Of superstitions, orgasms and other stuff: a 2010 review

It is that time of year when people look back. Magazines, newspapers and blogs display their reviews of the year past: the best photos, the top news stories, and the quirkiest blog posts of 2010, amongst others, inundate the web. I, too, should be doing a review of this year’s top Dinner Party Science clips but, given that this blog is only a few months old, a year review of its stories seems inadequate. So rather than selecting something from my own blog, I’ve decided to borrow interesting/funny science clips from the past year from other sources. In no particular order, here’s my 2010 (rather random) selection:

  • Let’s start off light. “”http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/badastronomy/2010/11/05/this-illusion-will-drive-you-mad/“>This illusion will drive you mad” shows how your eyes and brain can trick you into seeing movement where there’s none. Remind me to write about optical illusions at some point, they’re cool.
  • All in the name of science: “On the day I donate my orgasm, I bring along my hot pink dildo.” Do I need to say more to convince you to click on this link?
  • Portuguese people have a passion for breaking ridiculous and useless Guinness world records — you’ll be happy to know we hold the record for largest number of footballs thrown 20 meters up in the air — so I often feel reluctant to read or watch anything featuring terms such as world’s largest, longest, smallest or shortest in the title. But I’m glad I clicked on this link: behold the world’s smallest stop-motion animation. The motion picture was shot using a Nokia smartphone equipped with a device called CellScope, which turns a mobile-phone camera into a microscope. This technology can be used to capture and send images of blood samples all over the world, having the potential to help diagnose fatal diseases in developing countries. People of my country: world records can have a useful basis! Please, no more giant sardinhadas or massive pocket knifes.
  • “”http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/notrocketscience/2010/06/07/superstitions-can-improve-performance-by-boosting-confidence/“>Superstitions can improve performance by boosting confidence”. I wish I had written about this story. I know that superstitions have no scientific basis but, if you cross your knife and fork in front of me, I will be unable to prevent myself from reaching onto your plate to put them next to each other. Crossed cutlery is bad luck! My superstitious nature has also compelled me to wear my “lucky socks” for every single one of my high-school finals and University exams. I eventually wore the socks out (I did wash them in between uses, in case you were wondering) and had to throw them away when I finish my undergrad degree. Still, I kept another one of my quirky habits throughout grad school: eating “Cerelac” (yeah, I know it’s kids food…) before exams. Hey, don’t make fun of me, I was boosting my confidence.
  • I saved my favorite for last. Check the “”http://www.cracked.com/article_18871_12-things-youll-wish-youd-never-seen-under-microscope.html">12 Things You’ll Wish You’d Never Seen Under a Microscope". One of the photos “won first place in the ‘GET THAT SHIT OUT OF HERE, TOMAS. JESUS’ category”.

3 thoughts on “Of superstitions, orgasms and other stuff: a 2010 review

  1. Barbara Ferreira

    Thanks Mike! The microscopy was so terrifying yet interesting and with such witty comments that I knew immediately that link was my favorite.
    Happy New Year to you too!


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