The Natural Patriot rides again

New package! Same great taste!

Dear Friends, Faithful Readers, Passers-By, and Google search-bots,

I’m back.

In the saddle again, so to speak, after a few months of what I shall refer to as a sabbatical. I would like to say that a series of life-changing events has brought us to this juncture, and that now I’m ready to tell you the dramatic made-for-TV story.

But that would be a lie hyperbole.

Not that I’m above hyperbole, as regular readers will appreciate. But the prospect of the Natural Patriot’s slow slide into oblivion has been weighing on me for some time now. As have the remonstrations of my 13-year-old son, who reminds me on a near daily basis how far I’ve fallen behind his blog, which has been going strong for just shy of two years now (in fact the birthday of Sox.Rox is this Thursday, 3 Feb — may I suggest you give the boy a thrill and leave a birthday greeting there). What it boils down to is, as Clint Eastwood famously said, a man’s gotta do what a man’s gotta do. And what I had to do was my day job. That and family obligations, the need for occasional sleep. The usual stuff. Not to imply that I’m eschewing those things to go back to the NP. Perish the thought.

Then there was the technology thing. My previous “theme” (the layout of the site) was so ancien regime that it became too cumbersome to work with as the breakneck pace of the information superhighway careened on, eroding any incentive to post. That has now changed as you can see (New package! Same great taste!). In the course of that switcheroo, I’ve lost much of the e-bling that had accreted in the sidebars of the old blog. But most of that was basically a distraction anyway. It’s a new day in America. At least here at the NP. I do want to get the cool morphing flag thingamajig back up online. All in good time. Life, virtual and otherwise, is a work in progress.

It’s perhaps also worth mentioning in this context that I am not a digital native, having grown up in a galaxy far far away where kids were left to play outside without their parents getting arrested, everyone had the same three TV channels, one’s house was basically a sanctuary from 24-7 information onslaught, and so on. People wrote letters for godsake. How Jane Austen is that?

I mention this by way of what might be considered a confession: blogging doesn’t come naturally to me.  I’m really more of an old-fashioned essayist. And that takes time, at least for me.  If the truth be told, I prefer to read books made out of paper and talk with humans.  I prefer walking around in nature to hunching over and squinting at high-resolution images of it on a screen.

Nevertheless, here I am. Hunched over, squinting at a screen, and promising to continue doing so. I’m not saying every day. Everything in moderation.

So you may consider this a shot across the bow. The Natural Patriot is alive and well. My intention, which is of course constantly evolving, is to continue with the eclectic mix of essays on nature-related topics, political diatribes, pedantic advice, commentary on recent scientific advances, and miscellaneous pontification. And of course, Friday poetry.

So welcome back and thank you for your loyalty. Please note that you can  subscribe to the NP through one of the nifty buttons in the sidebar on the right.

Full speed ahead!

About Emmett Duffy

I am a Natural Patriot and an ecologist with expertise in biodiversity and its importance to human society. My day job is Professor of Marine Science at the College of William and Mary in Virginia.
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9 Responses to The Natural Patriot rides again

  1. Udonis Haslem says:

    Congrats on getting the blog back into order

    -Go Heat!-

  2. Conor Duffy says:

    We’re proud of you, Dad!

  3. Andrew Dessler says:


    Glad to have you back in the blogosphere!

    Hope all’s well with you.

  4. Marian Litvaitis says:

    Hoorrray, you’re back!

    I must have grown up in the same galaxy as you; we didn’t even have a TV until I was 12.

  5. jebyrnes says:

    Glad you’re back! While you’ve been gone, everyone seems to have begun making science rap videos. Will we see the NP rap soon? Ha!

  6. Emmett Duffy says:

    Thanks, everyone, for the votes of support! Funny that you should mention rap videos Jarrett — my lab has in fact been toying with the idea. Perhaps our secret has already entered the grapevine . . .

  7. Eileen says:

    Yes, you are back! I was hoping to find a new post again some day!

    Have a great time getting re-started.