Right Now in Stuff Mom Never Told You

Who Has a Facebook Relationship Status and Why: A Casual Case Study

When I started by Facebook account, I was freshly out of a relationship, so I filled in "single" in the relationship status field. A few minutes later, I decided I didn't want any status whatsoever. So I removed it. Then Facebook alerted my fledgling group of friends that "Cristen Conger is no longer single."

When people think of pirates, their minds often turn to legendary brigands such as Bluebeard -- but piracy wasn't restricted to males. Join Molly and Cristen as they recount the fascinating adventures of genuine female pirates.

Are Women the Greener Gender?

Imagine that men and women are automobiles parked next to each other in a garage. The male car (painted blue, naturally) is a full-sized sedan that gets, oh, 15 miles to the gallon. The gal-mobile is a VW Bug with an imitation flower sitting cheerily in the built-in vase compact car that chugs along at 25 miles to the gallon. Which car gobbles up more gas and emits more carbon? The bigger man-sedan.

Sexism and the Search for "Good Men"

Like I agree with And if Ms. Hymowitz truly believes that "husbands and fathers are now optional" for women today, why is she spending such a high word count discussing how difficult the "good ones" are to find? Perhaps because -- ...

According to a recent study, around half of American adults use a vibrator on a regular basis -- yet the devices remain controversial. In this episode, Cristen and Molly explore the history of vibrators, from Victorian society to the modern day.

Visualizing Inequality: U.S. Gender Pay Gap by Industry

Pardon me if it seems like I'm beating a dead horse, but the gender pay gap is still very much alive and kicking in the U.S. of A. This old news flash comes courtesy of 2009 data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics arranged in a handy, colorful (and depressing if you're an employed female) chart...

Status Update: Facebook Is Stressing You Out!

Yesterday, I had a red letter day for a number of reasons. At one point, I found myself practically bouncing up and down in my office chair with glee, trying to think of the best way to broadcast my A-plus fantastic mood to the rest of the world via Facebook. Why would anyone care that I had a chocolate cupcake kind of day? I don't know. But after agonizing over how to communicate all of this, I finally gave up and decided to keep my good fortune to myself. I was suffering, apparently, from Facebook-related anxiety.

Women tend to have warmer core temperatures than men -- but why? In this episode, Molly and Cristen examine the science behind this mysterious discrepancy in body temperature.

Grammys for Girls, Oscars for Boys?

...Arcade Fire wins, Gaga entered in an egg (of course.) and Justin Bieber, Prince of Swagger, lost out to the lesser-known Esperanza Spalding. Injustice for beloved Biebs? Nah, says The Atlantic. The swoop-haired singer didn't take home a Best New Artist award because the Grammys favors the girls.

Japan's Legal Battle for Maiden Names

A Valentine's Day lawsuit filed in Japan challenges an 1898 civil law maintaining that women have to give up their maiden names when they wed. Four married Japanese women and one of their husband's brought the lawsuit, which the Sydney Morning Herald (via Jezebel) described as a "test for the rights of women, who continue to struggle against gender stereotypes and remain under-represented in politics and corporate boardrooms."

The first image of a kiss dates back to ancient India -- but where did the concept of kissing originate? More importantly, why do we do it today? Tune in as Molly and Cristen recount the history of kissing and the science behind smooching.

Why is online porn the trend piece du jour?

So far in the world of online (and print to some extent) journalism, 2011 is shaping up to be the Year of Porn. It's everywhere, people. Porn in The Atlantic, porn in Salon, porn in New York magazine, and onward. No, the reputable publications aren't trying out some new profit model based on Adults Only sections or anything like that; they simply can't stop talking about pornography -- especially Internet pornography.

What was with the Middle Ages and terrifying torture devices? Seriously, if the "Saw" movies had somehow been shot during the medieval times, they'd be exponentially more horrifying. For any particular kind of pain torturers were wishing to inflict -- unnatural stretching, digital damage, slow suffocation -- there was a medieval device out there for the job. One case in point: The Scold's Bridle.

Inspired by an article about recent changes to the zodiac, Cristen and Molly examine the use of horoscopes in modern society. Tune in to learn more about horoscopes -- and how they can affect an individual's perception of happiness.

V-Day Study: Guys, Play Hard to Get

Guys, if you're single and having anxiety attacks about spending Valentine's Day alone, then do I have some sexy science advice for you! To pique a woman's interest, you don't need to wear your heart on your sleeve and make a grand romantic gesture. Instead, just ask her to hang out in a casual enough setting that she won't be able to decipher whether it's a date or not. In other words, play hard to get because according to a new study in Psychological Science, women like guys who are indifferent toward them (which explains so much and so little at the same time.)

Ask your grandparents or great grandparents how they met each other, there's a good chance family was involved. In the early 20th century, couples met most often through family members, which provided a vetting process before the dawn of modern-day dating. Once people started going on a-courtin' outside the home, friends became more involved as matchmakers, and the family's role diminished. But today, friends are getting elbowed out from introducing romantic hopefuls by the ultimate meta matchmaker: the Internet.

The hot flash is one of the most infamous symbols of menopause, and it's no laughing matter. But what exactly is a hot flash, and what causes it? In this podcast, Cristen and Molly break down the science behind hot flashes.

Sexual Health Alert: HPV Vaccine Gardasil Just as Effective for Men

A new study in the New England Journal of Medicine found that the human papilloma virus (HPV) vaccine Gardasil is as effective at preventing HPV and genital warts in men as it is in women. According to the CDC, more than 6 million cases of HPV are diagnosed every year in the U.S., and inoculating more boys and men could potentially slow the spread of the sexually transmitted disease.

Little Girls Need to Ditch Their Dresses and Dig in the Dirt

A post over at NPR's health blog about girls and germs reminded me of an old family photo. In it, my older siblings are playing football in the yard while little Cristen is standing on the sidelines, stone-faced and sporting a frilly dress and matching hair bow. Adorable -- and completely bored. That picture could perfectly illustrate the point Oregon State science philosopher Sharyn Clough made to NPR about something called the hygiene hypothesis.

Throughout history, opinions of corsets have fluctuated. Some have called the corset the Western version of foot binding, while others think the corset's been stuck with a bad rep. Tune in as Cristen and Molly dive into the cultural history of the corset.