Off-beat science we missed

the geneticist ate my homework
  More 1997-edition strange science stories!

One precious jumper
Want to wrap yourself in the medical news of the century? What better way than to design a jumper knitted from sweaterDolly's wool? You do remember Dolly, the sheep cloned in Scotland last year? It turns out the ol' girl not only makes headlines -- she also makes wool.

The textile whizzes at Leeds University in England have already spun Dolly's wool into yarn. Now the charitable Cystic Fibrosis Trust is looking for designs for a jumper, which will be knitted at the university. After the winner is named in February (1998), the jumper will hang on a wall at a London science museum.

Thought we'd never get around to it... . Procrastination science
Never do today what you can rush through just before deadline... That's our motto here at The Why Files. But there's good news and bad news for us procrastinators. Although we might feel better while we're in the delaying mode, eventually we'll feel even worse than the goody two-shoes who finish their work on time.

At least, that's what happened when psychologists at Case Western Reserve University compared the mental health of students who submitted papers on time to those who, well, were "a little late" due to no fault of their own: ("Honest, I started the paper months ago, but I had to take my dog to the vet and my computer was hung and a parked car ran me down and broke my leg and my mother died again and ...")

Not only did procrastinators have more stress toward the end of the semester, they also had more colds and flus. Big question: Does information about this kind of "academic procrastinator" apply to real-life, big-time slackers? No way to tell, say experts at procrastination research groups (BTW, we didn't invent that particular sub-discipline). These folks say depression and low self-esteem, not poor time management, are probably to blame in serious cases of procrastination.

Want more details? Hustle now to the library and check out the November, 1997 Psychological Science, and the Dec. 5, 1997, Science (p. 1716-7).

Don't delay your visit to the strange cast of characters who put this page together!

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