Saturday, April 16, 2011

From Athens with love: greetings from "His Dudeness"

I have now spent about a week at Ohio University in Athens, and as you see on the pictures I have been working hard with Shawn. Apart from discussing geometric morphometrics, predator-mediated natural selection and dragonfly wings, I have had the opportunity to participate in several discussion groups, ranging from niche conservatism in salamanders to the strength of selection in natural populations. It has been fun and entertaining.

Athens is a lovely little liberal "latte-town" in Ohio, with about 30 000 inhabitants, of which about 70 % are students and academic staff at OU. There are an impressive high number of bars and coffee shops around, and one of the most popular is the Casa Nueva, which is on the uppermost picture. There we have had many margharithas and beers and listened to some good live music. 

By the way, OU scientists are impressive in their party mood and habits, we have been going out every evening, and I think I will need a loooong recovery when I am back in Sweden. I feel I have been very welcomed and well-treated during my visit, and the two research seminars I gave were very appreciated by students and faculty. I especially enjoyed discussing science with Molly Morris, who works on sexual selection in swordtails, and ecomorphologist Donald Miles, apart from Shawn, of course.

Close to Casa Nueva, on the corner in the picture above, there is an excellent T-shirt shop, where I bought the lovely T-shirt I am wearing, showing one of my favourite actors (Jeff Bridges, "The Dude") from one of may favourite movies The Big Lebowski. I use this T-shirt the first time before we go to a party (again!) tonight at Donald Miles' house. What could be a better combination than also trying out some of their excellent local beers from Ohio's microbreweries, and posing in front of the photographer (Shawn) at his motorcycle and Volkswagen bus?

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