Sunday, April 20, 2014

Some "Holiday" Themed Microbiology?

It's Easter Sunday as I write this quick post.  And don't worry:  I'm not going to discuss religious issues.  For many people (especially those of us with children), Easter is much more about high fructose corn syrup.  Right?  Sad but true.

One type of scary yet oddly delicious sugary item for this holiday seasons are the infamous Peeps.  They become all the rage during this time of year, with their near total lack of nutritional value, in addition to colors and textures not normally observed in nature. Peep mania becomes "a thing." Some people get carried away a bit with Peep Dioramas each year. 

But I look at Peeps scientifically.

There are some scientists who "get" the season in the fashion I am describing, and have funny websites like the Institute for Peep Science.  If you haven't been gone to that site, their evidence that smoking and drinking are bad for you, demonstrated with Peeps, is hysterical. 

And there are many, many other sites that explore ersatz-science using our sugary Eastertime friends.  Here is a nice review.  Searching around the internet yields such great stories as the hard, cold facts regarding Peep Jousting.  Or for the space-mad among us, even what happens when you put an evil or misbehaving Peep outside the airlock into vacuum.  

Science of the tasty and humorous variety! 

In that spirit, my lovely and talented wife Jennifer Quinn (not just an authority in mathematics, but a wonderful and creative artist) made me the following video.

Oh, sure.  I should have had her write about agar instead of gelatin (forgive me, Fanny Hesse!).  But it is still awfully funny.

Thank you, Jenny!  You made me smile.  And now, back to that intimidating Tower of Grading...

No matter how (or if) you celebrate this day, I extend my very best microbiological wishes to every reader.

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I am happy to hear your comments and suggestions. I hope to avoid spammage. We shall see how that works out!