"No one knows exactly why yawning is contagious, although many theories have been posited — including the idea that yawning cools the brain and increases alertness, helping entire groups to become vigilant if one individual yawns."
In 1980, 16 shipwrecked Danish fishermen were hauled to safety after an hour and a half in the frigid North Sea. They then walked across the deck of the rescue ship, stepped below for a hot drink, and dropped dead, all 16 of them.
The whole piece is chock-full of thrilling goodness.
From Wired’s Space suit: 1949 piece:
Ross and Smith ended their paper by estimating their suit’s weight. It would, they calculated, have an Earth weight of 150 pounds. On the moon, however, where gravity pulls with about 15% as much force as on Earth, their suit would weigh only about 25 pounds.
Naturally, everyone reading this would assume that since 25 pounds is much, much lighter than 150 pounds, it woulbe much easier to move on the moon thanks to the lighter body.
It is the “weight”, the force needed to keep the suit from falling to the ground, that has dropped from 150 pounds to 25; the “mass”, the amount of matter contained in the suit, still remains the same. What this means is that despite being lighter, it’s still harder to move than on earth. Why? Inertia. Inertia is due to mass and not weight.
So if you swing your arm fast, on Earth you’d be able to control the inertia of the swing and bring your arm to stop pretty quickly due to the higher gravity helping you. On the moon, you’d need 6 times the force needed to bring the fast-swinging arm under control because even though the arm has the same inertia as on Earth, the moon’s lower gravity means you’d have to generate almost all of the force required to stop the arm from spinning your entire body off balance. That’s why you see astronauts move on the moon as if in slow-mo. The lower gravity yet same inertia forces their movements to become more like floating around than walking around. They can’t control their inertia as well as on earth so once they start moving, they keep moving for a distance.
Amazing how such a simple change in a fundamental property can create such pronounced effects. Try imagining the opposite: what would it be like to move on a planet that has 6 times greater gravity than Earth.
Sex and disgust are basic, evolutionary relevant functions that are often construed as paradoxical. In general the stimuli involved in sexual encounters are, at least out of context strongly perceived to hold high disgust qualities. Saliva, sweat, semen and body odours are among the strongest disgust elicitors. This results in the intriguing question of how people succeed in having pleasurable sex at all. One possible explanation could be that sexual engagement temporarily reduces the disgust eliciting properties of particular stimuli or that sexual engagement might weaken the hesitation to actually approach these stimuli.
— Charmaine Borg & Peter J. de Jong, Department of Clinical Psychology and Experimental Psychopathology, University of Groningen, The Netherlands
Totally see it.