doc w/ Pen

journalist + medical student + artist

Stupid Google! (and some HTML resources)

Dear Google:

Your Dynamic layout series is wonderful, in many respects. It is interactive, reader-friendly, and attractive. However, there is one major problem: The inability to change the HTML coding stifles creativity, and seems to go against the philosophy of Google itself. I hope you will fix this problem. In the meantime, I am sadly restricted to one of your lesser templates, simply because it affords me the ability to customize my pages. Were it not for my followers (however few they may be), I would consider changing blogging platforms. For now, though, I will hold out hope for your listening to the many complaints online about this omission in your template design.


Lorien Menhennett

For those of you who may have visited my blog in the last few days, you may have noticed that it has been a revolving door of layouts and templates. For this, I apologize. I realize this can be disorienting and confusing to readers … I know it is to the author.

The reason for this is as follows: I found a very wonderful template, called the Dynamic series. However, I wanted to customize it by changing the HTML coding. After about an hour of frustration on both my blog and other blogs dedicated to helping bloggers blog, I discovered that this template series does not allow you to edit the HTML code. It is fixed, so to speak. I find this very frustrating. Hence my faux open letter to Google in my faux version of The New York Times (at right).

I find it humorous that this was a problem for me (at 5 a.m. on a Saturday, especially). I never would have dreamed that I would be editing HTML code. But I have learned bits and pieces of it, through different Web sites and others’ blogs. This post is a shout-out to those of you who are experts at this foreign language, which I am slowly learning. This post is also a complaint to Google for not making it possible to speak this language in the Dynamic template series, which aside from this issue is pretty darn cool.

With that said, here are two sites I have found helpful in learning HTML code. Just in case, ya know, you want to try it out too …

html tags
This site is great. It offers tons of code HTML code resources. One of my favorite things about this site is that it has “code generators.” I know, I know … the purists will call me lazy, but I really like that I can just specify the number of columns, rows, background color, etc. in a table and have the site churn out the whole table’s code for me, which I can then copy and paste into my blog. (Here is the specific table generator link:
There are blogs about everything. Including blogs about blogging. This is a great one if you need tips on technical things (I have found it quite useful).

IFLS Helps Make Facebook Worth the Trouble

IFLS: The Facts

Founder: Elise Andrew (employed by LabX Media Group, which owns LabWrench and publishes Lab Manager Magazine and The Scientist)

Description: A community built for the posting and sharing of scientific updates, quotes, cartoons, jokes and photographs. We’re dedicated to bringing the amazing world of science straight to your newsfeed in an amusing and accessible way. Tell us what makes you say “wow!”

Facebook Page “Likes”: 1.6 million

Alternate site: If our name bothers you, please see our mirror page here:

Source: IFLS FB page

Like many people, I have mixed feelings about Facebook. There are definitely pros and cons associated with this social networking site.

But, like hundreds of millions of other people in the world, I have decided it’s worth the trouble. I love keeping up with old friends, yes, espeically the ones who live far away and now have little kiddos I never get to see. But also in great part because of one single FB page: I f***ing Love Science, aka “IFLS.” (Note: There most definitely is an expletive in that title, which I have asterisked out. Not that doing so hides it very well … )

With so many FB pages out there, so many people posting photos and status updates, why do I care about this particular one? Because it appeals to the scientist in me. In so many ways.

IFLS posts are sometimes hilarious, sometimes poignant, sometimes thought-provoking, sometimes informational, sometimes ridiculous (or a mix thereof).

I don’t pay heed to every single post from IFLS – there are quite a few every day – but I make sure to at least glance through them when I’m taking a study break and in need of a hearty laugh or some inspiration.

In this blog post, I present a few recent photos posted by IFLS. Happy viewing …