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!