By Faith Miller
Operations Manager at Bootstrap Compost, Inc.
If you are a parent, sibling, teacher, honorary auntie, citizen of the world, whatever, you’ve come across a kid with a case of the whys. Why are plants green? Why is the sky blue? Why can’t I have a pony? As a kid, I had a terrible case of the whys. Fortunately for my mom, not only was I full of questions, but I had a wild imagination and invented answers before she had a chance to respond. Although everything I concocted later was debunked in the classroom, I was never disappointed enough to give up my “Faith fables.” Science, I discovered, could give me answers I would never have dreamed of (although it has yet to give me a good reason for my pony-less childhood).
While I may have developed into a first-rate science nerd, other kids didn’t seem to rejoice over photosynthesis and chemistry in the same manner I did. Their lack of enthusiasm continued into adulthood; science was boring, too hard, and didn’t relate to them. Apathy toward science is maddening but understandable because the scientific community is doing a terrible job capturing the public eye. Important research never reaches the right people because the presentation is boring. All substance and no style is dandy for the fellow scientist, but it won’t fly with Johnny Public.
“Apathy toward science is maddening but understandable because the scientific community is doing a terrible job capturing the public eye.”
It seems to me that what we need is science to become a bit more relatable (and maybe even fun!) for the public at large. Thus, I present to you, “The Big Stink,” my biweekly blog series addressing not only science, but policy and environmental issues as well. I hope to kick down the ivory tower of academia and present topics of interest in a digestible manner. Speaking of digestion, stay tuned; this Thursday, we’re kicking off the series with my first post, “Eating by the Bucket,” where I address something we all do quite often, nomming!