Author Archives: Kayla Neiland

The Key to Success

What do Eminem, Angelina Jolie, and Steve Jobs all have in common? They are all hugely famous and successful people, who have also all done LSD. LSD, also known as acid, is a chemical that leads the user into a trip that completely disconnects them from reality and they are able to see visions that they would not be able to see sober.

Besides LSD other psychoactive drugs have been known to be used by highly respected people. Barack Obama, Oprah Winfrey, Bill Gates, William Shakespeare, George Washington, and Chinese Emperor Shen Nung are known to have smoked cannabis. Drugs have been a crucial part of human existence.

[LSD] is “one of the two or three most important things I’ve done in my life” – Steve Jobslarge

This got me thinking about the correlation between intelligence and drug use. As a young adults I’m sure you have all been told that doing drugs is stupid, it will deteriorate your mind and the addiction will ruin your life. If this is so then why have so many successful people done it?


This graph shows that bright people are more likely to consume drugs than dull people. Data was collected from users of cannabis, ecstasy, amphetamines, LSD, amyl nitrate, mushrooms, cocaine, temazepan, semeron, ketamine, crack, heroin, and methadone.

My hypothesis is that if you have reached a certain level of success where you feel like you cannot get any further, then you will turn to drugs to seek that next level. You could only test this in an observational study by asking people of their experiences and the data collected just would not be accurate enough to come up with a solid conclusion.

So intelligent people are more likely to use drugs but can drugs make people more intelligent?

Terence McKenna is an ethnobotanist who constructed the Stoned Ape Theory. In this video he explains his findings. The Stoned Ape Theory suggests that magic mushrooms should be accredited for human evolution. Within a 2 million year period the ape’s brain doubled in size therefore becoming human and McKenna believes this is due to diet. At one point in history, primates were forced to change their nutrition and resided to finding mushrooms under cow dung, these mushrooms are what is known today as a psychedelic drug. They kept eating these mushrooms because it would enhance their vision which increased hunting skills. The mushrooms also increased their desire to have sex, they reproduced and evolved faster.

People are known to have created some of their best work while being under the influence of drugs. For example Steve Jobs learned that making beautiful objects was more important than money while taking LSD (lucky for him he acquired both) . So does our future lie within the hands of psychoactive drugs? Only time will tell.






SIOS (science in our spongebob?)

There have been rumors going around saying nickelodeon plans on cancelling a show we all know and love, Spongebob. This provoked me to remember when a popular topic of conversation a few years ago. Watching spongebob makes you stupid.


Scientists from the University of Virginia conducted a study with three groups of pre-schoolers. The independent variable was the activity each group participated in, the first watching spongebob, the second watching a slower-paced TV show, and the third group was asked to color with paper and markers. They then were each asked to take four tests  and the test group who watched spongebob had significantly lower scores than the others

Spongebob was intended to be viewed by 6-11 year olds, not pre-schoolers. At that age they are far too young to understand the point of comedy and absorb it as a lesson of how to act. But even at this suggested age I feel like children do not understand everything Spongebob has to offer.

Angeline Lillard of the University of Virginia says that it does not harm intelligence but it drains attention. Attention is a cognitive ability, it can be drained throughout the day but this draining has no long term effects. Therefore, Spongebob is NOT harming children’s brains.56dc2a1cf3636_screenshot2016-03-06at7-55-51am-png-54a6b1a4f9e315869cfe31c01f903c11

Coffeeholics Annonymous

Coffee! A beverage people all around the world know and love. We consume it to wake up, to concentrate while studying, or just enjoy it. Drinking coffee is a HUGE part of the college experience. Another huge part is drinking, so why not combine the two? My friend was studying for a test the other day and he decided if he shotgunned the coffee can then the caffeine would be more effective (he really just wanted the attention). Now I do not have a video of this to share but heres someone else doing it.

This made me realize that caffeine and alcohol are pretty similar. They are addictive, unhealthy especially when mixed with too much sugar, and in the long run both increase stress levels. This chart shows contrasts between coffee and beer but looking at the big picture they seem fairly similar.

Now I have heard that the faster you drink alcohol, the drunker you get. This is because your body absorbs the alcohol faster and your metabolism cannot keep up, but is it the same for coffee and energy?

If I had to test this I would use the hypothesis of if you drink coffee faster, then the caffeine will be  more effective. I would have 1 test group consisting of 10 people and they would have the independent variable of a time limit to drink the coffee (30 seconds, 5 mins, 20 mins). Each will be tested by every subject but on different days to make sure they are not effected by the previous sample. The controlled variables will be the kind of coffee and how much of it. The dependent variable would be the amount of energy they have (concluded by a questionnaire completed at the end of each test). The problem is that there could be confounding variables effecting the results such as the effect of the excitement of chugging coffee and assuming it should have an effect on you, this might wake you up more.

Both caffeine and alcohol are addictive drugs, caffeine is easier to get addicted to but alcohol has more dangerous effects. Try not to drink too much of both and theres no need for unnecessary consumption methods.






Coffee: Is It Bad For You?

bad coffee

Turn it down

My morning routine is to wake up and get ready for my earliest classes. As I take my 15 minute walk to each class I normally listen to music to bypass the time. My mood for music changes everyday and I change my playlist depending how I am feeling. Do I hear my friends calling my name? No, my music is blasting. That is the only way I roll. My room mate tells me to turn it down because she gets annoyed but my mom tells me to because it is dangerous.

Image result for listening to loud music gif

Teenagers have the same amount of hearing damage as their parents but at a much younger age, this is due to Noise Induced Hearing Loss (NIHL). A habit of listening to music at a certain level of volume can ruin your future. The noise damages your inner ear and turns into permanent hearing loss. So what is being blamed for this?  The invention of earbuds and the rising popularity of them over the past two decades.

Accused ... Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin and his band.

Coldplay lead singer Chris Martin

I am sure you have all heard a million times that listening to your music at a high volume is dangerous but I am going to stress this again. Once you loose your hearing it will not come back. The lead singer of Coldplay, Chris Martin, has been diagnosed with tinnitus. This is not a disease but it is the symptom of permanent ringing in your ears.

According to the American Osteopathic Association 1 in 5 teens have some form of hearing loss, this rate is 30% higher than it was in the 80s.

How can you prevent this?

  • switch to ear phones instead of earbuds
  • be aware of how loud your volume is; anything above 100dB (which is typical in most venues) is dangerous

Now if I researched this before taking this class I would definitely change my style of listening to music. I have come to realize that the benefit out weighs the risk. Coldplay’s singer Chris Martin only has tinnitus because he is constantly exposed to extreme conditions with his successful career in his profession. I would much rather enjoy my music loudly and have minimal chance of hearing loss than being a cautious freak. What happens in our society is that a rare occurrence happens, the media over-exaggerates this, and hysteria is caused. Mothers everywhere are telling their children to turn down their volume or to not make that face or it will be stuck like that forever. Based on evidence shown it might not be earbuds causing the hearing loss, it could be a 3rd confounding variable. For example, it could be kids who live in the city,which is a huge portion of the demographic, who happen to listen to music through earbuds, are losing hearing due to normal city background noise. Earbud volume is just a soft endpoint and cannot be the only thing blamed for the hard endpoint of hearing loss. The problem may not be from ear buds but from hanging out in loud bars, clubs, concerts, and sporting events; all habits of our american youth. Therefore, at this very moment that i am writing this post, I am blasting music through my earbuds.

lets talk about sex…

Yup. Sex, an action that is usually frowned upon to the youth should actually be suggested.

gif Mean Girls coach carr you will get pregnant and die
 One in five american teenagers suffers from depression, this is a struggling time in almost everybody’s life due to emotional, social, and school related stress. This can then lead to anger issues, drug use, and even suicide. Almost 5,000 young people end their own lives each year making it the second leading cause of death for youth in college. I believe this problem could be solved with more confidence spread amongst this group.

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Urine Trouble

The other day I walked into my friends room to my roommate screaming about stepping into a puddle of water. Turns out it was not water, there was a puddle of pee on his floor and a kid passed out in his bed. We then heard the story of how his friend pulled down his pants in the middle of the room and let all hell brake loose. If you’re questioning as to what this has to do with science, the answer is everything. When you gotta go you gotta go, holding in your pee is bad for your health for multiple reasons.


When you hold your pee you are using a muscle to hold it in and if you constantly hold in your pee this muscle will eventually wear out. This is why americans have the need for adult diapers. Also when your bladder muscles weaken you are prone to urinary retention. This is when you can never fully let everything out of your system so you always feel like you have to pee.

Holding in your pee exposes your body to harmful bacteria. This bacteria could give you a bladder infection or UTI, these infections could then spread to your kidneys and turn into a life-threatening problem.


Eventually, if you keep holding in your pee your brain will get so used to that feeling that you will not know when to go anymore. It was a very healthy choice for that boy to pee on my friend’s floor.

Everybody knows that most girls are self conscious about their weight but this is for appearance reasons. Timothy Judge from the University of Florida and Daniel Cable from the London Business School found that skinny women make more money than average and overweight women.


The United States has problems with our standards of attractiveness, every year women are trying to lose more and more weight due to the way models, celebrities, and cartoons look. Now it is shown that women should have another incentive, money. Women who are very thin earn nearly $22,000 more than average weight women.

Women are also punished for gaining wait loosen over $9,000 while men are unaffected by this. Overweight men tend to make more money than skinny and average weighted men. Everybody is aware of the gender wage gap and the weight wage gap is just another factor adding to that.

chartThis graph shows the relation between the effects of weight, salary, and gender. As a young woman who aspires to go into the business world I find this data to be very concerning. Looks like ill just have to hit the gym more in hope to help the gender wage gap.


Study: For Women, Skinnier Figures Can Equal Fatter Paychecks



(Wo)man’s Best Friend

The hardest part of being away at school for me is not being able to come home to my dog everyday. I used to bring her everywhere with me and there was nothing better than being greeted every time we met with a smile and waging tail.She was always there for me when I was feeling down but I always wondered if she truly understood how I felt. You can always tell when a good friend is upset and I could always tell when something was wrong with her but could she do the same for me? The answer is yes.


Turns out many people have asked the same question as I did. Many owners have reported times when their dog has been sensitive towards family members in distress. Researchers at the University of Lincoln found that dogs can recognize emotion by facial expressions and change in tone. The study showed that dogs would spend a longer time looking at the people who showed emotion of sadness or anger than people who did not.


Dogs can also detect happiness within their owner. Dr. Corsin Muller of the University of veterinarian Medicine in Vienna has proven that dogs respond to the bearing of teeth in smiles. He then was able to train dogs to obey commands given through facial expressions such as the wrinkle between your eyes when you are angry.

Now I just can not wait to go home to my dog and for her to pick up the happiness I express due to our reunion!


Hey guys my name is Kayla Neiland. I am a freshman from Huntington, New York and have no idea what I am going to major in!!!! To be honest I am actually freaking out about this whole college thing but I’m sure everything will work out.


I had always wanted to be a marine biologist but that dream was shot down once I realized how much science and math was required. My mind is just not wired to learn in the way certain sciences need you to. I am an advanced scuba diver and absolutely love exploring ocean life. The link I have included is a question you all have definitely asked.

Do fish pee?

I like science but I don’t love it which brings me here. What intrigued me the most about this class was that it is not limited to one topic, I am a girl who loves and needs variety.