EVENT SUMMARY: | BOOK CLUB I
The following article summarizes the original event which is listed below the summary.

Book Notes | ‘Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law’

May 17, 2024, at 2pm
 

In her latest book, Mary Roach describes situations around the world where animals have come into conflict with humans. The goal of the wildlife management companies in the countries described is to establish protocols to deal with the problems, using solutions that would not involve destruction of the animals. Roach has gone around the world to collect stories of animal behavior and the measures that humans have taken to reach compromises to allow the animals and humans to live in harmony. Unfortunately, in most cases, the problem is loss of habitat; as agriculture pushes animals into smaller and smaller areas, the animals react aggressively.

These problems include garbage-eating black bears in Aspen, Colorado, marauding macaques in India, plant-destroying gulls at the Vatican, and invasive rabbits and stoats in New Zealand. The 15 chapters of the book describe different geographical settings and the conflicts that have arisen, between various animals and the inhabitants of cities and farmers who have suffered crop losses. Roach also describes dangerous situations with falling trees and rosary peas (source of abrin, a lethal phytotoxin) and castor beans (source of ricin, a highly potent toxin).

There is a lot of humor in the book, and some of the situations that wildlife managers have encountered are hilarious. Roach has a witty way of writing and seems willing to dive into any situation, even if she gets dirty. She establishes the fact, though, that these are real-life problems, and everyone involved is working hard to find solutions for the devastation caused by some of these animals. 

The members of the UMRA Book Club group generally liked the book. Each chapter of the book deals with a different situation, and some members admitted they skipped certain chapters due to their dislike of the subject matter, or skimmed over parts of the book.  

Roach is a superb researcher whose other books include Stiff: The Curious Lives of Human Cadavers and Gulp: Adventures on the Alimentary Canal.

— Stephanie Daily, UMRA Book Club I

 


 


BOOK CLUB I

Book Club I to meet May 17

Fri, May 17 2024, 2pm

Location
Event to be held via Zoom.
 

Stephanie Daily will lead the discussion of Fuzz: When Nature Breaks the Law by best-selling author Mary Roach when the UMRA Book Club meets via Zoom at 2 p.m. on Friday, May 17. 

Named one of the ten best science books of 2021 by Smithsonian Magazine, the book is a work of nonfiction that explores the times when plants and animals break human rules. Think murderous cougars, thieving monkeys, and sinister birds. Roach explores the nature-human connection with humor and wit.

Email Pat Tollefson at [email protected] for more information.



Upcoming Events

Event Date: July 26, 2024, at 2pm

Erik Larson’s non-fiction narrative recounts the struggles of middle-class University of Chicago, Professor William Dodd, was appointed as U.S. ambassador to Germany during the rise of Hitler and the Third Reich. Dodd not only had to deal with the threats to democracy, but his thriftiness was criticized by State Department officials who mainly came from wealthy elite families. In addition, Dodd’s daughter began dating Nazi officials.


Event Date: August 5, 2024, at 9:30am

Our August 5 hike will be a reprise of our hike last summer at William O'Brien State Park.  This is a beautiful park with a winding trail and a great view of the countryside.  The hike is about 5.5 to 6 miles and we'll go at a moderate pace with frequent water breaks.  After the hike, we will eat lunch at Rustic Roots Winery, a half mile north of the park. 


Event Date: August 16, 2024, at 2pm

Kathy Cramer will lead the discussion of The Bookbinder by Pip Williams, a book set in 1914 Oxford chronicling the life of Peggy who works in the University bindery, but craves a life beyond binding books but to being a scholar herself.


Event Date: August 28, 2024, at 5:30pm

Enjoy a two-hour cruise on the Jonathan Padelford, leaving from the Harriet Island dock in St. Paul, boarding time at 5:30 p.m. We will have a brief program on board by Patrick Nunnally from the River Life Program of the Institute on the Environment.


Event Date: August 31, 2024, at 11:59pm

August 31 is the due date for annual reports and updates.  Annual Reports, Toolkits, web page updates, operating document updates and archives collections are all due each year on this date.


Event Date: September 10, 2024, at 10:30am

Autumn is a wonderful season in Minnesota so plan to join UMRA at the Andersen Horticultural Library at the Minnesota Landscape Arboretum. Kristen Mastel, head librarian and curator, will reveal its treasure trove of publications and artifacts relating to plant history, horticulture, and natural history. After the tour, those who are interested may stay to eat lunch together, sitting outside if the weather is nice. Later, you are invited to a one-hour tram tour of the entire Arboretum that includes natural areas of flowering shrubs, bogs, and forests, family garden and landscaping showpieces, and the red barn farm


Event Date: September 10, 2024, at 12:30pm

After a summer break the UMRA Photo Club will next meet September 10, 2024 in the meeting room of the Hennepin County St. Anthony Branch Library. For those interested in lunch, meet at the Great Dragon at 11:30 am. For September the THEME will be Curves


Event Date: September 16, 2024, at 10am

We will continue to discuss the pros and cons of Medicare Advantage.  You will also hear about notable non-health plan and non-broker resources.


Event Date: September 30, 2024, at 10am

Topics relevant to managing investments in retirement.  By David Foster, CFP©, CRPC©, CRPS©


Event Date: October 13, 2024, at 9am

This trip begins in Madrid and ends in Barcelona with stops 3 cities in between. International round trip airfare from NYC is included in the quoted price. See the attached a copy of the e-brochure with highlights and complete itinerary.  Register by May 1.