Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Podcast: Carmen Drahl

New podcast episode!

Sam and I interview Carmen Drahl. She talks about a recent article about Chris McCandless ("Into the Wild"). How did he die and what does chemistry have to do with the story?

Show Notes

1:30 - Carmen tells the story of Chris McCandless from the book "Into the Wild" (Her article HERE).

9:00 - Chad fumbles the pronunciation of beta-ODAP

11:00 - More mispronunciations - Lathyrism is basically limb paralysis, a pretty deadly condition for someone alone in the wild like McCandless was at the time.

14:00 - The chemistry story deepens - where is beta-ODAP found? (My apologies for the phone ringing)

19:00 - So how did Chris die? Apparently (unknown source) Chris was cremated so any of these tests can't really be done.

20:00 - Carmen doesn't trust her mother. What a cynical woman (I say this in jest, of course. I've been burned in the past by bad sources, so I understand the importance of what she's saying).

20:15 - A great quote. I'm not surprised that Chemjobber was the one to find the source.

22:30 - Ben Goldacre, author of  "Bad Science" and "Bad Pharma" is mentioned. Ben is an amazing author, scientist, and speaker. Check out his books.

24:00 - Group Think.

28:00 - Inserted audio from Futurama - "You have a degree in bologna"

28:15 - Scientific rigor in the pharmaceutical industry.

29:00 - "Everything is a chemical". We're hitting all the cliche things that chemists talk about in one episode. 
We also talk about the gray area in the "Natural vs

36:00 - Chemists telling bad jokes. Followed by a bad segue.

38:00 - The Fortnightly Scientist - Carmen talks about Detective Monday from Mathnet.

42:00 - Carmen is far too optimistic about the reach this little podcast has. She describes an "outpouring" from the science community after we air this podcast. I do appreciate the comment, Carmen, but I don't think we're there yet.

43:00 The Fibonacci parrot

46:00 - Carmen is seriously disappointed that I haven't watched "The Wire" yet.