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Bob Siederer

The SciSchmooze Goes Nuts


Greetings fellow Science Fans! We trust you have had enough to eat this Thanksgiving weekend and are ready for some science! Well, we have that, and a little more for you.

Start with the nuts!

As I was growing up, one of the highlights of the holidays for me was eating roasted chestnuts. My father would talk about buying bags of them from street vendors in Vienna where he grew up, using them to keep his hands warm (in addition to eating them). I haven’t had them in quite a while, but this Thanksgiving I decided to buy a few and roast them.

Hardly anyone I know has tasted a

Astronaut Jim McDivitt’s official NASA portrait, taken in 1971

Hello again Science Fans!

It has been a very busy few weeks, with lots of news on many scientific fronts, so let’s get to it.


I remember all too well late August and early September, 2000. I was returning from a road trip and spent a night in Pensacola, FL. I went to dinner at a restaurant early in the evening. One of the staff came in behind me carrying a small bag which I would later overhear her say was full of medicine her doctor had given her to counter the infection she had. She coughed

Cutting Through the Fog with the SciSchmoze

Fog over San Francisco. Credit: New York Times

Hello again Science Fans!

Before I moved to the Bay Area, I lived in South Florida. As they do everywhere, people there talked about the weather and how it was always too hot, too cold, too wet, or too dry, but never “normal”. While a sample of one doesn’t prove anything, our weather lately certainly hasn’t been “normal” what with a record-breaking heat wave, followed by an earlier-than-usual winter storm, followed by more heat.

One of the biggest influences on our local weather is fog. But even that seems to be changing, and the fallout could

Mt. Rainier, seen from the Puyallup Valley. Photo credit: USGS

Hello again Science Fans!

We’re in for a week of summer-like weather. While this isn’t unusual for the Bay Area, other parts of the country and world are experiencing record heat and other oddities. the Denver area was in the 80s one day this past week, followed by snow the next that broke numerous tree branches. In Spain, 

Celebrating Earth Day with the SciSchmooze

Blooming Prickly Pear cactus at the Tucson Botanical Garden, April 2019. Will climate change endanger cactus species?

Hello again Science Fans!

First off, Happy Easter, Passover, Ramadan, or whatever you are celebrating today.

I’m happy to report that my Ukrainian friend successfully got out of the country to safety with her daughter. So many have not been able to, or lost their lives trying. Imagine the uncertainty she faces now, in a country where she doesn’t speak the language and has no social support. Her daughter fell and chipped one of her front teeth yesterday. At home, that would prompt a quick visit to the doctor. Now, she’s unsure what to do. It is a daunting situation, but much better

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