Dr. Joan Bushwell's Chimpanzee Refuge

Jim Fiore

Bill Bruford The Autobiography

What do you expect when you pick up an autobiography of a rock musician? Sex? Drugs? Rock-n-roll exploits with a chainsaw and a gallon of baby oil at the Ramada? Scandalous stories of band-mates and sundry hangers-on? You get virtually none of that in Bill Bruford The Autobiography. It’s much better. Insightful, entertaining, and well-written,…

Happy Birthday Bill Bruford

Master of the drum kit and poly-rhythmist Bill Bruford celebrates 60 years today. Well known among all manner of percussionists and drummers, Bruford’s work spans 40 years from his early days with Yes, his tenure with several incarnations of King Crimson, and his own band, Earthworks, along with work in bands such as National Health,…

Is Total Cholesterol Misleading?

Under 200. That’s the usual target for total cholesterol as reported in popular media. But are all 200s the same? I just received my profile from a recent blood test. Here’s what it said. Total cholesterol: 204 LDL (bad cholesterol): 131.6 HDL (good cholesterol): 57 Triglycerides: 77 The total is computed as LDL+HDL+Tri/5. These are…

Defar Breaks 5000m Indoor Record

Meseret Defar of Ethiopia ran 14:24.37 in Stockholm to break the women’s 5000 meter indoor mark, lowering it by over 3 seconds. It is worth noting that this formidable run was performed on a track well short of the 200 meter indoor “standard” found in many colleges and universities, and thus displays tighter corners. Details…

Louie Bellson, RIP

Sad news for the drummers and jazz lovers on SciBlogs. Jazz drumming legend Louie Bellson passed away unexpectedly on Valentine’s Day. Some details here. Update: Here’s a short bio video with some nice bits of Louie playing and some rather unique kit layouts.

The other day, perennial political tool Rush Limbaugh was on CNBC defending his now infamous “I want Obama to fail” comment. His argument went something like this (paraphrasing): Yes, I want him to fail. His policies are liberal policies and I want liberal policies to fail. I want conservative policies to succeed. I find this…

Why Breathe When You Can Swallow?

From a recent ad spotted in Running Times magazine, we discover a way to get oxygen into the bloodstream of athletes without using the lungs. Yes, it’s SportsOxy Shot from Scientific Solutions LLC. They’re selling “super oxygenated” water that’s supposed to drastically improve athletic performance. A “serving” is 10 milliliters and it contains 15 volumes…

How Well Can You Count?

And now for something almost completely different on The Refuge: How well can you count? No, not like in grade school. I wrote and recorded a tune the other day. It’s called Timmy Umbwebwe Lights A Candle (yes, I have a thing for odd titles). The initial beat was composed on the drum kit. Not…

Bible Verses Illustrated

Here’s a wonderful rendition of 2 Kings 2:23 Who says the Bible can’t be a source of hilarity? (hat tip to vdrums.com)

Well, at least Stevie Van Zandt and Britain’s Youth Music seem to think so. A recent article in The Times refers to research by Youth Music indicating that the games have prompted upwards of 2.5 million children to take up musical instruments. I’m skeptical. No doubt the games are a lot of fun for people…