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The Night Is Large: Collected Essays, 1938-1995 by …

In its native range, the brown recluse is a very common house spider. A colleague in Missouri found 5 in a child's bedroom one night, a person in Arkansas found 6 living under his box spring in his bedroom, during a cleanup at the Univ. of Arkansas, 52 were found in a science lab that was being used everyday, a colleague found 9 living under one piece of plywood in Oklahoma, a grad student and I collected 40 of them in a Missouri barn in 75 minutes, and would have collected more, but we ran out of vials to house them. One amazing story is an 8th grade teacher in Oklahoma checking up on his students avidly collecting material by some loose bricks around a flagpole on an insect collecting trip. In about 7 minutes, 8 students collected 60 brown recluses, picking them all up with their fingers and not one kid suffered a bite. An even more amazing story is that of a woman in Lenexa, Kansas who collected 2,055 brown recluse spiders in 6 months in 1850s-built home. This family of 4 has been living there 8 years now and still not one evident bite. (see Vetter and Barger 2002, Journal of Medical Entomology 39: 948-951). When you find brown recluses in an adequate environment, you do not find one, you find dozens. And yet, the people who live with these spiders rarely get bitten nor do they run around in constant fear. With the current paranoia, if we had populations like that in California, they would evacuate the state and close it down. The California reaction to the mythical brown recluse is based solely on the fear of the unknown and the willingness to believe that there is an 8-legged menace running around causing havoc. I was interviewed by a local newspaper reporter looking for a sensationalistic sound bite. The question was, "What do you think the effect of this brown recluse event will have on southern California?" My answer was "All the tourists from Missouri, Arkansas and Kansas are laughing themselves off their hotel beds because a story on one alleged brown recluse spider found in Los Angeles makes the evening news."

To be educated is to know a little bit about many different things. To be extremely well-educated is to know a great deal about absolutely everything. Martin Gardner is extremely well-educated, but there's more to reading his book than being informed by a well-informed man. This gargantuan collection of 47 essays covers everything from the workings of quantum physics to the odd pursuit of pseudo-science to the existence of God, and the reader soon realizes that Gardner wants to do more than merely lecture on brainy subjects. A master skeptic and brilliant thinker, he knows how to ask the right questions about anything. He has the gift of being able to explain complex subjects and processes to an average person without condescension. And perhaps most important, Gardner has developed an unerring sense of what is important, and to read his writing is to feel the importance of an idea and of thinking for its own sake. The Night Is Large is an education in itself.

Martin Gardner: The Night Is Large: Collected Essays, …

The Night Is Large: Collected Essays, 1938-1995.

The Night Is Large: Collected Essays, 1938-1995 by Martin Gardner

To be educated is to know a little bit about many different things. To be extremely well-educated is to know a great deal about absolutely everything. Martin Gardner is extremely well-educated, but there's more to reading his book than being informed by a well-informed man. This gargantuan collection of 47 essays covers everything from the workings of quantum physics to the odd pursuit of pseudo-science to the existence of God, and the reader soon realizes that Gardner wants to do more than merely lecture on brainy subjects. A master skeptic and brilliant thinker, he knows how to ask the right questions about anything. He has the gift of being able to explain complex subjects and processes to an average person without condescension. And perhaps most important, Gardner has developed an unerring sense of what is important, and to read his writing is to feel the importance of an idea and of thinking for its own sake. The Night Is Large is an education in itself.

Night is Large: Collected Essays, ..

Starry night Essay - 1605 Words - StudyMode

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