Coast-to-Coast: Cape Cod

After N was out of school and I submitted my last grant for this cycle, we went camping! We stayed at Nickerson State Park and had the place to ourselves as it was still before public schools were out. It was a huge park with many natural ponds. My favorite pond was the little, remote pond behind our campsite with a natural sandy beach. With the red cedar trees and other plants unique to the Cape it makes it feel like we’re not in MA anymore. The state park is so large that it had a few evening ranger programs that we enjoyed.  It’s my experience that the ranger programs are just a national park thing… but I guess not! The National Seashore is up the road and it seems that no one was charging for beach entrances yet so we just wandered and checked a lot of things out.

Besides cooking… which is quite the routine when cooking over an open fire. Not to brag (but yes I’m bragging) I made french press coffee, eggs, and bacon over the open fire two of the mornings: I-am woman-hear-me-roar! So now we know- if I was a pioneer woman, I would last at least 5 days. Unfortunately, the pioneer woman could not remember her ATM code and though we are in the 21st century and Cape Cod is a tourist industry, very few places took credit cards. Fortunately, people did take checks or we shopped around until we found a place that took my bank card. A nice little breakfast place took my checks. We ate there the two mornings it rained.

We ended up staying 5 nights. I think we were about to leave a night early as Nehemiah was a tad homesick and I was tired… but he really wanted to kyak so we stuck it out. Besides cooking, beaching, and kyaking we did some mountain biking (the way I like- looping around in the woods with only a general sense of direction on a huge network of trails), little hikes at the State Park and National Sea shore, museum-ing, and a visit to Provincetown, which was really neat. Nehemiah is 7 now and it’s the first vacation I have done with him solo. Usually we vacation with friends and/or family, but he is turning into a good little travel buddy. Sometimes people ask me if being a single mom is intense— and I don’t know…I think staying home with a pile of kids would be intense- I spend a lot of time apart from him. However, I will say that camping with one parent and one child IS intense- for. sure. However, the fruit of it was the time to work on some heart issues. There were times when I could relax as Nehemiah always seems to find other kids to play with and now that he is able to swim, I am able to sit and read on the beach while he plays. We even met a very like-minded Christian family that was there and the mom and I hit it off really quickly and had a great time of prayer together.


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Nehemiah’s medal that he “won” for getting to the top of Pilgrim monument.

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Nehemiah harassing me.

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One very proud paddler of his OWN kayak!

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Exploring Provincetown.

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The campsite.


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A whaler’s mansion.

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In his element??? Hmmm… I’m not sure….

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Our “private pond” behind our campsite— just  few other campers were there.

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N is at the reptile/amphibian-phase-of-life.


The 1% of Scientific Publishing


Well said:


Publishing is one of the most ballyhooed metrics of scientific careers, and every researcher hates to have a gap in that part of his or her CV. Here’s some consolation: A new study finds that very few scientists—fewer than 1%—manage to publish a paper every year.

But these 150,608 scientists dominate the research journals, having their names on 41% of all papers. Among the most highly cited work, this elite group can be found among the co-authors of 87% of papers.

The new research, published on 9 July in PLOS ONE, was led by epidemiologist John Ioannidis of Stanford University in Palo Alto, California, with analysis of Elsevier’s Scopus database by colleagues Kevin Boyack and Richard Klavans at SciTech Strategies. They looked at papers published between 1996 and 2011 by 15 million scientists worldwide in many disciplines.

“I decided to study this question because I had seen in my life a large number of talented people who just did not survive in the current system and with the current limited resources,” Ioannidis wrote to ScienceInsider in an e-mail. He suspected that only a few scientists are able to publish papers year in, year out. But the finding that less than 1% do so surprised him, he says.

The ranks of scientists who repeatedly published more than one paper per year thin out dramatically.

  • Two or more: 68,221

  • Three or more: 37,953

  • Four or more: 23,342

  • Five or more: 15,464

  • 10 or more: 3269

Many of these prolific scientists are likely the heads of laboratories or research groups; they bring in funding, supervise research, and add their names to the numerous papers that result. Others may be scientists with enough job security and time to do copious research themselves, Ioannidis says.

But there’s also a lot of grunt work behind these papers that appear like clockwork from highly productive labs. “In many disciplines, doctoral students may be enrolled in high numbers, offering a cheap workforce,” Ioannidis and his co-authors write in their paper. These students may spend years on research that yields, then, only one or a few papers. “[I]n these cases, the research system may be exploiting the work of millions of young scientists.”

If he could pick one thing to do, Ioannidis wrote in an e-mail, he would recommend spreading resources “to give more opportunities to a wider pool of scientists, especially younger ones, to help them secure continuity of productivity and excellence.”