My mind is dragged back to the fascinating story in the previous post. Trent Arsenault has the ideal Darwinian strategy, doesn't he? He's perfecting and maximizing his genetic material and its distribution, including the likelihood that his offspring will be healthy and well-protected and well-reared to adulthood.
If you do come to Madison this weekend, perhaps to take in some Darwin-related things, make sure to drop by the Chazen Museum and see the Art Department's faculty show. Meade and I loved it. I couldn't do photographs of that exhibit, but there's a slide show at the link. My favorite thing was "Stoney's Tiny Tattoo" ("a painted-wood structure by Assistant Professor Fred Stonehouse... Inside, graduate student Ben Grant tattoos himself"). No one was doing tattoo performance when we were there. I just loved all the faux-primitive drawings inside the booth.
But wait! Why am I talking about Darwin's birthday today? It's not the 12th, it's the 7th. And it's not a big centenary birthday for Darwin. That was 3 years ago. Today is the 200th anniversary of the birth of another great Charles D: Charles Dickens. And the reason I noticed this is the usual reason people these days notice things like that: I saw a mysterious Google Doodle and clicked on it. I've read a lot of Dickens, but there's only one Dickens book I've read twice:
It was the best of times, it was the worst of times, it was the age of wisdom, it was the age of foolishness, it was the epoch of belief, it was the epoch of incredulity, it was the season of Light, it was the season of Darkness, it was the spring of hope, it was the winter of despair, we had everything before us, we had nothing before us, we were all going direct to Heaven, we were all going direct the other way....Oh, yes... that reminds me, it's just about exactly the 1-year anniversary of the start of the Wisconsin protests, our own special Wisconsin season of darkness/spring of hope/winter of despair.
If you're coming to Madison for Darwin