- The Washington Times - Friday, June 12, 2015

Female scientists are taking to Twitter with the hashtag #DistractinglySexy, after Nobel laureate Tim Hunt made comments at a science conference about “girls” in the laboratory being too emotional and falling in love too easily.

Mr. Hunt, 72, a biochemist who was awarded the Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine in 2001, resigned as honorary professor at University College London on Wednesday following backlash for comments he made at the World Conference of Science Journalists in South Korea.

“Let me tell you about my trouble with girls,” he said Monday. “Three things happen when they are in the lab: You fall in love with them, they fall in love with you, and when you criticize them they cry.”

Mr. Hunt later apologized and said the comments were “intended as a lighthearted, ironic comment” but had been “interpreted deadly seriously by my audience.”

On Twitter, female scientists mocked Mr. Hunt with photos of themselves hard at work and the hashtag #DistractinglySexy.

“I was so #distractinglysexy when collecting cheetah crap that even I lost track of what I was doing and dropped some,” tweeted Anne Hilborn, an ecologist.

“The #distractinglysexy trend is phenomenal. Here I am shoulder-deep in cow rectum, so seductive!” tweeted Vanessa Adams, a veterinarian.

Professor Sophie Scott of University College London, who researches the neuroscience of voices, speech and laughter, wrote: “I am in the office, but I can’t do my science work as I saw a photograph of #TimHunt and now I’m in love, dammit.”

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