The story of Mimi and Brownie, besties for 74 years

Mimi and Brownie became close in 1942 while serving as World War II Army nurses. For 74 years, they remained best friends and talked on the phone every single day. Veena Rao of Pop-Up Magazine shares their incredible, and oh-so-sweet, story (get out the tissues).

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Becky and Susan, this one's for you!

screengrab via Read the rest

Great science bloggers winning the battle against the inner swine-dog

I was a judge on this year's Science Seeker Awards, which honor great science writing being done online. The winners were just announced and you should really check out the whole list. It's full of great writing, including some names and blogs you've probably never read before.

I also want to draw your attention to a runner-up post that made a big impact on me. It's a piece by Jalees Rehman about what happens when scientists (and science journalists) settle for easy work and quick rewards instead of pushing themselves. The post introduced me to the concept of der innere Schweinehund, aka "the inner swine-dog", a fantastic German metaphor for the part of ourselves that prefers laziness over productivity, comfort over challenge, and routine over achievement. Everything is a battle against our own inner swine dog. It's a terribly German way of looking at things, but it resonated with me — and will probably resonate with anyone who has ever had to decide between checking Facebook and finishing an important task.

More importantly, reading about it in the midst of judging some really good science writing reminded me of how important that daily battle is. These Science Seeker Award Winning stories will educate you, scratch your itch for curiosity, and help you question your world. Those are incredibly important goals, and the only way we reach them is by fighting off the inner swine-dog.

There is a statue of the Innere Schweinehund in Bonn. Norbert Schnitzler took this photo of it for Wikimedia Commons. Read the rest