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Cash SimpsonRSS Feed of this column.

In his other life, Cash is a Formula One race car driver who solves mysteries on TV. His personal site is Science And Supermodels.... Read More »


I'm taking a moment away from crafting "Journey To The Center Of The Uterus", my opus on reproduction and culture, to discuss something of equal import - namely, orgasms.

It will shock you to know this, but nearly 50% of British women don't have orgasms. Are they frigid? No, not at all, as my 1999 layover at Heathrow can attest. Science funding is the issue, as we shall see.

As we have discussed in articles like The Science of Orgasms and Would Female Orgasms Kill Men?, (1) orgasms are tricky business but scientists know what they are doing. Fewer scientists means fewer orgasms. Britain is in the throes of a science funding meltdown so the problem for British women will only get worse. With fewer scientists there can be fewer studies on important stuff like this.

What are we talking about?

Do you like that title? I can't help it, I hear that song from Robin Hood every time I see the word 'oekologie' so hum along with me and enjoy episode #16.

First, I can't take credit for finding most of the terrific stuff contained in here. We're big fans of community events like this so we bothered everyone we could to help find good stuff rather than stay passive and just use submissions that got sent in. As a result, we got some terrific work that was done over the last month. Let's get right to it.

Justin at Sustainablog advocates a velvet glove approach rather than the iron fist approach sometimes taken by enviromentalists in Myths of Environmentalism. He says it's a better idea to remind people that the beautiful nature experiences they enjoyed as kids should be around when they have grandkids too. No argument about that, though we're generally inclined to make fun of Proust here, but that's only because we have fewer Ph.D.'s in English than those guys.

There is a good reason most Americans stink at chess - our unfailing optimism. No matter how bad things get with the economy or the environment or (insert your pet cause here) Americans will always believe that, because we have Christina Aguilera, we beat the pants off of everyone else. Russians, for example, don't think that way. Half of Moscow is populated by women hotter than Christina Aguilera and they're all on a Russian dating site hoping to meet an American mechanic who will get them a green card and raise their kid.

I got some questions from a writer named Captain Carrot who deduced that, because I write this column for peanuts, I must also be available for free science consultation and/or general life and relationship advice.

Here is a sample:

I am 27. Should I try to stop smoking, or will I regret it later in life?

Most of you know me well enough by now to realize that, unless you provide proof you are a supermodel, I am unlikely to even bother learning to spell your name.

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Frankie Rayder is probably a little too edgey and dangerous for non-smoking men.

In case you've been canoodling with your supermodel and not reading this blog, you may not know that the Large Hadron Collider(LHC) is due to go online.(1) Or is it? No one can really be certain. After 14 years and billions of dollars, it's had a number of delays but they have intended to make up for lost time by just eliminating minor steps, like a low energy run.(2) “We’ll be starting up for physics in May 2008, as always foreseen, and will commission the machine to full energy in one go,” said LHC Project Leader Lyn Evans. Oh my. But before you get concerned, let's keep in mind that science is often done without being absolutely certain about every little detail. As train engines were being developed, they tested them using dogs because they were not certain how humans would respond to high speeds, 30 plus miles per hour. In hindsight that seems quaint but it was scientifically prudent. You can think of the LHC experiments like the early days of trains, except if something goes wrong you, your loved ones and the entire galaxy could be sucked into some alternate universe and be ruled by our new Strangelet Overlords.
If you're a student of culture, a number of things have likely piqued your curiosity; like why so many modern people get drunk about ancient religous stuff.

Take Mardi Gras, for example - go to any Mardi Gras celebration and 98% of people there will be Protestants, so they haven't fasted for Lent in over 400 years, and 85% won't know why they are getting drunk at all, but they still act like they are getting ready to starve for 40 days - if by starving we mean not having yards of beer for 11 straight hours.  It's a real mystery but at least it gets people thinking about religion and its relationship to Brazilian strippers.