Let’s Remember: Mary King, 1827-1869

Mary King (Ward after marriage) was born April, 27 1827, and died August 31, 1869, age 42. Normally, I post bios on birthdays, but King is a special case.  She deserves to be remembered for her scientific work while alive, and what was lost because of her premature death.  The cause of her death should not be her claim to fame.

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Crime Waves: The murder of a foreigner in Taipei, Taiwan

Update below: the capture of the second murderer.

Second update: Police questioning of Mayer has begun.

The murder of Ramgahan Sanjay Ryan on August 22 in Taipei, Taiwan, has made international headlines. (Today’s news about a 55 year old woman’s attempt to stab other passengers on a subway likely won’t, nor will the story of the pervert who placed a camera in a Starbuck’s toilet.) As mentioned in my post of yesterday, I’m not involved with the crime and don’t know the participants, but I am within arm’s reach of them. I have friends (and some now ex-friends) who know or have met one or all three.

Below are a collection of local news stories. I highlighted sections to explain certain facts, or parts which have been the basis of rumours (but won’t state any myself). Names with Chinese characters are removed because they are not being displayed properly.  I have chosen not to allow reader comments to avoid speculation, and offered only one opinion (about how Taiwan courts would handle those accused of possession) and the eye roll.

For the most part, Taiwan is a safe place to live.  My biggest daily concern is that defensive driving is a foreign concept. But for myself and many I know, the murder is the only topic of conversation. It angers me because it gives Taiwanese people a bad impression of foreigners at a time when we need to support Taiwan’s battle to maintain its independence. It’s not just so I can live more comfortably.

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While away….

While away, I did not while away the months since January.  My life has been in turmoil.

Immediate and important matters come first: My condolences and well wishes to all who knew Caine, to her co-bloggers, to her family, to other bloggers here, to readers and commenters.  I apologize for not being around as events happened.  It’s highly unlikely I could have done anything to help, but I should have been around to offer commiserations and kindness.



Those who remember that I live in Taiwan may have wondered about the recent news of a murder in Taipei.  This is not the first time I’ve been in close proximity to a murder (*), but it is the first time I’ve had mutual acquaintances with the accused murderers, people whom I no longer consider “friends”.

(* I worked as a security guard when I was in college in the early 1990s.  A co-worker was stabbed and murdered at a motel that employed our company, a place I had worked from time to time.  Other hotels and the local Greyhound station regularly had violent ex-boyfriends and ex-husbands attempting to find women who tried to get away.)

Oddly, it’s not the murder and those involved that worry me, it’s other people and other issues I’ll talk about in other posts.  I won’t be offering any opinion on the murders, only reporting news items because I have in the past associated this blog with my facebook page (though not vice versa) and someone may be able to connect them.

I’m restricting my social life for the next few months for personal and safety reasons which will give me a lot more time to write.  Whether I will maintain the discipline to do so remains to be seen.  Please prod me so that I do.

A final note: A thank you to PZ Myers and others who maintain Freethought Blogs for not closing and removing this blog.  In all honesty, I thought they would have, I was expecting to return only as a commenter.  I had suggested in the past to close down blogs that were inactive for six months, and I’ve been away for eight.