Archive for the ‘Oddities’ Category

Dormivigilia’s “Official” Website
November 18, 2009

A birthday present from

Bookmark it!:


Don’t Sleep Tonight. Go Outside.
November 17, 2009

For once, I am advocating for not sleeping, even if you have an exam tomorrow. Go outside in the wee hours of the morning, hence, missing precious REM sleep time. But seeing 30 to 300 comets whiz across the sky if you don’t live in suburbia and/or the city is well worth the skimping on sleep. Leonid’s Meteor Shower is tonight/tomorrow. Comets should appear between 2 and 4 am.


No Comment.
November 15, 2009

Oh, Lil Jon. You started your career by creating one of the finest dancing songs of all time, slowly progressed into having ridiculous, nonsensical songs like “Snap Yo Fangers,” but this? I can’t even comment.It certainly isn’t a public service announcement the National Institutes of Health would endorse.


Larry Kagan: The Steel Artist
November 9, 2009

It’s fitting for Youngstown, a post-steel apocalyptic city, to have an exhibit at the Butler Institute of American Art  with steel as a choice of medium…..and light. Larry Kagan is the artist, and Larry Kagan is a genius. He has crafted several hundred steel pieces that appear to be the work of a juvenile welder, until light becomes an additional medium. And voila! Airplanes, chairs, footballs, Lucky Strike cartons, bicycles, insects, and even three-dimensional planes emanate from the convoluted cluster of steel.


History (Evolution) of Birth Control et al.
November 3, 2009

Newsweek has a fascinating slide show recapitulating the history of birth control. From chastity belts to Lysol douches to female condoms, human history waxes and wanes from societal endorsement of abstinence and safe sex. Advocating for the practice of safe sex has been a crucial platform of the Obama administration. This certainly was an effective tactic in The Girl Next Door when Matt and his nerdy “tripod” of friends created an educational sex video featuring porn stars. And it worked!

On a related note, boys in the 18th and 19th century were fitted with penile clamps, preventing them from masturbating or having erections at night. It essentially was a “one size fits all” cock ring with jutting barbed spikes (imagery is enough, not visual media necessary). Before the development of polysomnography and the subsequent discovery of nightly erections (nine a night!) coinciding with REM sleep, it was assumed that these nightly erections were associated with “wet dreams” and not a physiological phenonmenon called nocturnal penile tumenscence. Nocturnal penile tumenscence enables doctors to determine if erectile dysfunction is psychologically and/or physiocally mediated. It’s a more invasive measure than the “postage stamp” test. Perhaps Charlotte would had benefitted from this information…..

Fruit Bats Engage in Oral Sex: No Joke.
October 28, 2009

“At present, we do not know why genital licking occurs, and we present four non-mutually exclusive hypotheses that may explain the function of fellatio in C. sphinx.”

Hey, it’s in PlosOne. Blow jobs, er, excuse, fellatio, oral sex, and/or whatever other polite term you care to use increase copulation in bats. The average licking session extends copulation by 6 seconds. Rodents also have stereotypic foreplay known as “pacing” to increase copulation. If Freud was still alive, I’m guessing he would extrapolate his “theories” and say that all mammals are fixated in the oral stage of development.

I tried finding a video of bats caught in the act, but none yet. The authors of the article can’t keep this million dollar movie footage hidden for long, I imagine.

Sike! Six more seconds!

“Sleep Deprivation is the Number One Medicial Problem in America”
October 27, 2009

Per ZombieLand. Clearly, this is ironic for the heroes of Zombieland to acknowledged that Americans are sleep deprived when they have brain eating, gut guzzling, blood thirsty zombies eating all the humans in the world. But, nice of Wichita to address America’s ongoing epidemic.

I can’t vouch, however, for the movie trailer of A Nightmare on Elm Street preceding the showing of Zombieland. It urges people not to sleep, particularly kids, or expect to not ever awake.

Freudian Slips? Ideas Needed!
October 23, 2009

I do not have any motivation to post anything related to neuroscience today. SfN kicked my ass….er should I say re-unioning with friends, late-night socials, and unhealthy eating was the culprit and now my paraventricular nucleus and immune system are suffering. I’ll be hopped up on a cough suppressant/fever reducer for the next few days. Anyways, I need ideas for my Halloween costume, which is a repeatof the lovely Caroline Mailloux’s (@maillouxska) costume last year: Freudian slips. I have a few “slips” in mind, but need about 20 more…..

Twitter @ beastlyvaulter
October 16, 2009

I now have a Twitter account, particularly for brief commentary while attending the symposia and posters at SFN 2009. Glad to have bought a Lenovo S10 ThinkPad this year for easy, convenient laptop traveling even if the battery life is sub par and the pute makes an obnoxious, blaring noise every time the power cord is plugged in or unplugged. Librarians love that.

Why Go To Graduate School?
October 14, 2009

This afternoon, I was asked by a fellow faculty member to talk about graduate school. I decided to utilize his vagueness to my advantage: show that I’m not a nerd. After talking a few blah, blah, blahs about the doctoral degree which actually means you are a qualified problem solver (well, I  actually didn’t say that. I simply showed them a concept map illustrating that obtaining a degree in a particular field (e.g. neuroscience) also necessitates experience in other disciplines (teaching, writing, consulting, business, public health, psychology, medicine, and chemistry, to name a few)), I showed them the following video. It probably accentuated my nerdiness given that it is a music video to “Under Pressure” by David Bowie performed by graduate students of the science departments at Berkeley, but that makes me a cool nerd, right?

And if you’re extra nerdy, you can mimic my fellow scholarly friends who constantly debate about the best blue collar suburb in  Northern Rhode Island (Cranston vs. Warwick). The Warwickite uses this video as a rebuttal.