I do a live weekly science experiment segment on the NBC affiliate in Denver. I practice the demo before I go on, check and double check my materials and do everything I can to ensure a flawless performance. On live TV, there are no do overs. This week during my Science Monday on 9News, I attempted to show my cohort in crime, news anchor Mark Koebrich, how to pull a cork out of a wine bottle. Sounds easy, right? It didn’t exactly go as planned until the last 5 seconds of the segment.
I remember having to sit through my fair share of horrible chemistry videos in high school. I must say this is a much better way to learn about the noble gases, but I’m not sure which version I like better.
… and things didn’t turn out exactly as I had planned. Back in December, I had the great opportunity to speak to professional speakers in Canada. Seems a little strange for a speaker to be speaking to speakers about the art of speaking, but that’s how it works. In the U.S. we have the National Speakers Association (NSA), and in Canada they have the Canadian Association of Professional Speakers (CAPS). After I stepped off the stage, I met Paul Huschilt who introduced himself as a professional speaker who was asked to perform a comic recap of my keynote. He wanted to know if I had any extra MENTOS® and a bottle of Diet Coke for his recap of my presentation at the end of the conference. After you watch this video, you’ll see why I consider Paul to be one of the most brilliant speakers on the circuit today. And I laughed until I cried when I saw it happen live. Take a look at the video.
Okay, I’m a science geek, but I’ve always dreamed of being an Olympic athlete. To realize this dream, I joined my on-air co-workers at 9News – Gary Shapiro, Gregg Moss, Graeme Nistler and Rob Proctor – to form the 9News ice skating team. Here’s the problem… we received some ill-advised guidance from legendary but shadowy Olympic coach Boris Kreskov. This opportunity, along with the $500 I gave him, proved to have some flaws. I also made a bad judgment call when I brought my fire extinguisher. Take a look…
Kreskov put us through a series of unusual exercises that involved both yoga and psychological intimidation before turning us loose on skates.
Shapiro, Nistler and Proctor actually stayed upright. Moss looked fetching in his Spiderman helmet, while I stunned the coach and a handful of onlookers with my use of a fire extinguisher to propel myself across the ice.
Thanks to the Hyland Hills Ice Centre at the Promenade in Westminster for hosting our practice. I also want to give a shout out to the Rocky Mountain Figure Skating Club for showing the morning men what real skating is supposed to look like.
Surprisingly, I didn’t make the team, missing by only inches. I’m looking forward to Sochi, Russia in 2014.
If you didn’t get enough of our attempt at the Olympics, watch the outtakes -
It’s not supposed to snow in Iraq… but that didn’t stop the 34th Infantry Division of the U.S. Army stationed in Iraq. Shelli Markgraf shared these pictures of her husband’s division making a pile of snow in seconds by adding water to our Insta-Snow® powder. By looking at the additional pictures, you might be lead to believe that this was just a fun activity for our soldiers to pass the time… but you would be wrong.
In fact, the eruption of snow was used as a small scale experiment to see what would happen if millions of pounds of Insta-Snow were dropped from helicopters, instantly mixing with water, erupting into massive mountains of snow, with desert winds whipping the snow into a blizzard-like frenzy. Yes, this would confuse the enemy.
After pondering the idea for a few seconds, someone asked, “Where are we going to find the water in the desert to make the reaction work?” It took exactly 1.3 seconds to completely abandon the blizzard idea, and the soldiers resorted to making snow angels on the surface of the sun.