Maroon 5

The Turn of the Page (Marooned Fifth)

#PutiTrump | #WhatTheyVotedFor

Composite — Donald Trump: Detail of photo by Mark Peterson/Redux for msnbc; Carter Page: AP Photo; Puti-Toots: Artist unknown.

Should we take a moment to recall, oh, not quite six months ago, the ledes made a pretty straightforward setup:

President Donald Trump sought to insert himself into congressional investigations on Russia on Wednesday, urging lawmakers to hear from one of his former advisers, Carter Page, to counter testimony by directors of the FBI and CIA.


† † †

President Donald Trump on Wednesday accused Democrats of resisting testimony from Carter Page, his former campaign adviser, because he “blows away” allegations they have made.


And that really is a wasted setup, right? That is, since we already know the punch line:

Carter Page, a former foreign policy adviser to the Trump campaign, informed the Senate Intelligence Committee on Tuesday that he will not be cooperating with any requests to appear before the panel for its investigation into Russian meddling in the 2016 election and would plead the Fifth, according to a source familiar with the matter.


#wellduh. Because of course he will.


A Prescription of Sorts

Musicus annoyus. The humble common earworm. A minor plague upon humanity, to be certain, but Sofia Lyons brings us this latest prescription:

Science of UsI get at least one song stuck in my head every day, and many of my favorite tunes have been completely ruined after their hundredth mental play-through. Science of Us has grappled before with the question of how to get rid of an earworm, but new research recently published in the Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology suggests that there’s been a simple solution all along: chew gum.

Testing the theory that interfering with “articulatory motor programming” — that is, the motor skills involved in speech — by chewing can disrupt the formation of unwanted musical memories, researchers at the University of Reading conducted three experiments involving chewing gum and listening to catchy tunes. (The initial idea for the research came from an inauspicious source: an anonymous online post touting the anti-earworm benefits of chewing on cinnamon sticks.)

To the one, we might wonder if M. annoyus actually has any dangerous manifestations in the world. Would it not explain, well, something, if it turns out this or that ridiculous explosion of human damage occurred because the shooter or knife-wielding maniac or whoever just couldn’t stop hearing One Direction in his head?

Which raises a serious question about the ethics of these experiments. That is to say, as a matter of professional integrity, we might wonder at the wisdom and propriety of any experiment obliging subjects to listen to David Guetta or Maroon 5.


Lyons, Sofia. “A Simple Trick to Get a Song Out of Your Head”. Science of Us. 29 April 2015.

See Also:

Beaman, C. Phillip, Kitty Powell, and Ellie Rapley. “Want to block earworms from conscious
awareness?B(u)y gum!”
The Quarterly Journal of Experimental Psychology. 21 April 2015.