Looking to take up a hobby that will get you more physically active this year? Perhaps your New Year's Resolutions include something about more excitement. Here are a link or two that will qualify for both.
Insultingly Stupid Movie Physicsintuitor.com/moviephysics
Not just for technonerds (although being one would help in understanding the formulaic equations), this site exposes movies that totally disregard the laws of physics as they pertain to feature films. This means, for the most part, action movies that contain flaming cars, flashing bullets, and other special effects that wouldn't really occur in the natural world.
Not only do the reviewers give the films ratings that range from "GP" (good physics in general) to "XP" (obviously physics from an unknown universe), they include detailed explanations of the errors. The reviews are quite long, and quite frankly, over my head, but others who are more physics-minded will probably understand them. Even with my low scientific orientation, however, I enjoyed the section called, "Generic Bad Movie Physics" and the essay, "The Day James Bond Died, or When Reality Collided with Hollywood."
Adam Rice is a fire dancer. Here are pictures of Adam in action: http://crossroads.net/a/writing/firedancing.php. Apparently, he and his buddies do a Thursday night fire dancing jam in Austin, TX. How cool is that for an evening out?
A shirtless dude in leather pants may seem a little over the top, but apparently there are good reasons for that. Leather and skin tend to absorb less flammable liquid fuels than, say, cotton. Ergo they're not quite as likely to burst into flame. Adam talks about it here: http://crossroads.net/a/writing/firemaking.html.
That's also where Adam tells you how to make your own fire dancing equipment. He happens to make and sell it, but he's into informed consumers.
Look neat? Make you want to rush right out and sign up for lessons? There are places that do just that. Here's one: http://www.glittergoddess.com/glitter%20girl/index.htm
The "Glitter Girl" is based out of San Francisco. She does lessons and performances. And if you're good enough, you can hook up with her and be a Fire Fly Girl. (Or guy, presumably.)
-- guest columnist Alex Queen