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some recent stuff #5

1 min

This week: terrifying small things

Up Close With The World's Deadliest Animal (ft. John Green) (Youtube)

Mosquitos have been eating me alive this summer thanks to all the rain and puddles. But for Journey to the Microcosmos, we had a surprisingly beautiful time with mosquitos…at least, aesthetically. And we had noted “whatever the opposite of a mosquito enthusiast is” John Green guest-narrating.

You never want to get up close and personal with mosquitos…unless it’s like this, a microscope’s distance away. Under the lens, the mosquito undergoes a transformation of sorts. Before, it was a pesky, biting insect whose presence was felt at best through the itchy bumps left on our skin, and at worst through a whole slew of diseases. But under the microscope, mosquitos undergo a metamorphosis sculpted in gold. The buzzing body takes on a life of its own, its usual role as menace lying far beyond the margins of the screen.

(Not pictured: my light panic attack about John Green reading a thing I wrote.)

Mad cow and the science and spread of prion disease (Podcast)

I don’t eat beef, so the Mad Cow disease scare kind of passed me by. But it turns out that prion diseases are super fascinating and strange, and for this episode of Tiny Matters, we explored how they work and why they’re so unsettling.

Brian Appleby: My predecessor used to say that the fear of prion disease was way more infectious than prion disease itself. And that's certainly true, right? It’s difficult to transmit prion disease and you really can only do it in certain scenarios.

Bacteria (Youtube + Podcast)

For Scishow Tangents, I got to finally write a game about bacteria! And I think this might be one of my personal favorites, which is all thanks to Hank, Sam, and Ceri, and their collective effort to make some sense out of one of our most chaotic game formats.


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