I wimped out and didn’t try the roads into TO today, thanks to those two storm fronts that are moving through.

Instead I veg’d out with Gizmo Guy, watching his favorite computer tech show – The Lab With Leo (Episode 156 if you’re googling) when they brought on Dr. Kristen Sanford, a ‘food scientist’ who showed how to make Oobleck, a “non-Newtonian fluid” named after a Dr. Seuss story. (What that had to do with computers, I have no idea.) Gizmo Guy and I found it fascinating, and we immediately wanted to go out into the kitchen and make our own oobleck.

Oobleck is a very strange liquid/solid that resembles Elmer’s glue. If you slowly stick your finger in it and lift it back out, it’s liquid. But if you hit it with your finger, it’s a solid. If you mush it up in your hand it forms into a ball. And if you drop it, it shatters and then melts – rather like the metallic bad guy in Terminator 2. If you fill up a kiddies’ pool with it, you can actually run across the top but if you stop, you’ll sink into it.. (that clip won’t let you embed the video unfortunately.)

The government is experimenting with using it as a natural protective agent – sort of like Kevlar. Find it hard to believe that such a simple substance could be used to stop bullets? Well, with a few adjustments, d3o.com has created a similar substance that molds like foam but protects like metal. Take a look at this guy getting whacked on the head and knees with a shovel.

How do you make oobleck at home? Simple: All you need is one part water to two parts cornstarch. Add the cornstarch slowly, giving it a chance to melt properly. That’s all you need! And it’s safe for the kiddies too.

**Note, have soap and water handy, it’s messy!

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7 thoughts on “Oobleck

  • March 8, 2008 at 2:48 pm

    How cool is that?! *_* Oobleck. If I had some cornstarch in the house, I’d seriously give it a try. I’d have to watch my husband and Oldest son though – I can imagine that stuff is what practical jokes were made for. Know what I mean?

    Thanks for stopping by my blog for a visit! I hope you’ll pop in again sometime. 🙂

  • March 8, 2008 at 5:04 pm

    Hi there,

    So sorry you didn’t make in for the meeting. That’s a shame.

    That stuff is cool huh? Little M did that last year at a birthday party. The girl’s mother use to teach science to middle schoolers. The joys of science.

  • March 8, 2008 at 7:20 pm

    I’m sorry you didn’t get to your meeting, but the Oobleck sounds like fun!

  • March 9, 2008 at 4:35 pm

    Me and #1 son made oobleck a few years ago — used food coloring to make it more interesting. Very cool, but a bitch to clean!

    Leah – you were the smart one for not attempting the roads. I was stupid… very stupid…
    Got home a nervous wreck, sore hands from gripping the wheel, headache behind my eyes and throbbing shoulders/neck.

  • March 9, 2008 at 5:10 pm

    Yeah they made that on a Treehouse Show called This is Emily Yeung except they called it slime and dyed it green.

    Boo wants to make some big time.

    I’m sorry you weren’t there. It was a great meeting. Sex and Action were compiled together. Kelley yelling out “Sex and Action at this table here.”

    ROFL!! So Eve and Christine were my group leaders and as I explained the book I was working on to Eve (set up for sex scene) said I was targeting EC she looked me straight in the eye and asked me “Why?” she gave me TONS to think about. Seriously. OMG, she rocks, so does C.

    Okay I will shut up now, cause for the most part we were dumb braving those roads. Dumb dumb dumb. LOL!

  • March 11, 2008 at 7:13 am

    You come up with the most fascinating stuff! Miraculous, cheap. Ultimately, can you just see two countries’ soldiers fitted with this stuff, whacking it out, until they fall over from exhaustion?

  • March 11, 2008 at 7:18 am

    Cora – Welcome to my blog. Yes, I am going to have to watch my eldest son – who is much older (like in 20+ years older) than your Mimi and therefore much more dangerous with his practical jokes. That’s just the type of thing he’d use. *Leah hides cornstarch*

    LOL, Marley – you know what they say about small things amusing small minds? Now you see what gets my mind whirling.

    Amy and Wylie – I’m still jealous that you got to the meeting and I didn’t. I really really wanted to go despite the weather. Glad to hear you both got home safely though.

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