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Over Easy: Monday Science

Happy New Year!

Alka Seltzer fizzing in a glass.

Over Easy cures your New Years' hangover. You're welcome.

In the old days, new years basically meant nothing. People told time by the seasons, not by the Gregorian calendar. So the nearest holiday was the winter solstice. The calendar as we use it didn’t even exist until 1582 

The holiday has evolved into a worship of Football and intoxication, normally by alcohol. Since it would be rude to ignore such a long and storied tradition…

Concussions are a part of football, some say. Yet universities are looking at the health effects. Well, some of them. Lawyers are looking at it, too.

While ethanol from corn turns out not to be the wisest idea we’ve ever had, ethanol as an alternative to petroleum is not without merit. It’s less efficient, but releases way fewer pollutants per mile. Here’s a company actually selling alcohol made from algae! They claim a cost of $1.00/gal.

Assuming you’re smart enough not to get caught drinking and driving, here are some suggested hangover cures. Boxturtle’s recommendation: Drink a packet of alka seltzer in twice the recommended amount of water before crashing. Hangovers are caused by dehydration and impure alcohol, among other things. This will prevent the dehydration, dilute the toxins, and give you a had start on the headache.

I learned something from this. UV sterilization of public water is a good thing, but I didn’t think it was this complicated. Different bugs die differently under different frequencies. Different, no?

Titan is cool. Add to the list of places that could support life. Ditto Enceladus. Slightly less interesting is Dione.

The rare pygmy right whale is actually a living fossil. We keep finding those. Wonder what we’ll find when we go deeper? Environment drives evolution and conditions at 5000ft haven’t changed much.

Hawaii is dissolving. Starting in 1.5 million years or so.

Fukusmina will likely kill us first. We still don’t have a clue on how to clean it up.

Boxturtle (Will avoid New Years Hangover by drinking Iced Tea. Works every time.)

Photo by Spencer E Holtaway released under a Creative Commons No Derivatives license.

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