I’ve now been at scienceblogs for a couple of months, and it is fascinating to me – I went from a stand-alone blog to one with a whole lot of other people, and getting to know the local culture is a really interesting exercise. Overwhelmingly, it has been really wonderful and fascinating. Still, I have learned some new-to-me things about this culture. I thought I would do a series, seeing if I could sum up the lessons learned here as I adapt to this strange new world. So here is the first one.
#1 – The phrase “American Conservative Evangelical Protestantism” is spelled “R-E-L-I-G-I-O-N. In some cases, admittedly, the category of “religion” is diversified to include the Inquisition and Moslem suicide bombers.
In response to what is clearly a custom of the country, I feel obligated to try and conform. I will thus resist the attempt to observe that there are difference on a whole host of subjects between the perspective of say, a leftist Jew, a neo-pagan, a zen Buddhist or even an American Liberal Evangelical Protestant vs. an American Conservative Evangelical Protestant, much less a Grand Inquisitor.
In conformation with this custom of priveleging the general over the inconvenient specificity that details and distinctions bring, I am also going to start referring always to “scientists” rather than specifying what scientific discipline they specifically belong to, what their training is and what their goals are. I think this will enhance clarity, or at least bring me more traffic. I will also refrain from distinguishing between whether this is something that scientists actually know what they are talking about or not – after all, it is said by a scientist, and therefor goes into the catetgory of things about scientists.
So here goes – all observations gleaned form my months of reading scientists on sciencblogs:
Scientists are definitely trying to contain global warming. Scientists are also trying to cause global warming by developing new ways to consume fossil energies. Scientists believe that global warming is anthropogenic and accellerating. Scientists believe that global warming is not anthropogenic (well, 2 or 3 of them, anyway, but let’s not muddy the water with specificities). Scientists are trying to reduce chemical contamination of the waterways. Scientists are also trying to increase chemical contamination of the waterways by developing new pesticides. Scientists believe women should count equally with men. Scientists believe that women just make the problems of inequality up. Scientists believe in cutting the vocal cords of barking dogs. Scientists believe this is inhumane. Scientists don’t have a problem with eating meat. Scientists are vegetarians. Scientists live in Sweden. Scientists have no fashion sense. Scientists really like highly fashionable shoes and have a great deal of fashion sense. Scientists believe that duck sex can unite duck sex fetishists and scientists. Scientists can teach high level physics to dogs. Scientists can comment on blogs in entire sentences using only the word “fuck.” Scientists are getting laid. Scientists are lonely. Scientists are good at creating ways to destroy the whole world. Scientists are good at fixing the world, but not quite as good as they are at destroying it. Scientists have breasts. Scientists are sadly without breasts. Scientists are concerned that there aren’t enough scientists with breasts. Scientists believe that the Yellowstone mega-caldera is not likely to explode. Scientists believe NASA has conducted secret tests on the best sexual positions for space nookie. Scientists have determined that marshmallow peeps are better than twinkies. Scientists consume marshmallow peeps. Scientists think stuff is cool. Scientists think we should have sex like the Swedes. Scientists think having sex like the Swedes might be depressing. Scientists think that population will be best controlled by instituting communism and then collapsing it. Scientists believe blogs should be civil. Scientists are not always civil. Scientists are religious. Scientists are atheists. Scientists really like more blog traffic.
See, now I know about scientists!