Scratching my own funny bone for shits and giggles. Lampooning books, music and being a single woman over 40. Recording observations with an almost Seinfeldian obsession for the minutiae of life. Things can get sweary around here. You understand.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


From time to time you've heard me bemoan the demise of JS. Well with good reason. I spent a good two years on that website building up a repetoire of articles and a fabulously intelligent and funny band of readers (many of you who are still with me) and in an instant *poof!* it was sucked into the ether. (boo-hoo) Sure I had a back up of half of the articles and comments but frustratingly the archived comments appear in reverse making it difficult to re-install them into another blogging platform. Back then I entertained the idea of blogging for a living but without the necessary evidence of readership I gave up. Now I'm not complaining...hell knows I've had long enough to get over it...but occassionally I get sentimental and want to post old articles. So long time readers please bear with me. I'm still working on new stuff. Old articles will be labelled with 'The Russian Spy Files'. Today I had cause to remember a nostalgia piece I wrote about the 'Curiosity Show' which you will find below. I will also post some of the old comments as they were particularly memorable due to Rob Morrison from the show dropping in to tell me he was offended by me referring to him as a 'seventies porn star'! He must have had Google Alerts set on his computer. The comments that ensued after his visit still make me giggle. So for old time's sake!

One of them had a goatee and a skivvy; the other a mini afro and a clingy body shirt zipped up to the chin. They could have been 70s porn stars if it weren’t for the prominently displayed Bunsen burner, a boiled egg, a milk bottle, a dazzling array of coloured thumb tacks, ping pong balls, pipe cleaners, iron filings, magnets and pins. “It’s really easy boys and girls. All you need is an empty margarine tub, sticky tape, an old candle and a particle accelerator” A smug little know-it-all in the television audience adjusted her pigtails and smiled broadly to herself. She loved question time! “Deane it’s all very well understanding the physical properties of atoms, electrons, protons and neutrons, but has anyone ever had a serious look at my Dad’s navel fluff?” “Well I’m glad you asked little girl. Watch me create a magnetic field by setting off this room full of mouse traps” “But Rob, if the earliest Homo Erectus were indeed living in Africa more than 1,600,000 years ago" the little girl persisted, “why is it we still laugh at people hurting themselves?” “Well I’m glad you asked. This is after all
‘The Curiosity Show’. Now watch me freeze off Deane’s vital organs with this liquid nitrogen”

From ROB: Porn stars??? A bit unkind, but I have lost the goatee these days - when I was 50, it started to get white streaks and it looked from a distance as though a rat had eaten bits of it, so it went in the big clean up. That theme was the third, although nobody remembers the earlier two - one of them (the first) was when we broke away from Humphrey (Yes, the Curiosity Show originally had Humphrey in it) and formed the show in its own right. It was then an hour long magazine show and, I think, not so hot (fortunately also not remembered in that form). In about 1984 Deane and I took it to a more tightly focused 1/2 hour dealing with science and technology, and that's when the awards and overseas sales started.

From NOWHEREBOB: Rob. We're not worthy. We're not worthy. We're not worthy. I'm with Nat, Porn star is a term of affection, nay even envy. What experiments did you perform with "The Pants-less one"?

From MICKH: Rob! WE ARE NOT WORTHY! :-) Hahahahahaha Nats! boy! did you get caught out!! :-) Oh and Rob, WE ARE NOT WORTHY! (still giggling here...hehehehehehe)

From SIMONBEDAK: Dear Dr Morrison, via NatV Come on, you enjoyed being compared to a 70s porn star. Lounging around the pool with your soap-powered speed-boats, thermos filled with martini, corrugated cardboard sunglasses on... What a superb show. Apart from one teacher in primary school, your show was perhaps the only time I got around to learning anything. Many thanks. Warmest r., Simon Bedak Wagga Wagga

From ABEFRELLMEN: Rob. Wow. What an honour! I owe my childhood love of science to you guys. Thank-you!

From BARNESM: Rob, porn star when used by NatV is definitely a term of affection. I am sure like most of us here all have fond memories and can trace a love of science and technology back to our early viewing of the show.

From TOBP-STEVE: Celebrity and science icon as the case may be, it was still quite the porn look. Hey, I loved my Dad, but I was horrified at some of the clothes he wore back then.

From NOWHEREBOB: I know I'm dwelling here, but I'd love to see what a vivisectionist could do with Humphrey.


Nautilus said...

I remember the post, but must not have followed the comments because I had no idea you got that response!!!!

That is huge, like it would be if Dolph Lundgren dropped by my blog after my post on him.

Anyway like everyone else I grew up with that show and these days the only show that comes close to mixing science and entertainment properly is Mythbusters.


That is funny - and so is Naut's comment. It is almost worth setting up a Dolph profile to make his dream come true!

Steve said...

I just now realized, I may have vaguely implied that my dad was a 70's porn star. I want to set the record straight, he was a bad dresser because he was a brilliant astrophysicist. To the best of my knowledge, he was not an adult film star.

Naut, Top Gear did it tonight, when they had a 3 car race (VW Polo, Jag and Subaru) from Basel Switzerland to Blackpool 1 tank of gas per vehicle.

Nautilus said...

Steve I refuse to associate Top Gear with science after seeing Richard Hammond in Brainiac. I wholely support big boobed women in bikini's on tv for no real reason, but the supposed scientific testing on that show was woefull.

Anonymous said...

That was well worth revisiting Nat. I miss the community of JS as well.

Abe said...

This was one of the all time greats. Making me homesick though.

Steve said...

Well, Naut, in fairness it was called "Brianiac: Science Abuse." I don't think they considered any of that "scientific."

There was also the time they launched old commuter cars at a caravan (sitting in an old quarry) using a massive hydraulic catapult (crossbow is a closer description). That's very scientific, having to determine ballistic travel.

NowhereBob said...

Still obsessing about Humphrey.
C'mon people - a mute, no pants, bear with the tip of his tounge poking out & innapropriate cuddles from small kids!
How is this not innapropriate?

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