Joined: Jan 24, 2019 Last Active: Jul 22, 2024 iNaturalist

Retired biology/biochemistry bench scientist. First binoculars (Tasco Featherweight 7x50) received at 10 yoa. First good microscope (American Optical Series 60) purchased used at 17 yoa. Passionate about birds, fungi, freshwater algae, the night sky... and optical equipment, from hand lenses to telescopes. A joyful student! (For image capture, I'm currently using a Panasonic Lumix FZ200, point and shoot, bridge camera, and a 1970s Bausch&Lomb Balplan microscope with an Amscope MD500L eyepiece camera)

“Once, on ancient Earth, there was a human boy walking along a beach. There had just been a storm, and starfish had been scattered along the sands. The boy knew the fish would die, so he began to fling the fish to the sea. But every time he threw a starfish, another would wash ashore. "An old Earth man happened along and saw what the child was doing. He called out, 'Boy, what are you doing?' " 'Saving the starfish!' replied the boy. " 'But your attempts are useless, child! Every time you save one, another one returns, often the same one! You can't save them all, so why bother trying? Why does it matter, anyway?' called the old man. "The boy thought about this for a while, a starfish in his hand; he answered, "Well, it matters to this one." And then he flung the starfish into the welcoming sea.”
― Loren Eiseley, The Star Thrower

"The best thing that we're put here for's to see; ..."
― Robert Frost, The Star-Splitter

-“[...] it is a strange thing that most of the feeling we call religious, most of the mystical outcrying which is one of the most prized and used and desired reactions of our species, is really the understanding and the attempt to say that man is related to the whole thing, related inextricably to all reality, known and unknowable. This is a simple thing to say, but the profound feeling of it made a Jesus, a St. Augustine, a St. Francis, a Roger Bacon, a Charles Darwin, and an Einstein. Each of them in his own tempo and with his own voice discovered and reaffirmed with astonishment the knowledge that all things are one thing and that one thing is all things—plankton, a shimmering phosphorescence on the sea and the spinning planets and an expanding universe, all bound together by the elastic string of time. It is advisable to look from the tide pool to the stars and then back to the tide pool again.”
― John Steinbeck, The Log from the Sea of Cortez

"Somehow with my Latin squares and factorial designs, my isotopes and mass spectrometers and scintillation counters, and my training to consider only sharp lines of statistically significant differences, I have come full circle to stumble onto some of the indigenous ideals: Diversity matters. And everything in the universe is connected—between the forests and prairies, the land and the water, the sky and the soil, the spirits and the living, the people and other creatures. "
― Suzanne Simard, Finding the Mother Tree: Discovering the Wisdom of the Forest

"There is perhaps no better demonstration of the folly of human conceits than this distant image of our tiny world. To me, it underscores our responsibility to deal more kindly with one another, and to preserve and cherish the pale blue dot, the only home we've ever known.”
― Carl Sagan, Pale Blue Dot: A Vision of the Human Future in Space

"… I’m using a lot of words to explain this, but what it seems to show is that beneath the sprawl and jumble of it all, there might be something small and true, a clean understandable perch where the tired mind can rest a moment as it wanders through the shambling ruin of its world and that, surely, is the cold bonework of the real, the very frame on which the braids and draperies are hung, a formula that can be read and used and understood”
―Bruce Taylor, Fortunes Algorithm in No End in Strangeness

"...I'll simply step outside and take it all in, eyes and ears open, mind quiet, feet moving in a thoughtful cadence across the welcoming curve of the earth."
― Katherine Hauswirth, The Book of Noticing

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