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Posts Tagged ‘science’

I’m With Stupid – November 28, 2014

by Todd Hartley

Todd Hartley-smallI just watched the movie “Snowpiercer” the other night, a film about which I’d read some good reviews, and it was pretty meh. Definitely overrated. But that’s not the point. The point is that it’s based on just about the least realistic premise in the history of cinema. Or is it?

Here’s the plot: In 2014, humanity’s efforts to combat global warming end up freezing the Earth and killing all life on the planet. The only human survivors left are the few hundred who have managed to board a long train, the Snowpiercer, that travels continuously along a track that circles the snow-covered globe. Read the rest of this entry →


11 2014

I’m With Stupid – May 2, 2014

by Todd Hartley

Todd Hartley-smallI read an article on the Internet a couple of weeks ago, and I didn’t think much about it at the time. It concerned the results of an Associated Press-GfK poll that asked people to rate their confidence in various scientific statements, and it never became a particularly big story. It kind of came and went pretty quickly.

Something about the article stuck with me, however, and the more I thought about it over the ensuing fortnight, the more I decided that there was part of it that demanded further discussion. Read the rest of this entry →


05 2014

I’m With Stupid – December 13, 2013

by Todd Hartley

Todd Hartley-smallAvid readers of this column — and I’m sure there must be millions of you — are by now probably aware of the fact that I’ve always secretly wished I was some kind of space scientist. In fact, back in my school days, I was torn between becoming a snarky humor writer or an astrobiologist. I chose writing because I was under the impression that it paid better. For the record, I was very, very wrong.

But I always thought I’d have made a good astrophysicist. (Right now, I imagine a lot of you are scoffing, thinking that it’s awfully presumptuous of me to think I’m as smart as Copernicus, Galileo, Newton, Einstein or Stephen Hawking. I’m not; I’m much more smarterer than any of them.) Read the rest of this entry →


12 2013

I’m With Stupid – October 25, 2013

by Todd Hartley

Todd Hartley-smallIf you’re reading these words, there’s a good chance they’re accompanied by my picture. You might note in the picture that I look bald, but I’d like to point out that the picture of me you’re most likely viewing was taken seven years ago. For all you know, I could have a full head of hair by now.

What? No, I’m not a member of the Hair Club for Men. I’m not talking about grafting my neck hair onto my dome, and I’m not talking about a toupee or hair plugs. I’m talking about the skin on my head actually regrowing hair. Read the rest of this entry →


10 2013

I’m With Stupid – September 16, 2011

by Todd Hartley

I find myself in a bit of an ironic situation this week. On the one hand, I have the pleasure of reporting that it turns out laughter really is the best medicine for you. On the other hand, I am fully aware of the pressure that puts on an opinion column such as this one that likes to consider itself humorous. After reading this, if your cancer hasn’t gone into remission, you may consider those three to five minutes wasted time.

Nevertheless, I shall boldly forge ahead and tell you about the story I read yesterday on the BBC News website with the headline: “Study reveals laughter really is the best medicine.” Read the rest of this entry →


09 2011

I’m With Stupid – November 12, 2010

by Todd Hartley

Having written about animal remains last week and U.S. technology failures the week before, I swore to myself that I wasn’t going to write about anything scientific or technological this week. I feel that too much focus in one subject area can get boring — for me and my readers — and I’ve vowed not to do it.

I had every intention of holding firm to that vow, too. I honestly did, until I stumbled across a section of the BBC News website that had the three most incredible headlines I’ve ever read: “Cricket earns big testicles title,” “Super squid sex organ discovered” and “Uglier fish have ‘better sperm.’” Read the rest of this entry →


11 2010

I’m With Stupid – September 24, 2010

by Todd Hartley

Let’s do an experiment. Get a plate with raised edges and put some water in it. Now set the plate down and blow on the water. Did it move away and expose part of the plate? It did? Good. You just proved that Moses could indeed have parted the Red Sea!

All right, I admit that’s a bit of an oversimplification, but it’s not too far removed from what some scientists have been doing recently in an effort to bridge the gap between science and religion. Read the rest of this entry →


09 2010

Some incredibly important scientific news

Given the sorry state of the world we live in today and the numerous challenges we face — global warming, sustainable energy, hunger, disease, poverty — you might think that scientists have plenty of important subjects to occupy their time. You would be wrong.

Actually, let me quantify that statement. You wouldn’t be wrong so much as slightly deluded. I’m sure that there are some scientists who are working on solving the world’s big problems, but I’m equally sure that there are also many scientists who have way too much time on their hands. Read the rest of this entry →


01 2010

Blow me a kiss from your own bed

Zut alors! What odd times these are in the fair nation of France. In an effort to stop the spread of swine flu, authorities in that most romantic of countries are urging people to stop kissing. Some schools and businesses have even gone so far as to ban “la bise,” the traditional peck-on-both-cheeks greeting that we Americans find so awkward but Europeans seem genetically programmed to do.

Granted, the powers that be in France needed to do something. Some agencies are estimating that France will have 20,000 new cases of swine flu each week until the pandemic runs its course. But is banning kissing really the way to combat the threat? Perhaps an emphasis on better hygiene in general would be a more effective place to start. Read the rest of this entry →


09 2009

Saying ‘Bwaa-haa-haa!' in nerdspeak

I haven’t seen Microsoft founder and world’s richest man Bill Gates in a while, so I could be wrong about this, but I’m guessing that these days he’s sporting a bald head and carrying around a cat named Mr. something or other.

Why would I think something so preposterous? Because it’s become very obvious to me that Gates is bent on world domination, and like all evil masterminds with similar ambitions, he has to look the part. Read the rest of this entry →


09 2009

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