The Ryders, the Wilkies and the Ryder Wilkies. Hawaii, Christmas 2007.


Stuff we have been doing recently (aside from working very very hard on our theses, of course!):


(Christmas in Hawaii -- 2007 )


Look for more photos on Kari's flickr page.


(September 3, 2007)

cosmos hoodienutcrackers u ndiesbddshirtwp finger

One of Kari's first actions as a new Boston Derby Dame was to set up the Boston Derby Dames Online Store, which we are happy to announce is now up and running and ready for luv. Take a look and support your favorite roller girl by buying a bunch of stuff and telling everyone you know about it (even if you don't live in Boston!). Link

(August 22, 2007)

Well, it's a done deal -- Kari is now officially known in the Roller Derby world as #Five-O Queen Kamayhemayhem. Yay!

(June 19, 2007)

We did it!  Kari is now one of the newest members of the Boston Derby Dames Roller Derby League. Holy Crap! It will be awhile before she is actually in a bout, but practices start soon.

Want to learn more about roller derby?  Try these links:

Next step -- choosing a cool roller derby name.  How do you come up with a derby name?

"There's an art to coming up with your roller derby name. In just a few words tops, it must convey toughness, wittiness and intelligence. The best names are plays on words, and many take their inspiration from a famous figure (usually female, but not necessarily) in history or pop culture." -- Roller Derby Diva
"The process of choosing a derby name is actually quite involved. According to roller derby legend, the yet-unnamed skater must prepare a hollowed-out gourd containing the following items: one roller skate wheel, three strands of hair, scrapings from a burnt piece of whole wheat toast, one tube of red lipstick (any brand will do), and one white sock. On the evening of the next full moon, the skater must place the gourd and its contents outside in clear view of the sky. The skater must sit cross-legged (in front of aforementioned gourd) for exactly nine minutes while looking up at the moon and thinking positive derby thoughts. That night, the perfect derby name will appear to the skater in a dream..... Just kidding" -- Emma Badapple, Gotham Girls Roller Derby
"The perfect derby name should not only be sassy, witty, and tough, but it should also have some personal significance to the skater. Favorite celebrity names, movie titles, and song lyrics can all serve as inspiration for a great derby name, as well as hobbies, interests, and personal obsessions." -- Emma Badapple, Gotham Girls Roller Derby
Our favorite roller derby names tend to be hard-as-nails but also ironically-tongue-in-cheek. For example: Marie Fury, Lois Carmen Dominator, Ivana Clobber, Sheryl Crowbar, Claire D. Way, Sandra Day O-Clobber, Pina Collidah, Etta Maims, Rhoda Perdition, etc. Names have to be registered and no two girls can have the same name. Check out this massive roster of names.

Anybody have any thoughts?

(May 12, 2007)

Tim and Kari's new favorite spectator sport is now roller derby.  Our local flat track league is the Boston Derby Dames.  The season is over but luckily the fun isn't over!  Tryouts are coming up and Kari has been practicing her skating skills in order to make it her favorite participatory sport.  Unfortunately she hit a small snag at her first practice session when she fell over and broke her arm.  Luckily, it isn't too bad and it was her left hand.  She didn't even need a cast.  All is well.

(April 26, 2007)

Announcing Kari's very first published journal article:

Biodiversity below ground: probing the subterranean ant fauna of Amazonia. Ryder Wilkie KT, Mertl AL, Traniello JF.  Naturwissenschaften. 2007 Apr 25; [Epub ahead of print].  PDF


(February 15-19)

Tim and Kari head to DC.  Tim has a job interview.  Kari visits the ant collection at the National Museum of Natural History to drop off some ant specimens and chat with folks at the Smithsonian. 

On Friday, we meet up with Tim's cousin Martin for dinner. 

On Saturday we meet up for dinner with Kari's cousin Nicole and her husband Jason.  Kari hasn't seen Nicole for about 20 years! 
On Sunday Tim (along with friends Erik and Kathy) went on a cool white house tour.  Not just any tour, but one where you had to give your social security number and got to see the Oval Office.  Kari stayed in bed all day with a cold.  But she did manage to meet up with Caryn, her old roommate from Macalester, who kindly met her at the hotel so they could catch up. 


(February 7, 2007)

Tim has started a new blog "examining political/military gaming and simulation, related topics, and whatever else."  It is called A Horse of Peas and can be found at:


(February 4, 2007)

Tim and Kari throw a Guitar Hero Party.  Everyone rocks. More photos.


(January 7-14, 2007)

Tim and Kari (and friends) at Fitness Ridge Resort in St. George, Utah.  We decided we needed a kick in the butt to kickstart a healthier lifestyle.  We spent a week exercising, counting calories, and hiking in some of the most beautiful places in America.  It was awesome!  More pictures here.


(December 25, 2006)

Christmas in Boston.  Yay!
Brunie thinks the wrapping paper is her present.


(December 4, 2006)

Tim's Dad and Sarah come to visit.
Tim explains the engineering marvel that is the bunny cage.


(November 4, 2006)

Tim and Kari have a new digital camera.  You can tell this because they now have lots and lots of photos of their bunnies.  Take a look.  Don't miss the elusive bunny yawn.


(November 4, 2006)

So, for those of you who keep up with this site, you might recall that Tim and Kari purchased a video game called Guitar Hero not too long ago and that it is awesome.  Well, Guitar Hero II is coming out this week and on Saturday a local Best Buy store had a Guitar Hero Tournament to publicize this momentous event.  And guess who entered?  Tim and Kari!  Both played awesomely, although only Tim went through to the second round with a lucky song pick (songs were chosen randomly and because diferent songs carry different maximum scores, there was a bit of luck to it) which garnered him the highest score in the first round!  Whoo hoo!  And a T-shirt and a poster!  Whoo hoo!  Unfortunately he was roundly defeated in the second round.  Kari did not even make it to the second round, but was called back to compete for "Hardest Rocker," where she was required to make her best "hard rock face."  This won her a DVD.  Whoo hoo!   Click here for photos.


(October 27-28)

Well, it's not all fun and games.  Tim has just finished participating in this year's Simulex program.  What is Simulex?  It is The Fletcher School's International Security Studies Program (ISSP) annual crisis management exercise, in which participants assume the roles of national policy makers in an international scenario. Held over a two-day period, the exercise focuses on a highly realistic scenario involving the United States and other world actors.  Actually, Tim probably thinks this is fun and games!

(October 20, 2006)

Tim and Kari recently went to a performance of Kaiju Big Battel, which is kind of hard to explain but is sort of an ongoing performance parodying professional wrestling and the tokusatsu kaiju movies of Japan (think classic Godzilla rampaging in Tokyo).  It was fantastic.  Even better we invited our friends Katsuya and Yuri, who are actually from Japan, to join us.  They seemed confused by the whole thing but we feel like we did our duty by exposing them to a uniquely american experience. Click here for pictures.

(October 5, 2006)

Tim and Kari fulfilled one of their lifelong ambitions (well, since they heard about it, anyway), to attend the annual Ig Nobel Prize ceremony, which is conveniently held across the river at Harvard.  According to their website, "The Ig Nobel Prizes honor achievements that first make people laugh, and then make them think. The prizes are intended to celebrate the unusual, honor the imaginative -- and spur people's interest in science, medicine, and technology."  Some of this year's awards:

  • ORNITHOLOGY: Ivan R. Schwab, of the University of California Davis, and the late Philip R.A. May of the University of California Los Angeles, for exploring and explaining why woodpeckers don't get headaches.
  • MEDICINE: Francis M. Fesmire of the University of Tennessee College of Medicine, for his medical case report "Termination of Intractable Hiccups with Digital Rectal Massage"; and Majed Odeh, Harry Bassan, and Arie Oliven of Bnai Zion Medical Center, Haifa, Israel, for their subsequent medical case report also titled "Termination of Intractable Hiccups with Digital Rectal Massage."
  • PHYSICS: Basile Audoly and Sebastien Neukirch of the Université Pierre et Marie Curie, in Paris, for their insights into why, when you bend dry spaghetti, it often breaks into more than two pieces.

We had a blast.  Video of this ceremony is available online.  We haven't watched it yet but we were sitting right in front of one of the cameras, so maybe you can see the back of our heads!

(September 5, 2006)

Tim and Kari have just returned from a trip to Long Island, which turns out to be surprisingly easy to get lost in.  We attended the wedding of our friends Tim and Sara, who shall forever endear themselves to us by putting Godzilla and King Caesar on their wedding cake.   Also, Kari's Mom came to visit us in Boston for a week and a half or so.  Highlights included: Finally seeing all the friggin' ants, a Duck Tour, a road trip to Buzzard's Bay (where Mom used to live), and a fantastic meal at The Elephant Walk (with an even more fantastic gluten free menu).  The most important thing, though, was that she got to meet the bunnies.  And, as it should be, fell in love with them.  Who wouldn't?