Book Description: From 1981 to 1996 David Quammen delighted readers of OUTSIDE magazine with his thoughtful ruminations on the world around us in his monthly column, NATURAL ACTS. This is a selection of twenty-six of his most durable and engaging essays from that column. The Boilerplate Rhino presents Quammen's distinctive take on topics such as rattlesnake handlers and rattlesnakes, eel mythology and living eels and arachnaphobia and spiders. Each essay is written in the articulate and penetrating style for which Quammen is so renowned. Each touches upon the rich and sometimes horrifically fascinating tension between man and the natural world, in all its complexity and ambivalence. The result is another irrepressible assortment of ideas to explore, conundrums to contemplate, and wondrous creatures to behold. From the acclaimed author of WILD THOUGHTS FROM WILD PLACES and the award winning THE SONG OF THE DODO.