Making scents of tea olives

The tea olive Osmanthus fragrans is a wonderfully aromatic plant, particularly when its scent is captured by the evening breeze. I have been stopped in my tracks upon detecting this olfactory ambrosia in the air. What amazes me is that some people cannot smell it at all or only can detect the slightest ghost ofContinue reading “Making scents of tea olives”

Evolutionary Process and Normalcy

This is perhaps more of a heuristic extension of natural process to culture and draws together a disparate group of ideas about human tendency (both as products of environment and natural selection and as cultural products and producers). That caveat stated, I wanted to think about modernity and conformity but place it within a frameContinue reading “Evolutionary Process and Normalcy”

Evolution, Emotion, and Language

In a study on Meerkats in the Kalahari Desert, a team from the University of Zurich found that young meerkats respond to vocalization information about “threat urgency” (via tone) earlier than “threat type” (via variation in vocalization) as compared to older meerkats who can distinguish both pieces of information. The researchers argue this association betweenContinue reading “Evolution, Emotion, and Language”