A Study Break

Science fiction reports possibilities. 

The novel Corr Syl the Warrior introduces an Earth on which intelligence appeared long before humans.

A Study Break

White Hat.pOne morning as Corr sat at his table listening to his mother’s instructions and conducting a set of simultaneous exercises, his father came in with a tall, short-legged, white-haired otter wearing a broad-brimmed hat. “Corr, meet Ori Calin, one of the district’s assistant librarians.”

Calin grinned, swept off his hat, and sat facing Corr. “Corr, your parents say your studies are going well. They asked me to come to meet you so you could show me what you’ve learned. Would you like to answer some questions?”

Corr nodded.

“Do you know what has one head, one foot, and four legs?”

Corr didn’t know what to say.

“A bed,” answered Calin, with a chuckle.

“How many letters in the Human alphabet?”


“Nope, sixteen.” Calin laughed so hard that Corr grinned.

“Corr, this is what I want you to do….”

For the next fifteen minutes, Corr recited a series of poems while he mentally calculated the intermediate chemical states for a metabolic series, composed a story based on a prompt given him by Calin, and prepared two proofs of the infinitude of prime numbers.

“Corr, that’s very good. Now, do you have any questions for me?”

Corr reached into the drawer on his side of the table. “Can you name something that’s in this drawer?”

Calin said, “Not fair”“. I have no clues.”

“My hand,” said Corr, his whiskers twitching.

Calin whistled and laughed. “Corr, stop by the library and say hello if you’re ever in the District Center.“

Recent Posts

Statewide Pesticide Use–California Draft Environmental Impact Report

California Statewide Pesticide Use

The California Department of Food and Agriculture is preparing an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for a Statewide Plant Pest Prevention and Management Program.

Source: www.cdfa.ca.gov

GR:  The EIR considers approaches and alternatives and describes an “Environmentally Superior Alternative” that seems more destructive than beneficial.  The Alternative does not appear to me to be prudent in light of recent determinations of the harmful consequences of pesticide use.

A “No Pesticide Alternative,” is included, but its description criticizes the alternative in the first sentence.  The Department says, “It could cause other adverse environmental impacts because alternative management methods are not anticipated to be as effective in controlling or managing pests.”

There are guidelines for the safe use of pesticides, but I believe guidelines are outdated and inadequate.  As native species and ecosystems are damaged, invasive species spread even more quickly. Moreover, invasive species evolve pesticide resistance.  The continued use of pesticides-while ecosystems decline and super bugs form is a short-term (rape and pillage) strategy.

Throughout the report, the Department fails to consider recommending changing crops and practices to avoid pest impacts.  Of course, we might have passed the point where we can feed our growing population without pesticides.  In this case, we can look forward to a time of forced population decline.  When our ecosystems fail to moderate storms and floods, and they stop absorbing toxic wastes from the farms, food production will fall.

The full report and the address for comments are available here.

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