The mortifying ordeal

Willb/ September 23, 2020/ personal/ 0 comments

A while ago someone wrote “If we want the rewards of being loved we have to submit to the mortifying ordeal of being known,” in some fancy newspaper. This concept – of submission to such an excruciating process in order to find comfort and solidarity with others – resonated with a lot of people. Like anything that can be interpreted

Read More

inclusive astronomy 2: postmortem

Willb/ October 18, 2019/ personal, research log/ 3 comments

The inclusive astronomy conference was originally held in 2015, at a time when tensions were boiling over in the field. it was attended by a variety of astronomy-lovers who sought change in a field that (to this day) hides the ugliness of colonialism, racism, misogyny, and LGBTQ-phobia behind a veneer of impartial, apolitical scientific inquiry. My personal hero, Frank Tavares,

Read More

a stressful series of requests to shadowy money brokers

Willb/ October 11, 2019/ personal/ 0 comments

these past two weeks my midterm studying and test taking and essay writing have been interspersed with fairly frantic applications, communications, and aggravation in an attempt to register, plan travel, and secure funding for numerous astronomy related travels (which is why September’s book corner will likely become Septober’s Spooky book corner). This Sunday I’ll depart Amherst for Baltimore and the

Read More

book corner: august 2019

Willb/ August 27, 2019/ book corner/ 0 comments

This month wasn’t nearly as literate as I had hoped. With no schedule I fell into a pretty sticky miasma of poor sleep and witlessly minecrafting my month break away. Nevertheless, I did read some good stuff, plenty enough to chew on while drifting around Portland. August’s reading list: The Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le Guin Cuba

Read More

writing from home

Willb/ August 19, 2019/ personal/ 0 comments

august in the pacific northwest is probably the best summer weather there is: sunny weeks of dry heat and soft breezes punctuated by cloudy days at ~15°C. For someone with a ironic preference for the cold and the sun like myself, it makes existing unexpectedly pleasant during a month where I have less and less to do. i wouldn’t call

Read More

book corner: july 2019

Willb/ August 1, 2019/ book corner/ 0 comments

On the shelf for this month was a slew of books, almost all of which I enjoyed immensely. I find it really hard to get started reading novels, and usually I’m not hooked into a story until about a 1/3 of the way through. These four books managed to break that inertia quicker than I expected. July’s reading list The

Read More


Willb/ July 22, 2019/ personal/ 0 comments

By Wednesday I’ll have to have all my belongings in a few boxes, packed snugly in my friend’s basement. By Sunday I’ll be on a plane headed back to Portland. If we’re being honest, I wish I had more time; this summer has seemed like both a lifetime and a brief blip, and I feel like I haven’t been able

Read More

a solstice party

Willb/ July 6, 2019/ personal/ 1 comments

i meant to post these earlier, but these are some photos i took during our lab’s solstice cookie baking party two weeks ago. remember to enjoy the daylight while it lasts 🙂


Willb/ July 5, 2019/ personal, research log/ 0 comments

on workflow and production in my limited research experience. i’ve been thinking today (day two of a four day holiday weekend) about my process. since attending amherst i’ve struggled a lot with schoolwork; mental health being my largest hurdle. after 1½ go rounds doing summer research, interspersed with a part-time research job in the same lab during the school year,

Read More