Wednesday, 11 August 2010

The Barmaid's Brain; and Other Strange Tales from Science; Jay Ingram

Jay Ingram is the co-host of “Daily Planet”, the hour-long prime-time science program on Discovery Channel, which he helped to design and launch 15 years ago. He has worked in almost every mass medium. He hosted CBC’s “Quirks and Quarks” for 12 years, freelanced for CBC’s “Morningside,” and hosted two CBC radio documentary series. He was contributing editor to Owl magazine for five years, he wrote a weekly science column in The Toronto Star for 12 years, and is now involved in web-based shows, outreach events, and podcasts. He has written ten books, and received numerous accolades and awards for his outstanding contributions to the popularization of science. He has received five honorary degrees and was appointed to the Order of Canada in 2009. Bio from The Banff Centre.

A number of years ago, when Ingram was still hosting “Quirks and Quarks,” we began 'collecting' his books. He is a good writer who really gets you interested in unusual scientific facts.

The Barmaid's Brain is a collection of essays about unusual scientific facts and theories written by Jay Ingram.

Psychology Today's website has this short review:
Ever wonder how some waiters remember numerous food orders, without the helpof a memo pad? In The Barmaid's Brain (Freeman, $23.95), Jay Ingram, co-host and producer of @discovery.ca, the Discovery Channel's daily science program, ponders this and many other science mysteries in a series of eminently readable essays. Although the topics cover the full spectrum of science, at least half of them bear directly on psychological puzzles, including why we laugh, the role fungus played in Salem witchcraft, whether or not Joan of Arc was mentally ill, and, yes, even how barmaids remember a dozen orders at a time.
It is simply a fascinating book. This particular book brings a number of historical events into a different light as other possibilites for the events are examined. It also discusses such things as why we laugh, why moths fly to light, the possibility of humans once being aquatic, a discussion on Cystic Fibrosis and other subjects mentioned in the review above.
 
If you ever get a chance, try this book.

No comments:

Post a Comment