So many people emailed me yesterday, thanks! I’m answering your questions here instead of by email so everyone can see. I’ll answer more in subsequent posts. Also, thanks to everyone for all the comments on the posts. I have to read through them still, but I’ll try to answer questions there soon, too.
Can you buy educational games or toys for your daughter?
Isabella got a lovely, second hand rocking horse from the Housing Works thrift store the other day. Of course, when we got it home we realized it had the name “Miles” etched on its neck but we decided that that was the name not of the owner but of the “worsey,” as Isabella calls it. The rule is that we can buy second hand stuff only (with the exception of socks and underwear). But honestly, Isabella would rather bang together pots and pans and walk down the street with her hands in her pockets than play with toys.
Are you allowed to use over-the-counter drugs if you get sick?
Have you considered the climate/waste/energy input associated with eating dairy?
Please don’t try to make us give up our milk and cheese and homemade yogurt. I’m begging you. Since we’re eating only unpackaged local and seasonal food, that would pretty much leave us with nothing but apples a la cabbage and cabbage a la apples. Besides, we buy our milk from the local Ronnybrook Farms, where the cows are fed grass and homegrown corn.
How do you make fruit scrap vinegar?
Great book: Wild Fermentation by Sandor Ellix Katz. Get your scraps of fruit—apple cores, dregs of berries (though no berries for us cause they’re not in season), whatever—and chop up coarsely. Dissolve a quarter cup of honey (recipe calls for sugar but I can’t get it locally) in one quart water. Throw the scraps in and cover with a cloth. Let ferment for two or three weeks, stirring occasionally. Adds great flavor to—you guessed it—cabbage.
What about books (I couldn’t live without them)?
No purchase of anything new except socks and underwear and a
couple of other personal items is the rule. As for books, we use the library
and we can buy a second hand book from the
Would you mind telling me the address of the Yahoo group mentioned during your appearance on the Brian Lehrer show?
Please could you post pictures of you and your family?
I thought you’d never ask. See above.
Could you write a bit on why you decided to pursue a career outside of academic science? And how, if at all, your doctorate training in physics has affected your subsequent career. Was making the choice to leave academia easy or difficult?
What a random and fun question. Do I detect a PhD student who wants
to quit? My doctoral studies—in electronic engineering actually—were in a
galaxy far away and long ago.