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I suppose we'll see about Mr. Landis, his testosterone levels, and the quality of testing in this case.

Materials science and state change is fascinating stuff.

Speaking of inexplicable behavior, I wrote a guest blog on Joel Achenbach's

Achenblog.http://blog.washingtonpost.com/achenblog/2006/07/bcs_cosmic_gumbo.html

Perusers of this blog might enjoy the array of Bad Science Metaphors.

bc

That Achenbach, such a slacker. :) And one can never have too many bad science puns...

Hello, let's not panic at the latest media report. All men have testosterone, and many men have way too much. The winner of the Tour De France should automatically be made President of France; it would give France true leaders. As you can see from today's photos, I've been drinking vodka too.

Joel may be a slacker, but he does pick up the tab most of the time, so he's allright by me.

Louise, that idea about making the winner of le Tour President of France is great.

Please note that I have avoided adding any of the 1000+ jokes/comments regarding "excessive testosterone" that have come to mind over the past couple of days. This *is* a PG blog, isn't it?

Sand is fascinating stuff, and I speak to this from the perspective of a long-time sandcastler, including some this past June on the Jersey shore (there's excellent sand at Wildwood Crest and Cape May). I've learned a lot from it.

I can even make sand castles without the condiments of little green army men and popsicle sticks.

bc

Hi, just passing by. Enjoyed the dune surfing, looks like fun spot here, I'll be cruising thru.
laters for now ... Q

"you know a substance, it's so familiar, you see it every day, but somehow it keeps surprising you with unexpected or inexplicable behavior. That's how scientists feel about their ongoing relationship with sand and other forms of granular materials, which is looking like a pretty long-term commitment, thanks to this constant element of surprise."

This is a nice sentiment Jennifer, and applies to almost everything: it's how physicists feel about air, light, the vacuum, ... We learn so much more every year, but there is always so much more to know.

When I was a kid, I lived for a couple of years with my grandparents who lived in a beach house near Santa Barbara, CA (MAN, was that a great time in my life.) During my time there, I noticed a curious thing: while walking on flat dry sand, if you scuffed your bare feet in the sand you could make noises not unlike the sound made by quickly rubbing two pieces of denim or corduroy together. (Being a somewhat largish kid at the time, my jeans made that kind of noise just walking around, whether on sand or not.) The noise obviously wasn't nearly as loud as the 100 Db the UoP scientists observed in Morroco, but it was definitely audible to people around me. When you're a kid, making funny noises is kinda your job.

Never really thought anything of it at the time, but somehow this post reminded me of it.

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    Physics Cocktails

    • Heavy G
      The perfect pick-me-up when gravity gets you down.
      2 oz Tequila
      2 oz Triple sec
      2 oz Rose's sweetened lime juice
      7-Up or Sprite
      Mix tequila, triple sec and lime juice in a shaker and pour into a margarita glass. (Salted rim and ice are optional.) Top off with 7-Up/Sprite and let the weight of the world lift off your shoulders.
    • Listening to the Drums of Feynman
      The perfect nightcap after a long day struggling with QED equations.
      1 oz dark rum
      1/2 oz light rum
      1 oz Tia Maria
      2 oz light cream
      Crushed ice
      1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
      In a shaker half-filled with ice, combine the dark and light rum, Tia Maria, and cream. Shake well. Strain into an old fashioned glass almost filled with crushed ice. Dust with the nutmeg, and serve. Bongos optional.
    • Combustible Edison
      Electrify your friends with amazing pyrotechnics!
      2 oz brandy
      1 oz Campari
      1 oz fresh lemon juice
      Combine Campari and lemon juice in shaker filled with cracked ice. Shake and strain into chilled cocktail glass. Heat brandy in chafing dish, then ignite and pour into glass. Cocktail Go BOOM! Plus, Fire = Pretty!
    • Hiroshima Bomber
      Dr. Strangelove's drink of choice.
      3/4 Triple sec
      1/4 oz Bailey's Irish Cream
      2-3 drops Grenadine
      Fill shot glass 3/4 with Triple Sec. Layer Bailey's on top. Drop Grenadine in center of shot; it should billow up like a mushroom cloud. Remember to "duck and cover."
    • Mad Scientist
      Any mad scientist will tell you that flames make drinking more fun. What good is science if no one gets hurt?
      1 oz Midori melon liqueur
      1-1/2 oz sour mix
      1 splash soda water
      151 proof rum
      Mix melon liqueur, sour mix and soda water with ice in shaker. Shake and strain into martini glass. Top with rum and ignite. Try to take over the world.
    • Laser Beam
      Warning: may result in amplified stimulated emission.
      1 oz Southern Comfort
      1/2 oz Amaretto
      1/2 oz sloe gin
      1/2 oz vodka
      1/2 oz Triple sec
      7 oz orange juice
      Combine all liquor in a full glass of ice. Shake well. Garnish with orange and cherry. Serve to attractive target of choice.
    • Quantum Theory
      Guaranteed to collapse your wave function:
      3/4 oz Rum
      1/2 oz Strega
      1/4 oz Grand Marnier
      2 oz Pineapple juice
      Fill with Sweet and sour
      Pour rum, strega and Grand Marnier into a collins glass. Add pineapple and fill with sweet and sour. Sip until all the day's super-positioned states disappear.
    • The Black Hole
      So called because after one of these, you have already passed the event horizon of inebriation.
      1 oz. Kahlua
      1 oz. vodka
      .5 oz. Cointreau or Triple Sec
      .5 oz. dark rum
      .5 oz. Amaretto
      Pour into an old-fashioned glass over (scant) ice. Stir gently. Watch time slow.