Heyo!! Published fiction author here!! Recently, I had the privilege of publishing an old flash fiction of mine, “Lethe,” in a local magazine, the Meridian Creative Arts Journal. It’s about fly fishing, and also about the nuclear apocalypse, but most of all, it’s my response to writing about love, and what’s worth writing about love. All that in 1000 words, too—because, you know, I’m so good at conciseness and that kind of thing. In any case, it was such a privilege to not only be able to put my name in actual print (!!), but to also do a reading of this story. I’ll do more voices next time, and that’s a promise, but I had a lot of fun this first time and would be honored to read again. If you’re interested in reading “Lethe,” you can read the 51st edition of Meridian online here—I’m the finisher, on page 77. While you’re there, be sure to check out the wonderful work of some of my wonderful writer friends, Sierra Farnum, Jemma Kuster, Ruth Nowotny, Jeffrey Pincus, Emma Schick, and Tristan Skogen (whose name is spelled with an “e,” Meridian). I hate to pick favorites, but Ruth’s “Psalm” will knock your socks off, Jemma’s “The Life Cycle of the Mimic Glass Lizard” would have made me a super fan if I wasn’t already, and Jeff’s “Full of Surprises,” well… it plays out as advertised. I’m gonna risk speaking for them and say your support means a lot to all of us!
While you’re still here, though, I figured it might be fun to talk a little about my process behind the scenes, like with my last SciAll project. Without further ado, let’s talk Lethe! But not out loud, because I don’t totally know how to pronounce it… still.
And just when I was thinking that Science Communicator header was looking suspicious, too…
It’s true—while I’ve brazenly word-vomited enough to justify the title of Author and become a Creature of the Night in order to get that stuff out (Remember, Kids: Suffering Makes Better Art, And That Is True), my portfolio has been lacking in science communication this past year. I’d love to remedy that, though, and perhaps the best place to start would be my semester-long internship with SciAll last fall. SciAll is a nonprofit science communication platform founded by marine biologist Dr. Mike Gil with the aim of making science more accessible to anyone intimidated by STEM fields. Since SciAll is made entirely up of overbooked researchers volunteering their time, I was able to speak with so many intelligent, eccentric, and passionate people from (literally) across the country, and consider myself super lucky to be a part of their work.
In this episode of Cabinet of Curiosities, I collaborated with the University of Michigan’s own Dr. Jenan Kharbush, chemical oceanographer and microbial biogeochemist to tell the story of her STEM career through the lens of her styrofoam cups. We also talked about doodling, whale training, and seasickness. Check it out!
Well, it looks as though 2022 has already slipped through my fingers, because this post is already so last year. Sorry about that—I try to prioritize making a post the best it can be over its timing, but I think my philosophy should probably be closer to “quality before quantity, except after consistency,” because the time for resolutions has already wrapped.
Speaking of Wrapped, wrapping season has long since passed over at Spotify. Even their indie, small-town competitor, Apple Music, has its own original spin on this New Year’s stats sheet with Apple Replay. Aw, cute! Keep it up with these fresh ideas, Tim! As an Apple Music user myself (🚩)—and someone who can’t shut up about music, to boot—I’m always hit with that sweet, sweet, social media FOMO every time December rolls around, and I was sheepishly excited that Apple was finally providing their own option for seeing my year in music. What I walked away with, however, was largely disappointing—Apple Replay nails everything Spotify Wrapped has already done, down to its cheugy corporate-hip lingo, and that means it also nails Wrapped’s structural flaws.
Look, I know this is probably the last thing worth getting militant about, and to tell you the truth, my feelings are nowhere near that strong about this. Still, I figured now was as good an opportunity as any to enter my own dark horse into the streaming music recap race (wrolls wright off the tongue. Wrrecap. Wrrrapped. Wrrrreplay)—a real homegrown replay/wrapped situation. So, as 2022 comes to a close (four days into 2023), let’s take a look back at the music that defined my year, and that probably didn’t define yours, but here you are, reading about it, so it’s no skin off my back. Don’t think about it too much.