Wednesday, 29 February 2012

5 health myths you thought were true

Here's a few health myths that are often regarded true, have a 
listen to these guys while you're at it -

5. You need 8 glasses of water a day

Yeah, you don't. There is actually no significant scientific evidence saying you need 8 glasses a day. Sure you need water, that's for the cytoplasm in your cells. But just by eating food which has moisture, and also drinking other drinks, you fulfil that 8 glasses anyway.

Most people are under the illusion that it HAS to be water, yeah water is good but there other things which can wet your whistle.

Also not only do you then fill your body up with more water than necessary, you'll have to nip to the toilet every 10 minutes to empty it out.

A good indication whether you need something to drink is the colour of your wee, if it's pale, then you're fine, if it's dark, then it's time to get some H2O

4. Acne is caused by not washing properly

Acne is caused by hormones from sebaceous glands, which are at the height of activity during teenage years. If you wash your face too often you actually increase the amount of spots you get because you wash away body oil that is essential to keep your skin healthy.

You just need to focus on getting rid of them when they arise.

3. Reading in dim light ruins your eyesight

Haha, my mum says this to me as well, it's false. 

Remember doing this on the right when you were younger?

It's true that reading in darker places strains your eyes, but when you sleep your eye muscles get to rest and you're perfectly fine and back to normal.

2. Cold weather makes you catch a cold

This myth was debunked by the Common Cold 
Research unit. 

They got 2 healthy groups who were picked randomly, gave them the cold virus, and made one group sit in a warm room, the other dripping wet standing in a hallway. 

None of them caught a cold, maybe this is just a matter of chance, but I reckon its more about your personal immune system and how well it's doing.

1. You can catch up on sleep at the weekend

Most people believe this, but it's wrong! While it can help you feel fresh on the Sunday morning, you have just altered your body clock. 

So now good old you thinks it gets to enjoy a nice lie-in every day which isn't going to happen.

By doing that you stop your body working at full speed ahead the next day and loads of problems obviously come with that.

Tuesday, 28 February 2012

Understanding Downs Syndrome

Down syndrome is thought to affect 1 in 733 children, making it not common, but not rare either. It is misunderstood by a lot of people so hopefully this will help you understand the reality.

What exactly is it?

Down syndrome is caused by having an extra chromosome. You are designed from 46 pairs of chromosomes, each chromosome is split into smaller sections, your genes, and subsequently made of DNA.

Usually you get 23 pairs of chromosomes from your Dad, and 23 from your Mum which totals to 46, your full set.

But on the off occasion, a gamete (sperm or egg cell) can be made wrong during meiosis (production of sex cells) and it's given 24 pairs.

This happens during the separation part of Meiosis. When the chromosomes move apart to go to 2 different cells, sometimes 2 get stuck together and you end up with an extra one in a cell.

So including your mums and dads and an extra one, you have 3 copies of chromosome 21, when you should just have 2.

Yep, you guessed it, that means you have 47 pairs.

It is always the 21st chromosome!

The problem

There are several theories to why the extra chromosome affects the body so much. The most popular theory is: If each gene codes for a different characteristic, and you have more than the normal amount of genes, they're going to get mixed up.

It's a bit like your body being a computer, if you have 2 mouses linked up to the computer with another person controlling the other, it's going to be mayhem doing what you want.

It's important to understand that the extra chromosome is just a regular 21st chromosome, it's the fact there's another one that causes the problems

The effects

Unfortunately there are quite a lot of impairments as a consequence. Physical characteristics being abnormal facial and body growth.

The matter gets worse, children with down syndrome often develop more health concerns as they grow up, including hearing loss and heart defects.

Mental ability is also hindered, with the average IQ of children with down syndrome being 50, without being 100.


Fortunately, with support from family, quality of life can be improved significantly resulting in a normal life albeit with certain genetic limitations.

It's expected for a child with down syndrome to complete education, and with training and social support, continue further and also live an outgoing lifestyle.


You might be thinking "oh I know about ethics blah blah" but keep reading!

The abortion rate for a child with down syndrome is appalling: 90%!

Nearly half of these is also unconfirmed, some people are willing to take no chances at all.

Maybe 100 years ago, people with down syndrome would have a really tough time, but nowadays they're expected to live a normal life. Medical and society priorities have improved by so much that they can live normal lives.

Parents are also paying huge sums of money to give their children plastic surgery so that their physical abnormalities won't show.

  • One could argue that it's simply selfish
  • However at present social structure is such a huge part of society, and research does show that 2/3 of people with down syndrome who underwent surgery feel more accepted.
Melissa Riggio

She's like you but she has down syndrome, if you'd like to hear what life is like from her own point of view, check this girl out. She talks about living her normal life and how she has everyday hobbies just like you!

Know before you judge!

Monday, 27 February 2012

Why are we allergic to things?

On a massive Newton Faulkner hype, take a listen -

There are 2 types of allergies: Food allergies so peanuts, shellfish etc, and Non food allergies so pollen and dust etc.

Food allergies

You might find it interesting to know that the number of children allergic to peanuts has doubled in the last decade, this is due to an over reactive immune system.

Your body is in a constant battle with foreign things entering the body, I don't mean the Italian food you ate last week, I mean pathogens and proteins.

The structure of histamine
The body likes to be familiar with what it has in it, so as soon as it senses something shouldn't be there, it'll pounce on it like a tiger on a mouse.

Common things people are allergic include shellfish, milk, eggs, wheat etc. 

That's because they have proteins which your body isn't used to, and like I said before, it'll attack it. A by product of this attack is Histamines, and that's the nasty chemical which causes all your symptoms.

Why are so many people allergic to peanuts?

There is a significant higher number of people allergic to peanuts (myself included), and that's pretty strange. Most kids grow the allergy out as they become more accustomed to it in their daily life, for example, the boy next to you chomping on a peanut butter sandwich and you trying to edge as far away as possible!

The reason why peanuts is the most common allergy is that it has an army of unknown proteins to the body. Literally, it's like you walking into your house and seeing your friend's house interior.

Your body again jumps at these and histamines are again produced, giving you a horrible feeling.


Ige or Immunoglobulin E is your team of allergy killers. They're constantly on the lookout for any intruders in your body and ready to give them hell. But in that process, they release the chemical you are probably sick of hearing now: histamine

Why is the roof of my mouth so itchy?

This is simply a mild reaction to the food you're eating, most people get it with some fruits and it's the weird proteins your body doesn't recognise being under attack by IgE's. 

Can't drink milk?

Lactose intolerant is a fairly rare disorder. It's because of your enzymes which digest lactose, a type of sugar found in milk. 
  • You need a lot of milk during your younger years (to give you good bones and keep you big and strong!), anyway, because in prehistoric times milking cows wasn't a common thing, the only time to get milk was from your mum. And hopefully you've grown out of that!
  • Because you grow up, the amount of lactase you produce decreases, and therefore you can't digest the lactose. 
  • And then the bacteria make use of it, producing a load of gas and that'll make you fart like crazy.
Non food allergy

Hayfever and asthma are the two big ones, and they're quite related too. 

Being unlucky again, I also have hayfever.. And also asthma which I've kinda grown out of.

Pollen is the baddie as you probably know with hayfever, it irritates your sinuses giving you that horrible neverending itch in your nose!

 It's because of those IgE's and you guessed it, the histamine they produce!

Asthma is because of dust or other small particles which tickle the cells in your bronchus, and IgE's attack them because your air pathway so important. This makes the muscles in the bronchus restrict which means its harder to breathe, if the case is so severe, you have an asthma attack.

Sunday, 26 February 2012

10 Things you didn't know 5 minutes ago! (Part 1)

10. Venom from a certain Brazilian spiders causes erections

Not the kind you want either, normally it'll come up at a inconvenient time and you'll just hide it. Not with this fella called Phoneutrier Negriventer. These guys aren't only massive with a leg span of 15cm, but also their venom can give you a raging boner for several hours!

9. You shouldn't water your plants in the daytime

The water droplets act as magnifying glasses that magnifies the sun's rays which can burn your plant, which is never good. 

This counts for humans too! If you've recently been for a dip you may find that your legs or arms burn faster. Unless you have a hairy body that is..

8. According to the bible, God said "Let there be light!"

Except.. It took 500,000 years for the universe to expand enough to allow photons to travel freely, I'm afraid its Science 1 : 0 God!

7. How the Aurora Borealis works (The Northern Lights)

Solar wind form the sun excites atoms in the atmosphere, Oxygen goes green, Nitrogen goes blue and red!

Colour is caused by when an electron jumps up or down an electron shell. When the electron moves down, energy in the form of a photon (light) is emitted and you see whatever wavelength of colour the energy is equal to.

6. How a solar powered device works

Take your calculator for example, if you have an old fashioned battery powered one, you'll have to keep replacing the cell. But with solar power it can last forever!

How this works is called the photoelectric effect. When high energy waves like from the sun bombard the metal surface of your solar panel, the electrons get released with a bit of energy. 

5. Women with breast implants shouldn't go to space

You may have heard of the recent PIP implant crisis? Well lets hope they don't get to space, the decrease in pressure would cause your boobs to explode! Nobody wants to go from a DD to an AAA..

4. Everyone dreams the same kind of dream

Some scientists carried out a study where they asked a ton of people to record what the theme of their dream was, it got totalled up into 55 themes! And of course.. The big number 1 on the list was some kind of sexual encounter.

3. Neutron stars are seriously heavy

They are the most dense things we know about (apart from a black hole). If you put a neutron star the size of a 10p coin on a scale, it would weigh 100 million tons!

2. Astronauts aren't allowed to eat beans

NASA reckons beans will make them fart which increases the pressure in their spacesuit, something you do not want! Oh and also it'd smell a bit.

And last but not least..

1. At least 75% of people who read this will try to lick their elbow!

Ha, you did it didn't you?

Saturday, 25 February 2012

What's really in a Mcdonald's chicken nugget?

We've all had them since we were young, and most likely still love them to this day. There's so much variety, you can get them in a box of 6, 10 and 20 in America! What are you actually putting into your body?

Mcdonald's started out as a Barbecue restaurant in 1940, ran by a Married couple who used production lines to get food made faster. Then came along a businessman called Ray Kroc who developed the restaurant into a worldwide franchise.

The ingredients
Here is the ingredient list for the nugget, taken from the Mcdonalds website

White boneless chicken, water, food starch-modified, salt, seasoning [autolyzed yeast extract, salt, wheat starch, natural flavoring (botanical source), safflower oil, dextrose, citric acid], sodium phosphates, natural flavor (botanical source).  Battered and breaded with: water, enriched flour (bleached wheat flour, niacin, reduced iron, thiamine mononitrate, riboflavin, folic acid), yellow corn flour, bleached wheat flour,  food starch-modified, salt, leavening (baking soda, sodium acid pyrophosphate, sodium aluminum phosphate, monocalcium phosphate, calcium lactate), spices, wheat starch, dextrose, corn starch.

CONTAINS: WHEAT (The least of your worries)

Prepared in vegetable oil (Canola oil, corn oil, soybean oil, hydrogenated soybean oil with TBHQ and citric acid added to preserve freshness).
Dimethylpolysiloxane added as an antifoaming agent

Chances are you won't be able to pronounce half of these, never mind know what they actually are!

Spell-checker tells me half these words are wrong, which proves my point!

Detective work

White boneless chicken - The thing you want to be buying, makes up for just 44% of the nugget. If that's not worrying you, the fact that the other 36% is made of industrial chemicals should!

Salt - there's 0.5 grams of salt in these bad boys, which is pretty much the only test they pass as 0.5g is a small proportion of your recommended 6g a day.

Dextrose - A type of sugar, oh good, more sugar than you already want!

It all goes downhill from here..

Food starch-modified - This is to chicken nuggets as cement is to a house. It holds all the bits together, note I did say bits, the 38 other ingredients need to be stuck together.

Natural flavouring - It says it comes from a botanical source, which means it came from some kind of plant, maybe there's a hidden reason Mcdonalds doesn't want you knowing which plant

Citric acid - Used for preserving the nuggets, also found in oranges and other sour foods

Sodium Phosphates - The type of sodium phosphate here here Trisodium phosphate, used in cleaning, degreaser and stain remover, at some point in time it was the main chemical in soaps

Bleached wheat - You know, the stuff which stinks and used to clean your kitchen? Yeah that's in the wheat to make your nuggets too..

Niacin - Believe it or not this is one of the essential human nutrients!

Pyrophosphate - Used as a buffering agent in chemistry woo! (keeps pH the same)

Sodium aluminium phosphate - An acidic form of baking powder

Monocalcium phosphate - This stuff is used for fertilisers, lucky you!

Calcium lactate - Sometimes found in aged cheeses, also found in sugarfree chewing gum

Hydrogenated soybean oil - A fancy word for trans fats, this stuff is BAD and lowers the levels of good cholesterol making you more prone to heart disease and heart attacks

TBHQ - They use this in perfumes to stop it evaporating and also added to varnishes. Not to mention it increases the risk of cancer. It's also what stops it from going mouldy. If bacteria don't go near it, you probably shouldn't either..

Dimethylpolysiloxane - This is a bad one! An anti-foaming agent, not that it should foam anyway!  Used in making contact lenses, shampoo (seen adverts which say it makes your hair shiny? It's this that does it)

Nice, so now we know what devilry goes into the delicious chunks of 'meat'. Actually, we shouldn't call it meat now because it makes up less than half of the nugget!


Thursday, 23 February 2012

What does it mean to be left or right handed?/The advantages and disadvantages

The vast majority of the human race of right handed, 90% to be a bit more accurate, so what does it mean to be left handed?

Personally, I'm left handed, it causes complications in everyday life, from nudging the person next to you constantly while you're writing to choosing a decent guitar (Most are built for right handed).

You may think that it doesn't really matter, but being right handed or southpaw both have their advantages and disadvantages!

The two sides of the brain
You may know that your brain is spit into two halves, the left and right cerebral hemispheres (fancy word for left and right half). They are mostly equal but with a few exceptions

The left half's specialities

  • Controls speech
  • Responsible for language skills, logic and reasoning
  • Responsible for numeracy skills
The right half's specialities
  • Poetic ability
  • Creativity
  • Art appreciation
  • Athletic ability
  • Music ability
The right hemisphere controls the left half of the body, and the left half of the brain controls the right half of the body, pretty weird right?

Why are most people right handed?
It's not entirely clear right now, but loads of theories have been proposed. One of the most likely is that our ancestors so happened to use their right hand, and therefore the adaptation has been passed down as children want to become like their parents.

Another proposes that left handedness is actually caused by brain damage during early birth, while there is some evidence to back this, more goes against it.

Religion plays a role in determining the handedness of someone
In some religions right handedness is deemed to be superior.
  • Jesus was said to be at God's right hand, so Christians tend to lean to right handedness
  • The left hand was used to be known as the devil's hand, which could have swayed people away to right handedness
  • In Hinduism, the left hand is not allowed to be used for ceremonies or even eating food.

Advantages of being left handed (this ones goes first because I'm left handed!
  • Sport, most people are right handed, so they're used to playing with right handed people, if they go against a southpaw player, they are less prepared
  • Higher IQ, (I'm not making this one up!) is correlated with a higher IQ. 20% of Mensa, the group for people with a really high IQ (Top 2%) are left handed, which seems to correlate if you consider only around 10% of the human race are left handed.
  • Left handed people see better underwater, they adapt to the blurriness better. So if you are a southpaw, you have the upper advantage if you are swimming without goggles!
  • Better at video games, because the right half of the brain controls the left hand, the person has more creativity and nimbleness, giving them the upper hand at video games.
Advantages of being right handed
  • Most things suit you, because 90% of the world is right handed, everything is made for a right handed person
  • Better analogical thinking, language skills and mathematics capability.
  • You don't smudge your pen while writing! (This one really annoys me as whenever I write in ink, I leave a trail of smudges)
  • Tend to be more organised and to things in an order
Be aware though, that practice plays a huge role into whatever you're doing, being left handed doesn't mean you'll go to the Olympics and being right handed doesn't mean you'll be the next Einstein! 

Wednesday, 22 February 2012

5 Ways to improve your memory

You may think that your memory is poor, and way below other peoples, but now's the time you can stop being jealous because you're about to learn how to improve yours!

Your brain is a complex piece of equipment. In a computer, to increase capacity, you simply add another computer chip, but with your brain, you need to stimulate it. With specific stimulations, you can open new pathways in your brain and learn new information!

The human brain has the ability to adapt and change according to your surroundings, this is known as neuroplasticy.

Therefore your brain has the power to increase memory and learn information.

Hit the gym or do sport

Many disorders linked to obesity go hand in hand with memory loss. Exercise regularly and you have more oxygen flowing to your brain!

Some studies show that exercise releases more healthy chemicals for your brain. It also protects brain cells!

Stop going on late night Facebook

When you are sleep deprived, your brain is working on half power, think of it as a nuclear power station with only half the atoms going in, you only get half out.

Concentration, learning, problem solving, creativity and general common sense abilities are all hindered during a period of sleep deprivation.

Scientists also found that memory enhancing activity increased a lot during the deep stages of sleep. (Also when you dream)

Be social!

Locking yourself in your room knocking one off isn't going to help your brain. Get out, see things, meet people!

Humans are in control for a reason, because we communicate. Interacting with other people get the brain juices flowing more.

A study from Harvard showed that the most social people have slow brain degeneration. Now I guess you want to visit your local club eh?

Now if you really aren't a sociable character, you can always get a dog. They're man's best friend for a reason!


Does laughing feel good? Of course it does! Even down to the point you feel you're getting a 24 pack!

Brain scans show that laughter stimulates regions all over the brain, literally it lights up like a firework display.

How to experience more laughter

  • Bring up embarassing memories with friends, not only does your brain love it, its a chance to get over something
  • Have playful friends, boring is a plague, and spreads fast
  • Stick photos around the house, have a poster of something you love, anything to spark some cheerfulness
  • Engage with children, when I work with children, I find that they have boundless amounts of energy, and usually whatever the activity, a board game or simple chatting, we always find a level ground of humour.
Get your brain nutrients!
There are loads of brain enhancing food, some of them tasty!
  • Omega 3, unfortunately this one isn't tasty, you're best downing a pill
  • Fruit and veg are loaded with antioxidants which protect your brain
  • Wine (in moderation) improves memory, but just a glass, don't go downing bottle upon bottle in an effort to make yourself a super human.
Your brain requires energy, so make sure you have plenty of carbohydrates to keep your body powerhouse going!

Tips for revision or if you just want to remember things
  • Use as many senses as possible, the more stimuli, the more brain usage
  • Focus on basic ideas then build up, it's like rebuilding a bridge from scratch, its better to completely rebuild than keep fixing holes (been waiting to say that for ages!

Tuesday, 21 February 2012

Nanotechnology in medicine

Technology has developed exponentially in the last 2 decades, we have seen the first mobile to the first tablet to robots. And now it gets better, nano scale surgery. 

What is -nano?

Nano means x10^-9. or times 10 to the power of -9.

It's hard to appreciate how tiny this is, so I'll turn it the other way. A nanometre is 0.000000001 meters! roughly the size of wavelength of visible light!

Down to business

This technology was created by a team in Montreal who changed the genetic material of a virus by performing surgery on viruses at a nanoscopic level!

The team used ultra short laser pulses directed on nano particles of gold to perform super precise surgery on the genes of viruses.

Nano-particles can also be engineered to deliver the drug straight to the cancer cells.

These are usually delivered in 2 batches. 

  • The first locates the tumour and sends a signal
  • The second homes in on the signal and delivers the therapeutic drug
Hate getting injections?

Doses administered by injections can soon be eliminated and replaced by medicine taken orally.

These involve nano-particles containing the medicine by passing the stomach lining because it's small enough. This means next time you need a flu immunisation, you can just take a pill!

The future

You may have seen films with nano robots, these are tiny tiny robots which work together on a minuscule scale.

Perhaps in the future we can take nano robots into our bodies to physically repair tissue, cells and any other bits which are damaged.
  • Potentially it has the capability to allow us to live forever, if our tissue degrades and robots fix it, there's nothing to stop us dying!
Now you may think you'll live forever, but this technology may not be in our lifetime, it will take years and years to develop, never mind the trials! 

However, we are developing a lot faster as a race, so maybe you will live long enough to live forever thanks to little robots, warning though, you won't survive getting hit by a bus.

Monday, 20 February 2012

What time you should go to bed/How to get to sleep/How to get out of bed

You never want to go to sleep at night, and you never want to get out of bed, bit ironic right?

The government recommend you get at least 8 hours sleep a night, so if you go to bed at 11, get up at 7. But this is actually not the case!

There is no magic number to how long you should sleep, often you find when you go to bed at 5 in the morning,  you can easily get out of bed after 6 hours sleep.

2 things affect sleep need
  • How much energy you use in the daytime
  • How much sleep you've had recently
If you're a builder and lifting concrete blocks all day, you're going to need all the sleep you can get! Also if you've had trouble sleeping lately, your body wants to account for all the sleep you've been missing out on.

Some studies have also shown that sleep deprivation is linked to some factors such as:
  • Increased risk of motor incidents
  • Increased BMI --> greater risk of obesity
  • Increased risk of diabetes
  • Decreased reaction times and memory
A useful technique to find out roughly how much sleep you want is to estimate how long you're up for the day, and rate the amount of energy you've put in out of 10, add them.

From 0-5 you don't need sleep.
From 6-10 you can sleep, but probably won't be able to
From 11-15 you could do with some
From 16-20 you are probably quite tired and need a couple more hours than usual
From 22+ you will need a good 10+ hours sleep!

A very rough guidance!

If you are absolutely lost and have no clue, here is a chart which shows what your needs may be near to.

How to get to sleep
  • Quiet down before you go to bed, this means no late night work (which most of you do) 
  • Take a shower before you go to bed, the drowsiness after you get out will help
  • Don't drink tea/coffee, you're just putting caffeine into yourself
  • Finish eating 2-3 hours before you go to bed

How to get up in the morning

Most of it is psychological, as you realise that once you're out, you are totally awake!
  • Get Sleep Cycle for iPhone, it is seriously the best app ever, it gently wakes you up in your lightest sleep phase which it senses by using the accelerometer on the phone to detect how much you are moving
  • Obvious one, set your alarm and put it on the other side of the room
  • Get a small cup of water to splash into your face in the morning! (It works, I've tried!)
  • Drink loads of water before you go to bed, you'll end up having to get out fast in the morning before you wet yourself
  • Get your iPod and suddenly increase the music to full blast in your ears, giving you a nice shock to wake you up
  • Roll off your bed when you awake

Sunday, 19 February 2012

How telescopes and lenses work

Telescopes come in many different forms, from a mass produced mcdonalds toy up to the Hubble space telescopes; telescopes serve so many useful purposes such as viewing distant galaxies and accompanying chicken nuggets.


Lenses come in many different shapes and sizes; convex, concave, mirrored, biconvex, biconcave.. The list goes on and on.

These are bits of plastic or glass (that are obviously see through) that manipulate light into being magnified. Think of it like a toll-gate on a road, all the cars branch into one road (just like light). We can use this property to help us fulfil our needs.

Focal points and lengths

Lenses have focal points. This is the point the light gets refracted to. Again with the toll gate situation, think of where the road starts again after the branch off. The focal point is where the image is the clearest.

Focal lengths are the distance from the lens to the focal point. 

As you get further away from it, the image gets bigger but also more blurry (less clear). An image on the right will help you understand this a bit better!


Most telescopes nowadays are categorised into two groups: Refractors and Reflectors.

Bit self explanatory, refractor telescopes reflect light (like the toll gate situation I explained earlier). Reflector telescopes reflect light by gathering and focusing it to a single point. Reflectors are a bit more complicated but we'll go into that later on!

Telescopes use 2 main lenses, the objective lens and the eyepiece. 


Galileo often claims credit for making the first telescope, but wait! It wasn't him.. He was the first to use it for astronomy. The clever dude who invented refractor telescopes was a guy from Holland called Hans Lippershey.

The objective lens (the massive one at the front) gathers all the light and refracts it to a single point near the back of the tube. The eyepiece projects this light into your eye and you see zoomed up images. The eyepiece has a much shorter focal distance (why you have to be right next to it to see).

However Refractors have chromatic aberration, which is a really annoying rainbowy effect on edges.

Newton (THE Isaac Newton) created the Reflector telescope to solve this!


Reflecting telescopes are more complicated. Because of the annoying chromatic aberration, Newton used a curved mirror to solve the problem (because mirrors don't refract light, so no rainbow). This curved mirror again reflects to a focus.

Because the mirror reflects some light into the tube, a second small mirror is added on the side so light is reflected back in. 

Magnification and Resolution

Don't get confused with the two! 
  • Magnification is how far from the focal point. So the closer, the less zoomed in but the better the resolution (the clearness). 
  • The Resolution is how clear, so how close to the focal point. You have to find a compromise between the two. But if you want a lot of both it gets very expensive.. Take the Hubble telescope, I don't think you can cover that with your Saturday job!
More stuff on lenses..

Your eyes

Your eye is a lens, but all light going in refracts upside down so technically your seeing everything upside down. Your brain though is clever enough to flip it so it's all upright!

An experiment you can do

Bare in mind this is at your own expense, I don't dare try it myself.
  1. Create some glasses 
  2. Make mirrors reflect things upside down so you see stuff upside down
  3. Wear it non-stop from 3-5 days
  4. Your brain will flip it so it's upright
  5. Take glasses off, everything should be upside down!
If you do the experiment, tell me what happens! I don't want to do it in case everything is upside down permanently and get hit by an upside down car..