I will be in Yorkshire tomorrow to talk about the science of sex, drugs, and rock and roll with Salon North. After researching these three things solidly for two years, a friend asked: what’s your favourite subject? Music. Without a moment’s hesitation. A violin has never split up my home, broken my heart, or killed any of my friends. Forever and always: music.


I appear today in the Sun in Scotland, who I have a new respect for (or this writer anyways). The woman drove all the way from Glasgow, and unlike the Daily Mail, actually spelled my name right.

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I will be in Edinburgh at the International Science Festival tonight talking about the science of hedonism in the Sin Academy! Stoked to go back to Scotland. Seems appropriate, as Guerilla Science’s biggest installation last year was a giant maze behind a massive sign declaring SIN.

Shangri La: Glastonbury Festival 2013.

Shangri La at Glastonbury 2013. Photo Credit: James McCauley

Also, turns out all I had to do to get a PhD was appear in the Daily Mail with my name spelled wrong.

Addendum: Best bit of feedback after my lecture. Angry bald Scottish man: “YOU SHOULD HAVE TALKED MORE ABOUT AMPHETAMINES.”

In Scotland there is an incredible place called the Bass Rock. It is known as the Alcatraz of the north. 

Who’s up for applying for funding to cover it in sub woofers? C’mon. It would fucking rock.


I have been mentioned on Twitter by The Gherkin, as I wrote about skyscrapers and physics recently for The Guardian. Should I be pleased that I have been mentioned on social media by a gigantic weird dildo?

For three nights, Guerilla Science converted a derelict WW2 bunker in East London into an incarnation of the brain, culminating in a five course dining experience featuring real calf brains. Check out all the pics of the Brain Banquet here, more about the event in Jen Wong’s wonderful post in The Guardian here, and coverage in Wired and Time Out!


The External Brain, by artist Agatha Haines. Image Credit: Rita Platts.



The third of a five course dining experience, crafted by chefs Blanch & Shock. Photo Credit: Rita Platts.



The Final Course: Calf Brains, by chefs Blanch & Shock. Photo Credit: Rita Platts.



The Neuronal Forest, crafted by artist Evy Jokhova. Photo Credit: Rita Platts.

On Friday I celebrated my grandmother’s 87th birthday. I am lucky to inherit such longevitous genes. My step-grandfather remarked: 

“We thought about it and realised we’ve been together for more than 52 years. That makes us rare among couples.”

“That’s true,” I said. “But what is even more rare is that you love her for her intellect and intelligence. You always boast that she is smarter than you are. Most men don’t enjoy the company of clever women.”

“Eh,” he said, waving his hand. “Sine qua non. If she wasn’t smarter than me, I’d have become bored a long time ago. I pity men who love dumb women.”


In a hotel in Salvador, Brazil. My friend Katy: “Can we smoke in the bedrooms?” Hotelier: “Yes, of course. We smoke. We are normal people.” I love you Brazil, you incandescent dirty bastard.


That’s it. I’m getting a tattoo. After a long period of rumination, I have decided on this: Trope. (Thank you to my friend Daniel Farrell, who gave me this nickname.) It is Latin and will complete the word “Zoetrope” (translated as “life turning” or “life movement”): a 19th century form of animation technology. (I’m getting the word, not a picture of the device. That would be expensive and painful.)

Two questions:
1. What font should I use?
2. Where should I get it? I need a body part that a) will not wrinkle with age or reproductive activity, and b) moves.


At Burning Man there are no spectators. So my friends built a giant set of sports stadium seating on the back of a flat bed truck so we could drive around… being spectators. Ladies and gentlemen I give you The Bleachers, the most brilliant art car on the playa. I must have done something pretty amazing in a past life to deserve these people for friends.



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