Going on a date with an academic? scientist? #RuinADateWithAnAcademicInFiveWords

If you haven’t seen the twitter hashtag #RuinADateWithAnAcademicInFiveWords – you should check it out! It is hilarious… and mostly true! Especially if you are an academic, someone who is dating an academic, or someone who wants to date an academic!! Info about the hashtag here by Steve Kolowich. Shout out to my friend Becky for sending me this article – she also sends it to first dates prior to meeting them.

In hundreds of tweets, clear themes have emerged. Apparently, a sure way to kill the mood is to speak admiringly of astrology, Fox News, homeopathic medicine, The History Channel, or Malcolm Gladwell. Disavowals of coffee, evolution, and Oxford commas might not play well, either. And God help you if you suggest that academics get to “take summers off.”

A few of my favorites!

[tweet https://twitter.com/GradStudentWay/status/556660657924636672] [tweet https://twitter.com/Paleo_Bonegirl/status/555841241855062016] [tweet https://twitter.com/rothmanistan/status/555710936942907392] [tweet https://twitter.com/academickitty/status/555734007715860480]

AsapSCIENCE Video: Why do we like our own farts… #science.. ? hahahaha

Why Do We Like Our Own Farts?

Your farts may smell like roses…to you!
Get the AsapSCIENCE book! http://asapscience.com/book
Watch The Science of Beards: http://youtu.be/HHSjnbfE8XQ

Destruction of student science projects by Antares explosion provides invaluable lesson for aspiring scientists

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When the Antares rocket exploded on Tuesday, it destroyed not only the Cygnus spacecraft, but also the many science experiments it was carrying to the International Space Station. Many of the experiments were from young science students. The explosion hastily destroyed the work of the aspiring scientists in a fiery blaze, providing a valuable lesson about science. Disappointment, despair, and rejection. These feelings faced by the students is a perfect primer for the competitive, harsh, and unsupportive reality of today’s science careers. No classroom education could have better prepared the students for science than watching their work destroyed in a gigantic explosion before their own eyes (although in science, disappointment is rarely accompanied by such a spectacular visual).

Mary Crace Meyer, a fifth grader at Duchesne Academy in Houston, was part of a group of a group that created an experiment to see how algae grows in space under UV light, ABC affiliate KTRK reported. “Kind of weird to hear that something we’ve been working on all year long had just gone to waste and wasn’t there any more,” Meyer said.

Young Mary Meyer’s disappointment is great preparation for the disappointment experienced by scientists on a daily basis.  Hours spent meticulously following a protocol only to find out it didn’t work. Weeks of writing and editing a manuscript that gets rejected by the editor, or returned with overly critical comments from reviewers. Months or years of hard work gathering preliminary data for a grant that doesn’t get funded. Or worst, years of a scientific career wasted because the science is no longer deemed fundable, or the scientist can no longer handle the rejection and disappointment.

And in Michigan, students were disappointed to learn that their E. coli experiment, investigating gravity’s effects on the bacteria, was also destroyed in the blast. Another student group from Michigan had a project on the Antares rocket that examined microgravity’s effect on the muscle of shrimp.

The dashed hopes of the student scientists, who likely held their experiments near and dear to their hearts, will prepare them for the dashed hopes of scientists whose ideas are criticized for being too ‘basic’ or ‘too risky’. In this case, the unexplained explosion represents anonymous peer-reviewers, both having the same non-identity and de-motivating impact.

Some of the experiments were part of Student Spaceflight Experiments Program, which was launched in 2010 by the National Center for Earth and Space Science Education. Stacy Hamel, the program’s flight operations manager, told ABC News today that the students whose projects were destroyed will get another chance to send their experiments to space. “We’re working on a plan for a reflight mission as we speak,” Hamel said. “They will definitely be provided an opportunity to refly those experiments.”

While the explosion will likely turn many of the student scientists away from science, it has also weeded out those not strong enough to survive today’s science environment. Luckily, the students that can pick themselves up from scientific tragedy will realize that, like many scientists, they can continue their pursuit of science with the knowledge and preparation that more disappointment is sure to come.

What is the perfect beach body? Not so much how to get it

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Dean Burnett has written a very entertaining and somewhat scientific piece for the Guardian defining the ‘perfect beach body’. Turns out that getting the perfect beach body is probably impossible, and that’s because our definition of ‘perfect beach body’ is a joke. Despite the misleading title, ‘How to get the perfect beach body (with science),’ it is a very cute article. Thanks for a good laugh and great perspective Dean, but next time please leave the gender stereotypes out; “For many people (but particularly women) there is increasing pressure to achieve a body type that is acceptable for displaying on the beach.”

So, should your body have all the qualities listed above, congratulations! You’ve got the perfect beach body. Anything else is just personal preference. And if you, through no fault of your own, don’t have a body that conforms to the above description, then again don’t worry. As you should have spotted by now, the very concept of a “perfect beach body” is a meaningless one.