Friday Shorts

image copyright Fred First
* Coldest day of the year so far, but a dry cold, and though I will have to start warming up the car at 7 to get to work by 8, I think I’ll get there just fine. I left the house yesterday in a blizzard, gambling that it was just a brief, intense snow shower. Five minutes later, I was driving in sunshine under a cobalt blue sky.

* I have been approved for Google AdSense, and still undecided what to do. Would be nice to recoup at least the cost of the monthly DSL by some (hopefully tasteful and unobtrusive) ads on the periphery of the blog page. I’ve resisted going this route now for almost five years (anniversary of FFF actually in March) and can cancel out after a few months if it isn’t an acceptable fit. This, just in the way letting you know the blog may change in subtle ways soon. Or not. We’ll see.

* Hey man, why don’t we get wasted and do an interpretive dance of protein synthesis? Maybe only a biologist would get such a kick from this YouTube presentation of a noble laureate in a tighty whitey dress shirt and thin seventies-type tie narrate as several hundred UCDavis college students play the role of messenger RNA, ribosomes and such. What a hoot (at least for me.)

* And here are two images that I found worth a look: a bike “eaten” by a tree (thanks Pablo) and something in our child rearing years I neglected to ever do with duct tape.

* The image above–which has absolutely nothing to do with any of the above topics–was taken a few days ago from the logging road that winds through the steep immature pine forest behind the house. Now this would be a great place to use that panorama function with the camera. And if this isn’t done in the near future, there will be no view from back there. The pines are quickly filling in the vistas, as I describe in Slow Road Home in the piece called “Succession”.

Now, I better go put on my Friday shorts (and don’t forget the pants!) and get to work.

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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.

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  1. You can do AdSense sensibly. If you build in a header bar just below your own header bar, that will give you the best conversion ($). In between blog entries is a possibility too. If you just do the text ads then it won’t be obtrusive. If you hit my home page you can get an idea of what I’m talking about ( ).