Day 2 – Yellowknife

by Ben Ladouceur

My father underlines the words
he doesn’t understand. Dear father,
penultimate means next to last. Husband, as a verb,

is not unusual. To husband is to conserve.
Ajar is fancier than open. Masticate is stronger than eat.
Like this: Within, we eat our caribou. Without,
the bears masticate theirs.

I am reading his copy of Yellowknife, a travelogue
published in the year of our centennial.

Yellowknife is where my older brothers both were born
in the middle of the eighties, when men at the Wildcat twisted
to the beat of the only vinyl the needle hadn’t scratched

into oblivion. As the dogs barked and the spiders
prospered — if spiders can live
in climates so cold. Dear father, oblivion means nothingness,

and I was never there. I wasn’t a breath in the wind
or a glint in your eye or a howl from afar
overheard because Daniel left the green bay window

ajar. You know the north and I
the words. The songs, the dogs, the
spiders, and I the words.


Have arrived in Yellowknife. My intended B&B was double-booked so they found me somewhere else to stay for the first night. Everyone has been lovely, though I get lots of looks that seem to say “who is she and why is she here on her own?” -perhaps I am imagining it. Spent the majority of the afternoon and evening catching up with family and friends and sending emails. I spent a short bit of time thinking about what my day should look like tomorrow. Perhaps it is better to go on without a plan for a little bit. See what happens.


Day 1- Edmonton

I’m currently in Edmonton on my way up to Yellowknife to begin my summer research. I had planned to stay in the Edmonton airport hotel on the way up, and then again on the way back down. Circle like. Very appropriate. I had no idea what to expect from the airport hotel, but judging by the price I assumed it would be relatively luxurious. On the way up, it seems silly to me – overly and overtly materialistic with a strange obsession with geometric patterns. We shall see what I think of it in July after 5 weeks of the relatively remote Arctic and when I am on my way home again. Right now, I don’t know anything about what will happen on this trip, what I will see, or who I will meet. When I am back here again, I will know everything.

IMG_20150602_174007 IMG_20150602_174154 PANO_20150602_173858 PANO_20150602_174049

Resources: Twitter and

This is a selection of resources generated for the @WesternAnthro Social Media and Digital Tools Discussion Group. Resources range from introductory or “how to” quick guides to theoretical commentary on the platform or tool’s use in academia. While I do believe that all of the links included here are useful for thinking about and/or using the tools, the inclusion of a link does not necessarily indicate my endorsement of, or agreement with, views expressed therein. Please share links to additional resources in the comments below!


The Academic Benefits of Twitter by Carole McGranahan (Savage Minds Blog Post) NOTE: The comments at the bottom are also interesting.

 “Why Twitter? What value does Twitter offer to an academic? And, are you missing out if you are not on Twitter?”

Tweets Loud and Quiet by Jon Bruner (

“The profile that emerges suggests that Twitter is more a consumption medium than a conversational one–an only-somewhat-democratized successor to broadcast television, in which a handful of people wield enormous influence and everyone else chatters with a few friends on living-room couches.”

Twitter as a Cultural Resource Outreach Tool by Sarah Miller (Archaeology, Museums and Outreach Blog)

“Social media is a hard sell for heritage professionals not already engaged in on-line activities for their personal life, especially so for Twitter.  One reason to consider social media is its ability to reach new audiences and build a following to create buzz.”

The Complete Guide to Twitter’s Language and Acronyms by Lauren Hockenson (

“From the basic beginner to a tweet-savvy expert, this cheat sheet will help you navigate the perplexing and concentrated language that often appears in the stream, and make you seem like a regular pro in no time.”

10 Commandments of Twitter Etiquette by Vadim Lavrusik (his own personal blog)

“… 9. #Thou #Shalt #Not #Hashtag #Every #Word”

Some tools I use that enhance my Twitter experience: 

  • Tweetdeck – manage multiple accounts, display multiple feeds (follow various hashtags at once for example)
  • Bitly – shortens links to keep character count down (Example: “” becomes “”)
  • Buffer – manages multiple accounts, allows you to schedule posts and tweets, and posts across multiple platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and Google+
  • Storify – allows you to document twitter conversations as a permanent record of the discussion (good for sharing tweets from a conference or lecture,  or for documenting academic collaboration. See, for example: Tweets from Latour’s Distinguished Lecture at AAA 2014 meeting in Washington, DC.
  • Tweet2Cite –  generates academic citations for Tweets, will format for MLA, APA and Wikipedia

Interview with Richard Price, CEO by Hadas Shema (Scientific American Blog)

 “ is a San Francisco-based start-up, which currently has 1.8 million registered users and 4.5 million unique visitors a month, with about 4,000 new users registering every day.” 

 Should You Share Your Research on by Menachem Wecker ( NOTE: this website has an competitor (Vitae), so read with this in mind.

“For many scholars, isn’t just about exposure; it’s about analytics. In addition to tracking the number of users reading and downloading your articles, the site will tell you who’s searching for you online. If you’re interested in the reach of your scholarship, this can hold real appeal.”

‘Someone Searched for You’: and Me by Christopher Phelps (Chronicle of Higher Education)

“One thing my stats confirm, if anyone still needs this to be confirmed, is that we live in a global age—one that is nonetheless skewed by existing biases in language and resources. My page has drawn eyes from Tunisia, Greece, Denmark, Poland, Lithuania, Australia, Pakistan, South Korea, Brazil, France, Germany, Thailand, and Turkey, among many other countries.”

Social Networks for Academics Proliferate, Despite Some Doubts by Katherine Mangan (Chronicle of Higher Education)

“Academics’ communication overload is apparent on some of the networking sites, where discussion groups are empty shells and some profiles haven’t been updated in a year or more. Still, the founders and regular users of the sites insist they are having a profound impact on how scholars go about their work.”