Posts Tagged ‘chemistry’

Helium – So Long and Thanks for all the Balloons!

Somehow this didn’t make it into the blog earlier – our Time.com video about helium.  A flight in a zeppelin, a visit with the Balloon Lady, and the end of an era?…

Related Post:
Science Comedian Riffs on Hydrogen and Helium at Ignite

San Francisco Chronicle Features Science Comedian

The San Francisco Chronicle ran a feature story on me today (the print version actually appears in the Datebook section, Sunday, January 11, 2009):

Making Science Funny:  Brian Malow

It’s written by Nick Thomas, who we love!  Last year, Nick did a Q&A with me for Nature:

Helium Walks Into a Bar

In addition to being a prolific freelance writer, Nick is Associate Professor of Chemistry at Auburn University in Montgomery, Alabama.

The article comes out in time to promote my upcoming Bay Area shows – Tuesday at the San Francisco Punch Line, and Wednesday in Sunnyvale at Rooster T. Feathers.  Also, a week later at the Sacramento Punch Line on January 22.

P.S.  The book I’m holding is Cosm by Gregory Benford, one of my favorite reads of 2008.

Nature Abhors a Science Comedian

“I am at two with Nature.”  -  Woody Allen

* * *

Unlike Woody, today I am at one with Nature…  the magazine, anyway.  One page of it.

There’s a short Q&A with me in the current issue of Nature.  The writer/interviewer is Nick Thomas, who is not only a chemistry professor but also an impressively prolific freelance writer.

The photo was taken at SciFoo 2008 by John Gilbey…  although the background has been entirely photoshopped out, leaving me looking like a cut out for a Monty Python animation.

Still, I’m in Nature.  That’s pretty cool.

Did I say “abhors”?  I meant “adores.”

Conservation of Mass

I noticed a long time ago, whenever my mother would lose weight, my father would gain weight. And when my father lost weight, my mother gained weight.

It was like the Conservation of Mass, within our family.

Being the young scientist that I was, I developed a theory to explain the facts: You see, you never actually lose weight….you just give it to somebody else.

Fat can be neither created nor destroyed. It’s one of the basic laws of the universe. You need to know the laws if you’re gonna live here.

Science Comedy Video

A montage of some of my science comedy routines, taken mostly from two events at the Marian Koshland Science Museum of the National Academy of Sciences (in 2006 and 2007).

A couple clips from my 2008 performance appear earlier in this blog (on cell phones and Karma) and more are coming soon.

The Man Who Mistook His Wife For A Yarmulke

I’m a Jew from Texas – a relatively rare breed, we can’t even propagate in the wild.

So, before my migration to Northern California – which is counter to the eastward migratory pattern characteristic of my kind – a migration which, over time, deposits us in the Sunshine State like calcium carbonate on a stalagmite – I had the opportunity to make sociological and psychological observations of an uncommon species.

I hope to someday publish my findings and share with the world these curious and fantastic tales.

The working title of my book is The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Yarmulke.

Neal Stephenson on Jupiter Envy

“For a Westerner to trash Western culture is like criticizing our nitrogen/oxygen atmosphere on the grounds that it sometimes gets windy, and besides, Jupiter’s is much prettier. You may not realize its advantages until you’re trying to breathe liquid methane.”

- Neal Stephenson