I’ve been doing a fair bit of traveling lately, and although generally exhausting, traveling is great for playing podcast catch-up. I had been hopelessly behind on most podcasts, especially Science Friday. But I have been diligently listening away in airports, airplanes, cars and cabs and finally, last night, I got to last week’s Science Friday.

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I promise, I had no prior knowledge of this before I wrote the Wikimedia Commons Brontosaurus/Apatosaurus posts. Check out what Canada Post just did!

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It wasn’t that long ago that I took to this blog to nominate the Wall Street Journal’s Nicholas Wade for having “the worst idea ever” about evolution education, namely to somehow appease creationists with the ol’ “don’t worry, evolution is just a theory” trick. To be honest, I was still scratching my head over that one, when I was forced to redirect my incredulity to another humdinger in the pages of the WSJ.

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What’s it going to take for science writers to understand that there is no need in evolution? Think I could get Tom Hanks to do a PSA for me? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6M8szlSa-8o

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I interviewed for my post at NCSE in the wake of the Bill Nye/Ken Ham hullabaloo (which Josh Rosenau reviewed here), so watching the whole 2.5-hour-plus affair was part of my preparation. Looking back at my notes still makes me laugh, since there are all kinds of “what!?!?!”s and “this makes no sense”s.

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My older daughter’s birthday is right before Christmas, and my younger daughter’s birthday just after. Last year, there was such a glut of gifts that we never even got around to getting some out of their boxes (which was actually quite handy since I was able to re-gift some back to the girls this year in addition to making big donations to local toy drives). Determined not to have a repeat this time around, the majority of the gifts under our tree took the form of the one thing you can’t have enough of: books.

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Let me start this post by admitting that looking to the work of the Understanding Evolution team for examples of excellent science writing is not unlike looking to Glenn Branch for examples of quote-mining in obscure Scopes-related reporting—it’s pretty much a fish-in-the-barrel scenario. As I have noted many times on this blog, Understanding Evolution is chock-a-block with quality materials for educators and evolution-minded people alike.

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(MotorBlog via Wikimedia Commons) A car company is not something I’d usually criticize for a lack of understanding evolution. But watching television last night, I saw an ad for the Mercedes GLA that made me yell, to no one in particular, “OH PLEASE!” It was just so bad I had to share.

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A few weeks back, blog-reader Anson Kennedy sent me an idea for a Well Said/Say What? The article in question, “Evolution’s Random Paths Lead To One Place,” describes the work of Dr. Michael Desai at Harvard University to perform large-scale evolution experiments on baker’s yeast. I re-read it today, and realized it would make a great companion to my Misconception Monday post on randomness (or lack thereof) in evolution.

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