Thursday, January 19, 2006

Just what are stridulations, anyway?

Welcome to Stridulations!

This blog is a work in progress. I'm not sure where it's going, and I can tell you ahead of time that it'll be only sporadically updated (at least for now). But, as planned, it'll be a place for bug talk.

For those who don't know me already: I'm a serious antenna-head; in fact, I study insects for a living. I'm a postdoctoral fellow in the Department of Biology at the University of Rochester. If you look up this photo, I'm third from the viewer's right in the front (kneeling) row, wearing the aqua windbreaker over a dark red shirt.

In fact, I'm ecstatically happy to finally be studying insects for a living. I loved bugs as a kid growing up in a blue-collar neighborhood in northern Connecticut. We had a back yard full of grasses and wildflowers and garden flowers and grapevines and such, and it was also full of insects. While no one would call me a highly physically coordinated person, I did learn at an early age how to pick up a large Chinese mantid without getting my fingers too badly torn up.

After some career-choice missteps at an early age, I realized that I loved bugs as much in my late thirties as I did at elementary school age, so I finally went to graduate school and earned an M.S. and Ph.D. in biological sciences at Western Michigan University. For any readers who are seriously considering getting a Ph.D. at or around age 46 (which I did in 2002) and are wondering whether they're too old, here's my advice: Do it. With or without the Ph.D., you're going to be 46 anyway.

(That's all for today. Actual bug content will follow.)

Oh, and you can find the definition of the title here.

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