Let’s nerd out about ants before you see Ant Man

Ants. These little animals run our world. It’s estimated that 322,000,000,000,000,000 ants are on Earth turning over soil and preying on other insects daily. The release of Ant Man is a great opportunity for myrmecologists (ant specialists) to bestow upon us a little ant science.

WIRED spoke with Kevin Welzel of UC Riverside and Adrian Smith of the University of Illinois about Ant-Man and actual ants:

In this year’s movie, Ant-Man’s ant controlling powers have been updated a bit; he directs his insect minions via “neurotransmitters,” moving him a bit closer to reality. Ants communicate chemically with glands located in or near their anus, in addition to 30 additional glands scattered around their bodies. Oddly enough, Marvel did not choose to update this particular part of the biological backstory of Ant-Man.

In Welzel’s words: “Ants are basically a walking chemical factory. There’s just glands everywhere.”  Rectal glands are used to lay odor trails to help nestmates find food; they also summon help when an ant is threatened. The poison glands of ants are also located in the rear, and make formic acid.

Read the full story on Wired

This past thursday @forevrstrong_ and I were able to speak to a total of 14 students at UCR about the importance of detoxing their body, and the Core Program.

Knowledge of nutrition not only gives us power over ourselves, but enables us to become more knowledgeable about the paths to take, in order to reach our goals.

Spreading our knowledge of nutrition, and attaining our nutritional license is just the beginning. We will Live Life On Purpose, and help those who wish to do the same.

#ucr #college #student #health #nutrition #fitness #purpose #goals

Saving Money & Still Having a Life

Shoutout to ThimbleAndBobbinUK for the freshest cross stitch ever. 

Welcome to Episode 2 of Collegiate Ballin’ on a Budget! Today’s inspirational quote is a classic, and comes from the Wu-Tang Clan, who penned that “Cash Rules Everything Around Me”. Keeping these wise words in mind, today let’s look at how to cut some cash out of our current lifestyle. I know a lot of budgeting blogs (that even sounds sad) recommend a strict plan, trading your chic personalized Diet Coke cans for generic Shasta. While a no-frills approach works fabulously for saving money, this is called “ballin’ on a budget”, not “bawlin’ your eyes out drinking disgusting generic soda”. 


If you haven’t seen Cloudy With a Chance of Meatballs 2, stop reading this right now and go get yourself some food-themed puns. Source.

If you’re eating out:

  • Take advantage of happy hour specials or other time-sensitive deals. My favorite Riverside discount eats include Island’s (sliders, nachos, fries), Yard House, (huge discounted apps, awesome $6 pizzas), Taco Tuesday/Thursday anywhere (tacos hover around $1 each), and the different wing specials at BWW.
  • If you can’t make it to the restaurant during Happy Hour, try getting an appetizer served alongside everyone’s meal. This trick is golden when you’re stuck at an expensive place for a friend’s birthday. Eat a snack before you head to the restaurant so you aren’t super hungry.
  • Finally, if you’re set on ordering an entree, think of what will make good leftovers. We all know how massive most entree portions are, so maybe go for a plated dish over a sandwich that might get gross in the fridge.

If you’re cooking at home:

  • Plan ahead. If you head into Stater Bros. without any clue what you’re going to make for the week, it’s easy to be lured by the siren song of expensive novelty foods (I am 100% looking at you, fancy trail mix. You are a cruel and beautiful mistress.)  Outline your big meals and list your snacks.
  • Shop seasonally. Learn what fruit/veg is in season- it’s usually on sale, which makes your job easy. In general, cheap CA fruits include bananas, apples, cantaloupe, oranges, and kiwi. This website is helpful.
  • Sadly, any food that makes your culinary life easier tends to be more expensive. Those cutie pie yogurt-and-granola combos? Super expensive per serving when you compare to buying yogurt and granola in bulk and mixing it yourself. Similarly, try to avoid pre-portioned meat, or pre-seasoned/sauced food. Once you learn about spices, it’s easy to DIY.

On campus:

  • In my opinion, the best deals on campus are at The Barn, for both quantity and quality food. Steer clear of the Hub if you’re trying to save money, but if you’re trapped Panda and pizza are fairly reasonable. Byte’s over in Bourns and the Market at Glen Mor are delicious and affordable if you’re on that side of campus.
  • Take advantage of any free food opportunities from ASPB, ASUCR, or other departments.
  • On Wednesdays, buy delicious and cheap homemade food from clubs and orgs at the bell tower.

Learn about how to balance a social life with saving that ca$h on the next page!

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I could have gone all teacher/English inspired with my grad cap, but I could not resist this opportune moment to call myself a (#Pokemon) Master! 🎉🎓🎉 Last year I received my BA in Sociology/Law and Society. In just 3⃣ days, I graduate with my Masters in Education and Teaching Credential! It’s quite a fantastic feeling 😊👍 #UCR #UCR2015 #GSOE #GradStudent #Classof2015

Electives That Won’t Ruin Your Life

As a fourth year at UCR, I’ve had my share of up and downs when it comes to picking electives for my breadth requirements (you will too my friend, you will too). I’m here to save you from writing terrible iEVALs and endlessly rummaging through ratemyprofessor.com. Here are my five of my favorite electives I’ve taken throughout the years!

1. Intro to Creative Writing: CWRT 56

Actual footage of me in all my writing courses. Source.

Not a writer, no worries. This class teaches you step-by-step how to bring the best out of your creative writing. The class has a fun writer’s workshop-esque discussion that helps you craft your final project, which will be a short story on the topic of your choosing. You’ll be surprised at how awesome you are at writing after Professor Goldberry Long gets through with you. She’s magical.

2. The Evidence of Evolution: Botany and Plant Science 50


As a CHASS student, I had been convinced to take the infamous Dirty 30 (Human Sexuality, Biology 30) to fulfill my Biology breathe requirement. Being the rebel that I am, (and the fact that the class was filled) I decided to try a Botany and Plant Science class, one of UCR’s oldest and most renowned fields of study.  This class focuses on explaining the evolutionary theory of life in a fun, inclusive way. If you like learning about dominant and recessive alleles, The Germ Theory of Disease, and the difference between relative and absolute fossil dating, this is the elective for you. And if you’re not interested in any of these things, as was I, I promise you will be after taking this class. Plus, you get to take a field trip to the UCR’S citrus fields and pick all the citrus you can carry. This class literally fed me for a week. (ps. No discussion!)

3. Introduction to Film Studies: Media and Cultural Studies 20


After taking this class with Professor Burrill my freshman year, I decide to become an MCS major. The class explores the ins and outs of professional film making from acting and directing to cinematography and film theory. Instead of a discussion, you’d have weekly screening where you’d watch a film pertaining to that quarter’s theme. My quarter’s theme was the ocean, and we watched films like Blue Lagoon, The Life Aquatic with Steve Zissou, Jaws, and much more. Take this class. Just do it. You will thank me.

Check out the last two electives you don’t want to miss after the break!

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