Monday, July 14, 2014

word of the day: adjutant

The word of the day is adjutant:

a staff officer in the army, air force, or marine corps who assists the commanding officer and is responsible especially for correspondence (Merriam-Webster)

"Klay writes with a powerful restraint about the inversion of normal reality called combat, its permanent effects on bodies and souls, but the best stories in 'Redeployment' look at war from a slight distance.  The narrator in 'Unless It's a Sucking Chest Wound,' a battalion adjutant, has the inglorious job of writing up the heroics of other marines being nominated for medals...

"The adjutant is one among many troopstheir numbers grew over timewho spent their war almost entirely within the confines of an American base."

 - George Packer, "Home Fires: How soldiers write their wars", 7 April 2014 The New Yorker

Sunday, July 13, 2014

phrase of the day: scare quotes

The phrase of the day is scare quotes:

quotation marks used to express especially skepticism or derision concerning the use of the enclosed word or phrase (Merriam-Webster)

"'Every war is ironic because every war is worse than expected,' Paul Fussell wrote in 'The Great War and Modern Memory,' his classic study of the English literature of the First World War...

"Here's Kevin Powers, who joined the Army out of high school and ended up as a machine gunner in the same region of Iraq as Turner: 'I had by then inferred that the military was where a person went to develop the qualities that I had come to admire in my father, my uncle, and both of my grandfathers.  The cliché, in my case, was true: I thought that the army would "make me a man".'  The scare quotes suggest Fussell's wised-up irony, but they weren't enough to keep Powers home."

 - George Packer, "Home Fires: How soldiers write their wars", 7 April 2014 The New Yorker

molecule of the day: lysergic acid

The molecule of the day is lysergic acid:


"In the context of their species, these flamingos were like space voyagers, those who'd return with tales beyond telling.  Except that they'd never return.  You might as well have immersed the birds in a bathysphere and introduced them to the orcas, or dosed their food with lysergic acid."

 - Jonathan Lethem, "Pending Vegan", 7 April 2014 The New Yorker

Lysergic acid is closely related to lysergic acid diethylamide (LSD).


Friday, July 04, 2014

Recent blogging activity

My most recent piece for the Transcript, the Hopkins Biotech Network's newsletter, is on non-competition agreements, and my most recent blog post for the ACS Chemical Biology Community on the ACS Network shares some statistics from my job search.