research.unc.edu/endeavors/spr2007/index.php hit my mailbox today. "Generally, research is about pursuing new knowledge, not about taking a stand," writes the editor, *Neil Caudle* [he was a reviewer for my master's thesis reporting project], in a short editor's column that mentions his father's dying of emphysema. The magazine includes an article by Mark Derewicz about smoking: "Facing Facts: How research and activism can steer kids away from cigarettes.":http://research.unc.edu/endeavors/spr2007/facing_facts.php ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Open doors AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/15/2007 08:33:56 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Restaurants CATEGORY: ----- BODY: A postprandial stroll up Franklin Street for an orange-pomegranate popsicle at "Locopops":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Locopops, and on the way back I see that "Lantern Restaurant":http://www.lanternrestaurant.com/ is closed for emergency repairs -- looks like the bar area has been torn up for plumping work -- and then across the street Adam Bliss invites me into his just-opened "Hookah Bliss":http://www.hookahbliss.com/, a hookah bar serving flavored tobacco -- he says the tobacco is mostly from Virginia and North Carolina, gets bought up and shipped to the Middle East, and then its imported to the U.S. and "aficionados of the water pipe":http://www.hookahforum.com/ get to smoke it right here in Chapel Hill. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Sunday photo blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/13/2007 10:12:35 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Vanuatu CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I'd like to start a new tradition for mistersugar.com by posting a photograph from my boxes of snapshots pre-digital camera (2001) every Sunday night. Here's the first: Priscilla, Enna and another girl wait huddled under umbrella One rainy afternoon, Priscilla and Enna and a friend were waiting under an umbrella for the cargo ship to arrive at the beach below Liro Village. Noel, Enna's father and my adoptive brother, is sitting on the bank above them. Each day, Radio Vanuatu broadcast over shortwave radio a shipping report with the locations of the handful of rust-bucket cargo ships that plied the archipelago. When someone up in the hills spied a ship in the waters of Paama Island, he or she would sing out "whoooo-eeeeee" and there'd be a rush of islanders running to the beaches. When a cargo ship pulled into our little bay, the men would form a brigade to carry sacks of flour or concrete up to dry ground. (I previously wrote about these "passing lanes":http://mistersugar.com/article/3470/passing-lanes.) The cargo ship visits were quick -- the ships rarely spent more than 30 minutes at our beach, and only once or twice spent the night so the men could visit the kava bars -- but they were entertaining, if only to break up the monotony of island life. The girls are giving the thumbs-up sign that we'd taught them (we learned later that this is an obscene gesture in Australia). ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Home and alone AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/12/2007 11:03:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Films CATEGORY: Meals ----- BODY: Erin safely drove from NC to Cleveland today. She'll be in Ohio for the next 12 weeks working as a summer associate for "Roetzel & Andress":http://www.ralaw.com/. For the next four weeks, I'm a single dad -- should be fun, if I remain patient and well rested. The other night, a friend watched the girls so Erin and I could enjoy a rare dinner-and-a-movie date. We had dinner at "Piedmont Restaurant":http://www.piedmontrestaurant.com/, a delicious meal (asparagus spears atop a fried egg, white sweet potato soup, wahoo over risotto with pancetta and artichoke, and gnocchi Bolognese) that we somewhat rushed in order to walk up the block to the "Carolina Theatre":http://www.carolinatheatre.org/ to see "The Namesake":http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0433416/ (I wrote about the novel "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/3808/naming-rights). ----- -----

    The Namesake is quite a piece of movie-making, Anton. I know you’ll love it. I saw it a couple weeks ago at my beloved Cedar-Lee and found it quite absorbing.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jettorre@voyager.net URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 05/12/2007 11:03:52 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Bloodlines AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/12/2007 10:51:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Radio CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Some great reporting and storytelling on "NPR":http://nrp.org this week: * An "interview with a nurseryman":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10080629 who is leading the return of the American elm -- ""There are more Elm Streets than Main Streets in America," he said. * The "good news about Indian mangoes":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10057780 coming to the U.S. * This "interview with a survivor of a killer 1955 Kansas tornado":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10080623, * Ken Harbaugh's essay "about being a dad to a young daughter":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10098234, * This chat with reporter "Gwen Thompkins about Sudan":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10108239, and * A local report by "Dave DeWitt":http://wunc.org/tsot/blog about "fewer African-American baseball players":http://wunc.org/news/archive/NDD051007.mp3/view. But something's been eating at me since Monday morning, when I heard *Cokie Roberts* do her usual political analysis. At the end of "her segment":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=10040663, Morning Edition host "Steve Inskeep":http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=4080709 added the tidbit that Roberts is the mother of Inskeep's co-host for the week, *Rebecca Roberts* (who should be listed on the "NPR personalities page":http://www.npr.org/templates/people/?typeId=1#R but isn't). It's natural for a daughter or son to excel at what a parent does, to follow in the footsteps of a mother or father -- I was a Peace Corps Volunteer after my father, of course (I wrote about that inspiration "here":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4005/foreword-to-step-to-freedom). During the 2004 election, I made my feelings on presidential succession by bloodline or family connection pretty clear with "this poster":http://mistersugar.com/article/3509/standing-steady. I won't be voting for "Hillary Clinton for president":http://www.hillaryclinton.com/ either. And I'll admit that, given that and my discomfort with Roberts NPR hosting, I need to spend more time exploring the competing ideas of meritocracy and aristocracy. What do you think? ----- -----

    I remember hearing that from Steve Inskeep, too, and it stuck in my mind for exactly the same reasons. It raises questions about how Rebecca Roberts got her job — probably unfair questions. (There’s a bio of her here, http://weta.org/theintersection/show_personalitydetail.php?p_id=2). She seems quite accomplished, and certainly experienced enough to get national air time on NPR as a host.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: marktzk@gmail.com URL: http://www.thoughtsignals.com DATE: 05/12/2007 10:51:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Mark, you’re right about Rebecca. I actually enjoyed her hosting, and liked her gentle approach to Morning Edition.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/12/2007 10:51:23 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I think she is MUCH better than her mother.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix1@aol.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 05/12/2007 10:51:23 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Cookbook collecting, #1 AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/12/2007 03:07:35 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: In my Cake and cookbooks post last week, I mentioned I'd be collecting church cookbooks this summer. Looks like I found my first collectible -- Durham News religion reporter Flo Johnston includes this in "her column":http://www.thedurhamnews.com/115/story/56909.html today: bq.. *Don't go Dutch, go Greek with cookbook* If the memory of Greek pastries is still resonating with your taste buds after the Greek Festival -- held last weekend in Chapel Hill but sponsored by St. Barbara Greek Orthodox Church in Durham -- you might be interested in acquiring a copy of the church cookbook. "The Grecian Plate" is now in its 10th printing. This award-winner was published in 1984 and demand has been strong throughout the years, said Erie Cocolas of Chapel Hill, who claims to have typed the entire manuscript. "It just keeps selling and we have heard that people think it is one of the best Greek cookbooks on the market," she said. The editors of the book were Helen Paliouras of Chapel Hill, Joan Marinos of Durham and the late Lena Mousmoules of Chapel Hill. Copies are available by sending a check for $21, including tax and shipping, made out to The Grecian Plate to Erie Cocolas, 1298 Wildwood Drive, Chapel Hill, 27517. The book sells for $16.95. All proceeds from the sale of the cookbook will go to the building fund of the church, which has a new church under construction on N.C. 751. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Last item of the day: list blogging AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/09/2007 11:42:20 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As Erin can attest, I make lists -- seems like I'm always writing lists of activities and tasks and people to call and bills to pay and "goals to achieve":http://mistersugar.backpackit.com/pub/271306. Since the "NC Science Blogging Conference":http://wiki.blogtogether.org ended in January, I've had a stack of leftover yellow announcement cards, and on the backs of them I've taken to drawing my little square bullets and whatever action item has flitted across my mind. I've tried various online list sites. My favorite is one by former Chapel Hill blogger and "Tabulas":http://tabulas.com founder "Roy Kim":http://tabulas.com/~roy/ called "Listfoo":http://www.listfoo.com/ ("now open source":http://roykim.net/projects/listfoo/). Over the weekend, I came upon a link to "Behance":http://www.behance.com/Outfitter, and I ordered an orange Action Pad and a stack of Action Cards. These look pretty cool and useful, though my yellow conference cards are cheaper. And, at her Brazen Careerist blog, Boston Globe colunnist *Penelope Trunk* confesses to being a list maker, too, and she suggests "If you don't like writing lists, buy a new pen":http://blog.penelopetrunk.com/2007/05/09/if-you-dont-like-writing-lists-buy-a-new-pen/. ----- -----

    I am big list maker myself. Found you via a search for NC blogs…thinking about moving back to NC…
    I used Textpattern/Textdrive a couple years ago…I really liked however switched to Wordpress when I changed servers…

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: nathan.miller@gmail.com URL: http://www.bicycle-sidewalk.com DATE: 05/09/2007 11:42:20 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Me too. No matter how much I use computers I still gravitate back to the sensuous experience of paper and pen.

    But my Treo 650 is a great list maker. It even rings to remind me todo stuff. :) Reminders are key!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 05/09/2007 11:42:20 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Here’s an idea: why don’t you combine a couple of these elements, and blog about the list of bills you owe? You could then invite readers to pay them for you. You could start a popular trend that would spread like wildfire throughout the ‘sphere.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: jettorre@voyager.net URL: http://www.workingwithwords.blogspot.com DATE: 05/09/2007 11:42:20 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Ever since I was a little kid, I was a compulsive list-maker. Still am. Paper and pen.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: coturnix1@aol.com URL: http://scienceblogs.com/clock/ DATE: 05/09/2007 11:42:20 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Nobody cares AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/09/2007 12:35:29 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We caught the second half of tonight's episode of "Boston Legal":http://www.boston-legal.org/ ("watch it online":http://dynamic.abc.go.com/streaming/landing), and the monologue about Americans just not caring about how our country tortures people -- "not because of evidence but in order to get evidence" -- was about as tightly written as it could be. Would that it would be enough to get us off our asses to stop the madness. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Magnolia still tops to us AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/08/2007 10:29:43 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Well, shucks. Durham's stellar "Magnolia Grill":http://www.magnoliagrill.net/ was nominated for Best Outstanding Restaurant in this year's "James Beard Foundation Awards":http://starchefs.com/james_beard/2007/html/winners.shtml, but Rick Bayless's "Frontera Grill":http://www.fronterakitchens.com/restaurants/restaurants.html took the honors. Maybe Tom Michael can come back and give us a story about Frontera. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: National press for Locopops AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/08/2007 10:05:49 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: N&O restaurant critic and blogger *Greg Cox* "alerts us to some great coverage for our cherished Locopops":http://blogs.newsobserver.com/epicurean/index.php?title=loco_for_locopops&more=1&c=1&tb=1&pb=1 popsicle shop. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Putting the bread AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/07/2007 10:04:28 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The "Independent":http://indyweek.com newsweekly gives us fantastic series of essays about bread baking in the Triangle, "The fall and rise of good bread":http://www.indyweek.com/gyrobase/Content?oid=oid%3A116015. *David Auerbach*'s ode to the bread oven is particularly interesting, and as I read it, I was thinking back to some of the best bread I've had, of all places an island in the South Pacific and another island in the Caribbean. During "my Peace Corps service":http://mistersugar.com/clips/4005/foreword-to-step-to-freedom on *Paama Island* (in the Republic of Vanuatu), I loved walking the hundred yards from our home over to Micah's bread oven, where a couple days a week Micah would bake a simple white bread that sold for 100 vatu (about a dollar) a loaf. He'd have hand-mixed and kneaded the dough in an aluminum wash bin, divvied it up among the few dozen bread pans -- some left over from the missionary days before Vanuatu's 1980 independence -- and put the pans in the long and narrow brick oven that had been fired with the ample deadwood always available on the island. I'd hurry to get a loaf, since Micah always sold out, and I'd hurry to get back to our home, where I would cut a few slices and make a peanut-butter-and-jelly sandwich that was so much better than eating peanut butter on the hard Australian crackers we usually had in our food safe (although even the ants had a tough time with these crackers). Micah, by the way, was the father of Baby Erin, his daughter with Matu, the sister of my adoptive brother Noel. Paamese tradition suggested that Erin (my wife and fellow volunteer), as Noel's sister, would get to "put the name" to the baby, and any other aunts (or uncles for a boy baby) would give the child her own name, so a girl or boy on Paama would end up answering to a different name depending upon which relative was speaking. (I wrote about this Paama naming convention "here":http://mistersugar.com/article/3808/naming-rights). Matu went ahead and named her daughter Erin; I think we gave Matu some money for Baby Erin, and gave Micah some new bread pans that we picked up in the capital, Port Vila. But back to bread. When Micah wasn't making bread, we had an alternative: I baked bread in a Dutch oven covered with coals from the kitchen fire. When that loaf came out, it would cool for only a few minutes before I had a steaming slice, slathered with "Nutella":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nutella, sailing for my hungry mouth. The few days when we had day-old bread, Erin would make a tasty bread pudding, and that would have me remembering a tiny bakery in *Frederiksted*, a town on the west coast of *St. Croix in the U.S. Virgin Islands*. Before school most mornings, I walked up to the counter and paid my 50 cents for a warm, soft, delicious bread roll. After school, if I had a dollar, I'd return to the bakery and buy a square of moist bread pudding with plump raisins. Now I'm landlocked, but to read the Independent, seems I have a good opportunity to add some more bread tastings to my pantry of memories. ----- -----

    Thank goodness you didn’t have pictures or I would have been carb loading all day!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: davak@carotids.com URL: DATE: 05/07/2007 10:04:28 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Davak, I’ll look through my Vanuatu pics tonight to find a photo of the Paama bread. If we’re lucky, it will show that wonderful Nutella spread!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/07/2007 10:04:28 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Take another sip AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/07/2007 09:09:30 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Tastings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: At "3CUPS":http://3cups.net/?p=371 this past week, manager *Badi Bradley* announced a seemingly drastic new policy for a coffeeshop: after 11am on weekdays and all day weekends, no more of their "quick cup" single servings of coffee. Instead, he wants customers to order a press-pot of coffee and enjoy a slower sip: bq. Why the change? To better align ourselves with our Slow Food philosophy, to honor the coffee farmers by preparing coffee in the best tasting method, and to concentrate on the Press Pot… what we do well! At the "Chapel Hill Bloggers Meetup":http://blogtogether.org/article/268/chapel-hill-bloggers-meetup-5207-notes last Wednesday, I mentioned the "Slow Food":http://www.slowfood.com/ movement, and when someone asked about the significance of the phrase, "Brian Russell":http://yesh.com said simply, "It's the opposite of 'fast food.'" Oh, was the response, as Brian demonstrated the d'oh headslap to self that usually accompanies the realization that there is an alternative to the fast-paced processed food that corporate interests want to shove down our throats. So while Badi has his work cut out for him as he explains to his customers that he doesn't want to see them so quickly out the door, he's on the right path. Brian, by the way, is working on a "cool project for creative Carrboro workers":http://www.yesh.com/blog/2007/04/27/coworkershome-workers-town-meeting-in-carrboro/. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Thank you, Tom AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/07/2007 08:54:53 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Site Updates CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Well, *Tom Michael* stopped by mistersugar.com and posted some great entries, just as I knew he would. My thanks to him for guest blogging this past week, and filling this blog with interesting links and intriguing anecdotes. You're welcome back any time, Tom. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Ghost Town AUTHOR: mistersugar DATE: 05/06/2007 10:45:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Places CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/134t.jpg! Well, thank you, mistersugar, for allowing me to guest-blog this week. It was a pleasure. I leave you with the mystery of *Lobo Texas*. Officially, it's a "ghost town":http://www.texasescapes.com/TOWNS/Lobo/Lobo_Texas.htm. But quite mysteriously, every few years, it is haunted by "German-speaking ghosts":http://www.lobo-texas.com/lobohome/en/news/article-026.php. I always leave Lobo with something of interest. Once it was a "poem":http://www.schaffnerin.net/html/dust.html. Today it was an LP entitled "??Finnish Snow-Walks and Dances??":http://www.tokafi.com/newsitems/cd-feature-finnish-snow-walks-and-dances. ----- -----

    Thank you, Tom. Great posts and links this week. Now that you’ve got an account and a hang of the Textpattern system, feel free to post anytime.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: zuiker@gmail.com URL: http://blogtogether.org DATE: 05/06/2007 10:45:00 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Thanks, Tom. I enjoyed your posts.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com DATE: 05/06/2007 10:45:00 PM -----
-------- TITLE: West Texas Traffic AUTHOR: DATE: 05/06/2007 10:30:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ This was blocking my way in Alpine Texas this afternoon as I drove 160 km to Lobo. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Note to Boomers AUTHOR: DATE: 05/06/2007 12:34:16 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ How many times must you reinvent "middle age":http://www.nytimes.com/pages/magazine/? I was looking forward to - and fast approaching - the traditional definition myself, but you keep moving the goalposts. Put it back and please act your age. ----- -----

    Goalposts? I don’t even know where the field is and I’m still looking for parking.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: nerdpita@yahoo.com URL: http://www.dirtynerdluv.org DATE: 05/06/2007 12:34:16 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Reporting, not transcription AUTHOR: DATE: 05/06/2007 12:00:00 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Media CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ I understand the desire to "watch the watcher" but we ought to be careful when taking "this approach.":http://mistersugar.com/article/4329/theres-a-better-way After all, an interview is more than just getting the quotes right. If it helps for clarity, make adjustments to the quotes, too. It's reporting, not transcription. I've patched together audio interviews, where the subject, and here's a controversial statement, said something other than what they meant. No one speaks with exactitude and the best oral histories are largely edited. And then there's dialect. During the 1993 NBA Finals two Chicago newspapers took two methods to report a quote that I heard myself. Chicago shopowners, preparing for a victory riot, boarded up their store windows. The boastful *Charles Barkley* of the Phoenix Suns teased them and suggested they "remove the boards from the windows," because the Bulls weren't going to have a victory riot, because they weren't going to "have a victory":http://www.nba.com/history/finals/19921993.html. One paper transcribed it exactly as we all heard it on television, in full dialect. The other, better report, was more like the quote above. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cinco de Mayo AUTHOR: DATE: 05/05/2007 05:50:51 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ Out here festivities include mariachi music, folkloric dance, a parade of lowriders, cabrito roast and kids recreating the "Battle of Puebla":http://www.pbs.org/kpbs/theborder/history/timeline/10.html with water pistols on the courthouse lawn. ----- -----

    Cabrito roast sounds delicious. That’s goat, right?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/05/2007 05:50:51 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Tender young goat.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tommichael2@msn.com_nospam URL: DATE: 05/05/2007 05:50:51 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Fleur-de-lis AUTHOR: DATE: 05/05/2007 11:00:23 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/132t.jpg! OK, I’m still thinking about *Louisville* and that *Derby Pie*. And it’s reminding me of a recent visit by a Louisville duo (now living in LA): "Chandra & Leigh Watson":http://thewatsontwins.com/bio.html. The title song of their debut album, ??Southern Manners??, is a sweet melody about pie; sample it "here":http://www.thewatsontwins.com/music.html. bq. My southern manners do oblige Won’t you come on over for a slice of pie. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Run For The Roses AUTHOR: DATE: 05/04/2007 12:58:10 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Special days CATEGORY: Family ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/131t.jpg! Tomorrow morning my pal Camp is driving 200 miles in order to watch the "prizefight":http://fightfortheages.com/?p=13 between Oscar De La Hoya and Floyd Mayweather. For me, though, this Saturday is "Derby Day":http://www.kentuckyderby.com/2007/index.php, featuring that shortest of sporting events: *horseracing*. Horseracing holds a special place for me; my grandfather and then my father had a box at "Arlington Park":http://www.arlingtonpark.com/, and quite a few family tales flow from it. Here’s an odd confession: driving my 16-month-old daughter into town the other day, I had an overwhelming sensation to take her to the track. For other fathers I’m sure it’s the first baseball game or first time on ice skates. No predictions here. Last week I had dinner with one of the owners of "Churchill Downs":http://www.churchilldownsincorporated.com/our_company/history.html, but forgot to ask him to handicap this year's race. Next year, however, my Louisville friend Whitney promised me a slice of "Derby Pie":http://www.derbypie.com/mystery.html, which is heavy with chocolate, pecans and apparently trademarks. ----- -----

    Tom, I try to catch the Derby every year, too — best 3 minutes of sports! We watch lots of movies with horse races, and seeing a real race, even on tv, is a treat.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/04/2007 12:58:10 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Tom: We are back from Juarez and a rather disappointing fight. The Kentucky Club just across the border is THE place to watch a fight. Waiters in ties and the place is circa 1920. Lovely tequila selections.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: buck@bbgun.com URL: DATE: 05/04/2007 12:58:10 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Texas fog AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/04/2007 11:48:59 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by Tom Michael?? !(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/130.jpg(A bird heads for a feeder with a backdrop of fog.)! ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Cake and cookbooks AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/03/2007 09:35:54 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Family CATEGORY: Tastings ----- BODY: My in-laws stopped by this week, on their way home after visiting Erin's brother in Charlotte, and to celebrate the birthday of Erin's father, her mother brought along her angel food cake pan and a seasoned cookbook with the famous Shaughnessy family recipe for lemon sponge cake. This cake has been the Shaughnessy birthday cake for more than 50 years; I was introduced to it soon after I started dating Erin more than 15 years ago. The first time I tried it, I voiced my distaste for it -- "So many eggs," I said -- and I've been needled for that indiscretion ever since. This year, my tastes matured and evolved, I took two slices, with ice cream both times. Still eggy and spongey, but certainly delicious. p=. IMG_3274 Lemon Sponge Cake Famous cake IMG_3265 With butter-cream frosting speckling our lips and with Joanne holding the cherished recipe, we chatted about old church-guild cookbooks. "You know that the recipes in these cookbooks have to be good," said Joanne. No one would put a bad recipe into a cookbook that would be used by everyone else in the community. I decided on the spot to try this summer to collect at least 20 such cookbooks. Look for me rummaging in the book piles at neighborhood yard sales. ----- -----

    Ahh…. Grandmother Shaughnessy’s famous sponge cake! For nearly four years now, I’ve been in a baking battle when it comes to cakes due to the high altitude of our new desert mountain digs. But for our recent Easter dinner, I finally decided to ditch my fancy cookbook’s cake recipes with all of their high-altitude suggestions (which never fail to fall), and retreated to my messy scrapbook of tried and true family recipes. What a surprise that with just a few slight alterations (thanks to a little internet research), Grandmother’s Sponge Cake came through like a champ. The catch has something to do with using a bunt pan — it apparently helps to hold up the middle. And, I added an extra free range egg (from my very own hens) and used regular unbleached white flour instead of cake flour. The recipe has no butter, so it is super light and is as delicate as could be. As soon as I realized the success of this old recipe, I called my good friends Buck & Camp, and promised a birthday cake for Camp’s upcoming birthday. So on Friday night, I carefully packed up and transported over a long and windy rocky dirt road and a even longer (and hot!) highway drive, an exquisite yellow sponge cake with the lightest white butter icing you can imagine (I whipped that icing in my mixer for 25 minutes.) The guests at the party fell in love with my cake, and loved even more that it was indeed an old family recipe. It really was the best cake ever. Thank you, Grandmother, for passing on a tradition that has now been reignited for the next generation.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: katherine@doegirl.com URL: http://www.doegirl.com DATE: 05/03/2007 09:35:54 PM ----- COMMENT:

    My mouth is watering anew.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/03/2007 09:35:54 PM ----- COMMENT:

    OH the cake! I wish I could master it but alas, it has defeated me every time. Last month I made three cakes trying to get it right for my little Leo’s first birthday. I ended up at the grocery store 20 minutes before the guests arrived to buy a little cake slathered with frosting. Not so good, but Leo doesn’t know any better yet. Maybe for his second birthday I’ll get it right.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 05/03/2007 09:35:54 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Backyard visitors AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 05/03/2007 09:33:52 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Housecalls CATEGORY: ----- BODY: We caught a glimpse of a "rose-breasted grosbeak":http://www.flickr.com/search/?q=rose-breasted+grosbeak&s=int&z=t at the birdfeeder this week (thanks to our friend, Butch, who has kept us stocked with birdseed for the last three years). The cardinals and woodpeckers and doves and even a blue jay or two are around, too. No goldfinches yet. ----- -----

    Anton, come to our house. We’re hoarding the finches! Do you have a thistle sock?

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: arsepoetica@gmail.com URL: http://www.arsepoetica.com DATE: 05/03/2007 09:33:52 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Tune in Now AUTHOR: DATE: 05/03/2007 06:38:32 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: Radio ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/129t.jpg! You may be wondering what's with the recent posts about *Marfa Texas* on a North Carolina-based blog. (For those of us living in and around this remote tiny town, sometimes it doesn't seem so disconnected.) But in an odd coincidence today (thanks for the tip, "mistersugar":http://mistersugar.com/article/4151/hear-me-on-the-radio), there is a Marfa-NC link... but you must act now. If you’re in North Carolina and it’s noon, you need to tune your radio (or browser) to "WUNC":http://wunc.org/ (91.5 FM Chapel Hill, and elsewhere) to hear "??The State of Things??":http://wunc.org/tsot/blog/marfa-public-radio with host *Frank Stasio*. You are in for a treat. The very talented musician *Tift Merritt* will be on the show. She is working with our radio station, *Marfa Public Radio*, on a new program called "The Spark":http://www.marfaspark.com/. Tift is smart, sweet, hard-working and apparently too modest for not telling me about this appearance. And if you miss it at noon, it reprises at 9 PM and afterwards can be found in the "TSOT podcast":feed://wunc.org/tsot/archive/podcast.xml. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: West Texas Television AUTHOR: DATE: 05/01/2007 10:21:17 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Music CATEGORY: ----- BODY: ??Guest blogging by?? "Tom Michael":http://mistersugar.com/author/Tom+Michael/ !<(image)http://mistersugar.com/images/128t.jpg! It’s been too long since I’ve been to NC, but quite a few bands I like hail from the state (more on that later). I once saw "*Vic Chesnutt*":http://www.vicchesnutt.com/ play from his wheelchair at "Cat’s Cradle":http://mistersugar.com/article/4216/old-crow-medicine-show-rocked-the-cradle, where this Sunday the stage is set for *The Gourds*, who I caught at "Austin City Limits":http://www.pbs.org/klru/austin/. The Gourds are the prototypical Austin band, and "??Gin and Juice,??":http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AQQtvdCyb5A their bluegrass cover of a rap hit, is a local anthem in the Texas capital. Like the clerk in Woodstock NY who is a novelist or the waiter in Los Angeles CA who is a screenwriter, in Austin TX everyone seems to be a musician. It’s drifted over into my part of the state, where around the “West Texas television” (i.e., campfire), I remain, according to my wife, “the only guy in town” who doesn’t play guitar. When "*David Byrne*":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/01/14/arts/music/14herm.html?ex=1326430800&en=e8c30313b01e3563&ei=5088&partner=rssnyt&emc=rss visited (& borrowed my bike!), he said much of "the same":http://journal.davidbyrne.com/2006/07/7406.html: bq. It took me a bit to get used to this homey approach to music and performance. New Yorkers are sadly more “professional” in their attitude towards their art. … When I first encountered and participated in these campfire sings I realized the meaning and resonance of these things goes deeper — to some extent this is a way of resisting the century-old trend of produced and commodified entertainment and culture. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Texas AUTHOR: DATE: 05/01/2007 01:18:19 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Readings CATEGORY: ----- BODY: As guest blogger for the week, it’s nice to be on the same page as *mistersugar*. Because he's one of the most avid readers I know, he may appreciate this tale. I live in the "Big Bend":http://www7.nationalgeographic.com/ngm/0702/feature2/ region of rural Far West Texas, in the state's largest county, at a spot called Calamity Creek. Big skies, few people. The nearby towns are Alpine, Marfa, Fort Davis and Marathon. Add up all four towns and we still don't reach 10,000 - even on our tippy-toes. I serve on the board of a "local library":http://www.alpinepubliclibrary.org/history/history.htm, which is raising funds to build a new facility to replace the little cottage that houses it. The other day, an old man from the senior center walked in. He announced he’d never been in a library and had only read one book in his life (the Bible), but he wanted to try another. The librarian gave him ??Texas??, by "James Michener":http://www.achievement.org/autodoc/page/mic0int-1. Since he was in a library, he thought the proper thing to do was to sit down and read. And that’s what he did, page by page - more than 1,500 of them. He came into the library in the morning, left in the evening and said very little. A few days later, he finished ??Texas?? and returned it to the librarian. “That was a good story,” he said. “This "Michener":http://www.utexas.edu/faculty/council/1999-2000/memorials/Michener/michener.html fellow ought to write another.” ----- -----

    While I’ve read plenty of James Michener — The Source is my favorite — I never did crack Texas. See my earlier post about how Michener gave Richard Gildenmeister his nickname.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: anton@zuiker.com URL: http://mistersugar.com DATE: 05/01/2007 01:18:19 PM ----- COMMENT:

    Go Tom Go. Hope all is well in West Texas, hope we can meet your NC inlaws sometime. And of coures, Fiona Mae looks lovely.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: tiftm@aol.com URL: http://www.tiftmerritt.com DATE: 05/01/2007 01:18:19 PM ----- COMMENT:

    I love Michener. I think Chesapeake is my fav. I’ve never read more about breeding dogs or building boats, but I loved it!

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: mclaffey@masshist.org URL: http://www.masshist.org DATE: 05/01/2007 01:18:19 PM ----- COMMENT:

    If you liked Chesapeake, you will most likely love Beautiful Swimmers: Watermen, Crabs, and the Chesapeake Bay by William Warner.

    And, as for older Texans turning to books for the first time, one should really, really read Life is So Good by George Dawson and Richard Glaubman. Dawson walked into a Dallas literacy program one day and announced his intention to enrich his life by learning to read. He was 100 years old. His book goes back a lot farther, and the first chapter haunts me most days.

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: edarrell@sbcglobal.net URL: http://www.timpanogos.wordpress.com DATE: 05/01/2007 01:18:19 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Guest bloggers in May AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/30/2007 10:37:57 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Site Updates CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Tomorrow, *Tom Michael* (husband to my wife's sister) will begin a week of guest blogging here at mistersugar.com. I'm honored that he accepted my invitation to post his observations on life, memory, North Carolina and anything else he wants. Tom worked for 10 years as an editor at "Encyclopedia Britannica":http://eb.com/ in Chicago. He also started a zine, wrote for "Time Out Chicago":http://www.timeout.com/chicago/index.jsp, saw countless concerts and visited a wide variety of restaurants. Along the way, he's met some amazing people, and interviewed many of them on his long-running radio show, Tom's Town. After crisscrossing the country in a campervan, he and his talented artist wife, "Katherine Shaughnessy":http://doegirl.com/, alighted in a far corner of the Texas, where they've got more projects than I can keep track of -- "Wool & Hoop Crewel Embroidery Kits":http://woolandhoop.com/ is one very successful endeavor; "Marfa Public Radio":http://www.marfapublicradio.org/, which Tom helped found and build, might get fully off the ground someday soon, we hope. I dearly admire Tom -- he watched World Cup soccer with me at 5am, after all -- and it's going to be a treat to read his entries this coming week. Have at it, Tom. _After Tom guest blogs here, there may be other guest bloggers. And, with luck, by the end of May this site will have a nice new look (I'm working with the designer "Kelly Sims":http://anotherbrightidea.org)._ ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Trying to see Ted Kennedy AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/30/2007 09:01:15 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Blogging CATEGORY: ----- BODY: My college buddy, *Jim Parker*, rang me last week to tell me he'd gotten a promotion at work and will soon be leading an effort to incorporate blogging into his company's website. When he asked if I'd read his personal blog lately, I realized I hadn't, that I'd only been reading his "del.iciou.us linklog":http://del.icio.us/jiparker. I'm subscribed now to his "Attention Grab":http://www.attentiongrab.com/ blog about "media, technology, and humanity." When I did finally get to his site this weekend, I found this amazing post, "US Senators, a Vice President, a Camera Man, and a Cop":http://www.attentiongrab.com/?p=37. It's a wonderful storyblogging post, with memories tied to current events and a bit of serendipity: bq. Over the years, through my mother’s connections (and some of my own) I’ve gotten to meet or shake hands or be within speaking distance of many interesting people. But what's best about this post is how Jim relates to the people he met that day -- a nun, a cameraman, a police officer, a Secret Service agent, a couple of senators -- and how his interactions with those individuals demonstrate his connections to humanity. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Get on the bus AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/26/2007 10:06:49 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: I pulled into the driveway at 8:15pm tonight, just out of an exciting first meeting of a soon-to-organized association of Triangle-area science communicators (held at the beautiful "Burroughs Wellcome Fund":http://www.bwfund.org/ building), to see our friend, Butch, himself just parked in the driveway after driving straight down from Cleveland. Great surprise! -- he greeted me with a six pack of "Great Lakes Brewing Company":http://www.greatlakesbrewing.com/ Commodore Perry pale ale. Butch is here to attend the "Motor Bus Society":http://www.motorbussociety.org/conventn/index.html annual convention, and will tour North Carolina's bus depots, garages and facilities. He got his hobby of photographing buses from his father, who collected pictures of trains and buses. Have you ever really looked at all the different types of buses? Look for them and observe. Erin and I snapped pictures for Butch when we traveled around the world, and we presented him with an album of bus images from Vanuatu (Toyota vans), Australia (giant, plush touring buses), Thailand (jouncing blue buses with a ticket lady who helped us get to the mind-bogglingly claustrophic alley markets) and Chicago (good ol' CTA). If I could go back in time 30 or 40 years, I'd invest in touring bus manufacturers. I'd be wealthy, and cruising the country in my own mistersugar-mobile. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: There's a better way AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/26/2007 12:27:23 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Media CATEGORY: ----- BODY: "Welcome to the transparent era, my fellow journalists," says Jeff Jarvis in an excellent post with his thoughts about "The obsolete interview":http://www.buzzmachine.com/2007/04/26/the-obsolete-interview/. This is a response to an online debate about how journalists interview people and how a lot of online personalities (aka bloggers) want better control -- or, deeper pools of information -- on the content of interviews. I wrote about this two years ago, suggesting that, when you are interviewed by a reporter, "record the interview and post it to your own site":http://mistersugar.com/article/3878/truth-in-journalism. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Snowed AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/25/2007 11:06:33 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Media CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Just watched the "Bill Moyers Journal":http://www.pbs.org/moyers/journal/index-flash.html episode about how the media played along with the lying Bush Administration to sell America war in Iraq. UPDATE a few minutes later: Hmm. I think I'll need to watch this again, since I've long argued to my family against using the lump-sum term "the media." From soon after 9/11, there were plenty of American citizens, and enough reporting, to make the case against fomenting a sham war. It's just that the liars were really good at drowning out the voices of reason. ----- -----

    I hope someone taped it or it’ll be online… cause I missed it. :(

    Did hear Mr. Moyers on Democracy Now! last night. Such an amazing comeback considering the details of his rousting from PBS by right wing hatchet men at the Corporation for Public Broadcasting. Moyer’s now famous speech at the National Conference on Media Reform is amazing! Its called Take Public Broadcasting Back. http://www.commondreams.org/views05/0516-34.htm

    AUTHOR: EMAIL: brussell@ibiblio.org URL: http://www.yesh.com/blog DATE: 04/25/2007 11:06:33 PM -----
-------- TITLE: Slow food blogging speeding up AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/24/2007 11:44:50 PM PRIMARY CATEGORY: BlogTogether-NC CATEGORY: ----- BODY: The food blogging ball is rolling -- I'm finally off my duff and planning for the series of events around food and blogging for this summer and early fall. Here's an event I hope I can attend and blog: "Slow Food founder Carlo Petrini will speak at NCSU May 23rd at 7pm":http://www.cefs.ncsu.edu/news.htm as part of the "Farm-to-Fork celebration of Local Foods and Local Farms":http://www.cefs.ncsu.edu/petrini.htm. (Don't miss Corby Kummer's excellent article in the May 2007 Atlantic Monthly, "The Supermarket of the Future":http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/prem/200705/supermarkets, about a slow-food grocery store in Turin, Italy.) If you read Michael Pollan's essay in last Sunday's NYTimes Magazine, "You Are What You Grow":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/22/magazine/22wwlnlede.t.html?ex=1335067200&en=56d0833dcf38897c&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink, you'll see that there's a movement to get our country back on a sane farming and eating practice. Our "BlogTogether food blogging idea":http://wiki.blogtogether.org/blogtogether/show/FoodBlogging is another local way to celebrate the good farming and good food in our community. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Accidental journalism AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/24/2007 04:18:46 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: ----- BODY: Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist "David Halberstam":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/David_Halberstam "died yesterday in a car accident":http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/24/arts/24halberstam.html?ex=1335153600&en=dc4877da99e02ca1&ei=5124&partner=permalink&exprod=permalink, and when I read that the driver of the car in which Halberstam was a passenger was a grad student shuttling him away from a j-school speaking engagement, I recalled the brief wave of trepidation just before I drove a famous speaker to or from UNC's campus, worried that an accident would mar the visit. I drove Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Mark Schoofs "one time":http://mistersugar.com/article/3350/state-of-the-union, "Dan Gillmor":http://www.dangillmor.com/ another time. Both made it to campus safely and gave great talks. I saw Halberstam speak at the "2003 Nieman Conference on Narrative Journalism":http://www.nieman.harvard.edu/events/conferences/narrative2003/bios.html. He was a giant of the profession, one of the "best and the brightest":http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Best_and_the_Brightest (written as a compliment). We'll miss you, David. ----- ----- -------- TITLE: Bric-a-brac in the Courtyard of Chapel Hill AUTHOR: Anton Zuiker DATE: 04/23/2007 11:53:08 AM PRIMARY CATEGORY: Observations CATEGORY: North-Carolina ----- BODY: A beautiful Spring day in Chapel Hill, and after visiting my bank to deposit a check from the New York Times Company (I recently provided a small bit of consulting on a future web resource for "nytimes.com":http://nytimes.com), I walked up Franklin Street to pay a visit, natch, to "3CUPS":http://www.3cups.net/, where manager *Badi Bradley* finally had a satisfied smile on his face as he looked out onto the courtyard, which just last week emerged from too many months of reconstruction. Where before there was a sidewalk and a nice patch of green grass, there's now a European-style brick yard centered with a fountain that overflows into a short stream. Tables and