Sugar Daddy: Not so boron after all

Posted on behalf of Sugar Daddy

With the changing of the guard in Washington, late-night night television hasn’t quite been the same. I guess the new guy in charge is a harder target for comics. Anyway, to a certain extent, the late-night hosts have been turning their attention elsewhere, and eventually chemistry was bound to make it. In this clip, Conan O’Brien draws attention to, among other things, the discovery of a fourth form of pure elemental boron.

The humor in the clip originates from a recent New York Times article that had mistakenly counted the number of pure forms of boron, and Conan was mocking them for not being able to correctly count to four. The surprise for me was that Conan whipped out a big poster board with crystal structures of the various forms of boron and then started to describe them in rather gory scientific detail. I don’t think this will help the public understand chemistry any better, but it’s better than nothing, I guess. Plus, he’s funny.