Hi friends. I have been a downright slacker when it comes to blogging! But I am officially dug in on my next book project, which is about butterflies. In a couple of weeks my significant other (who loves to drive) and I will be recreating Vladimir Nabokov's 1941 road trip across the U.S. I will be in search of the butterflies N. collected on that trip (I will not catch any butterflies -- I cannot stand to interrupt a wild animal in its day).
The point is to investigate change over time, and to also wonder if literature, even at the level achieved by V.N., can mean anything in the context of mass extinction, etc. N. was an avid amateur lepidopterist -- a citizen scientist -- but he also saw deep transcendence and creativity in the magic of the living world, especially his beloved leps.
I am now pledging to step up the pace of my blogging. I sincerely hope you will stay with me and just delete the posts if you don't feel like reading them (can't blame you). For today, here is a fabulous issue of UCBerkeley's Breakthroughs Magazine dedicated to citizen science.