"Treasure your exceptions"

By Carl Zimmer | January 22, 2011 1:39 pm

“If I may throw out a word of counsel to beginners, it is: Treasure your exceptions! When there are none, the work gets so dull that no one cares to carry it further. Keep them always uncovered and in sight. Exceptions are like the rough brickwork of a growing building which tells that there is more to come and shows where the next construction is to be.”

William Bateson, in The Method and Scope of Genetics, 1908. [pdf]

[Image: National Portrait Gallery]

CATEGORIZED UNDER: General
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Comments (3)

  1. Oh! This applies to so many things in life! For me, in a life filled with “exceptions,” my daughter was truly the greatest. And I treasure her still, deeply, and in her profound absence. Indeed, treasure them well, for the exceptions are what make the “norm” worth suffering through. And many of those exceptional delights don’t last long enough…

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The Loom

A blog about life, past and future. Written by DISCOVER contributing editor and columnist Carl Zimmer.

About Carl Zimmer

Carl Zimmer writes about science regularly for The New York Times and magazines such as DISCOVER, which also hosts his blog, The LoomHe is the author of 12 books, the most recent of which is Science Ink: Tattoos of the Science Obsessed.

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