· Science ·

I work on pathogen identification and characterization through metagenomic and amplicon sequencing, which I use to study undercharacterized or novel viral species, interactions between co-occurring infections, and disease outbreaks, especially among vulnerable and underserved populations.

Latest:

Transmission from vaccinated individuals in a large SARS-CoV-2 Delta variant outbreak in Cell
An outbreak of over 1,000 COVID-19 cases in Provincetown, Massachusetts (MA), in July 2021—the first large outbreak mostly in vaccinated individuals in the US—prompted a comprehensive public health response, motivating changes to national masking recommendations and raising questions about infection and transmission among vaccinated individuals….

· Art + Writing ·

I work on visual and written communication about math, science, and scientist culture. I draw for fun every day, and I have written for MIT Admissions and MIT Technology Review and have illustrated MIT outreach publications.

Latest:

“Data, data, data” in MIT Technology Review MIT News
For computational biologist Bonnie Berger, SM ’86, PhD ’90, the explosion of new genomic information offers a gold mine of opportunities….

· Blog ·

Grad school, science, sci-comm, food, books, 1.5th generation, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts.

Latest:

And more….


Highlights:

  • Little Library DIY
    Our little library is painted black and the books have a sometimes spooky tint, because we live in a not-yet-painted-black house that may or may not have its own soul. Spooky books are often also joyful books, and hopeful books—but sometimes just spooky. This is a blog post about how we made the library/libraries….
  • Window View
    Cars bring up rain from the street and their headlights illuminate it and the lights and the chimneys and the treetops are outlined in the bright night sky, and you can just see the lights on our fence. I grew up in a neighborhood without fences, low to the ground; now I live and I work exclusively in tall places, surrounded always by the little lights of other people’s lives….
  • Ten Strategies I Use to Work Through Burnout or Mild Depression or Scatterbrainedness (and Other Low-Motivation Moments)
    I. Make it a priority to take good care of yourself. II. Clarify your goals. III. Reinforce your reward system. IV. Rolling for Initiative: remove decisions. V. Group tasks with similar tasks or with things you enjoy. VI. Schedule as many tasks as you can. VII. Join or form an accountability group. VIII. Pomodoro. IX. Do as much of a task as you’re willing to do. X. Schedule breaks, accept your needs, and give yourself time….
  • Three Kinds of Russian Pancakes: Сырники (Syrniki, Cheese Pancakes), My Grandmother’s Recipe; Оладьи (Oladi, Kefir Pancakes); and Traditional Russian Блины (Bliny, Crepes)
    Today I want to teach you (and the future me reading this) how to make сырники, really delicious Russian cheese pancakes I remember fondly from my childhood and have just this year finally learned how to make myself. I am also going to share with you оладьи (oladi), small fluffy pancakes made with kefir, and an old, traditional recipe for блины (bliny), Russian crepes that my mom remembers from her childhood and which she shared with me for my birthday this year….
  • Birds and Baby Birds Doing Their Best At Our Fire Escape Bird Feeder
    To get in, pigeons have scrambled (very undignified) and slipped (very undignified) on the curved roof, tried the walls that aren’t open (undignified), and, most importantly here, stood on the roof on one leg while reaching the other leg down to the railing—a good idea—a good idea that never works, but a good idea—that sometimes results in stepping on another pigeon….
  • Ten-Year Reunion
    High school was a magical time. I was obsessed with the radio, and I carried around a little wind-up Grundig. I knew all the stations in our town, and in the neighboring towns, and I vividly remember the staticky morning talk show wake-ups and the smell of the wet morning air in the early autumn and the hope I had for every single day. I knew all the genres of stations, and I thought I knew all the genres of people….

And more….