121: Isle of Discussion

121: Isle of Discussion

00:00 / 00:04:48

In this time of COVID19 and staying at home (if you happen to be at home with more than just yourself) you might be finding family harmony is getting a little rough around the edges. Amy has the perfect solution for you, the Scottish tradition of the Isle of Discussion.

Islands in Loch Leven © Richard Dorrell cc-by-sa/2.0 :: Geograph ...

The Isle of Discussion, or Eilean a’ Chomhraidh can be seen on the left. Disputants were left on the island to settle their differences over whiskey and cheese. 

Show Notes




120: Play-Doh!

120: Play-Doh!

00:00 / 00:04:53

In 1930, the Kutol company came up with a putty to clean coal dust off of walls. Impending bankruptcy forced them to shift gears to find news ways of making a profit. A new company was formed and Play-Doh was born.

Show Notes:

Trace’s Mom’s Most Excellent Play dough recipe:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 cup salt
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 Tablespoons neutral oil
  • 3 teaspoons cream of tartar
  • a few drops of the food coloring of your choice
  • Add everything to a saucepan and stir while cooking over medium low heat until it forms a ball. When the dough comes together, knead when it is cool enough to touch to smooth.
  • Keep sealed in plastic when not in use.

119: Pete and Repeat

119: Pete and Repeat

00:00 / 00:04:58

Margaret and Matilda Roumania Peters were sisters and tennis champions in the 1930s, long before Serena and Venus Williams. While still in high school, they were recruited by Tuskegee University’s tennis coach, Cleve Abbott.

The Peters sisters were accepted into the Tuskegee Hall of fame in 1977.

Margaret and Matilda: Tennis doubles champions

Blackpast.org Pete & Repeat

theroot.com Before Venus and Serena

thegeorgetowndish.com Honoring Pete & Repeat

118: Trundling

118: Trundling

00:00 / 00:04:46

It’s one of those episodes where you think you know where your research is leading and then it takes a sharp right turn. Trace follows a trail from shoving boulders downhill to the 18th century sport of hoop rolling.

P.S. Trace mentions in the beginning of the episode a video she’d seen on Instagram of guys rolling a giant boulder. That vid has since been removed. In many cases, trundling is illegal–people can cause immense damage to natural spaces and also put lives at risk. This episode is fun, but please, do not rock trundle.

Show Notes:

There’s some bad language in the Youtube Video–but this is trundling that you must see.

Skip forward to 27 seconds to see the rock go!

117: Space Bubbles

117: Space Bubbles

00:00 / 00:04:39

The science of how bubbles work changes a bit when they go into space. Amy explains why.

Show Notes: 

These show notes are super cool. Click all the links and watch all the videos. You’ll go down a space bubbles worm hole into fluid dynamics and it’s great!


Wired.com Bubbles in space video

Watch an astronaut play with bubbles and antacid in space. Worth waiting through the commercial. 


Science Focus: Can you blow a bubble in space?

ISS Water In Space

USGS Water In Space

Watering plants in space is tricky with no gravity to pull the water down into the soil.

A drop of water with an air bubble inside it, on the International Space Station.

Image Courtesy NASA

I didn’t talk about these videos, but they’re fun!