Shelley Batts

Shelley Batts writes the Retrospectacle neuroscience blog, which if you're not reading, you really should. She even reposted something in honor of our readers, since we're all ADHD-stricken, self-medicated weirdos. I say this as someone who just downed two NoDoz, so trust me, I speak from experience.

Not only is she a great blogger, but she's apparently up for a blog scholarship contest, and she needs your votes.

But more importantly, I need your votes for Shelley. What in the name of slithery Cthulhu could you mean, Widge? I shall explain.


You see, her profile on her blog states "She studies hair cell regeneration in the cochlea." And at first I thought: well, that's rather rude. But then I realized that the cochlea was a different part of the body than I originally thought of, tired as I always am.

And then I thought that most people really don't like hair growing out of their ears, as only really old men seem to have that problem.

So, I clicked that link and ohhhh I get it: she's working on deafness therapy.

Indeed, her page at the University of Michigan states: "Hair cell loss in the organ of Corti causes permanent and irreversible hearing impairment, as mammals are unable to replace hair cells once destroyed. This is in contrast to birds and reptiles, who can spontaneously regenerate new hair cells in reponse to damage."

Now, whereas you or I might get pissed off and go on a revenge killing spree against birds and reptiles, Shelley is trying to figure out why they can do it and we can't. This is because Shelley is well-adjusted and probably doesn't solve problems with explosives, like we usually do around here.

So, since I spent a few years as lead singer of a band, my hearing is shot to hell. I'm not as bad off as my grandfather was (who would surreptitious reach up and turn off his hearing aid when my grandmother would go on and on about something), but I can tell I don't have all the hair bits in my ears that I used to.

All of that to say: vote for Shelley in the blog scholarship contest. Because a vote for her is one less time that you have to repeat yourself when talking to me. Thanks.