Thursday, February 16, 2006

Blog-Tag? Uh ok.

Saralah has "tagged" me. So I guess I'm "it".

Four jobs I've had:

1. Serious games designer
2. Project manager for R & D
3. Gallery assistant/antique salesman/art framer/UPS shipping clerk/fudge server (all one job)
4. Unsupervised underage bartender (sketchy)

Four movies I can watch over and over:

1. The Long Kiss Goodnight
2. The Mummy
3. So I Married an Axe Murderer
4. Varsity Blues

Four places I've lived:

1. Pittsburgh (Lawrenceville), PA
2. Pittsburgh (Squirrel Hill), PA
3. Philadelphia, PA
4. Maine

Four TV shows I love:

1. The Daily Show and The Colbert Report
2. The IT Crowd
3. Sopranos
4. Battlestar Gallactica (the new one)

Four places I've vacationed:

1. Amsterdam
2. Seattle
3. Chicago
4. Maine

Four of my favorite dishes:

1. Hangover Cure (breakfast burrito-type thing) from Kiva Han
2. Mussels (usually with a garlic wine sauce)
3. Anything from Morimoto
4. My dad's pizza

Four sites I visit daily:

1. BoingBoing
2. Wonderland
3. Penny Arcade
4. Wired

Four places I would rather be right now:

1. Asleep
2. Maine (Snow!)
3. On a beach, somewhere warm
4. With my babe

Four bloggers I am tagging:

Hm. I think all the bloggers I know have been tagged. So if you haven't been tagged yet, you're it.

Monday, February 06, 2006

The Terrible Sea

The Steelers won the SuperBowl! Here's a pic of the sea of Terrible Towels on Carson Street after the game:

Mind-Controlling Wasps

[via BoingBoing] Here's a cool article about a wasp that takes control of cockroaches, leading them back to the nest to use as living fodder for larvae. I love nature. Here a great quote:

The wasp slips her stinger through the roach's exoskeleton and directly into its brain. She apparently use ssensors along the sides of the stinger to guide it through the brain, a bit like a surgeon snaking his way to an appendix with a laparoscope. She continues to probe the roach's brain until she reaches one particular spot that appears to control the escape reflex. She injects a second venom that influences these neurons in such a way that the escape reflex disappears.

From the outside, the effect is surreal. The wasp does not paralyze the cockroach. In fact, the roach is able to lift up its front legs again and walk. But now it cannot move of its own accord. The wasp takes hold of one of the roach's antennae and leads it--in the words of Israeli scientists who study Ampulex--like a dog on a leash.

The zombie roach crawls where its master leads, which turns out to be the wasp's burrow. The roach creeps obediently into the burrow and sits there quietly, while the wasp plugs up the burrow with pebbles. Now the wasp turns to the roach once more and lays an egg on its underside. The roach does not resist. The egg hatches, and the larva chews a hole in the side of the roach. In it goes.

The larva grows inside the roach, devouring the organs of its host, for about eight days. It is then ready to weave itself a cocoon--which it makes within the roach as well. After four more weeks, the wasp grows to an adult. It breaks out of its cocoon, and out of the roach as well. Seeing a full-grown wasp crawl out of a roach suddenly makes those Alien movies look pretty derivative.