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There's so many process to go throw to make paper never seen it made before. I will show this to my kids when they get home. a lot of work goes into making paper.

"Hi, folks; me again, your friendly neighborhood, er, whatever. If you've been hanging around here for awhile, you've seen me before."

Hi, nice to meet you. For those of us who haven't been hanging around here for that long ... well, not to be rude or anything, but who are you? Unfortunately, your 'Jen-Luc' picture has no caption with your name, and there's no "Posted by ______" at the bottom of the post to identify you.

From what you said, combined with hints from Jennifer about her guests, I suspect you to be Lee Kottner.

Thanks for the info on paper; while I'd noticed the tendency of paper to tear more tidily in one direction than another and knew it had to do with the grain direction, I'd no idea that the 'graininess' of industrially produced paper was an artifact of the industrial process.

Alumnus of, it turns out, James Hillier Elementary School of Brantford, Ontario, Canada.

[To Jennifer: why not allow *style* HTML? Underlining? Bold? Quoting? Just curious.]

Hi Wilson,

Your suspicions are correct. C'est moi, Lee. We're still working out the kinds of posting to a group blog, but eventually we'll have the "posted by" thing licked. In the meanwhile, Jennifer's posted a cheat sheet with our avatars on it in her "Ch-ch-changes" post, and they'll be available with real pics and bios on our own "About" pages too. It's sort of a piecemeal rollout.

Hey, Brantford! You know all about the OSC then, probably. I used to trek over from Michigan to visit cousins in Hamilton.

Welcome officially to the blog!

I saw a Myth Busters episode recently that you should look for. They interleaved two Yellow Pages phone books by just laying the pages against one another, page by page. They ended up with a fat book of interleaved pages with a spine at each side. They ran clamps through the two spines and tried to pull the books apart. Two mid-size cars could not do it. I apologize that I do not recall the numbers, but it took two tanks to tear apart these pages of paper that were bound together only by the hydrogen bonds that you talk about.


Yes, I went to the OSC a few times as a kid in the 70s. At least once for a school field trip, I think! (We called it simply the "Science Centre" at the time, TLAs not being the fashion they are now)

However, in '89, my wife and I moved to BC, so we're now (occasionally) taking *our* kids to Vancouver's Science World.

I notice that "Posted by Lee Kottner" has been added to the bottom of the original post; thanks!

I might suggest that, given that y' never know when y're going to have a new reader, and because it might take us a bit to memorize which avatar goes with which writer, that someone explore the Typepad software to see if there's a way to put the 'Posted by...' tag at the *beginning* of each article - even when Jennifer's posting, especially if people are (reasonably) going to say things like, "Hi, it's me!" Who wants to scroll down to the bottom (or try to find the 'Ch-ch-ch-changes' article when it's three months old) to find out who 'Me' is, after all?

Not that it's necessary for understanding the science, of course, and some - even many - won't care or bother. But I think a multiple-author blog ought to have the author information at the top of posts rather than the bottom. Just my opinion, though.

Malcolm, that's really cool.

Malcolm, thanks for that heads up. I found the link here: but I think they're dealing more with surface area friction than hydrogen bonds. If they'd wet the paper first, that would probably have more to do with hydrogen bonding. Still, it's pretty cool.

Wilson, you're gonna have to live with our names on the avatars. One of Typepad's quirks is that you can't move "posted by" info to the headers. We'll have bio pages up soon.

Actually, Germany had the world's first electron microscope in 1933. The University of Toronto had North America's first electron microscope in 1938. It's an absolutely gorgeous piece of equipment; it looks like a blown-glass sculpture. On display with U of T's EM are images taken in the 1940s of paper fibres with dust particles clinging to them, and little bits of clay from pieces of paper. I thought it was a nice little coincidence to with this post's discussion of using an EM to look at paper.

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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.