–That’s Ms. Wizard to you. Wired profiles neurophysiologist Dr. Kiki Sanford, who takes “the Mr. Wizard tradition to a sexier place.”

–Girls really are just fine at math and science, thank you. Wired Science’s Dr. Anna Kushnir examines why female scientists go from a 7 to 1 women-to-men ratio in grad school to roughly 1 to 7 in professorships.

–Olympian bodies, mommies edition. Salon Broadsheet highlights how the physical changes after motherhood helped make three Olympians better athletes.

–Women do talk about things other than men and babies. Science Fiction author Charlie Stross ponders Bechdel’s Law. Also, take a gander at io9’s examination of the Bechdel Law (or Ripley’s Law as it were).

–No, she’s not the Keymaster. IO9 Spoilers wonder if there might be a female Ghostbuster in the new movie.

–Boys, reading books about girls won’t give you cooties. In the article “Women Writing Science Fiction: Some Voices from the Trenches” Susan Elizabeth Lyons asks 31 women science fiction writers four questions: when they starting reading SF; how they broke into the genre; what they think has changed since then; and general feedback on gender bias in the genre.

–Grrrl power, indeed. A post wherein John Scalzi talks to his wife.

–Epic awesome. John Ottinger profiles 9 Awesome Heroines of Epic Fantasy.

–Grrrl crush. Salon Broadsheet points out reason no. 678 why Amy Poehler rocks.

–Grrrl power? ScFiGuy provides a tramp stamp roundup in urban fantasies (via SBTB).

–Notice that Wonder Woman is in a class all by herself. IO9 reports on how “a handful of superpowered grrrls stack up to their male counterparts.”

–Hang this right next to your Duran Duran Rio poster. IO9 showcases a “Crazy 1980s ‘New Wave’ Princess Leia Poster.”

–Go kick some writing butt. Romance Divas host a workshop on writing kick-butt characters.

–She’s no regular jilly. Show Me SciFi profiles gunslinger Aileen from Stephen King’s Dark Tower Treachery #2.

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When explaining the meaning of the song, Kate Bush has said:

“I was trying to say that, really, a man and a woman, can’t understand each other because we are a man and a woman. And if we could actually swap each other’s roles, if we could actually be in each others place for a while, I think we’d both be very surprised! [Laughs] And I think it would be lead to a greater understanding. And really the only way I could think it could be done was either… you know, I thought a deal with the devil, you know. And I thought, ‘well, no, why not a deal with God!’ You know, because in a way it’s so much more powerful the whole idea of asking God to make a deal with you. You see, for me it is still called “Deal With God”, that was its title. But we were told that if we kept this title that it wouldn’t be played in any of the religious countries, Italy wouldn’t play it, France wouldn’t play it, and Australia wouldn’t play it! Ireland wouldn’t play it, and that generally we might get it blacked purely because it had ‘God’ in the title.”

Of note:

  • The band Coldplay claims the drum beat of this song inspired their single “Speed of Sound.”
  • A cover by the band Placebo was used in the TV show Bones second season episode Judas on a Pole.
  • The background vocal chants (“e-yo”) are very similar to classical Japanese musical theatre Noh, and the drumming pattern may be influenced by Japanese taiko. The rhythm is also very similar to Fleetwood Mac’s 1987 “Big Love” single, which also explores sexual politics in its lyrics.

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Weekly Roundup

A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away. An arm of the Milky Way launched our sun thousands of light years from its birthplace.

Aye, matey. Rose Fox over at Publisher’s Weekly’s Genreville blog confesses her yearning to read about space wenches.

Curve appeal. Yet another marketing attempt to get women to buy hi-tech gadgets by making it pink.

There are no synonyms. SF writer Elizabeth Bear talks about the importance of specificity.

The Twitties. It’s not what you think.

Even amorphous semi-organic blobs want to be loved. Is that so wrong? The Top 20 excerpts from a Romance novel written by a Science Fiction writer. (A 32-inch tongue. Rly?)

A pretty cool Danger Gal list (too bad the title of the article ruins it). Top 26 Bad-Ass Action Movie Babes

Much to Scotty’s chagrin, anti-matter is likely rare and way out in the boonies. Scientists postulate about the nature of anti-matter.

It’s not the beer calories causing the man-boobs. Turns out, not just soy, but all kinds of food contain high levels of oestrogen-like chemicals, including beer, wine and roasted peanuts.

• • •

Critical Mass of Deep Thoughts

Danger Gal pal Heather Massey from the Galaxy Express Blog debuted yesterday as a new blogger over at Tor. com. For her first post, Heather tackles a big idea: How Science Fiction is the genre of big ideas and how Romance can introduce the genre to a new audience (also, how that relates to Green Eggs and Ham too). Money quote:

Compared to other literary genres, science fiction shares many of the same fundamental ingredients [as other kinds of fiction]: ideas, words, sentences, conflict, characters, grammar, and punctuation. The differences, of course, lay in the execution of said ingredients. Science fiction and its myriad sub-genres taste far different to most people than does the usual thriller or mystery.

In fact, it can be downright bizarre, and that’s what we love about it. The genre dares to ask “what if” to the extent that our minds reach a critical mass of Deep Thoughts. But even when the speculative aspects are wrapped in beautifully crafted prose and explore concepts other than aliens and starships, many readers wouldn’t touch it with a ten foot pole.

But, are they employing the right pole for the job?

Congrats to Heather on her new Tor.com gig. I can’t wait to see what other posts she has in store.

(I personally think Mynocks are kewl. Replicants: all kinds of awesome. And you know how I feel about Cylons.)

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