The Beatles and Kelp

For a blog post somewhere else, I’m trying to re-work the Beatle’s classic Kelp!, er, I mean, Help!. But my first draft got all urchin-y. I love it, though, so I thought I’d post it here.

KELP! (from the perspective of a growing urchin)

Kelp! I need some algae.
Kelp! not just any algae
Kelp! You know I need some kelp!

When I was younger (So much younger than) so much younger than today
(I never needed) I never needed any growing kelp in any way
(Now) But now these days are gone (These days are gone), I don’t eat just diatoms
(I know I’ve found) Now I find I’ve changed my mind and opened up my jaws

Kelp me if you can, I’m hungry now
And I do appreciate kelp being ’round
Kelp is great food for me oh right now
Won’t you please, please kelp me

(Now) And now my spines have changed in oh so many ways
(My Aristotle’s lantern) My Aristotle’s lantern is big and ready to graze
(And) And every now (Every now and then) and then I feel so insecure
(I know that I) I know that I just need kelp like I’ve never needed it before

(chorus)

When I was younger (So much younger than) so much younger than today
(I never needed) I never needed any growing kelp in any way
(Now) But now these days are gone (These days are gone), I don’t eat just diatoms
(I know I’ve found) Now I find I’ve changed my mind and opened up my jaws

Kelp me if you can, I’m hungry now
And I do appreciate kelp being ’round
Kelp is great food for me oh right now
Won’t you please, please kelp me, kelp me, kelp me, ooh

Statistics Made Marvellous Through Dance

You all know I’m one for silly science videos. And silly statistics videos? Well, that’s like catnip to me.

But today my postdoc Alison introduced me to Dancing Statistics. And it is lovely.

In short, this troupe of dancers illustrates a wide variety of statistical concepts using naught but movement.

Now I just can’t wait until they get to p-values and Bayes’ theorem.

Les Miserables Larides

One of the great things about field stations is the silliness they engender. I mean, there you are, in the middle of nowhere, with no one but other scientists thinking about the wonder of the natural world. Awe and wonder can only take you so far. And then, at some point, you cross over, and start to get a little silly.

It leads to things like dressing up as fouling panels, launching serious plans to make an ‘underwater office,’ elaborate nail-polish-marking designs for crab carapaces, and no small number of pranks.

And then, there’s this. This may be on the order of the silliest things ever to come out of field station. I heard the gull interns (seagull science is notorious for producing silliness alongside great science) talking about this idea to sync some of their videos up with the Les Mis soundtrack and now…now I found they’ve… well..

You must see this to believe it. Astounding. My hats off to the SML 2013 Gull crew. Marine science music video of the year?

(also, who is singing on ‘I dreamed a dream’ – amazing voice!)

Awww Yeah! Chemical Ecology Music Video Extravaganza!

I’m so excited. It’s one of my favorite times of year. That’s right, it’s time for the Annual Chemical Ecology Music Video Festival! Oh, J. Long, what have your students cooked up this time?

Pure awesomeness, that’s what. This year’s crop features a number of epic ballads, rap superstars, and more. I think I’ll highlight my current two favorites, but you should definitely go check out the whole bunch or go back and revisit last year’s (particularly Under the Boat (featuring K. Hovel)).

First off, we have the Lobster Rock Anthem, about Aplysia californica’s crazy chemical defense (pdf) against lobster predation. I think this group is fantastic – clever lyrics and great style.

And then the award for best costuming goes to…Key Mesograzers. A rhapsody on Hay et al.’s 1987 classic

Great work, all! Can’t wait to see what they cook up next year!