Monday, January 14, 2008

Dave, the Author

Last night, I was watching the lame Golden Globe announcements while Dave was on his lap top. We had just had a discussion about what irresponsible parents we are. Our daughter had arrived at her destination---Walla Walla---only to be pulled over by the Walla Walla police as soon as she took the exit off of Highway 12 into town. I am always on pins and needles while either of my children are driving long distances in the winter. I was relieved to get the phone call that she was back at her college dorm but she did encounter a problem.

The car she drives is an Acura that we purchased after our orginal Acura was taken in the U district last spring. The insurance company provided us with a fair settlement and it allowed us to buy a used car very similar to the one that had been stolen. Somehow, we overlooked the fact that a month after we purchased the car, the tabs expired. Kaley has been driving the car and we have been driving the car for over six months with expired tabs without realizing it until the Walla Walla police noticed it last night in the dark and the fog. Luckily, Kaley is an attractive young woman who has been taught to be truthful. She apologized profusely and explained the car belonged to her Dad who must have forgotten to order new tabs. No ticket was issued but merely a warning.

Needless to say, immediately after talking to her on the phone, I went online to order the tabs. It will be easy for her to refrain from driving for a few days until we get them to her. She was justifiably a little bugged at us though the experience was according to her "kind of exciting." Frankly, I was horrified we had put her in that situation and I kept trying to figure out a way to blame my husband because the car is in his name. But I am the family member who spends more time with the household documents so we were equally at fault.

Anyway, the man who lets his daughter drive for five hours in the middle of winter with a car with expired tabs amazes me at times. During the Golden Globe announcments, he says, "Oh my, this is good! Look at this," as he passes me his computer. It was a book review in a prestigious scientific journal. Dave and his colleague wrote, pulled together and edited a text book. I read the fabulous review.
Hamet P,Sˇeda O. 2007. Book review. Am J Med Genet Part A 143A:1809.

"This is your book! Wow!"

"Yea, it is my text book for the class I'm teaching. But the publishers have pissed me off because they are charging $130 for it and students can't pay that kind of money."

"Ah, but Dave, according to this review, the book appears to be worth that kind of money."

Typical of my husband, "Well, yea. It is good and I knew it would be but it shouldn't cost so much. I pleaded with them. It should be half of what they are charging."

Here are some excerpts from the review of Dave's book:

"The concept of individual responses to various
environmental influences has been recognized
by scientists and physicians for decades, and the
first empirical observations date back more than
2,500 years. Nevertheless,
Gene–Environment Interactions:
Fundamentals of Ecogenetics
represents the
first comprehensive treatise of the phenomenon.
The book is divided into four major parts, each
addressing different aspects of the gene–environment
landscape. Overall, the outline of the book
is well thought-out, although each chapter can be
read and serve as a reference text by itself. However,
in doing so, the reader would miss the gradual,
logical unfolding of the whole picture of the

Part IV is what makes this book truly exceptional,
as we are offered full-fledged accounts of the social,
ethical, legal and risk assessment aspects of ecogenetics....

Gene–Environment Interactions: Fundamentals
of Ecogenetics
is a great accomplishment, and it can
well serve as a primary, extensively-referenced text
for anyone interested in the intricacies and implications
of how our genomes interact with the environment
in producing biologically-unique responses."

"Geez, Dave, they call it 'well thought-out, logical, comprehensive, truly exceptional, and a great accomplishment!' I mean, whoa. This is absolutely amazing. So this is what you do when you are always on your lap top and I am mad at you because you are ignoring me?"

"Pretty much," he responded with a small smile.

And there I was wanting so badly to be mad at him for not following up on expired tabs.