There is no music in hell, for all good music belongs to heaven. ~Brigham Young
Question #23062 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Comment to board question Board Question #22833

Just like to add a few things to what has already been said. Like many others in the Church, at one time I had a mental image of paradise and spirit prison as two distinct and separate locations. Spirit prison I envisioned as something like Azkaban, perhaps with Dementors gliding around to make sure that the spirit prisoners didn't slip through the walls of the prison and escape. The prophets, however, have taught us that paradise and the spirit prison are really the same place - the world of spirits.

Joseph Smith said, "the righteous and the wicked all go to the same world of spirits until the resurrection.... Hades, the Greek, or Sheol, the Hebrew, these two significations mean a world of spirits. Hades, Sheol, paradise, spirits in prison, are all one; it is a world of spirits." (Teachings, p. 310.)

Brigham Young taught, "When you lay down this tabernacle, where are you going? Into the spiritual world.... Where is the spirit world? It is right here. Do the good and evil spirits go together? Yes, they do. Do they inhabit one kingdom. Yes they do." (Discourses of Brigham Young, p. 376; (JD 3:369))

While some (and even some manuals) have speculated a forced "no contact" separation of paradise and spirit prison, I believe that a careful reading of the scriptures and the prophets shows that there is no physical separation between those in paradise and those in spirit prison, except the voluntary tendency of "birds of a feather flock together."

Alma explains to his son that when we die, and before we are resurrected, we will go into a state (or condition) of happiness, or a state of unhappiness, but he doesn't say separate physical places. Alma 40:12, 14: "And then shall it come to pass, that the spirits of those who are righteous are received into a state of happiness, which is called paradise, a state of rest, a state of peace, where they shall rest from all their troubles and from all care, and sorrow...
14 Now this is the state of the souls of the wicked, yea, in darkness, and a state of awful, fearful looking for the fiery indignation of the wrath of God upon them; thus they remain in this state, as well as the righteous in paradise, until the time of their resurrection."

D&C 138 is a great vision of the spirit world. Here President Joseph F. Smith sees the righteous assembled "awaiting the advent of the Son of God into the spirit world, to declare their redemption from the bands of death (v. 16)." It is to the most righteous saints who were gathered together in that particular meeting in the spirit world that the Lord chose to come. The Lord then appointed messengers to go forth among the more wicked and teach them the gospel. There is no mention of any physical barrier or hindrance of these more righteous spirits to mingle freely with the spirits among them who were in some degree in spiritual prison. The same as it is for us today.

Everyone in the spirit world is in bondage to some extent or other. "For the dead had looked upon the long absence of their spirits from their bodies as a bondage (v. 50)." The wicked, in spirit prison, have an additional bondage. "I beheld that the faithful elders of this dispensation, when they depart from mortal life, continue their labors in the preaching of the gospel of repentance and redemption, through the sacrifice of the Only Begotten Son of God, among those who are in darkness and under the bondage of sin in the great world of the spirits of the dead (v. 57)."

We know that those in spirit prison can be released as, "58 The dead who repent will be redeemed, through obedience to the ordinances of the house of God,
59 And after they have paid the penalty of their transgressions, and are washed clean, shall receive a reward according to their works, for they are heirs of salvation."

To summarize and answer Christine Daae's question, the righteous and the unrighteous go to the same place. Righteous non-members will be in a limited state of happiness or paradise, as your bishop said, but to be fully free from spirit prison one must repent of all his sins and accept and obey all the ordinances of the temple, as you have been taught. To the extent a person is unrepentant and sinful he will be in bondage to sin and will be in spirit prison, wherever he wanders in the spirit world. Going from the bondage of spirit prison to paradise might be a sudden thing, or a gradual transition, depending on the speed of the spiritual progress a spirit makes, but it will be a mental or spiritual journey, and not a physical journey. Dementors are not what keep them in prison.

As Jesus said, "And ye shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free. They answered him, We be Abraham's seed, and were never in bondage to any man: how sayest thou, Ye shall be made free? Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. (John 8:32-34)"


A: Dear Doc,

You bring up some excellent points. Much of the discussion in the church does treat them as two seperate existences with notable divide, but do not explain the nature of that existence or divide.

Interesting ideas to think about.

-Pa Grape
Question #23053 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

In regards to Board Question #22947, I highly HIGHLY suggest Curves. Everyone there is very friendly, and no one judges you by how you look, what you wear, or anything. The trainers and those that work out are all very kind, and there's always someone you can relate to. Because there are so many ladies in my ward that go to Curves, they sometimes refer to it as Weekday Relief Society.

- "It's official, I'm amazing!" -Curves motto

Question #23051 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear College Dropout,

Speaking as someone who has a Family History degree from the BYU, I can tell you that I haven't found a lot of careers that specifically look for that particular degree. Most people that I know with it either work on their own as a professional genealogist, for the Church in the Family History Library, for (or companies like that), or in a field that has nothing to do with their college degree.

Many employers don't really care what your degree is in, just so long as you have one, and the training you get with this major on how to do research is extremely helpful in certain fields. Plus, the classes are really interesting, and I personally think it's better to learn about something you like than something that you think will get you a good career.

- 月の影 影の海

Question #23046 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

With regards to Board Question #22939, I'd like to add that much can be learned about graduation clothing by looking at the symbolism of temple clothing. In fact, in a famous opening prayer at a BYU commencement, Hugh Nibley said, "We have met here today clothed in the black robes of a false priesthood." While Brother Nibley was not a General Authority, this is still amusing and relatively convincing.

If you'd like to read a little more about it, here's his speech on the BYU speeches website:

If you still don't think the connection between graduation clothing and temple clothing is uncanny, I suppose it can mean whatever you want!

- nobody special

Question #23042 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear TUP (from Board Question #22915),

I teach a couple classes at a college in Virginia. Although I was never responsible for classes at BYU, I suspect the situations are similar. It comes down to having to discern which students are asking for a late test or an incomplete contract because they really have a good reason against those who have come up with a reason because they have actually screwed up.

Let's just talk about final exams. Suppose I give the final exam to 99 of my students (and there are 100 in my class this semester). Then, just as the grade deadline approaches, a student frantically sends me an e-mail.

* "Sorry I missed the exam. Can I please please please take the exam?" Why should I let this student take the exam? 99 other people already know what's on it and one of them could have tried to help this last student study so that they'd get a better grade. Is that really fair? At any rate, 99 other students were able to arrange their schedule to take it on time!
* "Sorry I missed the exam. I went to the NCAA basketball tournament." Yeah, right! Our exams are in May. The tournament is over long before the exams.
* "Sorry I missed the exam. I went on vacation." You'd be on summer vacation already if you'd taken the exam on time. (And so would I.)
* "Sorry I missed the exam. I don't understand [CONCEPT] so I wanted more time to study for it." Wait a minute. I have office hours. You should take advantage of them rather than trying to figure it out on your own.
* "Sorry I missed the exam. Remember I told you a couple weeks ago that my dad was in the hospital? He passed away last Thursday. I've filed a report with my Dean's Office. You can call them for more information." Why not call the Dean's Office? I can trust the university, right?

And.... one of my favorites, it comes about half way through the semester.
* "Can I take the final early? I bought a plane ticket home but it leaves before your exam." Wait a minute. The correct date for the exam is in the syllabus you got two months ago. At least talk to me about taking the exam early before you buy the ticket. I think I should make your life miserable. Doing something like this is reckless and irresponsible at best. And, besides, 99 other students are going to stay in town the extra day or two to take the exam at the scheduled time. What makes you better or more important?

If you are trying to get an instructor to make special accomodations for you, you need to think about how your request sounds, especially if your instructor is really fair and trying to treat all of the students equally. He'll understand that strange things do happen. The question is whether it's really strange or if it's fake. This is what I worry about most as an instructor. I don't want to give one or two students special privileges because they might be telling the truth. If you've been through extenuating circumstances, you'll have real evidence of them. If you're faking so you can scrape through my class, I hope to stop you.

Hooray for discernment through the Holy Ghost!

- statwizard

Question #23041 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear College Dropout,

In regard to Board Question #22935, I have good news. Have you ever considered what you will be getting in to when you study genealogy?

You will be looking at original sources as you do learn how to do research. You generally learn by practising on your own family. You will learn about research techniques (useful for all research in many fields). You will learn how to navigate through various original and derivative sources. You will learn how to judge the level of proof that a document provides (sounds like this would be useful if you went into law or law enforcement later on). You will learn how to read wills and probate files and extract information (law/paralegal). You will learn how to search land records (title search companies/real estate). You will learn how to write research reports to clients (progress reports for companies) and how to write a family history (historical research/writing - biographies, specifically but even background for stories in general).

You could be a records searcher or work for, or one of a bunch of Family History firms out there. This is a field that is getting larger all the time and demand is out there.

Some of the sample jobs in parenthesis require further schooling but you can see that there is plenty of application for Family History research skills.

- One Who Has Experience

Question #23033 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board and Concerned,

In regards to Board Question #22914, I have a couple more thoughts. Recently, I had the dating talk given during my Ward Conference. The stake president, who did a great job in presenting this, made several interesting points.

Society now has moved to a point where we have completely removed dating. Let me explain this point a little more:


Allow the above to be a spectrum of dating. It used to be, as my stake President presented it, that guys would ask multiple girls out just to get to know them. He said that it was not uncommon to ask several girls out a week. They would do simple things like have ice cream, attend a sporting events - something simple, and cheap. You would follow the above spectrum by becoming acquainted, going out on many dates, and if you found a good match you would begin to date exclusively, or court. In some cases, that would move to getting engaged and then marriage.

In our time, the spectrum has changed dramatically:


We try to move straight from being acquaintances to courting. Do you see the problem with this? Guys are scared to ask girls out because the above is implied. That is to say, asking a girl out means you are wanting to date her to eventually marry her. There is an implied commitment with each date. I know that girls say they don't think that, but this is what is happening.

So, with this implied commitment - "I want to marry you" - comes an increased need to show off, or to "woo" the girl. Hence, the need to have elaborate dates.

I think that the comments made by the board writers were valid, to an extent. Guys are scared and they don't have money, when considering the above statements. If there is going to be a change, it will take some time and it needs happen by everyone. Not just one ward can do it, the whole church needs to be involved. In particular, the students of BYU need to be involved.

One last thought: girls, be reasonable when talking of dating, engagements, and marriage. I often times hear a girl talk of how she wished that her life was like the movies. "I want to start dating my husband like [some actor] and [some actress]." I know that isn't what you want so don't talk like it is. (Sorry, that last comment was a little pet-peeve that I have)

So, be patient and hopefully things will get better with time.

- First Tenor

A: Dear Tenor,

I think you're in my stake, possibly even my ward. Our stake president just spoke about the same thing last week.

I would try to add to what you've already said but I think you summarized it pretty well.

And you can now wander all over our complex wondering to yourself, Is that Lavish?

- Lavish
Question #22977 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear Nike,

Thank you for quoting Brian Reagan in your answer to the favorite jeans question. I love it!

- K-A-T, I'm outa here...

A: Dear K-A-T,

"I know there's two T's!" :-)

Yea for Brian Regan!

Question #22963 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How do you decide which question is listed first when you post them everyday? Is it just randomly?

- Hoping I'm First

A: Dear Hoping I'm First,

Theoretically, it is by age. The oldest questions post first. Or in other words, they post in order of submission.

-Pa Grape
A: Dear Hoping,

If you submit your question at just after 8pm MST, it should be one of the first ones to post. (See Board Question #17212.) However, the first few questions posted on any given day tend to be "red" question -- questions that have gone over 100 hours and are only now being answered. So if your question really does post first, it's probably because we had a hard time answering it and we're only just getting around to it.

- Katya
A: Dear Hoping,

I've said it before and I'll say it again. Clean, unmarked bills in a brown paper bag tucked left outside the Board HQ does wonders...

A: Dear hoping,

While we cannot disclose the location of the Board headquarters, you and I could certainly work something out if you wanted to provide some sort of cash contribution aimed at getting your questions to post earlier. Just shoot me an email and we can arrange somewhere to meet. Don't worry, I'll be sure that your money gets to the Board. I'll take good care of it...heh heh heh...

- Optimistic.
Question #22962 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I was reading "Women Workers in France" by Julie-Victoire Daubie, and it mentioned a woman who committed suicide by drinking vinegar mixed with pepper. Can a person really die from drinking this mixture? I am inclined to doubt it, but I don't really want to go and try it (I have a pretty awesome life, and I don't feel like kicking the bucket any time soon), so I will defer to the omipotent Board.

- Lady Doomfiyah

A: My Dearest Lady of Something,

I am going to have to say no. I came to this conclusion because there are tons of recipes that call for both vinegar and pepper. Unless the chefs of the world have a desire to kill the people who try out their obscure recipes, I think we can trust my reasoning.

I am not saying that drinking vinegar and pepper would do no harm, but will venture to say it won't kill you. The human body has defense mechanisms to reject the harmful ingestion of things. I think the body would start vomiting if large quantities of vinegar and pepper were somehow ingested.

-The Right Reverend Rusky Roo
Question #22960 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

After several years of misdiagnosis, my aunt, her little boy and her little girl, and my cousin, both on my mother's side, were finally diagnosed correctly with celiac. Celiac runs in the family. My mother worried specifically about me because I have had many problems in my life, including depression, anxiety and low weight problems. I was tested for celiac, which is a condition in which the small intestine cannot take in nutrients because of an intolerance to gluten, which can be found in wheat products. Celiac is becoming attached to Osteoporosis and can be found in 1 in 330 people in the world. When I was tested, they found I had low iron. I started taking an iron supplement. I am taking ferrous sulfate, which can irritate the stomach a bit. when I went to give blood, they said my iron was actually fairly high (about 27 or 28-30 is high).That made me wonder whether there was a misdiagnosis. I have always found myself to be very tired and "weak". Recently, my stomach has been hurting like crazy. I am not going to the bathroom as often. And I don't have heavy periods, which is supposed to be common with low iron. I told my mom that at some points I felt like I couldn't eat at all and yet I was so hungry. My stomach just felt too bloated. I couldn't figure out where the food was going. My mom told me that this was what her celiac sister had felt like. Then I went to the chiropractor and he said there was something beneath the muscles of my stomach that was tight and he suggested I go to the doctor, but I haven't gone yet. My mom told me that with celiac testing, they look for the damage. Low iron usually accompanies celiac patients. So she has brought up the possibility of getting tested again to see if it might have progressed. I don't feel like I have celiac. I think I am just a little sick at the moment. But because it runs in my family and I have been having all these weird things happen to me, it does worries me. I know you are not an expert in these things, but does it sound like I have celiac or does it look more like I just have low iron and maybe an irritable stomach?
- Probably a Fairly Dumb Question

A: Dear Worried,

The problem with being celiac is that the damage is irreversible. The more gluten you eat, the less your body is capable of absorbing the nutrients from food. Don't mess with yourself, just go in and get yourself tested.

A: Dear Worried:

Having studied Celiac's Disease, I was going to write a long elaborate answer for you. But, Phoenix already summed it up. He's right. Get it checked asap.

Question #22959 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What do you think of NBC's comedy The Office? How do you think it compares to the original British version? My husband and I are fans of both, but I believe BBC's is far superior. Thoughts?

- Garreth's Stapler

A: Dear stapler-

I am unfamiliar with the British version, but I am generally a fan of British comedies. (I recently watched most of Fawlty Towers... good times.) I love the show on NBC. Steve Carrell's role as Michael Scott, the regional manager, is quite different from the British version--he's not nearly as mean, which is good. I don't find mean Americans as funny as mean Brits. I also really enjoy some of the more minor characters in Dunder-Mifflin's Scranton branch; their stories don't really get told in the original British version.

-The Franchise, who "is into beyonce, pink the color, pink the person, hot dogs, snow cones and anything that's awesome."
A: Dear GS,

I like both. I watch the BBC version with Closed-Captioning because the accents are really thick sometimes.

-la bamba
Question #22958 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why don't people make valentines with envelopes anymore? I can never seem to find them anymore. All that is available to purchase are the stupid "close with this stupid sticker" kind.
where did my envelopes go!?

- Mr Superior.

A: My dear great-lake-in-north-centralish-US-near Canada,

Your question seems to answer itself. You ask why people don't make them anymore, and then explain that you wish to buy them instead of making them yourself.

I believe that your envelopes were possibly "eaten" by the consumer-economy profit share margins dominated by out-sourcing all American manufacturing to foreign countries. So, that is where your envelopes went. Into the probably-long forgotten archives of a company who knows that the main product is the Valentine itself, and not the envelope.

My recommendation? Instead of trying to buy the kiddie-packs that save you thrity bucks, let the people you _really_ want to send Valentine's to (via card) ... hmm... make them yourself?

Trying not to squish squash you and attempting to be an open target for Cupid one of these years,
Lady Last Line

Thinking of going back to "The Last Line" considering no one ask questions of my gender anymore, or else thinking about using both simultaneously... oh, the Editors would have a field days with that one! *hehehe* evil little cackle... just a joke!


Dear 100 Hour Board,

How do I find cool vintage photos on BYU's website?
BYU-I's were easy enough to locate.

- Dudley Heinsbergen, who just can't get enough of those bouffants, big glasses, and closet Commies.

A: Dear Dudley,

Ok, I must be totally missing something in this question because I found the answer right away. Not that I'm complaining.

When I clicked on the url you provided it takes me to a site where I can search for photographs of BYU Idaho.

At the top, in the tan bar, there's a link to CES Digital Collections. Click that. That will take you to the Online Collections at BYU. The first choice is Campus Photographs ("Historical photographs documenting campus life at BYU and BYU Idaho"). Select it. Scroll down a bit. Choose BYU Photographs. That's what you wanted, right?

Simple enough. If, for some strange reason, you want to complicate things, you could start at and go to libraries on the Main Menu. Then pick Harold B. Lee Library. Scroll down to the purple section called "A Library for the World..." Choose "Online Collections at BYU" and go from there. I suppose that's still pretty simple though, too.

- Lavish
Question #22954 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I really need to pick up a 201 civilization course, and am wonder which one is the easiest. What 201 Civ course, and teacher, is the easiest at BYU?


A: Dear Lazy,

I can't speak for any other 201 classes, since I took one, but I will say that History 201 with Albert Winkler might fit what you're looking for. It doesn't require too much homework (three 3-page papers is all for the entire semester) and the tests aren't bad. Plus, it's fairly interesting, which is more than you can say about a lot of "too easy" classes. I'm sure other writers will have more suggestions.

A: Dear In Need of 201,

I took Art History. It was so fascinating and I loved it. The tests were prompt questions and you had to write a little essay to respond to them. I don't think it was exactly the easiest class I've ever taken, but it was good.

A: Dear lazy,

I took Hist 201H for my civilization credit (predictably, as I'm a history major). I took mine from William Hamblin, though, and I thoroughly enjoyed it. He approaches all of the civilizations in the class from the standpoint of their sacred symbols, which I found to be terribly fascinating. You won't find many other classes where you can read up on Zoroastrian creation myths at BYU. I suggest you take a look at it.

If you're just looking for easy, though, I hear Humanities is the way to go. I obviously didn't take the class, but that's what I keep hearing.

- Optimistic.
A: Dear Lazy,

For hands down easiness (and fast), I suggest you cough up a couple bucks and take it independent study. I hear you can finish the thing in a matter of a few weeks.

-CGNU Grad
A: Dear Lazy,

I understand that you want an easy class. However, I would just like to throw in my suggestion for MFG201, History of Creativity. It is a marvelous class, with a teacher passionate about thinking and how thought can be creative. The tests were a pain, I admit that up front, but this class was one of my favorites. Hands down the class I'd suggest.

Good luck with it. And, enjoy!

A: Dear Lazy,

I took Hum 201 in summer term from Anderson. (I think that taking it in the summer made it easier -- he cut down the assignments a lot.)

- Katya
Question #22952 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I had two cufflinks(a set of cufflinks, if you will), but now can find only one. Do any of you know where I can find the missing link?

The Man with the Rolled up Sleaves

A: Dear Sleevy,

If I were a cufflink, I might go hide in a drawer. Or maybe in your ward's chapel, dreaming peacefully on the floor.

A: Pssst. Pssssst. Down HERE!!! It's me, the missing link! I'm trapped in the garbage can underneath this unwanted copy of Schooled Magazine and that flyer the creepy guy stuffed under your door last Tuesday!

-The Missing Link
Question #22950 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I was in a bike accident over 3 weeks ago, and bruised my knee pretty bad. Should I be concerned if it has not yet healed?


A: Dear Bruised,

First off. I am not a doctor. The 100 hour board are also not doctors. We do not give medical advice. Please don't sue us (especially me).

This past summer I too mess up my knee very badly. I suffered a contusion to the knee caused by my knee hitting the side of a motor coach with extreme force. Basically it took my knee a good solid two to three months before it was fully healed and I've only recently felt like I was able to run on or with out it really hurting.

Basically some injuries take time to heal, especially injures to your joints (knee, ankle, etc.), so you may not need to be concerned. That said if it were me and my knee hadn't healed thee weeks after an accident I would definitely have someone look at it to make sure that there isn't something else that is more serious wrong. I sure hope this helps. Please don't hate me.

-- Brutus (who is grateful that workers comp. paid for his medical bills.)
Question #22949 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,
Can you please tell me of any national parks with near by temples in California, Texas, Arizona or New Mexico? For the purpose of a large family reunion. Please and thank you.

A: Dear Learned the magic words, did ya?,

The funny thing is, if you're looking for a place with a lot of Mormon temples and a lot of national parks and the probability of useful proximity, it seems like you should be looking in Utah. But let's start with the states you mention. Here are their national parks, with their closest temples:


Joshua Tree National Park: 50 miles from Redlands.
Lassen Volcanic National Park: 100 miles from Reno.
Redwood National Park: 165 miles from Medford, Oregon.
Yosemite National Park: 100 miles from Fresno.
Death Valley National Park: 85 miles from Las Vegas.
Sequoia/Kings Canyon National Park: 85 miles from Fresno.
Channel Islands National Park: hop, skip, and jump (i.e., a ninety-minute boat ride) across the water to Los Angeles.


Big Bend National Park: 320 miles from Lubbock.
Guadalupe Mountains National Park: 235 miles from Lubbock.


Grand Canyon National Park: 145 miles from St. George, UT.
Petrified Forest National Park: **40 miles from Snowflake**
Saguaro National Park: 120 miles from Mesa

New Mexico

Carlsbad Caverns: 300 miles from Albuquerque

And let's throw in Utah, because it seems like we should.

Bryce Canyon National Park: 90 miles from St. George
Arches National Park: 60 miles from Monticello.
Canyonlands National Park: 130 miles from Monticello.
Capitol Reef National Park: 260 miles from St. George.
Zions National Park: **35 miles from St. George**

So Petrified Forest and Zions look like your beest options if you're insisting on one of these four states and won't accept anything less than a national park.

But maybe you should. National parks are expensive to get in to, and usually about two thousand other people had the same idea you did about going there on the same day you were planning to. They're lovely places, but might just complicated the inherent complications of a family reunion. So let's consider some other options.

San Bernadino National Forest: 10 miles from Redlands.
Crystal Cove State Park: 7 miles from Newport Beach.
Redwood Regional Park: 8 miles from Oakland
Golden Gate National Recreation Area and Mount Tampalais State Park: 30 miles from Oakland.
Point Reyes National Seashore: 60 miles from Oakland.
Tonto National Forest:30 miles from Mesa.
Sonoran Desert National Monument:50 miles from Mesa.
Sitgreaves and Apache National Forests: 15 miles from Snowflake.
Petroglyph National Monument: 5 miles from Albuquerque.

Hope one of these myriad of options I've given you works out. And may I never go to again as long as we both shall live. That's four hours I'm not getting back.

-A. A. Melyngoch
Question #22948 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

The apartment complex I moved into has a very small laundry room and no change machine. I was wondering where I could possibly get quarters. My roommates and I are always trying to buy quarters from each other. Is it wierd to go to the bank and ask for quarters or is there some other quarter oasis I can go to?

-Bella Daze

A: Dear Bella,

You know that only place I go to get quarters is the bank, so No it's not weird. You can even go to banks that you don't actually bank at. I sure hope this helps. Please don't hate me.

-- Brutus
A: Dear Bella,

Brutus is correct. I usually stop at the Wells Fargo in the Bookstore and withdraw five dollars or so and ask for it in quarters. Or, if I have cash, I'll go into just about any store and just ask if I can exchange my notes for quarters. If they have them, they'll usually fund your dirty cause. (Ha ha ha!)

A: Dear Bella,

Carwashes always have change machines as well. I think the closest one is on Freedom and 5th or so but there's also one on University Ave. by the Chevron.

- Lavish
Question #22946 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear Writers for the 100 Hour Board,

What's your favorite poem?
Better yet, who's your favorite poet?

- looking for inspiration

A: Dear Let us go then, you and I,

"The Love Song of J. Alfred Prufrock" by T.S. Eliot.

-la bamba
A: Dear Inspiration,

again, this has been answered in the Archives, but considering there are some writers now that weren't around when it was answered, I will throw in another two cents:
(4 cents for the price of two-- Imagine that!)

One is:
Dance as though no one is watching you,
Love as though you have never been hurt before, Sing as though no one can hear you,
Live as though heaven is on earth.-Souza

Any goodness I can do, any kindness I can show, Let me not defer it nor neglect it,
For I shall not pass this way again.- ?

People are unreasonable, illogical, and self centered. Love them anyway.
If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Do good anyway.
If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.
The kindness you show to others will be forgotten tomorrow. Be kind anyway.
Honesty and frankness will make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.
The biggest person with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest person with the smallest mind. Think big anyway.
What you spend years bullding may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.
People really need help, but may attack you if you help them them. Help people anyway.
Give the world the best you've got, and you might get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you've got anyway.- Anomyous (Life Mantra)

and then, of course, "The Road Less Traveled By."
That, I hope is my life; making all the difference.

Lady Last Line
A: Dear searching, but never coming to the truth,

As I know nothing other than the archives, I actually haven't a favorite poet. However, I know that other writers' favorite poems can be found in Board Question #19402. Take a peek.

- Pietrisycamollaviadelrechiotemexity
A: Dear inspiration seeker,

As our dear friend Pietrisycamollaviadelrechiotemexity pointed out, my favorite poem can be found in Board Question #19402, but I like it enough that I feel that it bears repeating.

The Weary Blues, by Langston Hughes

Droning a drowsy syncopated tune,
Rocking back and forth to a mellow croon,
I heard a Negro play.
Down on Lenox Avenue the other night
By the pale dull pallor of an old gas light
He did a lazy sway....
He did a lazy sway....
To the tune o' those Weary Blues.
With his ebony hands on each ivory key
He made that poor piano moan with melody.

O Blues!

Swaying to and fro on his rickety stool
He played that sad raggy tune like a musical fool.

Sweet Blues!

Coming from a black man's soul.

O Blues!

In a deep song voice with a melancholy tone
I heard that Negro sing, that old piano moan--
"Ain't got nobody in all this world,
Ain't got nobody but ma self.
I's gwine to quit ma frownin'
And put ma troubles on the shelf."
Thump, thump, thump, went his foot on the floor.
He played a few chords then he sang some more--
"I got the Weary Blues
And I can't be satisfied.
Got the Weary Blues
And can't be satisfied--
I ain't happy no mo'
And I wish that I had died."
And far into the night he crooned that tune.
The stars went out and so did the moon.
The singer stopped playing and went to bed
While the Weary Blues echoed through his head.
He slept like a rock or a man that's dead.

Man, that's awesome.

- Optimistic.
A: Dear looking for inspiration,

A Psalm of Life
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real--life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal:
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destin'd end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world's broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe'er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act--act in the glorious Present!
Heart within, and God o'er head!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footsteps on the sands of time.

Footsteps, that, perhaps another,
Sailing o'er life's solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwreck'd brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us then be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.

-Novel Concept
A: Dear Looking,

"The Pasture," by Robert Frost:

I'm going out to clean the pasture spring;
I'll only stop to rake the leaves away
(And wait to watch the water clear, I may):
I shan't be gone long. -- You come too.
I'm going out to fetch the little calf
That's standing by the mother. It's so young,
It totters when she licks it with her tongue.
I shan't be gone long. -- You come too.

This poem has been made into a beautiful song and I sang it in high school. The poem has meant a lot to me ever since.

A: Dear looking for inspiration,

Currently, my favorite poet is probably Mary Oliver. At other times it's Emily Dickinson, Adrienne Rich, Gerard Manly Hopkins, or maybe Anne Michaels.

My favorite poem is even harder to pin down, but here's one by Adrienne Rich that I find particularly resonant.

IV (from Dedications)

I know you are reading this poem
late, before leaving your office
of the one intense yellow lamp-spot and the darkening window
in the lassitude of a building faded to quiet
long after rush-hour. I know you are reading this poem
standing up in a bookstore far from the ocean
on a grey day of early spring, faint flakes driven
across the plains' enormous spaces around you.
I know you are reading this poem
in a room where too much has happened for you to bear
where the bedclothes lie in stagnant coils on the bed
and the open valise speaks of flight
but you cannot leave yet. I know you are reading this poem
as the underground train loses momentum and before running
up the stairs
toward a new kind of love
your life has never allowed.
I know you are reading this poem by the light
of the television screen where soundless images jerk and slide
while you wait for the newscast from the intifada.
I know you are reading this poem in a waiting-room
of eyes met and unmeeting, of identity with strangers.
I know you are reading this poem by fluorescent light
in the boredom and fatigue of the young who are counted out,
count themselves out, at too early an age. I know
you are reading this poem through your failing sight, the thick
lens enlarging these letters beyond all meaning yet you read on
because even the alphabet is precious.
I know you are reading this poem as you pace beside the stove
warming milk, a crying child on your shoulder, a book in your
because life is short and you too are thirsty.
I know you are reading this poem which is not in your language
guessing at some words while others keep you reading
and I want to know which words they are.
I know you are reading this poem listening for something, torn
between bitterness and hope
turning back once again to the task you cannot refuse.
I know you are reading this poem because there is nothing else
left to read
there where you have landed, stripped as you are.

-A. A. Melyngoch
Question #22919 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Bored,

What harm could a small blue blanket actually do to a llama?

- Heretical in Heritage


What harm could a small blue blanket to do a llama you ask? I can think of all sorts of things.

-- The llama could eat it and choke.
-- The llama could be suffocated with it.
-- The blanket could be spiked with a deadly nerve toxin that when coming in contact with said llama would kill the llama before the llama knew that something was wrong.
-- The llama could become tangled in the blanket, trip, hit its head, and die.
-- The blanket covers said llama's eyes and the llama walks unsuspecting into a 10 bazillion volt electric fence.
-- The blanket fails in its role as a turban disguise so Isma and Kronk have no trouble recognizing the llama as the emperor and kill it.

Well I sure hope this helps. Please don't hate me.

-- Brutus
A: Dear Person who asked the only question worth answering today,

This is a great question -- one that I and I alone am qualified to answer (since hey I really am a small blue blanket). First off you cannot judge a blanket by its size. Like I always say -- it's not the size of the blankie in the fight, but the size of the fight in the blankie. See here as I have a whole hippo caught in a death hold.
<IMG SRC="">

Now that you know the devastating destruction that a small blue blankie is capable of your llama really needs to be afraid. There are also a few other little known facts about small, blue, blankies that you should know (due to their nature of causing harm to llamas (and to anyone now that I think about it.))
1. Blankies only look sweet and innocent. We are highly trained killing machines.
2. Blankies are really good at concealing advanced weaponry (you probably didn't even notice the three uzis and four pounds of C-4 in the above picture) and are not afraid to use it.
3. Blankies are really good at gaining people's trust. (see #1).
4. As a defense mechanism a Blankie bite is poisonous and you will die.
5. Blankies are really good at planning things and are very patient -- they wait until the perfect moment to strike (*As a side note I would just like to let Il Guanaco know that I haven't forgotten the multiple offenses you have committed against me and I am still planning my revenge. Consider this your last warning. *end side note*)
6. Blankies are very good at working teams/ using accomplices to get at their unsuspecting victims (again refer to above picture -- Am I holding that hippo in a death hold or does it only appear that way so that you are left in a more vulnerable position?)

So basically I hope that you have a better understanding now of the harm that a small, blue blankie could inflict upon a llama. Also don't do things that annoy me -- it only causes pain.

- Blankie (professional assassin harboring a vendetta against a board writer who has wronged him.)

A: Dear Blue Blankie,

Need I say more?

Have Fun Storming the Castle, (and not surviving...)
-Il Guanaco
A: Dear Iconoclastic in On-Campus Housing,

If the information about said blankies is true, I am wondering if it is such a good idea that parents let their children carry them around.

-Random Uselessness, who is disturbed about blankies eating children.
Question #22906 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,
I've often heard lately from people at electronics stores that in the next x number of years we will all have to have high definition TVs in order to watch any TV. Sometimes the x is as low as 1 or 2. Are there any plans that are in the works that would make this true?
- Patriotic

A: Dear Patriotic,

This is actually a very interesting question. You see, you have to remember that the salesmen at electronic stores are trying to make a few extra dollars off of your commision, so they're gonna tell the story in a light that will make them more money. Before I start off, let me just state that I got all of my information from . Although the article is published at it is actually written by a Salt Lake freelance writer, Max Stein, who provides wonderful sources at the end of his article.

So, let's get to the facts. As currently set by the FCC, all TV stations will be required to stop broadcasting analog signals and swtich to digital on April 7th, 2009. Now, here comes the half truth from those salesmen. Your current TV (or any TV that isn't HDTV) cannot show a digital TV signal. Does that mean you have to have an HDTV? No. It doesn't mean you won't be able to use your TV, it just means that you will have to have some sort of adapter for digital to analog TV signals. For cable or satelite TV, your tuner box will probably do this job for you (although some cable/satelite companies may require you to buy or rent these boxes). If you happen to watch TV over an antenna, then you'll have to buy your own signal converter, but these are expected to cost less than $70.

So, here comes my opinion. If you have the extra money to buy an HDTV now, go ahead and get one. They're nice TVs anyway. If you don't, don't worry about it, your TV will still work. Personally, I'm just gonna keep using my old junker TV, and here's why. Starting July 1st 2005, all TVs 36" and larger are required to be HDTV. On July 1st, 2006 the requirement drops to all TVs 25" and larger. And finally, starting March 1st 2007, all TVs 13" and up will be HDTV (these deadlines may be moved up). I personally believe that sometime after all TVs are required to be HDTV, prices will drop.

So, good for you for not being gullible enough to believe 100% what those salesmen told you. However, even though it was only a half truth, their idea wasn't far off. You probably will want to get yoursef and HDTV.

-cubic nerd
Question #22887 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why does one get dark circles/bags under werf's eyes when werf doesn't get enough sleep? What can werf do to treat and/or prevent such bags?

- (still) sleepless in Provo

A: Dear Sleepless in [not Seatle],

I, Il Guanaco, Understand what you mean by still... There are some weeks when you just never seem to get everything in, so the only part of your schedule you are in charge of, your sleepy time, is invaded by Chem 106. Grrr. Um, tangent. OK back to you Sleepless (I feel like Dr. Phil or something...). Anyways, not surprisingly, I found a few sites that purport to have the reasons, a beauty site listed these:
- Bone structure. If you have deep-set eyes, shadowing contributes to the dark color under the eyes. Your best bet: camouflage. Look for concealers with yellow undertones, which counteract the bluish cast to under-eye circles.

- Pigmentation. Genetic hyper-pigmentation is the most treatable form of dark circles. Your best bet: Try a lightening cream or talk to a dermatologist about chemical peels or laser resurfacing.

- Vasculature inflammation. Late nights, allergies and nutritional deficiencies can enlarge the blood vessels beneath the thin under-eye skin. Your best bet: Take care of yourself! Sounds cliché but drink that water, get your beauty sleep, eat a healthy diet and avoid cigarette smoke (easy enough, right?).
Taken from

Another source put these three reasons: (they come in threes.... Beware...)
Taken from

The skin under the eyes is very thin, and almost transparent - so it will show any colour changes in the layers underneath very easily.

First, the blood supply from that skin drains into the internal jugular vein. That drainage is a lot better when you're lying down than when you're standing up - so the blood tends to pool there. This is one factor that will give you dark half-circles under the eyes.

Second, you have huge numbers of Mast Cells in the skin under the eyes. These Mast Cells will release histamine (sometimes by themselves, and sometimes when you rub them), which will cause swelling under the eyes - and darkness.

Third, when you get dehydrated (which sometimes happens when you get tired), the skin under the eyes gets dark. And finally, not a reason but an observation. Eyes in animals are an important signalling area.

So if we humans get dark under the eyes, it's a way of telling other humans that we're tired.

So here are a few tips:
1. Lie down.
2. Sleep
3. Drink Water (while not lying down)
4. Repeat cycle.

Other solutions I found online but don't necessarily trust are the following... some are just comical:
" Raw potato slices - spritz the eye with water, leave in place for 10 minutes!!! "
" For dark circles or bags under your eyes you can place slightly warm tea bags over your eyes, leave on for 10-15 minutes. "
" I have heard that hemorrhoid cream works wonders on bags under eyes.....I don't seem to have this problem, so I have never actually tried this. But, I have heard the models use it on a daily basis. Its an anti inflammatory so it brings the swelling down. Also, Allergy eye drops on swollen pimples works great for getting the red out
" Stop Eating Foods that Kill!!! "

I'm sorry, but any solution that needs exclamation marks or says "this isn't a gag, it cured my hemmroids, and clears up acne better than lysol!!!" sounds like a scam. So... don't use anything without consulting a physician first.

Have Fun Storming the Castle,
-Il Guanaco, who is signaling his computer with his eyes that he is tired.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why are the RB pools closing for a week and a half?

And when will Intramural Inner Tube Water Polo (no, I'm not joking) be finished so swimmers can use the big lap pool again during open swim hours?

- A Little Frustrated (I mean, come on, six swimmers to a lane gets a little crowded...)

A: Dear Frustrated,

The pool is closed through Saturday for state swim meets.

As for Intramural Inner Tube Water Polo, there isnt an exact ending date known yet. They expect for it to be going until the first or second week of April.

Question #22845 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

At what campaign(s) did General Grant's wife live with him behind the lines?

- The Chan Man

A: Dear the Chan Man,

This question turned out to be a lot harder than I thought it was going to be. Being the resident U.S. history guru here on the 100 Hour Board, I figured it would just be a matter of finding the right book. That proved to be more difficult than I had anticipated. I thought Wikipedia might have some good background information, but they weren't forthcoming with much more than Mrs. Grant's name (Julia Dent Grant, by the way). Undeterred, I went on to find Grant's personal memoirs. I figured, if anyone would know if his wife was behind the lines with him, he would.

Curiously enough, his memoirs proved to be entirely useless. They might have been interesting to read had I not been skimming them to find references to his wife, but as I wasn't really reading them for content, I didn't get the chance to enjoy reading a bit about Civil War history. Shame, really. I would like you to know, however, that I read the whole book. In the future, if you have any sort of questions about Ulysses S. Grant's involvement in the Civil War, boy howdy, I'm your man.

From here, I went on a quest to find the personal memoirs of Julia Dent Grant. I managed to track a copy of them down, after days of fruitless searching. I carried this book around with me to a variety of random situations for a chance to read just a little bit more about her. This book actually proved to be interesting, as it wasn't purely about military campaigns, but rather about the stories of the people themselves. I enjoyed it. Thanks for giving me the opportunity to read about her.

That introduction wasn't entirely necessary, but I did want to impress on you how much work I went through to find the answer to this question. It caused a bit of soul-searching on my part, actually. "What am I doing reading about Julia Dent Grant for a person I don't know - for free - when I should be working on projects of my own?" I wondered frequently. Mine is a hard life.

On to the actual answer. During the four years that Grant was involved in the Civil War as an officer, his wife joined him behind the lines on three occasions, as near as I can tell. She stayed at his headquarters in Jackson, Tennessee, where she stayed for a month or two. She joined him some time later during a campaign at Vicksburg, Mississippi, also for a period of a month or two. She joined him toward the end of the war while he was in Philadelphia to meet with other commanding officers and President Lincoln.

So it looks like she stayed with him a total of three times. Not that you asked, but I learned a fair few interesting things about the Grants through researching this question. For instance, Julia Grant met John Wilkes Booth, the later assassin of Abraham Lincoln, the night he was shot at the Ford Theater. Apparently Booth told Mrs. Grant that she and her husband should join the Lincolns in the theater that night. She didn't like the look of him, though, and told him that they would not be attending that evening. Who knows what might have happened if they had? Well, I suppose we might have been spared the eight year presidency of Ulysses S. Grant, but it's entirely possible that someone worse could have come along. (Okay, it isn't. Fine.)

I also feel a need to share my favorite quote from this book. At one point, Mrs. Grant was discussing the war with some other ladies while on a boat, and one of them said, "Mania! Mania! Madam! Epidemic! Madam! Why the whole South has gone ravin' mad!"

Thanks for making me read this book.

- Optimistic.
Question #22462 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Regarding Board Question #22317, when you pour a foamy glass of root beer (a root beer float exhibits it more) if you touch the foam with your finger, just slightly, have you ever noticed that the foam seems to recoil from the touch.

Is it the oils in your hands? or a chain reaction of popping foam bubbles? or am I the only one this happens to?

- Be a Lert

A: Dear I will not be a Lert,

Believe it or not, it's a little bit of both.

When you stick your finger into root beer foam, the bubbles you touch pop, reducing the amount of foam. However, the oils in your hands serve to separate the water in the root beer, also causing it to recoil from your finger.

As for which is the primary cause, I really can't say. My guess would be that the oils in your hands do more to break up the foam, but that's only because you're only just barely touching it. Were you to stick your whole finger into the foam, it would probably break up a lot faster than if you were to just touch it on the top.

And now I want some root beer. It's a shame I'm in the library, or else I'd go get some. Alas.

- Optimistic.
Question #22434 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I am a mom and also a full time BYU student. I feel very alone, out-of-place, and misunderstood much of the time I am on campus. Other students are usually courteous and occasionally smile at my baby, both of which are appreciated. Yet I still feel ostracized. How many mother/full-time students are there at BYU? How do other women in my same situation juggle all of the demands upon time and resources? Has any other women in BYU history had a baby her first year of school and still graduated? Is it against any school rules to take a child to class? Do I have the right to take my child to class? Can a professor tell me I can't bring her? Thanks!

- The Lone Mother

A: Dear The Lone Mother,

Your question raised a lot of questions that I've often wondered about myself. To get to the bottom of your questions on school policy, Pa and I called around and finally found Ryan Beuhring, who was a lot of help. He is with Faculty Relations on campus and this is what he had to say about bringing your kids to class with you:

"With respect to children in the classroom, the university does not have a formal policy. Generally, it is expected that the student/parent will make other childcare arrangements. However, the student/parent may want to let the instructor know if a need arises. It is the instructor's decision in each instance on how to handle the situation preserving the integrity of the educational experience. It is expected that all parties will conduct themselves in a manner reflecting consideration for others and common sense."

As a mommy and a student, I can totally sympathize with your situation. Ugly looks, demands from professors to remove your child, and general ostracizing are not the most uncommon things you'll experience as a student mommy. From my experience in taking my daughter to class with me, I have found that the majority of problems arise in classes where either the child is noisy and therefor disturbs other students, or in situations where the class is so small, that your child cannot go unnoticed by anyone else in the room simply because of their unique presence. Because of this, I personally only took my kid to class with me when she was a very young infant (ie: sleep all the time, and through anything), and only to larger lecture classes where I could secure a seat next on the isle next to the door so that I could escape with her at the first sign of fussing. Oh, and I avoided teachers I knew where unkind about kids in their classroom (yes, they do exist here at BYU, unfortunately.)

There are two things to keep in mind about BYU and taking your kids to class. First, there are always going to be dumb, unfeeling, unchrist-like kids who think that you don't belong there with your child regardless of their quietness, and two, this is the friendliest school you could be attending with a child. My non-LDS friends were shocked to hear I was taking my daughter to class with me, and wondered if I'd been thrown out yet. So, while it feels awkward, you are in the best place to succeed with your education while in the situation you find yourself. Don't feel ashamed at what you are doing, or where you are. You have been commanded to have children, and you have. You have also been instructed to get your education, and you are doing that. What is there to be ashamed of? Perhaps the order in wich women like you and I do these two things is a bit harder than the alternative, but that's all the more reason to hold your head high and be proud of who you are and what you are doing. Forget those people who give you ugly looks, or who make you feel ostracized. I guarantee that they are single, naive, and unkind people. Their opinions of you and your situation are not worth your consideration. The truth is, those who have any idea of what you are up against value your tenacity and cheer you on your way. Don't let the losers get you down.

There's no way for BYU to keep records on such a thing, but I have to let you know that there are a TON of student mommy's there at BYU. Way more than you would think there are. I joined the club during my sophomore year, and am now 9 credits from graduation. I have other friends who have even gone on to get their masters with children at home. You can do it! Lot's of women have and more still will.

Here are some ideas I've utilized in getting through the demands a new split personality will demand.

1) As a freshman, be mindful of your major. Pick a family friendly, mostly lecture, lower stress major that will be more understanding of a late term paper due to your daughter being in the hospital, or having to bring her to class with you on occasion.

2) Start a co-op. Get together with other ladies in your ward who are trying to finish their degrees and make a schedule. You watch their kids during their school hours, and they take yours during your classes. In this way, everyone gets to class, no one has to take their kids, and no one has to pay any money to get away with it.

3)Get the full support of your husband. Pa takes our little girl for me on scheduled days and times so that I can do homework, or write a term paper. In this way, he always knows he has her for that amount of time, and they go play while I get down to business. It allows me the quiet I need to concentrate and the sanity I need to memorize important information.

4)Be VERY organized. Take advantage of nap times, evenings after bedtime, playgroups, and your husband's free hours to get work done. I found it useful at the start of every month to set out our family schedule during FHE. In this way, tests were planned out, babysitting was arranged, and I knew whether I need to fill in any holes weeks before I was in trouble.

I hope from this lengthy answer you take away two things. First, I hope you take away a feeling of pride at your work - both that of mommy and student. No matter what, the work you do to study now, finish or not, will enrich your children and your family in the future. Ignore silly people who make you feel bad or you ostracize you. You are not alone, you are one of many struggling mommy's out there, and we support you! And second, YOU CAN DO THIS! Get organized, use all your resources, and get resourceful where those fail. The church, our families and BYU give us a lot of options - so make good use of them.

Good luck Mommy!
We're All Rooting For You!
Ma Grape
Question #22369 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Does the Ipuwer papyrus support the Biblical account of the plagues described in Exodus when Moses led the people out of Egypt?

This is a follow up question to Board Question #22100.

According to Wikipedia, the Ipuwer papyrus is an ancient Egyptian papyrus document. The official name of this document is Leiden Payprus #344, after the town in The Netherlands where the papyrus is being held (in the National Archeological Museum).

It seems that the historians and scholars are less than objective when it comes to Egyptian documents purported to support the Bible. One side seems desperate and grasps at straws to confirm the Bible, while the other side seems just as desperate to explain away anything miraculous or could be interpreted to support the Bible. There do seem to be parallels between the plagues in Egypt, and this account of the plagues an Egyptian is witnessing.

Some extracts from the Ipuwer papyrus that seem to parallel the Bible: "A foreign tribe from abroad has come to Egypt.... Plague is throughout the land. Blood is everywhere.... The river is blood.... Forsooth, gates, columns and walls are consumed by fire....The land is left over to its weariness like the cutting of flax....Forsooth, grain has perished on every side.... All animals, their hearts weep. Cattle moan.... Behold, cattle are left to stray, and there is none to gather them together. Each man fetches for himself those that are branded with his name.... The land is not light.... The storehouse of the king is the common property of everyone.... Forsooth, the children of princes are dashed against the walls.... He who places his brother in the ground is everywhere.... Forsooth, those who were in the place of embalmment were laid on the high ground.... It is groaning that is throughout the land, mingled with lamentations."

- Doc

A: Dear Doc,

I emailed my classicist/divinity-sudent/general- studier-of-old-things friend with your question. His response follows.

I will assume that the reader has already googled Ipuwer, so I won't bother with information that can easily be obtained there. There hasn't been a lot of scholarship done on this papyrus. The database at the University of Chicago library yielded minimal results, but there are several issues to consider:

The date for this papyrus is not certain. Van Seeter dated the papyrus to around the end of the Middle Kingdom (ca. 1600 BCE). Most scholars have generally agreed to this dating, or at least to one thereabouts. There are apparently some textual characteristics that seem to have both Middle and Late dynastic qualities, potentially marking it as a transitional text between the two periods. However, there is also evidence that the extant papyrus is not only a copy of the original, but even a redacted copy. In other words, the original may have been written earlier in the millennium and the redacted copy in the Late dynastic period, which would also explain the mixed style of composition. There are also several lacunae in the text as well as widespread mispellings which make it hard to make sense out of it.

The biggest problem, though, is one of genre. Whatever genre this text is assigned to will determine in part the way we read it. Is this a fragment of a history? Was Ipuwer an eyewitness to the events described in his text? If so, it may be historically fruitful to suggest connections between it and Exodus. Unfortunately, the author tells us nothing about himself or the circumstances under which he is writing. We can't just assume that he's describing something historical. The fragments of the text could easily--much more easily, in my opinion--be assigned to various genres: apocalyptic or eschatological literature; or perhaps even moralistic or didactic literature. None of these genres are alien to the ancient Mediterranean civilizations. In my humble opinion, the Ipuwer papyrus, when taken as a whole (not just taken selectively), fits much more nicely into one of these other genres. That's not to say that there isn't any historical basis to the events described, but without any extra-textual evidence, we can't be sure. We can only go on what the text does contain. And the text, in fact, contains typical descriptions of anarchy that would fit nicely with the ancient "Ages of Man" motif. Hesiod, Homer, the Big 3 Greek tragedians, Ennius, Catullus, Lucretius, Vergil, Ovid, Seneca, etc. all wrote about the anarchy of the present age as opposed to some Golden Age in the past, when people were more pious, more courageous, happier, stronger, taller, and better looking than the people of the present age, who are usually described as complete degenerates. True, the Ipuwer text doesn't explicitly refer to such things, but, especially beginning with Books X and XI, it seems to be admonishing the religious and civic leaders to return to the old gods and rites (hence the title "The Admonition of Ipuwer" often given to it). The carnage and anarchy described in the first nine books are the result of poor government and impiety, Ipuwer seems to be saying. Compare this with similar descriptions of death and anarchy as the result of impiety in Sophocles' Oedipos Tyrannos, Vergil's Georgics, or even Thucydides' description of the plague in Athens during the Peloponnesian War.

There's also the immediate problem of internal consistency of interpretation; in other words, what sorts of readings does the text itself allow? Again, when taken as a whole, it is difficult to find undeniable evidence for many of the supposed parallels to Exodus. The most striking parallel, in my opinion, is the description of the river as blood. It's exciting to think that this may be a reference to one of the plagues, but if you read the rest of the text surrounding this particular phrase, you read that people are killing each other or flinging themselves into the river for crocodiles to feast on them as if they were fish. In that context, wouldn't it be more reasonable (and I dare say more honest) to say that the river is blood because of the bodies or the crocodile bloodbath and not that the water itself--its very essence--had been turned to blood through a miracle? Also, the phrases that describe the deaths of the children of princes are much less cryptic (and much less credibly compared to the account in Exodus) when you consider the many other passages that speak of other human beings as doing the killing, not a supernatural force.

Having said all that, I am the first person to get excited about ancient textual evidence that may support and/or illuminate our holy writings; unfortunately, some scholars, when only interested in apologetics or anti-apologetics, often fall into occular heresy: they see what they want to see and deny anything that might contradict their theses.

One more thing; and this is perhaps the strongest argument against any purported historical connection between Ipuwer and Exodus: if the text really was written anywhere near the era most often suggested (i.e. mid-second millennium BCE), then there is a serious anachronism in suggesting historical parallels to the Book of Exodus, which was written at least four hundred years later! (Of course, you can always contest the dating.)

-A. A. Melyngoch
Question #22281 posted on 02/10/2006 3:01 a.m.

To Whomever is Bored Enough to Answer,
I'm in a precarious position. You see, I'm completely smitten with one of your lovely peers. However, I attend a school that is far, far away on Judea's plain. So... looking into potential ways to hurry potential eventualities, and trying to maintain my characteristic thrift, the following question arises: If I can get a leave of absence from my school, can I apply to BYU while I am still enrolled at my current school, spend a couple of semesters and then withdraw? I wouldn't want to transfer any of the credits, but the advantage to applying as a full-time student is that the GPA/ACT rubric would help me pay for things, whereas such would not be the case as a visiting student. Thoughts, suggestions and potential concerns would be appreciated.

A: Dear "To Whomever is Bored Enough" not to think of a 'nym,

Well, the delay in this getting this back to you was exacerbated by the preposterous wait time spent on hold. I did the minute waltz (try holding a cordless and keeping your dance position), sang the entire Carmina Burana score through acapella, discovered the secret to continual good karma, balanced the national budget, composed a a diplomatic letter that will reconcile Cuba with the US and cause Castro to retire (no hard feelings), passed American Heritage, wrote a doctoral thesis on the cheapest and most ethical way to rid Central America of poverty, finished Med School Apps, took the MCAT, designed, programmed, and marketed a new computer operating system, understood Hemingway, learned to juggle, balanced my checkbook, repeated the minute waltz, slower this time to take up more time, figured up a pop culture ad scheme for dish soap that is popular with teenagers, dismantled a bomb, assembled a room full of Ikea furniture - without instructions - (I am a man...), and constructed my own tools to do so ("look around you, can you make some rudimentary lathe?"), hacked into the FBI mainframe and put a nice little reminder to floss regularly in the System Administrator's Inbox, designed a program that matches up the makers of spyware and the people that send phishing emails so that their emails are matched and information exchanged equally and exclusively, and I converted the Prime Minister of a Foreign Land through IM. All this before a real voice came on and said "hello, thanks for calling Admissions, can you hold?" "N-"!!! I tried to say... "OK, thanks, I'll be with you in just a moment-" . Grrrr. And a week later I got off the phone with this answer...

OK, so I really didn't do any of that stuff, BUT I did something that took almost as long... finding an interesting article in the Daily Universe. Hmmm... I finally settled on the Comics Page.

The answer by Admissions is that anyone with ANY college credit must submit their transcripts, but only those with less than 30 credits of earned credit may apply as new students (i.e. they will take into account ACT and GPA from High School). After 30 credits they base their admission info principally (if not solely on) the GPA and information from those 30 or more credits (the person who finally answered the phone was not very knowledgeable in such circumstances - he offered to put me on hold, but I have a Chem test next week that I don't want to miss, so I said no). The man also said that this is non-negotiable.

Sorry, I tried to go to bat for you, but the guy wouldn't budge. I also explored the possibility of Visiting Student Status, but this is only permissible for Spring and Summer-ONLY students, who may then re-apply for Fall/Winter. This was also non-negotiable according to "il duche".

So my recommendation is to go Spring/Summer, and see if said person also attends during said period. It is definitely cheaper in Spring/Summer, and you can use the extra time for dating, something there is not quite as much time during a normal semester.

Good luck with the relationship, and good luck getting through to admissions. I recommend electronic means of communication whenever possible, or calling right at 8AM.

The good news is that you CAN apply while still attending another school as long as you don't have a degree from that school already. You must, however, report your previous credits, and you will be classified as a "Transfer Student", effectively transferring your credits over. You will still be a full time student, but this may have an effect on your potential for financial aid. Apply for whatever you can, and hope for the best.

Have Fun Storming the Castle,
-Il Guanaco

PS. If you can't be with the one you want, want the one you're with...