Monday Morning Buffet

I’m back from a computer-free vacation, and of course I have returned to mountains of emails and a long chain of fascinating new links. In place of any original thoughts of my own, let me just point you to a few things that look interesting (if you have any mental space not presently occupied by the horrors of Katrina).

1. Over the past couple years I’ve enjoyed watching Chris Mooney’s blogging and articles evolve into a full-blown book, The Republican War on Science, which has just come out. Tonight he hits the big time tonight on the Daily Show.

2. Mooney is actually just part of the opening night of a week-long evolution series on the Daily Show. A couple years ago my wife and I decided to give up cable because we feared we’d be use up what little free time we had watching has-been celebrity biographies or movies about evil mechanical sharks. (I should point out that my wife is strangely immune to the lure of the mechanical sharks.) It’s times like these, though, when I wish we still had just a little cable.

3. Human brains are evolving. Questionable Authority recaps. Will Bruce Lahn get the Nobel Prize someday?

4. Parasites are manipulating. Latest case: grasshoppers hurling themselves to their death on behalf of hairworms. Not a public health threat like malaria’s sweet perfume, but very high on the science-fiction-meter.

5. Life on Titan? Astronomer David Grinspoon thinks all the raw ingredients are there.