Wondrous Science Mysteries to Start Debates

Ever have this situation?

You and a friend argue about a scientific fact, say why the sky is blue. You go on for a few moments, passionately offering point and counterpoint UNTIL one of your whips out your smartphone and Goggles it. Mystery ended. So is the debate.

I stumbled on a book, The Where, The Why, and The How, that offers up mysteries still eluding science (and Wikipedia). This is exactly the book for me, and possibly you. I know that one of the greatest deciding factors for purchasing a smartphone was the ability to look up information anytime, anywhere. Before this I had (sill have) a slew of books to do the same job: Full Webster’s Dictionary, Dictionary of Idioms, Cambridge Guide to English Usage, heck I even have a dictionary of punctuation (can you tell I was an English major).


I discovered The Where, The Why, and The How at the San Diego Comic Con (the only place where I allow my inner accountant to take a backseat). This book drew me in. Not only with the art, but also the mysteries. Here lie questions that still beg for speculation. The debate is still ongoing.


You may not be aware, but squirrels bury up to 5000 nuts each fall and in the spring, they can find them again. What’s weird is that a squirrel can’t detect another squirrel’s buried nut. But it can detect a nut buried at the same depth by a human. Apparently squirrels have a stealth nut technology.


This illustration pairs with “Why do we hiccup?” Believe it or not, this still eludes science. They think it is a vestigial nerve reaction related to frogs when they go through tadpole phase. One interesting cure for hiccups mentioned is swallowing a spoonful of sugar. Who knew that Mary Poppins had such a long lasting effect.


I love this illustration. It details how stars are born in interstellar nurseries. So of course artist Jenny Volvovski created an actual nursery. I love the nurse “gravity” which pulls the stars together.

Go out and buy this book (or order online). It’s very worth your time. If nothing else, you can start up a fresh debate around the household.

Tim Kane

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