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Washington State Magazine

Tom Norwalk
Summer 2014

Tom Norwalk ’75—Visit Seattle

Tom Norwalk’s office sits high above the Washington Convention Center and looks directly across the street to the guest rooms of the Seattle Sheraton. From another angle, Norwalk can see the two round towers of the Westin and the classic red brick Roosevelt then, just a bit to the left, the Hyatt. For the president and CEO of the city’s private nonprofit visitor marketing association, seeing those rooms in use every day is a good reminder of his job. Visit Seattle, supported by the convention center, hotel room surcharges, the mayor’s office of Arts and Cultural Affairs, and a number of other sources, draws new … » More …

Summer 2014

Machine in the classroom

New tech tools engage young scientists

In a familiar classroom scene, lab partners take turns squinting into a microscope. They spy a wriggling paramecium, if the organism doesn’t swim away from the field of view. These days they also peer into an iPad to watch videos and access digital textbooks. Engineer and entrepreneur Jeff Stewart sees a happy marriage between these old and new technologies in science classrooms.

Stewart and his colleagues at Exo Labs have enhanced that connection with an accessory that connects any microscope to an iPad, where students and teachers can take pictures and videos, measure objects, and quickly share … » More …

Volleyball team
Summer 2014

Summer spikes

The Washington State University volleyball offices just off Bohler Gym are a lively place, even on an off-season Tuesday in mid-winter. The far office is buzzing with the voices of coaches planning the afternoon practice, the phone rings and rings again, and an athlete studying on a couch greets another sweeping through between classes and the weight room.

The team’s last public game was in November, but recruitment is in full swing, there is some light training, and coaches and staff are planning for a series of summer camps for nearly 300 grade school, middle school, and high school girls. Several other WSU sports programs, … » More …

WSU Bookie
Summer 2014

100 years of the Bookie

For a hundred years the Washington State University student-owned bookstore, affectionately known as “the Bookie,” has served as a social hub, a source of funds for the student body and, of course, the place to get textbooks and supplies.

Since it opened in 1914, the Bookie has had several homes and sold thousands of books, baseball caps, fancy fountain pens, and frozen treats. But many former students remember best those iconic Bookie bags, the Cougar gear, and the coffee. Even though the bookstore doesn’t hand them out any longer, many also remember those crisp Bookie bucks that filled their wallets at … » More …

Bruce Lee v. Chuck Norris
Summer 2014

Consider the dragon

With his fierce gaze and swift, powerful muscles, Chinese American martial artist and actor Bruce Lee inspired John Wong and a generation of Chinese people in the early 1970s. Lee embodied a new and potent physicality as an Asian man on film, one who would transcend traditional kung fu forms, influence fitness, and stand toe-to-toe against stereotypes.

“He had a quality that people admired and almost worshiped,” says Wong, associate professor in the Washington State University College of Education and sports historian. “Even people who were born after Lee died see his influence as a pioneer.”

In a recent article for Sports History Review, Wong … » More …

John Florio
Summer 2014

The time in between

England came late to the Renaissance. But by the time it arrived, its greatest contribution would be literary. John Donne, William Shakespeare, and Ben Jonson served a literate aristocracy eager to be informed and entertained.

Into the late sixteenth century comes the observant figure of Michel de Montaigne, a French statesman and prolific essayist who wrote about nearly everything his mind encountered, “from cannibals to codpieces, suicide to faith,” as Will Hamlin, WSU’s English literature and Renaissance scholar, puts it. For most English readers of the time, Montaigne’s French Essais were made accessible by a translation undertaken by his contemporary John Florio, a language teacher … » More …

Chinese cannabis text
Summer 2014

Sex, drugs, and differences

After decades of researching gender differences in the effects of drugs, Rebecca Craft has found that females using marijuana are likelier than men to become dependent on the drug and suffer more severe withdrawals.

At the same time, females seem to be more sensitive to the drug’s pain-relieving qualities.

Craft, a Washington State University psychology professor who studies the effects of psychoactive drugs on rats, has reported these findings most recently in journals such as Life Sciences and Drug and Alcohol Dependence. Her work, funded in part by the National Institute on Drug Abuse, focuses on the medical side of cannabinoids, the class of drugs … » More …

West Nile virus chart
Summer 2014

Charting the course of a globe-trotting pathogen

For more than half a century, West Nile virus was someone else’s problem.

The mosquito-borne pathogen was first isolated from a feverish human in 1937 in northern Uganda’s West Nile district. It then lay low for a decade before emerging in an actual epidemic in Israel in 1951. With several Egyptian outbreaks in the early ’50s, researchers started to see the disease infect non-humans, particularly crows and horses. Mosquitoes of the Culex genus appeared to be its chief transmitter, or vector.

By the time the virus hit the United States, in 1999, it had taken on a more sinister character. Where before it mostly struck … » More …

Summer 2014

Posts for Summer 2014

 

Recollecting Washington’s landscapes

Tim Steury’s article “Mountains and Rivers and Prairies Without End—Recollecting Washington’s Landscapes” is a great read for this student of all he writes about.

But the narration also brought back fond memories of places and people significant to me. As a WSC freshman in 1956 I hitched a ride with Ed Claplanhoo, who was a senior at that time, from our farm near Port Ludlow back to Pullman after the between semester’s break.

Then in 1988 my wife Louise (Morse), WSC ’59, and I took a class in anthropology of the North Cascades taught by Bob Mierendorf. To get to … » More …

Milky Way in eastern Washington
Summer 2014

A Washington childhood

As spring surrenders to summer, so must we yield our state to its youngest residents, approximately 1.15 million children and teens who will soon take over our communities, yards, pools, beaches, and parks.

milky way
One of my early memories is of exploring a campsite on Mount Rainier. I remember roaming around the spot on a cool June morning, exploring a paved road dusted with pine needles and peering into the wet shadows of the woods. Laced into my first hiking boots, I followed my parents along the Sunrise Nature trail, an easy 1.5 mile loop … » More …