Since, in THEORY, I will have a new job sometime this year (still looking), I thought this might be a good time to start trying to clean up my office.  I re-discovered a whole bunch of old folders that I stashed in a box many years ago.

I found an entire NSF grant proposal that I have absolutely no memory of. It got a positive review, it had all sorts of collaborators, but wasn’t funded. And I remembered None. Of. It.   Scary!

I found 2 half-written manuscripts that I never finished, and will probably just give up on.
One was an examination of how advertising has historically used gendered entomophobia in order to sell pesticides and cleaning projects. If you want to pick that one up, let me know; I’ll mail you everything I’ve got.

The other was a project I started working on in the late 90s. I was placed on several prayer lists courtesy of some students in my evolution classes.  I got interested in writing about how millennial fears factored into different styles of Creationism.  Millenialism isn’t much of a hot topic now that it’s almost 2011, so I guess that one is dead in the water.


I also found lots of strange things stashed away in folders. In 1996, there was not a web as we know it now: “In 1996, Americans with Internet access spent fewer than 30 minutes a month surfing the Web.”   So, when I got kinda crazy stuff about Beware the Blue Beam, I couldn’t just blog about it, or post it to Flickr.  I could maybe post something to’s listserver on Usenet.
But now, with Web 2.0, you are welcome to riffle through my files!

I got stuck on The Institute for Creation Research mailing list from 1994 to 1997.  Before the novelty wore off, I used to actually open and read all the stuff they sent me.  ICR even produced little daily devotional booklets, I guess so you could read something condemning evilutionists every morning with your coffee.

Most of them featured the standard bible verses that showed up on nearly all of my class evaluations:  False prophets, Fools that think they are wise, yadda yadda.

But some of them were really weird. Like Henry Morris, Mr. Creationism, suggesting that teachers of evolution should be hanged and drowned.

In fact, he said it twice–here’s a link to the second time.

WWJD?  My reading of texts about Jesus give me the distinct sense he would not be down with this. While I might like for JC to put a smiting on ICR, that isn’t his style.  Dude’s a pacifist.  (Except for bankers, maybe. But who hasn’t felt that way recently?)

I also am fairly sure that this particular daily rant about “uncontrolled greed” and “opulent lifestyle” was foreshadowing PZ Myers’ rise and domination in the blogosphere. :D

Check out all the strangeness in my Flickr Stream; I’ll be adding things over time.

Posted by Gwen Pearson

Writer. Nerd. Insect Evangelist. Have you heard the good news? BUGS!


  1. Wow. That’s gotta be difficult and a bit funny to go through your office to rediscover past projects and exchanges. I’ve kept boxes of field notes and partially written papers in the garage that I haven’t looked at in over a decade. Best wishes on finding a new position!

  2. That Morris stuff is really scary and has discouraged me from cleaning my office. I still have boxes of crap from my days working in a lab. Which was next door to a Cockroach rearing room, with, o, about a million of those lovely critters.

    Why did it have to be roaches…..

  3. Thanks for letting us go through your old crap. I always find looking through my own old crap to be a fine distraction from doing the actual cleaning I’ve started.

    And if anyone does ever try tying a millstone around your neck and drowning you, remember that they mean well, because clearly their loving, merciful God would do something much worse. Like, He might use two millstones. Possibly even three. (And them things is heavy, I’ll bet.)

  4. I often wonder what causes people to develop such irrational fears about insects, and then I see a Raid commercial and then I remember it is the same reason you see old ladies walking around Walmart in rubber gloves and surgical masks to protect them from (insert current pandemic). Isn’t it nice when the media uses “science” to “help” the public.

  5. Woah, what level were you teaching at and where? I wish I got crazy creationist screeds from my students.

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