Monday, July 23, 2007

Are you committed to Evolution? Prove it!

Peggy Farnham at the U. C. Davis Genome Center sent me this picture. apparently of a real tattoo. After a google search I found at least an early source for it here.

This inspires me to ask everyone out there - are you committed to Evolution? What have you done to show your commitment?

What have I done? I think the biggest example of my commitment, though boring, is that I worked six years on a new evolution textbook which was just published a few weeks ago (which you can find out about here or order from Amazon here).

Less boring - I once stood on a street corner in New Orleans with Owen White and handed out altered forms of a pamphlet someone else was handing out in which we added some information about evolution.

So - rather that spout off about what I have done .. what has anyone else done? Are you committed?


  1. Small world -- Nipam Patel gave a (n excellent!) seminar here a week or two ago. I keep meaning to blog the story of how his group settled on their model organism when they wanted to move into crustaceans.

    P.S. how long before some loon takes your "committed to evolution" phrase to mean that you are pushing the theory in advance of the data...?

  2. You know - I thought about the "committed" part being taking in the wrong way. But it is so obviously done in a slangy kinds of way that I figured what the heck.

    As for Nipam --- write about him. He is one of the best evodevo people I know - both personally and scientifically.

  3. For years, I've been asking people to design another tattoo for me. I'd like a DNA molecule around my ankle. I'm committed to the tattoo as soon as someone comes through with a design for me. Does that count?

  4. I don't know. DNA ≠ Evolution now does it? You need something more than just DNA. Or were you saying you would use an evolution design. Maybe you should have a competition on your blog?

  5. Funny, I was actually thinking just that - about a competition - but I don't have much of an audience. Well, perhaps I will do that and insist that the DNA molecule be recombinant, or otherwise evoke evolutionary forces.

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  7. I became a member of Pastafarism, y'know? Flying Spaghetti Monster? does that counts?

    By the way... have you noticed the looong chain of discussion that appears on the "user reviews" section in the Amazon's page of your book? it's over a thousand comments... I was about to complain that the text is not available in México, but since the anti-evolution discussion has not arrived here either, I better keep my mouth shut!

  8. 1. Yes, that counts.

    2. I think the discussion stuff on Amazon is general for all of evolution. Or did you see something about my book specifically?

  9. My book on parrots has a chapter on their evolution that I am about to write, and also refers to the evolutionary basis of life history, color, behavior and the rest of it. The book also talks about the scientific method, more generally than evolution. The book is written for lay persons and tries to explain all of this for them, while staying interesting to my colleagues.

    Do you think that this counts? The book aims to reach the general public and explain what we know about the natural world, including how these things evolved.