Contents

Preface      
1
An Immigrant in the Wilderness
Montreal, 1957 — Yellowknife, 1959 —Barren Grounds Survey —Fisheries Research —  Franklin’s first expedition — Fort Churchill.
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2
The Emperor and the Earwig 
Britain under siege — Hitler — Bonaparte — St. Helena —Earwigs — “dismemberment.”
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3
The Marble Scorpion 
The White Tower — geology — fossil hunting — the sea scorpion — imported marble — most northerly population of scorpions.
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4
Left-handed Crabs
Lombroso — symmetry/asymmetry — crustaceans — twisted mouths — Satanic left-handedness.
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5
Flying Sand Dollars
Changing research program — perforated sand dollars — Darwinian contrivances — lift and drag — Friends of Echinoderms.
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6
Naming the Nameless
Linnaeus — how things are named — teaching a field course — humor in scientific names — fake Latin names for students.
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7
The Ugly History of Wild Rubber
Brazilian rubber tree seeds — plantations in southeast Asia — “Scramble for Africa” — plundering the Congo — the Putumayo Affair — Roger Casement.
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8
The Protean Potato 
Origin of potatoes — spread through Europe — Parmentier — famine — trade in guano.
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9
Worst of the Worst
What people eat — broccoli — rotten fish — maggoty cheese — I make a haggis — ragout of pig skin.
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10
Slime
Mucus — molecular structure — uses of slime — playing possum — insects have no mucus — the “Snouters.”
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11
Moths and Sloths
Panama and Suez canals — invasive species — Panama expansion — saving sloths — moths and algae — giant sloths — coprolites.
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12
Muck Raking
Manure for my garden — composted manure —19th century great manure crisis — Australia and the dung beetles.
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13
Samuel Pepys’ Wig
Origin of wigs — personal hygiene — Roman baths — the unwashed centuries — lice — molecular clocks — human prehistory.
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14
AG: A Tribute 
Oldest biological research station in Canada — teaching at the Huntsman — St. Andrews — Government and science policy — “libricide.”
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15
“Your Research Is Crap”
Beatrix Potter ignored — symbiosis — lichens — corals — the iconoclastic Lyn Margulis — evolution of cells —remarkable lives.
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16
Truth or Consequences 
Theories of truth — personal truthfulness — hoaxes — fraud in science — testifying — power of corporations.
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Acknowledgements