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Right Now in Stuff to Blow Your Mind

 Sailors on a Dark Sea: Illusion of Explanatory Depth

As we sail through this world of technological marvel and complex systems, it’s easy to assume we know the watery depths that yawn beneath our hull. As it turns out, however, it’s all an illusion of explanatory depth. We think we understand day-to-day gadgets, but are at a loss to explain their functionality. We think we understand policy and politics, but are better at explaining why we hold our beliefs than how particular policies might solve life’s hideous problems. In this two-part episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Joe dip into the waters of cognitive illusion. See more »

Mixologia: Potions, Cocktails & Deadly Spirits

 Mixologia: Potions, Cocktails & Deadly Spirits

While the cocktail is an inherently American invention, the history of combining alcohols with other substances to create potent, drinkable concoctions dates back to ancient times. While you might expect dangerous ingredients to have a place in a wizard’s potion or a philosopher's goblet, modern cocktails and spirits have also dabbled with nefarious elixirs. Join Robert and Joe as they explore the history, myth and science behind it all in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. See more »

The Science of Holy Butter

 The Science of Holy Butter

There's more to butter than meets the eye. Each yellow pat of fatty goodness is nothing short of processed solar energy, and its long history entails many a magical and sacred rite. In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian consider the curious nature of butter. See more »

Space Music: Puscifer Goes Electric on Remix Album

 Space Music: Puscifer Goes Electric on Remix Album

Robert Lamb discusses the evolution of Maynard James Kennan's Puscifer project, including the latest electronic remix album 'Money Shot Your Re-Load.' See more »

Retrofuturist Flashback: Shelter From the Atomic Storm

 Retrofuturist Flashback: Shelter From the Atomic Storm

Robert Lamb considers another slice of the future via the past, as Americans of the 50s and 60s contemplated nuclear war and the possibility of survival... See more »

Mind-blowing Video: The Butter Battle Book

 Mind-blowing Video: The Butter Battle Book

Robert Lamb watches the 1989 adaptation of Dr. Seuss' whimsical children's tale of cold war, nuclear war and mutually assured destruction. See more »

The Myth of Green Tea Hallucinations

 The Myth of Green Tea Hallucinations

Read the 1945 ghost story “Green Tea” and you might worry that a fresh cup of Sencha might summon visions of a demonic ghost monkey. But don’t fear! In this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind, Robert and Christian explore the myth and likelihood of green tea hallucinations. See more »

Exorcism/Adorcism

 Exorcism/Adorcism

You’ve likely never attended an exorcism, but popular culture ensures that you know what one is. Yes, we’re talking the forced removal of a demonic entity from the human psyche, but what else can we glean about this paranormal experience from shamanistic rites of exorcism and the psychological principles of dissociative identity disorder and cognitive dissonance? As “The Exorcist” creeps in on its 43rd anniversary, Robert and Christian discuss the real and imaginary forces at work in the demon-haunted mind. See more »

What Mind Control Feels Like

 What Mind Control Feels Like

If mind control is possible, whether enabled by hard neurotechnology or good old fashioned social and linguistic suggestion, what does it feel like? What is it like to be controlled by a will other than your own? Would you even know it was happening? Robert and Joe explore in this episode of Stuff to Blow Your Mind. See more »

The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers

 The Body Illithid: Science of the Mind Flayers

If Dungeons and Dragons has ever touched your life, then you’re probably familiar with the tentacled, brain-sucking Illithids. Even in a fantasy world so rich in bizarre monstrosities, the Mind Flayers stand out as shockingly alien. Yet the Illithids are not without their parallels in the natural world -- and even in human civilization. Join Robert and Christian for a science-grounded look at everyone’s favorite Underdark horror. See more »

Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course

 Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course

In a world… where few people know the source of their foods and everyday meals seem the safest refuge, some dishes have deadly designs. From the masters of terror who brought you last year’s Stuff to Blow Your Mind episode 'A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods' comes the holiday dread of 'Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course.' Can your heart stand the shocking facts about toxic potatoes, mad honey and the mysteries of the dead man’s fingers? 'Dangerous Foods II: The Second Course.' This time, it’s personal. See more »

A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods

 A Six Course Feast of Dangerous Foods

Considering a holiday feast of toxic sushi and deadly casserole? Then this encore presentation is for you. Join Robert and Joe for a six-course meal of culinary danger! Discover six foods that deliver a lethal taste profile when carelessly prepared or consumed by the uninitiated diner -- and tune in for a brand NEW 'Deadly Foods' episode on Thursday. See more »

Monster of the Week: The Illithid 'Mind Flayer'

 Monster of the Week: The Illithid 'Mind Flayer'

Robert Lamb discusses the Ilithid 'Mind Flayers' of Dungeons and Dragons within the context of real-world biology, computing and human psychology. See more »

The Nature of Heroism

 The Nature of Heroism

Heroes permeate our culture, from mythic archetypes and pop-culture superheroes to real-life humans who risk their lives for others. But from where does heroism emerge? Robert and Christian explore the question in this episode of the Stuff to Blow Your Mind Podcast. See more »

Euphemisms: Linguistic Transmutation

 Euphemisms: Linguistic Transmutation

Sure, euphemisms allow us to talk about something unpleasant or taboo without actually invoking the dreaded word or words -- but what else is going on? In this episode of the Stuff to Blow your Mind podcast, Robert and Joe explore the linguistic power of euphemisms to alter and transform the tone or meaning of everyday communication. See more »

Space Music: Occult Music for John Dee Week

 Space Music: Occult Music for John Dee Week

Robert Lamb presents a perfect musical pairing for this week's episodes on the sorcerer mathematician Dr. John Dee: 'The Unexplained: Electronic Musical Impressions of the Occult' by Ataraxia (AKA Mort Garson). See more »

Artes Mathematicall: The Diviner John Dee

 Artes Mathematicall: The Diviner John Dee

Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this second of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss Dr. Dee’s involvement in science, statecraft, cryptography and espionage. See more »

Art Spotlight: Kaluta's Angels

 Art Spotlight: Kaluta's Angels

Robert Lamb gushes over the otherworldly angels found in the art of comics legend Michael Kaluta... See more »

Artes Mathematicall: The Conjurer John Dee

 Artes Mathematicall: The Conjurer John Dee

Elizabethan scholar Dr. John Dee was one of the most learned men of the 16th century, applying his intense mathematical intellect to matters scientific, political, alchemical and occult. He advised Queen Elizabeth, sought communion with angelic beings, advocated British expansion and plunged the depths of human knowledge in age of great change. In this first of two episodes on the topic, Robert and Christian discuss the world, life and magic of the enigmatic Dr. Dee. See more »

Space Music: 'Dynamics' by Distance, Turbo Killer I & II

 Space Music: 'Dynamics' by Distance, Turbo Killer I & II

Robert Lamb discusses the latest dubstep/grime release from Distance, as well as the crazed, VHS-influenced world of Carpenter Brut and Seth Ickerman's 'Turbo Killer' video collaboration. See more »