Has anyone managed to catch Wonders of the Solar System on BBC2? I can highly recommend it to anyone with a passing interest in astronomy; or those among us who are simply interested in staring at sweet boy-faced men eulogising about something (anything) that they are so excited about that their eyes get all shiny and a sort of glow comes off them.
I mean, I find contemplation of our amazingly complex little solar system and the universe beyond absolutely mind-bottling, but honestly - astronomy's association with ancient, incoherent men who can calculate the elliptical rotation patterns of distant moons but are unable to buy a pair of fitting trousers, heat up a tin of baked beans or replace a pair of spectacles that are clearly beyond repair has made it a no-go zone for many women. Science on that sort of mathematical/astro-physical level just isn't sexy.
Well, get ready to have your preconceptions slapped around the face and covered in glitter:
How d'ya like them space particles?!
Introducing Mr. Brian Cox, formerly of D:Ream (thiiings... can only get better) and latterly passionate crusader for science funding and visitor of schools (sigh!) to raise the profile of the least-cool subject on the curriculum.
Coming from this man, space is cool - literally and pop-culturally. He sprinkled his magic space dust on me and suddenly I am the proud possessor of information about the names of the moons of Jupiter (Io, Ganymede, Callisto and Europa, named for the lovers of the Greek god Zeus). The earth would fit inside Jupiter more than a thousand times. Something about volcanos. Shiny, shiny eyes.
*apologies for the tortured wordplay - I just couldn't resist.