"Dissertating Drugs" has garnered over 3,000 hits in the year and a half that I've been curating it. There have been some gems, I've interacted with some very interesting people, and had dispassionate debates about substance use and culture.
My original vision was to weave developing findings from my doctoral dissertation with musings and tangents from the world of drugs in research and in popular culture. It's perhaps not surprising that the most heavily trafficked stuff was about baseball, Limitless, Tosh.0, and Charlie Sheen.
I got some great feedback from many of my former peers and colleagues at UCLA who generally enjoyed reading my public rants about the arduous process of completing a doctoral dissertation which seemed to vacillate between self-rewarding euphoria and stultifying clusterfuckiness. I'm thankful to the small community of terminal degree students who enjoyed following my misadventures and commiserating about this stuff. But grad students generally tend to do this privately (for good reasons), which a blog is clearly not. The stuff that audience wanted was unfortunately not the stuff I could post: for example, I'm not going to shit on my advisor (who I love!) or publicly rant against institutional forces that held my degree—and fate—in their hands. These bridges, I've learned, are best left unburnt. Even if they never ever find this blog ... just ... no.
Then there's the broader community of wayward googlers who have no clue who the hell I am, have no interest in the nuances of a dissertation defense, but who really appreciate a qualified research perspective on, say, inappropriate sponsorship in a sports documentary about addiction.
I will continue writing and blogging about drugs, college, sports, research, media, performance enhancement, and popular culture. I want to cultivate the Grantland of drugs. I promise this will continue.
Another key distinction to be made here is that I'm no longer dissertating about drugs. I'm done dissertating. And I'm done blogging quasi-anonymously.
My name is Ross, and I'm a substance abuse researcher, a postdoctoral fellow at the National Development and Research Institute in New York (affiliated—somehow vaguely—with Columbia University). This is what I do now.
And I have a new blog website: www.yourblogondrugs.com
(See what I did there?)
Dissertatingdrugs will stay up, and I may reach back periodically to post some gems from the archive, but expect all new stuff to be posted there. Much thanks to all the readers, tweeters, and supporters.
This always has, and always will be about public health and social responsibility. I just try to make it funny and entertaining. Keep in touch: firstname.lastname@example.org