05. Why Sh*t Happens by Peter J. Bentley, PhD

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05. Why Sh*t Happens by Peter J. Bentley, PhD

Post  twunny on Thu Feb 04, 2010 4:00 am

"The Science of a Really Bad Day"

I picked this up in the library and just started perusing. It was instantly engaging enough that I checked it out.

Its initial charm kind of wore off. The premise is that there is a character (referred to as "You") that is having one hell of a bad day. You sleep through your alarm, you slip in the tub, your toaster catches on fire...and it goes on and on for 39 chapters. Each chapter is introduced by a different crappy thing that happens. Then the author goes into how whatever it is works. For example, he discusses the sleep cycle to explain why you might not wake up when your alarm goes off. Or he explains how electricity works and goes into a toaster, explaining different ways for disaster to strike there.

It's all pretty interesting. But, to be honest, it's a little superficial. I felt like he could have spent twice as long on any given topic and slowed down the pace considerably. And then he could have had a sequel, you know.

Another thing was that I kept having the feeling that this book would be great for teenagers. It was science-y, but not too heady. And he had fun with it. I laughed out loud a couple of times, usually when the next awful thing happened to "Me". I also thought it'd make a good TV show or film-strip series. Somebody should get on that.

Final verdict: I think it'd make a good gift for a really unlucky schmoe who likes science. Not a waste of time, but don't run out and grab it.

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