Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Dr. Garbage!

The New Yorker reported in Talk of the Town this week that my dear friend and former professor, Robin Nagle (the smiling lady on the right), has been named Anthropologist- in- Residence at the Department of Sanitation here in New York!

For many years Robin has been researching garbage in New York, specifically the work of san men. She teaches a great class at NYU called "Garbage in Gotham" and is working on a book called "Picking Up."

Robin is brilliantly bookish, but she's not one of those ivory tower types. As part of her field work, she not only rode the trucks with the official san workers to get a sense of the work they do, but also trained to become a san worker herself, earning her CDL and passing the physically rigorous qualifying exam to be considered for hire by the DSNY. I was privileged to work as her research assistant for two years (although I didn't get nearly as down and dirty as her), and I can tell you, garbage is a fascinating and revealing subject (and one that I love to talk about, as some of you, perhaps unfortunately, know!)

So a big mongolicious congratulations to Robin!

(And I'll be sure to let y'all know when the book comes out...)

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