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Episode 151: Tears

Dry your eyes: Distillations has returned with the final episode of the three-part series Blood, Sweat, and Tears. These vital fluids are more than just bodily emissions—they can also be considered the purest expressions of our humanity, at least metaphorically speaking. But of course, our focus is science, so for our third installment we parse the chemistry of tears. First reporter Douglas Smith talks to a friend who lost the ability to make tears. She can't cry even when her body clearly desires that catharsis. Then executive producer Jennifer Dionisio gets to the bottom of those pesky onion tears—including how one scientist is trying to bioengineer a no-cry version. Finally, check out the newest episode of "A Distillations Explainer," where producer Josh Kurz (via Elizabeth Bennet) demonstrates the three types of human tears.

Show Clock

00:00 Opening Credits
00:42 Introduction
01:33 Emotional Tears
09:35 Onion Tears
13:24 Closing Credits

Credits

Special thanks to Jennifer Dionisio for researching this show.

Music from the Free Music Archive includes "Le Songe d'Hacolhii," by Sunhiilow, "The Soul Leaves The Body In Eternal Glory," by Jozef van Wissem, "Woody Allen," by Evgeny Grinko, and "Bridging and Mending," by Jared C. Balogh. This episode also features "First Appearance By Angel," from the production of Misterman, "This Is Our Science," by Astronautalis, "More And More," by Blood, Sweat & Tears, and "Tears on My Pillow," by Little Anthony.

Image courtesy of Flickr user Arturo J. Paniagua.

Posted In: History | Medicine | Society | Technology

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