Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Riu Chiu

The Monkees sing in Spanish, a-cappella, a beautiful version of an Old Spanish Christmas Carol, "Ríu, Chíu." From their TV Christmas special in 1967; arranged and adapted by: H. Diltz, C. Douglas, C. Faryar, J. Yester.

And here is what I look like on this very day in December

Each time I go to hairdresser I have to take a picture of myself, which is not easy, I can tell ya.

Hey there, this is how I study!

Books upside down!

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Sex on Mars

I cannot believe it. Is that the only thing they can think of.

Journal of Cosmology, 2010, Vol 12, 4034-4050.
JournalofCosmology.com, October-November, 2010
Sex On Mars:
Pregnancy, Fetal Development, and Sex In Outer Space
Rhawn Joseph, Ph.D.
Emeritus, Brain Research Laboratory, Northern California
Humans are sexual beings and it can be predicted that male and female astronauts will engage in sexual relations during a mission to Mars, leading to conflicts and pregnancies and the first baby born on the Red Planet. Non-human primate and astronaut sexual behavior is reviewed including romantic conflicts involving astronauts who flew aboard the Space Shuttle and in simulated missions to Mars, and men and women team members in the Antarctic. The possibilities of pregnancy and the effects of gravity and radiation on the testes, ovaries, menstruation, and developing fetus, including a child born on Mars, are discussed. What may lead to and how to prevent sexual conflicts, sexual violence, sexual competition, and pregnancy are detailed. Recommendations include the possibility that male and female astronauts on a mission to Mars, should fly in separate space craft.

Key Words: Sex, Mars, Pregnancy, Fetal Development, Menstruation, Testes, Ovaries, Radiation, Gravity, Sexual Conflicts

Performance of the sex act during a journey to Mars, may require potentially complex sexual gymnastics. On the other hand, any difficulties associated with sexual intercourse in space may turn out to be an easily solved problem of docking and entry as human are notorious for inventing ways of having sex despite all manner of logistical impediments (Joseph 2000a). However, what impact will sexual activity have on team dynamics and morale? And what if an astronaut became pregnant during the journey? Would the fetus be viable? How would this impact the crew?

NASA has no policy regarding sex in space and its repercussions (Office of Audits, 2010), other than to request, in 2008, that astronauts voluntarily abide by an "Astronaut Code of Professional Responsibility" and maintain "a constant commitment to honourable behaviour." As summed up by the NASA Astronaut Health Care System Review Committee (NASA 2007), "the absence of a code of conduct and its enforcement, and the lack of management action to limit inappropriate activity increases the likelihood of aberrant behaviour occurring and decreases the likelihood of such behaviour being reported." According to NASA's review committee (NASA 2007), and a panel of experts assembled by the National Academy of Science (Longnecker and Molins 2006), this is a serious oversight: if male and female astronauts share a cramped space ship for years, surrounded by stars blazing in the blackness of night, thoughts are bound to turn to sex and romance. Thus, "ignoring the potential consequences of human sexuality is not appropriate when considering extended-duration missions" (Longnecker and Molins 2006), and this includes a human mission to Mars.


Biologically, females serve one purpose: to get pregnant (Joseph 2000a, 2001a,b, 2002). However, the human female is also the only female regardless of species, who is sexually receptive at all times and who has evolved secondary sexual characteristics, e.g. the enlarged breasts and derriere, which signal to males and females alike, her sexual availability (Joseph 2000a,b). Almost all non-human primate species that exhibit genital and breast swelling live in multi-male groups and they only develop these secondary sexual characteristic when sexually receptive (Clutton-Brock and Harvey, 1976; Fedigan, 1992; Wallis, 1992). These swellings serve to attract males and to arouse male sexual interest when the female is in estrus (Carpenter, 1942; Chevalier-Skolnikoff, 1974; Fedigan, 1992; Ford & Beach, 1951; Zuckerman, 1932) and the same can be said of the female human derriere and breasts which have evolved and increased in size over the course of human evolution so as to signal continual sexual availability (Joseph 1985, 2000a,b). Moreover, the human female has evolved the cognitive and intellectual capacity to employ cosmetics, perfumes, colorful clothing, push up bras, high heals, and so on, which draw attention to her breasts and derriere, and which emphasize and exaggerate her sexual availability by mimicking the signs of estrus common in other social primates (Joseph 2000a,b). And just as female primates and other female mammals seek sex with high status males whom they most prefer (Allen & Lemmon, 1981; Carpenter, 1942; Chevalier-Skolnikoff, 1974; Fedigan, 1992; Ford & Beach, 1951; Zuckerman, 1932), the same can be said of the human female (Joseph 2000a,b).


Like other mammals, human females are "choosy" and prefer sex with high status males who can offer prestige and resources (Buss, 1994; Betzig, 1985; Betzig et al., 1988; Symons, 1979; Townsend, 1989). Like their human female counterparts, nonhuman primate females, such as baboons, rhesus, and chimpanzees, prefer and have sex with high ranked males and avoid lower ranking and in particular, the lowest ranked males (Carpenter, 1942, Hausfater, 1975; Lancaster, 1978; Seyfarth, 1977; Smuts, 1987; Tutin, 1975; Zuckerman, 1932).

The Antarctic has long been viewed as an excellent analog for long-duration space missions and the same preference for high ranking males has been observed (Stuster 1996). Female crew members seek sexual intimacies with senior, high status personnel to the exclusion of the other men.

Moreover, female primates will emphasize their sexual availability and may actively pursue desirable males (Fedigan, 1992). Hence, not surprisingly, male astronauts are often targeted by females who have emphasized their sexual availability (Mullane 2007).

As related by former Shuttle Astronaut Mike Mullane (2007), male astronauts are commonly flown all over the U.S. to locations where they often attend coctail receptions and dinners and are actively solicited by young sexy women. "Beside the open bars at our soirees, there were other attractions for the males... young, beautiful women. Lots of them.... a potpourri of pussy.... I had been in enough officer's clubs in my life to know that aviator wings had babe-attracting power... but there was an even more powerful pheromone than jet-jockey wings: The title "astronaut." We males found ourselves surrounded by quivering cupcakes. Some were blatantly on the make, wearing spray-on clothes revealing high-beam nipples and smiles that screamed, "take me." Even the gold bands on the fingers of the married were no deterrent to many of these woman. They were equal opportunity groupies." A common sight in the mornings were the "married colleagues with red-blasted all nighter eyes trailing the odor of alcohol and sex as they exited a motel room with a smiling young woman" (Mullane 2007).

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Slow down

We shall not flag or fail. We shall slow down in the office, and on the roads. We shall slow down with growing confidence when all those around us are in a shrill state of hyperactivity (signifying nothing). We shall defend our state of calm, whatever the cost may be. We shall slow down in the fields and in the streets, we shall slow down in the hills, we shall never surrender!

If you can slow down when all around you are speeding up, then you're one of us. Be proud that you are one of us and not one of them. For they are fast, and we are slow. If a thing is worth doing, it is worth doing slowly. Some are born to slowness—others have it thrust upon them. And still others know that lying in bed with a morning cup of tea is the supreme state for mankind.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

New Imaging Technology Shows Animal Insides, Python Digesting a Rat

This is somewhat different:

Science is inherently cool, but gross science is even better.

Using a combination of computer tomography (CT) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), scientists Kasper Hansen and Henrik Lauridsen of Aarhus University in Denmark were able to visualize the entire internal organ structures and vascular systems (aka "guts") of a Burmese Python digesting a rat.

By choosing the right settings for contrast and light intensity during the scanning process, the scientists were able to highlight specific organs and make them appear in different colors. The non-invasive CT and MRI scans could let scientists look at animal anatomy without the need for other invasive methods such as dissections.


Gear fun

I enjoyed watching this clip.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Happy Birthday, Jeff Bridges

The great man is celebrating his birthday today. Hope it is a good one!