Monthly Archives: January 2012


“College Writing Programs is not, in short, your grandparents’ writing program. Grammar and syntax still apply, and still matter. But CWP has come a long way from its 19th-century origins, when UC students were schooled in ‘Oral and Written Expression’ — known universitywide as Subject A — defined as the ability to use English ‘correctly, clearly and pertinently.’ In addition to such longtime staples as reading and comp and professional communication, the 21st-century Berkeley program offers more than 20 courses in everything from public speaking, creative nonfiction and travel writing to new media, where advanced students learn concision by crafting 130-character micro-essays suitable for Twitter.”

–Barry Bergman. “Berkeley’s Writing Requirement? Bold Vision, Endless Revision.” UC Berkeley NewsCenter. Jan 31, 2012. Web.


“He’s earned a lifetime of peace and happiness, but some people never get what they deserve. That’s why there are saints in gutters and sadists in palaces.”

–Ann Aguirre. Doubleblind. New York: Ace, 2009. Kindle edition. Quote in chapter 37.


“[When cars can drive themselves], who will be responsible for their operation–the car companies or the drivers? What happens, for example, when a highway patrol officer pulls over a self-driving car? Who gets the ticket?”

–Tom Vanderbilt. “Let the Robot Drive.” Wired Feb. 2012: 86-95, 124. Quote on page 95.


“I don’t know why I thought it was over, just because we got the truth out. There are always people who refuse to believe it, or want to analyze what they’ve seen seventy-four times before they even try to accept that reality has changed.”

–Ann Aguirre. Wanderlust. New York: Ace Books, 2008. Quote on page 1.


“The Brain Bank is the world’s largest collection of athlete brains. Since its inception in 2008, the bank has documented over 50 cases of CTE [chronic traumatic encephalopathy]. Much of that work is in the hands Dr. Ann McKee, the bank’s co-director and neuropathologist. She actually dissects the brain to track the trauma in the brain, and what she’s finding in the brains of some players in their 40s and 50s is astonishing.

‘You expect a pristine brain. I saw a brain that was riddled with tau proteins. I was stunned at how similar that brain was to the boxers who lived into their 70s,’ she said. Tau proteins are the same type of proteins found in brains of Alzheimer’s patients.

But to see the same type of damage in 17-year-old Nathan Stiles’ brain was something that surprised even McKee. It’s the youngest case she’s documented, and for her, a call to action. ‘It tells you that we’ve really got to protect our kids,’ she said. ‘It’s not just car seats and seatbelts, but it’s making sure that when they go out to play sports that we take proper precaution and we give them proper advice.'”

–Nadia Kounang. “Brain Bank Examines Athletes’ Hard Hits.” CNN Jan. 27, 2012. Web.


“Like videogames, real cars have cheat codes–actions that unlock hidden potential. Some are printed in the owner’s manual; others are meant only for dealers. Many shut down safety features, so we’ll warn you: Don’t try these on public roads unless you think you can cheat death, too.”

–Keith Barry. “Prepare for Liftoff.” Wired Feb. 2012: 58.


“Brain scans revealed that people with no symptoms of Alzheimer’s who engaged in cognitively stimulating activities throughout their lives had fewer deposits of beta-amyloid, a destructive protein that is the hallmark of the disease.

While previous research has suggested that engaging in mentally stimulating activities – such as reading, writing and playing games – may help stave off Alzheimer’s later in life, this new study identifies the biological target at play. This discovery could guide future research into effective prevention strategies.”

–Sarah Yang. “Lifelong Brain-stimulating Habits Linked to Lower Alzheimer’s Protein Levels.” UC Berkeley NewsCenter. January 23, 2012. Web.


“To say that I met Nicholas Brisbane over my husband’s dead body is not entirely accurate. Edward, it should be noted, was still twitching upon the floor.”

–Deanna Raybourn. Silent in the Grave. Ontario: Mira, 2007. Quote on page 13.


“With history within their grasp, the 49ers, a historically mistake-free team, fumbled away their chance to reach their first Super Bowl in 17 years.”

–Eric Branch. “49ers Drop Ball as Giants Win NFC Title Game 20-17.” SFGate Jan. 23, 2012. Web.


“She could not have known that to my mind sloppiness in textual analysis was absolutely unforgivable, far worse than the deliberate falsification of results from a slipshod chemical experiment.”

–Laurie King. A Monstrous Regiment of Women. New York: Bantam Books, 1995. Quote on page 56.