Ethan was born in New York City as the son of a Jewish postal worker. He did his undergrad at Northwestern, taught public school in Houston, Texas and Los Angeles, California, before moving to Florida, where he got his PhD in theoretical astrophysics at the University of Florida. After that, he moved to Madison, Wisconsin, where he taught at the University of Wisconsin, ate too much cheese, and also met his life partner, Jamie. After working in astrophysics research at the University of Arizona and starting the world-renowned science blog, Starts With A Bang, he moved from the hellish desert to rain-soaked Portland in 2008. Since then, he's been a professor at the University of Portland and Lewis & Clark College, grown a nationally renowned beard and mustache, got invited to join a circus and probably drank more beer than a healthy person should. He currently works as the head curator at Trapit, and can't wait to tell you a little bit more about the Universe.

“I call myself the Amusement Park. That’s because I’m funny and scary at the same time.” -Terry Crews There’s something to be said for the power of unique talents, or for combining a set of rare skills in a unique way. This weekend, have a listen to Murder By Death‘s interesting song, You Are the Last…

“And so with the sunshine and the great bursts of leaves growing on the trees, just as things grow in fast movies, I had that familiar conviction that life was beginning over again with the summer.” -F. Scott Fitzgerald The moment of Solstice has passed, and we’ve officially entered Summer (in the north) here at Starts…

“The brighter you are, the more you have to learn.” -Don Herold There’s a big difference between the Summer Sun and the Winter Sun, and I’m not talking about anything to do with the Sun itself. No, I’m talking about what you feel here on Earth due to the Sun’s rays! There’s no doubt that…

“Life is tragic simply because the earth turns and the sun inexorably rises and sets, and one day, for each of us, the sun will go down for the last, last time.” -James A. Baldwin But each day is a chance for hope, learning something new and experiencing something wonderful. In fact, in just a…

“Soccer matches should be something special, something people eagerly look forward to, something that brightens life.” -P. J. O’Rourke Well, my World Cup fanatics, the time is upon us. The 2014 World Cup is here and off to a spectacular start! No doubt, some of you have incredibly fond memories of previous soccer/fútbol matches; for…

“It suddenly struck me that that tiny pea, pretty and blue, was the Earth. I put up my thumb and shut one eye, and my thumb blotted out the planet Earth. I didn’t feel like a giant. I felt very, very small.” -Neil Armstrong When you think about the faintest object in the Messier catalogue…

“I guess I just prefer to see the dark side of things. The glass is always half-empty. And cracked. And I just cut my lip on it. And chipped a tooth.” -Janeane Garofalo During the week, it’s all about the natural wonders of the Universe here, about what we know and how we know it,…

“The real deal is always going to win in the end.” -Bill Hybels I always do my best to cut through the hype and give it to you straight here at Starts With A Bang, and that means telling you the secrets of the Universe and the truth about our physical reality to the absolute best…

“Sometimes a person has to go a very long distance out of his way to come back a short distance correctly.” -Edward Albee Every week on Ask Ethan, we’ve been taking a look at my favorites of the questions you send in. And one of the things you’ve been wondering about is this: when we…

“I see miracles all around me Stop and look, it’s all astounding Water, fire, air and dirt Fucking magnets, how do they work?” -Insane Clown Posse Oh, Insane Clown Posse, is there any amount of education that could ever change you? On the one hand, magnetism is a lot more counterintuitive than simple mechanics, I…