Episode 228 – Our Glitch For This Mission

Nailed it.00:00:00 – Most of this week is dedicated to our interview with author Andy Weir, author of The Martian. The free-wheeling discussion includes how Andy tackled the science of the book, what the reception has been like (including getting a little movie about it made), and what’s coming up next. We finish up our discussion with Andy’s favorite cocktail: a rum old-fashioned made with either Ron Zacapa or Ron Abuelo, two very fine choices not available on Mars anytime soon, whether there’s water there or not.

Miscellaneous things you might want links to:

01:14:14 – Since Andy brought it up, it only makes sense to complete the thought. Joe knocks it into orbit with his kumquat flavored Martian Soda. Ryan has a Track #8 from The Lost Abbey, which has an overly complicated connection to the subject matter at hand.

01:17:23 – PaleoPOWs are a lot like being stranded on Mars; it’s one thing to complete the mission, it’s another to survive the journey. Joe has a new recurring donation from Robert S-carrot, which is a letter we’re still not sure how to pronouncing and we’re not sure we even want to know. Thanks Robert! Ryan reads three iTunes reviews, the first being of the dreaded 1-star variety from GBarkimer and is reminiscent of a 1-star review of a National Park, of which there are many. The other two reviews from ridebutterflies and Weapon alpha that are more positive so we can end the show on a high now. The show is now ended. Goodbye.


Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!


Music for this week’s show:

Life On Mars – Seu Jorge


Image credit: Disney (Buy it through our Amazon portal if you want I guess)


Episode 227 – Feedback Feedbag

227_feedbagDoing an all feedback episode to get caught up on all the wonderful things y’all send our way.

00:00:00 –  Garrett, who doesn’t identify his hair color, and seems to think we know a lot about science immediately finds our weak spot by asking about genetics. Specifically, he wants to know if redheads are in danger of going extinct. This leads to a surprisingly long discussion about the origins of redhair. Plus you’ll learn once and for all which of the paleopals have red hair in their beards, even if they don’t have any on their head.

00:22:32 – Since humanity evolved, there have been drinks. Though some recent evidence suggests animals may have been drinking even before humans. Patrick goes first because he thinks he finally found a beer Ryan hasn’t had. It’s a Dead Rising from Flying Dog and he’s also wrong. Sorry, Patrick. Ben is enjoying some Irish Breakfast Tea, which is supposedly much better than English Breakfast Tea. And Ryan is having a beer he made for a class three years ago. It has not aged well, but does lead to a nice discussion of stable isotopes.

00:33:02 – For our second segment we have an awesome e-mail from Nami who shares a special kinship with Ben. She has suggested a few stories for us to cover. The first is about converting stellar radiance patterns into sound waves, essentially every star is singing a different song, which is really neat. The second is about using two people’s brains instead of one to control a spacecraft simulation. DRIFTING PEOPLE. Are Ben and Ryan drift compatible? You’ll have to listen to find out.

00:57:46 – PaleoPOWs are a lot like shows full of paleoPOWs, in that they’re both composed of listener feedback. Ben goes first with an e-mail from South African listener Gerhard R. He teaches us some Afrikaans and promotes some local African brews. Ryan then gets sidetracked talking about a recent dig we went to at Natural Trap Cave in Wyoming. Were any camel leopards found? Who knows. Once Ryan refocuses and actually finds his paleoPOW he thanks recurring donor Adam K. who has a request. Adam K. would like to use his donation to sponsor all future quotes and references to Jurassic Park. Challenge accepted, hold onto your butts. Ryan then gets distracted again talking about Pokemon. Ben joins in until Patrick remembers that the show isn’t actually over yet and forces us to listen to his paleoPOW. His is from Neece of WV, who caught a Brachiolope in the act of riding a velocipede (we had to look up what that was too). She was able to immortalize the image which you can now purchase from her Etsy and/or Redbubble store, as well as view it in the always impressive Brachiolope Gallery!


Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!


Music for this week’s show:

Red Headed Stranger – Willie Nelson

Have a Cuppa Tea – The Kinks

Pacific Rim (feat. Tom Morello) – Ramin Djawadi


Image credit: Searching for Slava


Episode 226 – Mountain Lion Saving Time

The clock that startles you every. single. time.00:00:00 – Why did the mountain lion cross the road? Well it couldn’t, because there were too many cars. It has now reached the point where mountain lions (aka pumas, cougars, catamounts, etc.) are showing reduced genetic diversity because they can’t get across roads. Turns out there is really simple solution: give them roads or tunnels. The problem is just convincing people to build them (which would save money in the long run, but humans don’t think like that so it’ll probably never happen). Oh well, the cats were nice to have around while they lasted.

00:17:26 – Joe, who likes both driving and conservation (a rare treat) enjoys a Lilikoi Passionfruit drink he took from a car event just so you, the listener, could hear him enjoy it. Abe goes back to one of his old favorites, a Dos Perros from Yazoo Brewing in Nashville. A brief discussion of Mexican brewing history ensues. Ryan throws his weight behind Negroni Week, an official drinking event that also supports charity. To take it a step further, he even uses a new gin  from Wyoming: Backwards Distilling Contortionist Gin.

00:24:46 – Time zones are the worst, right? Of course. What if we got rid of them? That’d be much better. At least that what Ryan is trying to convince everyone of when they discuss the absolute mess of a system that the railroads created back in the day. Get outta here, railroads! We have planes and electric cars and stuff now! Take a poll to tell us if you agree or disagree.


00:51:25 – PaleoPOWs are a lot like Daylight Saving Time, difficult to keep track of but easier with the internet. Joe’s paleoPOW is a new recurring donation from Amanda B. Thanks so much, Amanda! We briefly lose Abe but he shows up just in time to hear a few new iTunes reviews left by Yappari817 and melankholia as read by Ryan. Abe has a voicemail from the very well-read Galen who wants it to be known far and wide that Patrick is funnier than Ryan and that Ryan should admit it. He does. Finally, what would happen if you got struck by lightning in a suit of armor? Who knows? Not us, that’s who.


Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!


Music this week provided by:

Young Lions – The Constantines

Every Dog Has It’s Day – Flogging Molly

Stay (Wasting Time) – Dave Matthews Band


Image credit: Zazzle


Episode 225 – Industrious Growth

I suspect it will keep growing indefinitely with zero bubbles bursting.00:00:00 – Ryan is joined by Dr. Robert Baker, a postdoc in the Department of Botany at University of Wyoming to talk about PLANTS! Rob wants to understand how development and evolution of plants interact using everyone’s favorite plant study system: Brassica rapa. It sounds heady but he explains it well, including how development got left out of the Modern Evolutionary Synthesis. Ryan tangents to talk about E.T. because of course he does.

00:28:19 – Because they’re recording in person Ryan brought along a growler of Salty Dog Oatmeal IPA from the Coal Creek Tap in Laramie, WY. Brewing and bitters are discussed. Rob’s friend makes bitters, and Ryan got a book about them one time.

00:34:43 – The second half of the show we get back into the science of shoot architecture, which again, sound complicated, but is pretty cool once we get into it. We also find out what Rob’s favorite plant is, and you’ll have to listen to hear it for yourself!

01:15:14 – PaleoPOWs are a lot like plants, they keep growing and require the occasional pruning. Only one this week, since Ryan is flying solo. Fortunately he’s able to double down thanks to TWO donations from Bob M. Thanks, Bob! Bob also donated some knowledge in the form of a comment about isotopes and stability in response to episode 218.


Thanks for listening and be sure to check out the Brachiolope Media Network for more great science podcasts!


Music for this week’s show:

(Listen To The) Flower PeopleSpinal Tap

Do What You Want, Be What You Are – Hall and Oates

Daydreamin’ – Lupe Fiasco feat. Jill Scott


Image credit: RISHABH BPO


Episode 224 – Live at SCIENCE CLUB in Washington, DC

The event actually did occur in black and white, we're not quite sure how though...On Endangered Species Day Eve Kelly, Patrick, and Ryan convened at the Science Club in Washington, DC to record a special LIVE episode of Science… sort of!

We featured two guests, the first was Steven Sowell from the Baltimore UnderGround Science Space (BUGSS!) to discuss citizen science, being watched by the FBI, and other challenges associated with setting up a private lab for anyone to come use. BIOHACKING! DIY SCIENCE! CHEESE!

Kelly’s drinking something… red. Patrick is having an Exile Red Ale from Evolution Craft Brewing Company. And Ryan nerds out over his Apex Predator from Off Color Brewing, “a third-trophic level beer” which amuses him but nearly starts a fight with Kelly.

Our guest was Michelle Thaller, the Assistant Director for Science Communication at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center and occasional contributor to Transistor, a science podcast from PRX. We talk a lot about Hubble’s birthday, communicating science, and the “two-body problem” of being in a relationship with another scientist when you’d both like good jobs.

Thanks again to both our guests, to Steve at Science Club for hosting, to Jamie for doing the intro and outro live, and of course to all you lovely folks who attended.

Special thanks to Mason from Blue Room Productions for handling all the audio hardware, and Tim Dobbs for the edits.

Image Credit: Jamie Wheatley


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