Notebook Entries July 2004

Notebook entry, July 26th, 2004

Today is my last day of vacation and I am proud to announce that I finished the short piece on racism, diversity, and the MHC gene complex. I hope to polish it up with edit work and post it to the web site tonight.

As for the new house, we have a air condition/heating specialist tearing up the ceiling of the basement installing new air ducts in preparation to put in a new furnace and air conditioner. The house was built in 1942 and had an old "octopus" gravity furnace as original equipment. It still worked fine, but it was only operating at 15% efficiency and one of the major stipulation in buying the house was that the owners kick in a $3,000 "furnace update" fee. After the dust settles and the air conditioner is installed, it should cost us close to $9, 500. Can you say MONEYPIT?

Speaking of pits -- I return to my day job tomorrow.

Notebook entry, July 20, 2004

I am currently on vacation from my day job until July 27th. Yeah!!! Much of the unpacking of boxes and moving things from here to there has been accomplished, and I have found at least four straight days of uninterrupted quiet in which to begin writing again. It feels like part of my soul has been missing for the past nine months; I have been wandering in the desert for all that time with no directional signs pointing to the correct path to take. The disaster concerning my sister-in-law is now just a bad memory that is quickly being erased by my brain. I do wish her well (and the latest report is that she has found temporary work and has established the proper contacts to receive food stamps), but once again, Diana and I both agreed that she was just too high maintenance to care for at this stage of our lives.

I have just completed the book review for A Mind of Her Own: the Evolutionary Psychology of Women that I finished reading in May 2004 and bought in the fall of 2003. I will place this review on the web site within the next day or two. I am also working on a short piece concerning racism and diversity as seen through the eyes of the MHC gene complex. I am culling the work from Robert Winston's book, Human Instinct: How Our Primeval Impulses Shape Our Modern Lives. I am framing the work around the famous (in evolutionary circles) Body-Odor-Sniffing-T-Shirt demonstration.

Notebook entry, July 19, 2004

Got an interesting email the other day. Here's the letter with my response: It seems that there is the possibility that Evolution's Voyage will get a mention in a journal of the history of science. Maybe.

-----Original Message-----

From: Angela Cassidy [mailto:angela@ac.uk]
Sent: Wednesday, July 14, 2004 8:23 AM
To: wspriggs@evoyage.com

Dear Mr Spriggs,

I am contacting you regarding a cartoon on your website
Evolution's voyage, in the essay 'What is Evolutionary
Psychology?', showing a monkey with different brain areas highlighted.

For the past few years I have been researching popular
debates over evolution, particularly evolutionary psychology
in the UK media. I am currently writing an article for the
journal 'Public Understanding of Science' about why these
scientists make their arguments in the public domain (through
popular books and media appearances), and would very much
like to reproduce the cartoon in my article. It works really
well to explain the modularity thesis, and it would also be
great to use it simply to entertain my readers and lift a
fairly dense theoretical discussion.

Therefore, how could I go about obtaining an official
permission from you and/or the artist who drew the cartoon?
Many thanks in advance for your help,
Angela Cassidy

> --------------------------------------------
Dr. Angela Cassidy
ESRC Postdoctoral Research Associate
Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine,
University of Manchester, Maths Tower,
Oxford Road, Manchester, M13 9PL
tel: 0161 275 4658
email: angela@ac.uk

From: William A. Spriggs [mailto:wspriggs@evoyage.com]
Sent: 17 July 2004 13:20
To: 'Angela Cassidy'

Dear Dr. Cassidy.

Thanks so much for taking enjoyment from "Charlie" as a
teacher and entertainer.

You have contacted the correct person, and permission is given for a one time use of the cartoon in your paper with
the tag line: Permission given for use, Evolution's Voyage, www.evoyage.com.

I am assuming that you know how to lift the cartoon from the
web site by "right clicking."

For your information, the cartoon was drawn by Alex Hughes'
caricatures, Birmingham, UK.

Is it possible to read the finished paper? Will it be posted
to a web site where the general public can read it?
Good luck with your paper, and enjoy the Voyage.

William A. Spriggs
Evolution's Voyage

From: Angela Cassidy [mailto:angela@ac.uk]
Sent: Monday, July 19, 2004 4:21 AM
To: 'William A. Spriggs'
Subject: thanks

That's great - thank you for for your help in this! I will be sure to
pass on a copy of the paper once it is finished, and will keep you
updated on its progress.

Notebook entry, July 6, 2004

I'm working in the background of the web site by concentrating on the, What is Evolutionary Feminism book list. It is long and complicated, and I may have to cut it back a bit, but I always don't want to miss anything. I think that my background purpose is to impress the radical feminism of the overwhelming material out there about the biological and the bio-cultural research on the evolutionary perspective.

Notebook entry, July 2, 2004

It appears that I picked up a virus on Sunday, June 27th that effected my entire computer. It is called a "back-door-virus" with a fancy code word. It was taking a very long time to boot up the system and it was draining my system of all of its memory. I could not access the internet, and thus, could not make any notebook entries or conduct email exchanges. I had my "tech guy" Dan Frau, whom I have known for nine years, come out and clean the system out.

I think I may have picked up the virus while studying female same sex web sites. (Yes, it's a dirty business, but scholars have to go where the tepid fear to tread to get to the truth).

I have not yet heard back from Jennifer in reply to my email of June 27th.