April 8, 2021

Episode 9 - The one with Neutrinos with an identity crisis, a flat packed bearskin hat, and we beg recording artists to stop admitting to crimes

In this week’s podcast for a post stupid society our Brainy Lecture looks at the particle with multiple personality disorder - the neutrino and that forces us to relive the quantum strangeness that we first encountered in Episode 2. We encounter the least practical of all hats when we consider the surprisingly popular Bearskin and learn that it is part of the Uniform of 14 countries’ armies. 

In Songs under the microscope we compare the legal prowess of various recording artists and we beg them to stop confessing to crimes.


Our sauce is the  extraordinarily wonderful Cep Coulis.

We have our anagram poetry section that we call A Grayer tampon, or Panama Grey Rot, or Mangy Port area. 

In Literally the Last section we have a totally unrepentant murderous dinosaur who is mystified why society won’t forgive his reign of terror on the basis that being murdery is in his nature.


Episode 9

Hello, and welcome to Frenzied and Sustained.

In this week’s podcast for a post stupid society our Brainy Lecture looks at the particle with multiple personality disorder - the neutrino and that forces us to relive the quantum strangeness that we first encountered in Episode 2. We encounter the least practical of all hats when we consider the surprisingly popular Bearskin and learn that it is part of the Uniform of 14 countries’ armies. 

In Songs under the microscope we compare the legal prowess of various recording artists and we beg them to stop confessing to crimes. With the warmer weather I have chosen a lighter sauce in A Sauce A Sauce My Kingdom for a Sauce, the extraordinarily wonderful Cep Coulis.

Our anagram poetry today actually has the most famous speech by civil rights activist  Grannie Truth Milk (actually you may know him by his other name Martin Luther King). We have his Adam Eve hair speech. Oh, you may know the speech as I have a dream but really, this is a section about anagrams, you are going to have to work for this, I can’t be spoon-feeding you every inch of the way.

In Literally the Last section we have a totally unrepentant murderous dinosaur who is mystified why society won’t forgive his reign of terror on the basis that being murdery is in his nature.

You are listening to frenzied and sustained and I  am Ian Spector and this is a 

Brainy Lecture


The neutrino was probably the first  particle to be predicted rather than created to explain a strange observation. The Standard Model predicts a zero mass particle. The neutrinos were diabolically difficult to detect as they just have no interest in reacting with anything. They only feel the Weak Force. Therefore, they only stop if they hit the nucleus of an atom or an electron head-on and can pass through a million billion kilometers of lead without stopping. In fact if you got a piece of lead one light year thick and fired a neutrino through it there is only a 50% chance it will strike an atom on the way through. Of course the other problem is that if you actually had a piece of metal a light year thick you would first have to prise it off the neck of rapper Slick Rick (real name Richard Martin Lloyd Walters).

As you listen to this billions of neutrinos are entering your body and exiting the other side (hashtag consent hashtag me too).

There are three flavours of neutrinos, salt and vinegar, cheese and onion and prawn cocktail.  Well that’s what I call them but most physicists refer to them as Electron neutrino, Muon neutrino and tau neutrino.

A unique property of neutrinos was discovered when measuring neutrinos arriving from the sun. It was known that the sun emits mostly electron neutrinos but the number arriving on earth was far fewer than expected. Also it was known that protons from outer space slam into the Earth’s atmosphere and make muon and electron neutrinos in a ratio two to one.

Experiments observed a ratio of one to one. Definitive measurements made between 1998 and 2001 proved that these observations occurred because neutrinos were changing their identity as they flew along. For example, a beam of electron neutrinos would morph into a mixture of electron and muon neutrinos and then back again into electron neutrinos.

The pattern then starts over again and again. And, of course, tau neutrinos also get into the game. If you start with a beam of pure electron neutrinos and then try to predict what fraction of the beam will be electron neutrinos at different distances, the result is a very complicated pattern. Now if you cat our minds back to my earlier podcasts we showed that as photons are travelling at the speed of light they do not experience history. Their whole life from their perspective happens all at once. A massless particle must travel through space at the speed of light. Then how could neutrinos change from one type to another if they were travelling at the speed of light (i.e. if they were massless). The conclusion must be that neutrinos have mass and they must be travelling  slower than the speed of light.

But things just get weirder from here. So the particles have mass, we have three flavours of neutrinos and we have three different neutrino masses. Now regular particles all have their masses and they are sticking with them. So all electrons have a mass of 511 000 electron volts (for light things it is more convenient to measure mass in energy, E=mc squared and all that). Each particle has its signature mass.

 Nothing so straightforward for the neutrinos.

There are still three different flavour of neutrinos – the electron neutrino, the muon

neutrino, and the tau neutrino and we have three masses, m1, m2, and m3.

We know that neutrinos one and two are similar in mass and neutrino three is quite different.

You’d think that the electron neutrino might be the same as neutrino one, or two, or three,

but that’s not how it works.

Each of the electron, muon, or tau type neutrinos is a mix of the three different numbered neutrinos.

Yes, that means that each of the uniquely flavoured neutrinos doesn’t have a unique

mass. They seem to exist in a superposition of all three masses and only decide on a final mass when they are detected.

Yes, I know that you are having flashbacks to Episode 2 with our Quantum Entanglement. Let me repeat this as it is unique and fascinating.  An electron, muon, or tau, neutrino could simultaneously have a mass of m one, m two, and m three and and it’s only when you measure the neutrino’s mass that it is actually determined. Before the measurement, the electron neutrino simultaneously has all of the masses.

The converse is also true.

If each flavour doesn’t have a unique mass, then each mass doesn’t have a unique flavour.

For instance, mass 1 is mostly electron neutrinos, but mass two is roughly an equal amount

of electron, muon, and tau neutrinos.

Mass 3  is about a fifty-fifty mix of muon and tau neutrinos.

As these things are so difficult to detect and they are so fantastically light we have not been able to measure the masses of the three neutrinos. We only know the differences between the squares of the masses.

Another weirdness is that we know that neutrinos one and two are similar and three is different,

but we don’t know if one and two are small and three is big, or if one and two are big and three is small.

Working out which of these is true is the focus of much neutrino research as at the beginning of 2021.

I think that I need to summarise all this for you. 

First, neutrinos can change their identity over time.

Second, neutrinos of a specific type don’t have a specific mass and neutrinos of a specific

mass don’t have a specific type.

It’s all gloriously complicated and this strangeness hints that the neutrinos may not in fact be fundamental particles and may be made up of smaller particles.

A Sauce a Sauce, My Kingdom for a Sauce

Cep Coulis

Today we are doing a much lighter sauce than our mushroom velouté but it is also delicious on pasta or with chicken or fish. As usual we get cheffy at the end by adding a little butter and whisking it in to give us that velvety sheen. And as you will have guessed a sieve will be involved. Our access are smooth, refined and elegant. We are not animals.

This is excellent with poached or pan-fried poultry, or used as a dressing for pasta. 

We get kilograms of Ceps in our little corner of France and the flavour is beyond compare. If you cannot find them yourself ask Jacques for some. You can also find them in jars preserved in oil or dried or even frozen. They are worth the search.

75g butter

30g shallot, chopped

300g ceps, finely sliced

300ml chicken stock

1 small garlic clove, crushed

20g coriander, chopped

salt and freshly ground pepper

Melt 50g butter in a saucepan. Add the shallot, then the ceps and sweat over a

low heat for 5 minutes. Add the chicken stock, garlic and parsley and cook over a

medium heat for 10 minutes.

Tip the mixture into a blender and blend for 5 minutes until very smooth, then

strain a through a fine-meshed conical sieve.

Just before serving, dice the remaining 25g butter and reheat the coulis. Whisk in

the butter, a piece at a time, season with salt and pepper to taste and serve.

Songs under the microscope

Please, if you are a performing artist, stop waiving your 5th amendment rights and stop admitting to offences. In fact, just stop talking, or singing about your cases. Seriously, let your lawyers do the talking.

First we have Bob Marley and Eric Clapton both admitting to shooting the sheriff as some cockamamie legal defence against shooting the deputy. 

So Bob Marley is on the run for shooting the deputy and he is going around saying that he didn’t, but offering a worse crime of shooting the sheriff.

In the US the Fifth Amendment to the United States Constitution provides no person shall be compelled in any criminal case to be a witness against himself.  Do not say anything, especially to the police. It can not help, there is no way it can help you. Many recording artists think that it can and they're always wrong.  You cannot talk your way out of getting arrested.

Secondly, even if Bob is guilty of a crime, and it is almost certain that he is, there will be plenty of time to admit it, but do not just admit it in return for nothing. 

You are also establishing that you were in town where the shooting took place and you are also establishing that there was no love lost between you and the sheriff. Opportunity and Motive.

“Prosecutor: was there anything unusual in the statements made by the defendant? Yes, he stated that Sheriff John Brown always hated me”

Did the defendant mention a weapon, “well yes he did, he claimed that as he was leaving town he saw the Sheriff snd said that I shot him down”.

So, Marley was just released from prison and the first thing he does is shoot the sheriff. Even if they do not pin the deputy shooting on him he will be hanged for the sheriff. In the statements brought before court, all mention of self-defence will have been omitted.

By the way, listeners will be please to learn that Sheriff John Brown made a full recovery and went back to work. We now this because he reappeared in Bruce Springsteen’s 1981 song ‘Johnny 99’. By 1981 John Brown was a judge when he jailed Ralph for 99 years. Given the severity of the sentence one has to wonder if injuries that he sustained at the hand of Bob Marley has made him exceptionally harsh in sentencing perpetrators of gun crime.

The fifth amendment is not a shelter for wrongdoers. The United States Supreme Court held in Miranda that any time a person is taken into custody for questioning they must be advised of their Fifth Amendment rights in order "to counteract the 'inherently compelling pressures' of custodial interrogation." 

But Bob Marley and Eric Clapton are not alone in musicians admitting to crimes. Next up to the podium Talking Heads admission to “Burning Down the House”. Arson.

More hip Hop with M.O.P. in “Ante Up” they are describing an armed robbery and in the course of that crime he shouts, ‘kidnap that fool’

Katy Perry in Last Friday Night - 
Last Friday night
We went streaking in the park
Skinny dipping in the dark
Then had a ménage à trois
Last Friday night
Yeah, I think we broke the law

at a minimum in the UK she is admitting to exposure contrary to section 66 of the Sexual Offences Act 2003. If the menage a trois was also in the park then in her home state of California she could be charged with public lewdness and in that state it could involve registration as a sex offender.

Parliament-Funkadelic in ‘give up the Funk’ say they are going to Tear the Roof off the Sucker. There was no mention of a permit or planning consent.

A special mention goes to Carrie underwood for her song Church Bells. She confesses to the hitherto unsolved murder of her husband in the lines 

Jenny slipped something in his Tennessee whiskey

No law-man was ever gonna find

And how he died is still a mystery

But he hit a woman for the very last time

Well, a mystery no longer.

Paul Simon in “Wednesday Morning at 3am” admits that “for twenty five dollars and pieces of silver he held up and robbed a hard liquor store”.

Had he not admitted it no one would have suspected that 150 million record selling 2012 Polar Prize winning artist Paul Simon would have robbed a purveyor of alcohol for $25.

Now we must turn to a much more accomplished legal scholar, Jay-Z.

And with it we must also introduce the 14th Ammendment. 

The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized

The 14th Amendment came from English Law.

Charles Pratt, 1st Earl Camden established the English common law precedent against general search warrants.

In Semayne's case (1604), Sir Edward Coke famously stated: "The house of every one is to him as his castle and fortress, as well for his defence against injury and violence as for his repose."

Semayne's Case acknowledged that the King did not have unbridled authority to intrude on his subjects' dwellings, but recognised that government agents were permitted to conduct searches and seizures under certain conditions when their purpose was lawful and a warrant had been obtained.

So with the knowledge let us turn our attention to Jay-Z’s 99 Problems. This 2004  song is a true story of how Jay-Z was was transporting cocaine hidden in the roof lining of his car and the police signalled for him to stop.

Here is the first fourth amendment issue. The police stopped Jay-Z because he fitted the drug courier profile. And profile does not allow for a fourth amendment suppression claim. The Supreme Court ruled on this in Whren v United States in 1996.

Jay -Z say that when he saw the police (he used a much ruder term for them) he calculated that he could try and escape but he decided that he was better off stopping and fighting the case in court. The Supreme Court ruled that the fourth amendment permits the use of deadly force to stop high speed chases. This case was Scott v Harris. In that tragic case Harris was driving home late and the police signalled for him to stop and Harris panicked and sped off. Deputy Scott decided to end the chase by ramming Harris from behind at over 85 mile per hour whilst turning sharply to his left causing Harris to spin off the road and hit a tree. Harris is now a quadriplegic. Terminating the chase would have also removed the risk to other road users, and indeed a large number of states are now no-chase states.

Anyway, Jay-Z said that his car was not stolen and all his papers were ‘legit’. New Jersey are not a no-chase state.

I got a few dollars I can fight the case.

He is also betting that the patrol car is not a dog unit. He claims,  somewhat unbelievably, that the line I got 99 problems but a bitch ain’t one of them refers to the K9 sniffer dogs.

So Jay Z is being stopped for going 55 in a 54 limit. Without a dog there will not be probable cause for a search.

So Jay-Z states that “I pull over”. For a future 4th amendment claim you have to submit to a show of police authority.

The police office asks him if he knows why he is being pulled over and Jay - wisely records the encounter on his phone. 

Memorialization of the stated basis for the stop is important because the government must be able to show that the stop was based on probable cause, and you’ll be able to put the officer on the stand. So if you later develop evidence that you were not in fact doing what the officer said you were at the time, the officer will either have to fight the evidence, or else come up with a different basis for the stop, in which case he’ll have to contradict his contemporaneous explanation. 

Jay-Z answer that he did not know, another excellent response. Eric Clapton would have admitted the cocaine in the roof but that he knows nothing about the dead body in the trunk of his boss who always had it in for him.

Next he asks if he is under arrest. This was a superb question if it becomes necessary for a future suppression claim.

If you are arrested for a traffic violation no matter how minor,  your car can be impounded and then searched to inventory its contents, without a warrant and without any level of suspicion that the car contains contraband.

Your person, clothing, and bags can also be searched with no required quantum of suspicion.

On the other hand, if you are not under arrest, the police need probable cause to search the car. So if the cop tells you you’re not under arrest, and then proceeds to search the car, you will be able to suppress any contraband if you can show that there was no probable cause for the search. 

The law does allow the police to frisk a suspect if the officer has “reasonable suspicion” that the person may be armed and dangerous. These rights were later expanded by Michigan v Long to allow for a frisk of the car, the rationale is so that a suspect cannot quickly grab a gun and put an officer’s life in danger. But a car frisk can only cover areas readily accessible by the suspect and would don’t include the boot (trunk) or ripping apart the headliner.

The police ask for consent but Jay-Z says “I know my rights, so you go’n need a warrant for that”. Consent would allow the police to do what they want. Actually, the police do not need a warrant but they do need to establish probable cause, and more than a young black man driving a Lexus late at night on I 95.

The police’s problem is that the 4th amendment frowns upon excessive elongation of a traffic stop. The K-9 unit was late in arriving and any attempt to stall the stop will poison the tree and evidence if found will be suppressed. If the police were confident of concealed drugs then they could have arrested Jay-Z for the traffic stop, impounded the car and torn it apart at their leisure. Their risk is with their boss if it comes back clean.

And now life imitates art. In December 2020 The State of Maryland’s highest court ruled that rap lyrics may be admitted in court as evidence of a defendant’s guilt. The case involves the January 2017 killing of George Forrester, who was shot by a drug dealer after he attempted to buy cocaine with a counterfeit bill. Based on a single witness’s identification, Lawrence Montague was indicted for Forrester’s murder. Three weeks before trial, Montague used a jailhouse telephone to record a rap verse, which was then uploaded to Instagram. At Montague’s trial, the State of Maryland introduced the telephone recording of the lyrics as evidence of Montague’s guilt, and Montague was convicted and sentenced to a combined fifty years for second-degree murder and use of a firearm in a crime of violence.

So how big a problem is this. Let us have a bonus top 10 chart of number of crimes per song.

Number 10 with a relatively law abiding 1.11 crimes per song is Eminem

Number 9 for Nas with a score of 1.32

At number 8 is The Game with a respectable 1.34

Jay Z enters the chart at number 7 with  1.37

Above him at number 6 is Tupac Shakur at 1.38

Getting serious with a 1.48 for lil Wayne

Number 4 for Tech N9ne with 1.54

Fellow horrorcore Insane Clown Posse at 3 with a huge 2.23

Number two position for Bone Thugs-n-Harmony with 2.25

And this week’s number 1 is Kendrick Lamar at 3.36 crimes per song

It will come as no surprise to anyone that is the first time I have ever uttered those names.

As a way of a comparison, the Sex Pistols only mentioned 8 crimes in their entire cannon. 


Anagram poetry

I have a dream - martin luther king

Adam Eve Hair by Grannie truth milk

Have made air

A  Handmade Noway Battalion 

Wits visit caoitus chair

So worth riveting 

Defrost with a Highland porno virgin with tendinitis who pip piss  if lunatic loin

Or nighty reheated

Neatly blackmails a bobtail silk crab glands

A  Lowliest Hobbled Ninja Be Whitest Holy Twilit lasting dishware in shortbreads rests


New lawyers for babies from Baby’s first lawyer

Are you tired of object permanence abuse, do your parents keep disappearing by covering their face then use New Lawyers for Babies with a goo goo ga ga Intentional Tort

Low milk flow - then amaze your parents by suing under Product Liability  from the Early Lawyering Centre

Mummy says, incorrectly, that it’s time for a nap, then get a temporary restraining order; Torts for tots

If you are asked who has a full nappy - do not answer, refer them to Baby’s first Lawyer and recite “it was already in my pampers when I put it on” or “my parent put it in there to incriminate me”

Suppress bad character evidence relating to previous full Pampers convictions with the long arm of the La La Law Law

No fin no wee Conditional Fee Agreements Only from Baby’s first Lawyer

Hat of the week

The Bearskin

The bearskin is a tall fur cap, usually worn as part of a ceremonial military uniform. Traditionally, the bearskin was the headgear of grenadiers and remains in use by grenadier and guards regiments in various armies. They were introduced as the peaked caps obscured the view for the grenade throwers lobbing their bombs at the French, so bafflingly they chose a hat 45cm high weighing two kilograms that largely obscures all the eyes as a replacement. The fact that the French were so easily defeated at Waterloo with relatively light British losses makes one wonder if the French died laughing.

The origins of the bearskin date back to the seventeenth century and perhaps it was to make the soldiers seem more imposing.

The modern updated bearskin in the UK is a maximum of 410mm high and weighs a svelte 680g. The caps are made of canadian black bears that are culled as part of bear control. Officers wear the skins from brown bears as the fur is denser.

Bearskins are worn by members of the armies of Sri Lanka, Thailand, Uruguay, Vatican City and Sweden, although in Sweden’s case it uses fake fur, comes flat packed and no-one can understand the instructions. Oh, and the 7mm chin strap fastening B3 is missing.

In the United States the bearskin is only worn by the 2nd company of the Govenor’s Foot Guard of the Connecticut state guard. How dangerous is the role of feet in Connecticut. Surely if it was that dangerous then there would be songs relating to foot based misadventures. But then I remembered the 2005 song by Peter and the ….Hang on, let’s have a foot condition top ten

Down to number ten is last week’s number 1 Foot Full of Bullets by Peter and the test tube babies

number 9 is  a non-mover for Frank Zappa’s Stink Foot

In at number 8 is Henry’s got flat feet by Hank Balard

Jack Johnson is at number 7 for the third week in a row with the painful sounding hit  Bubble Toes

At number 6 Bob Dylan talks about foot based gender issues with ‘Foot of Pride’

Another new entry at number 5 for Jimmy Buffett’s My Head Hurts, My Feet Stink

Leona Lewis has Fire Under her Feet for the second week running at number 4

Up one to number 3 for Richard Thompson’s Two Left Feet

Fifth week in the charts and second week at number two  for Tracy Chapman’s Cold Feet

And straight in at number 1 for Parliament’s  Agony of Defeet

Literally the Last Section

T is for Terrible By Peter McCarty

T Is for Terrible is the story of a lonely T. rex. He's sad that he has no friends because the other dinosaurs are scared of him. He mopes around as the smaller creatures run away in terror, explaining that it's not his fault he's so big and scary. Clearly this is based on the internal conflict of Shakespeare’s Hamlet. 

Terrible does nothing to help his murderous image. He says that it is not his fault that he walks on all the tiny flowers, well  no, but that is not the case that has been brought. You say it is not your fault that you make the earth shake when you walk, literally no one is accusing you of that. It is the fact that you go around murdering all the other dinosaurs. Even his own parent’s named him Terrible Lizard.

He laments that he does not know why he is s terrible. Seriously old chap, it is the murdering. 

But this is not just a big animal be driven on base instincts to kill everything. Its internal monologue is in perfect English. He is asking questions that he know the answer to. He says he does it because he is hungry and he hates vegetarians. He honestly says “if I could I would be a vegetarian. But I am a Tyrannosaurus Rex and I do not eat trees. So he did not even try the salad, he just felt it beneath him. 

Now perhaps the lesson here is based on Harper Lee’s Atticus Finch when he tells his daughter, 

“You never really understand a person until you consider things from his point of view – until you climb into his skin and walk around in it.”

It is just that here the T Rex wants to have his Stegasaurus and eat it too. He is baffled why the other animals will not let him play with them as he slowly picks off one or two as a snack.

And then he plays the race card. “Would I be so terrible if I were pink, or blue?” Yes, you ravenous reptile. The others aren’t going to say ooh, I was just going to use that leg you have eaten, but my, what a lovely colour. You have brightened up my day. This is not about race this is about your refusing to take responsibility for your actions.

 T Is for Terrible may just be a look into the flawed mindset of a bully or an abusive family member. He's clearly in denial about the effect his behaviour has on others, projecting laughably wrong attitudes upon his victims. He says that “I cannot help that I am so terrible”. But society will also reserve its rights to exclude you from polite society.

He tries to make us into compassionate witnesses by explaining that he started out as a cute little baby, just as we all did. It's just that he had a rough upbringing, so it’s not his fault.

Is this a book to teach 3 year olds about domestic violence? It is not his fault that the other dinosaurs are so delicious or that he is violent at home, he was just made that way. The Tyrannosaurus has no emotional growth, makes no attempt to change but just wants society not to be mean to him about his frenzied and sustained murdering spree. Hey, he just mentioned the name of our Podcast.

Any way, I have managed to write 590 words about a book that had only 126.

And that is the end of Literally the Last Section. It is also the end of this week’s podcast.

In next week’s Frenzied and Sustained our Brainy Lecture has a change of pace and takes a break from the invisible and debatable to the merely difficult to see. We explain my attraction of astrophotography and show what a fabulous night sky we have when we are not limited by our puny human eyes. In Songs Under the Microscope we consider whether Paul Simons diamonds on the soles of his shoes will alleviate his adhesion problems in Slip Sliding Away. In Literally The Last Section we will delve into the scandal in 100 Acre Woods where numerous psychiatric pathologies have gone untreated and wonder when Winnie the Pooh describes himself as a bear of very little brain he is talking about microcephaly from the Zika virus or is he making a reference to a hemispherectomy. Perhaps he should listen to Episode 5 where the Pina Colada song has just the woman for him.

Our subscriber numbers are up 40% on the week so a big thank you for recommending this podcast. If I could ask you again just find one person to introduce this podcast to we will make it in to the top ten percent of all podcasts.

In return you get another joke.

If a dyslexic nerd goes to CERN and gets aroused at the sight of the particle accelerator, does he get a hadron?