Posts Tagged ‘science comedy’

My 25 Mundane Neutrino Explanations

Today I had the most fun I’ve ever had on Twitter, thanks to the OPERA experiment working out of CERN, home of the Large Hadron Collider.

The blogosphere is ablaze with news that they seem to have detected neutrinos traveling faster than light.  If true, it would be the biggest science news of the century, overturning one of the most fundamental concepts in physics.  There is obviously much skepticism amongst scientists.  For a typically insightful explanation, check out Bad Astronomer Phil Plait‘s post:  Faster-than-light travel discovered? Slow down, folks

The Twitter fun began when a discussion between two physicist/mathematician-types, Blake Stacey (@blakestacey) and S.C. Kavassalis (@sc_k) led Blake to tweet:

@sc_k Maybe we need to counterbalance the HEP blogohedron with a Twitter meme? e.g., #mundaneneutrinoexplanations

Then he spun out a few funny examples of more mundane explanations for the unusual neutrino measurement:

  • #CERN physicists did arithmetic on old Pentium computers
  • #CERN physicists let undergrads near the experiment
  • Calculations done by visiting Americans who still don’t get the metric system.

…  all with the #mundaneneutrinoexplanations hashtag appended.

I think I was the first one to follow his lead with:

  • Forgot to carry the one
  • Confused neutrino with one sent later
  • Study published by Wakefield et al

Then @drskyskull and @physicsdavid and others joined in (even astophysicist Neil deGrasse Tyson and the Bad Astronomer) and, before you know it, the Twitterverse was alive with funny explanations, some of which may be as likely as superluminal neutrinos.  I ended up spitting out about 25 of them, which I present here, as they were tweeted, in reverse chronological order (so start from the bottom).  Enjoy!

 

#mundaneneutrinoexplanations

 

April Fool’s Tribute to Thomas Edison

Last year, for April 1st, I was asked to make a guest post to a GE blog called Edison’s Desk.  So I made this April Fool’s Tribute to Thomas Edison.  I had a lot of fun with the links – try ‘em all!

I must really be an April Fool because this is a big day for me.  I’ll be on NPR’s Science Friday with Ira Flatow – to talk about science and comedy with my friends Tim Lee and Norm Goldblatt.  The show streams live from 11am to 1pm Pacific/2-4pm Eastern, in addition to airing on your local public radio station.  Listen to it here.

Then later tonight I’m emceeing a great STEM education event (STEM = Science Technology Engineering Mathematics) in the planetarium at the California Academy of Sciences.  It’s called STEMPosium and it’s an evening to honor some fantastic education innovators.  This event will be live streamed from their website at 7:30pm Pacific. Check it out!

Upcoming San Francisco Shows

Science Comedian Street Team: Activate!  Please forward via email, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace, telegraph, semaphore, smoke signals, and telepathy.

I have two(2) big San Francisco shows coming up – plus, a bonus appearance at Ignite SF.  One show is this week, part of SF Sketchfest – the others are just around the corner:  February 8 and 9.  Details and links… to more details and links:

This Wednesday, January 26, see two one-man shows for the price of one.  At the Eureka Theatre, comedian and cartoonist Michael Capozzola will present his food-themed multimedia show “Regurgitated,” and I’ll be doing my latest science comedy: “Spontaneous Emissions.”  Joining us will be the amazing Mike Meehan for a special cameo.

Wednesday, February 9, join me at the San Francisco Punch Line Comedy Club for an evening of science humor – again, “Spontaneous Emissions.”  My good friend Ngaio Bealum will join me as a guest performer.  Call the club and make reservations in advance!  This show will sell out.

And for something a little different…  the 2nd Annual Global Ignite Week is coming.  I’ll be participating in the San Francisco event at Public Works on Tuesday, February 8.  Ignite is an evening of 5-minute talks with 20 slides each, that auto-advance every 15 seconds.  Presentations are by artists, technologists, and other thinkers – designed to be of interest to geeks.  16 speakers!  A huge variety of topics.  My presentation will be called “How Wine Saved the World.”  True story.  Be there!

And, seriously – even if you’re not in the SF Bay Area, please forward this link to someone who is!  Thanks!

Punch Line Comedy Club, SF

Wednesday, February 9, 2011.  An evening of science comedy at the Punch Line Comedy Club, San Francisco, with science comedian Brian Malow and special guest performer Ngaio Bealum.

Tickets are $15 if you call the club:  415-397-PLSF  (415-397-7573)
For an additional $5 service fee, you can buy tickets online

***
Science Comedian Brian Malow
presents
Spontaneous Emissions
An evening of science humor

“It’s as much about expanding the mind as it is tickling the funny bone.”
- The Washington Times

Get your geek on!  From the lighter side of helium to the darker side of the moon, join science comedian Brian Malow on a rocket ride through the humorverse.  Brian will dispel myths & misconceptions about science, explore the science in science fiction films, and exercise your brain as well as your funny bone.  Also, appearing:  special guest comedian Ngaio Bealum.

For all audiences!

Music is not just for musicians. Art is not just for artists. And science is not just for scientists.

—————————————————-

$15
8pm, Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Punch Line Comedy Club
444 Battery Street (between Washington and Clay)
San Francisco, CA 94111
415-397-PLSF

Tickets are $15 if you call the club:  415-397-PLSF  (415-397-7573)
For an additional $5 service fee, you can buy tickets online

—————————————————-

Brian Malow is Earth’s Premier Science Comedian (available for off-world appearances if transportation is provided). Based in San Francisco, Brian has appeared on “The Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson,” and performed for NASA, JPL, NIST, OSA, ACS, and other acronyms. He also makes science videos for Time Magazine’s website, and has been featured in the Washington Post, New York Times, San Francisco Chronicle, and San Jose Mercury News.

For more info, check out www.sciencecomedian.com and  www.youtube.com/sciencecomedian and www.twitter.com/sciencecomedian

Bad Science in Star Wars

FORA.tv has a short video of me performing at the recent Wonderfest science festival in Berkeley.  I’m talking about bad science in science fiction movies, and the example in the clip is a classic moment from Star Wars…

Link to video on YouTube

Link to video on FORA.tv

Georgetown University – Free Show

Friday, October 22, 2010. As part of the inaugural USA Science & Engineering Festival, I will be performing 8pm, Friday night, October 22, 2010, at Georgetown University – and it’s free and open to the public (that’s YOU!).

For details:
Rational Comedy for an Irrational Planet – An Evening of Science Humor

My friend Norm Goldblatt, the Phunny Physicist, will also appear.

USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo Saturday

As part of the inaugural USA Science & Engineering Festival, I will be performing multiple shows.

At the huge weekend Expo – which is free and open to the public (that’s YOU!) – I will be doing 20-minute sets:

Saturday, October 23, 2010, 2:30pm – on the Wilson Plaza stage

Sunday, October 24, 2010, 3:30pm – on the National Mall stage

And check out my full-length show on Friday night at Georgetown University – also free.

USA Science & Engineering Festival Expo Sunday

As part of the inaugural USA Science & Engineering Festival, I will be performing multiple shows.

At the huge weekend Expo – which is free and open to the public (that’s YOU!) – I will be doing 20-minute sets:

Saturday, October 23, 2010, 2:30pm – on the Wilson Plaza stage

Sunday, October 24, 2010, 3:30pm – on the National Mall stage

And check out my full-length show on Friday night at Georgetown University – also free.

Wonderfest

Sunday, November 7, 2010. Once again I am thrilled to be performing at Wonderfest – the Bay Area’s long-running festival of science.  This is their 12th annual event – and my third time participating.

As always, it’s a 2-day event – Saturday on the Stanford campus and Sunday on the Berkeley campus.

I am only attending Sunday, November 7, at UC Berkeley’s Stanley Hall.  I will perform and then moderate a dialogue:

3pm:  Science Laughs with Science Comedian Brian Malow

4pm:  Moderator for  “Do We Understand the Structure of the Universe?” – a dialogue between Lloyd Knox, a physics professor from UC Davis, and Chung-Pei Ma, an astronomy prof from Berkeley

And, in between my two slots, you can enjoy a live podcast of “This Week in Science” with my friends Dr.Kiki and Justin!

Science Comedy at the Purple Onion, San Francisco

8pm, Thursday, Sept. 23, 2010

An evening of science comedy – and a couple guests on the show.  Get tickets here!

San Francisco’s Purple Onion, in North Beach, is an awesome venue with a lot of history.

Tickets:  http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/129964
140 Columbus Avenue
San Francisco, CA 94133
(415) 956-1653