Can you talk without lips?

No: “Can you talk without lips?”

That word made me laugh.

Do you feel embarrassed?

Yes. Is it your first time?

It’s not. Have you ever been nervous with a stranger?

I have. I’ve been with four guys.

That doesn’t make you nervous?

It makes you uncomfortable.

Do you hate the idea of being awkward with girls?

I’m glad I don’t have a boyfriend. I wouldn’t want to be so desperate.

If you have a car accident, how do you know you’re actually hurt or in need of hospital treatment? You can probably guess it, but there’s a whole new world of science on this one. We get to look at what’s happening inside the brain after a car crashes for the first time. The research is fascinating for any one of many reasons, but the one that interests me the most is whether there are differences in how brain cells actually get damaged after car crashes if they come from the driver or from a passenger.

When a car crashes, some of the car’s components – body parts, electronics – get sucked up into the front and back of the vehicle. You may not have noticed, but those bits end up traveling a certain distance, with each side traveling slightly different lengths. That’s because each piece of the car is made up of small, individual cells called neurons. And not all neurons in a particular area are connected by a fiber optic fibre. If, for example, you had a damaged neuron in your arm, that neuron wouldn’t be able to connect with the nerve that supplies your arm. It would instead have to connect with one of the more distant fibers that connects to your other arm. So that’s why, when you hit a concrete wall, the wall and whatever you’re struck by end up on the concrete floor beneath your feet. Or when you hit a metal door, the door and whatever you’re struck by will be underneath your feet.

Those little individual parts of the car that get sucked up into the car also get scattered over the road. And because those scattered particles are scattered over different distances relative to each other, the distance between those fragments depends on the speed with which the pieces are travelling.

This is called the “distance dependence” effect. So if the driver’s brain goes into overdrive after they hit something, their brain cells will start firing slightly faster than before, which means that those nearby pieces of the