"When you get a little older, you'll see how easy it is to become lured by the female of the species." - 1960's Batman TV show
Question #25591 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I am from Plano, Texas, where the traffic lights are coordinated so that if you leave an intersection when the light turns green (as opposed to it already being green when you get there), all the lights you come to afterward on that road will be green. Has Provo ever considered something like this? I'm tired of stopping at virtually every red light on University Parkway. Also, if you have any idea, why is the light on westbound University Parkway at 800 E. always red when I get there, regardless of what the traffic lights before it were like?


A: Dear ThisIsYak,
The Provo/Orem area has experienced considerable growth in the last decade, thanks in part to two large and growing universities and a number of start-up companies based in the area. Unfortunately, much of the cities' infrastructures have lagged behind this growth. Roads are probably the best example of this shortcoming. In fact, prior to the 2000 Winter Olympics, the entire interstate system in the state of Utah was in need of improvement. Traffic light timing has long been one of my biggest pet peeves with Provo and Orem because I took it for granted when I lived in other areas. Have you ever noticed that most traffic lights in the Utah Valley don't have turning signals? And many of the lights that do have turn signals don't use them. That's why only three people can get through on the yellow at the end of each cycle at many intersections.

Anyway, pardon my tirade. The real reason Provo and Orem haven't reworked their traffic light system is because they will have to bring in a traffic expert and do some serious studies on traffic flow to determine how the lights should be set up. It will be fairly complicated, because the analysts will have to take into account a lot of pedestrial traffic in many places, as well as vehicle flow. On University, all the lights will usually cooperate with you late at night because there aren't other cars tripping the signals. But if any other cars are coming the other direction, they screw it up. At some point the two cities will have to rework all of the major intersections, but for now you'll just have to be patient.

- de novo -
Question #25590 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I just moved into an apartment with a fridge that has a tiny little compartment at the top that constitutes the freezer. When we got there, about half the freezer space was taken up by frost, but I used a home remedy I heard of to remove it in which I put a series of boiling pots of water in there with the power off. I was successful in clearing it all out, but our joy was short lived when, by the end of the night, frost was already lining the freezer and hanging down from the ceiling. It's now entirely overrun with frost again. Is there anything I can do to keep it from returning and taking over the small bit of freezer I have to my name?

- Wants My Freezer back

A: Dear Desirer of your Freezer,

Call the Landlord and get a new freezer. Personally, I don't take much from half quality stuff in my apartments. Aside from that, moisture has to be getting into the freezer causing it to collect like that. Possibly, the seal surrounding the door has gone bad and is allowing moisture; or, there is so much moisture already in the freezer that it is condensing and freezing. Either way, I would get the Landlord involved in this one and get it fixed.

Question #25582 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I want to buy a scooter this summer. I don't know much about makes or models. Is one particularly better than the other? Do people buy Vespas because that is the most trendy one or is it actually a better deal?

Also if any of you have a scooter what have you thought of it as a means of transportation? Do you use it is in the winter?

I am fully aware that I have listed a handful of questions here but please answer what you will!

- Je suis la reina

A: Dear la reina,
We've answered various questions about scooters before. Let me refer you to Board Question #05735 or Board Question #14685 for a little more info. I'll also try to hit the major points of your individual questions.

Which scooter is "better" for you depends on your needs. If you're just looking for something to get you around town, a smaller scooter would probably be best. It would be cheaper, and if the engine size was about 50cc or under, you wouldn't have to get a different driver's license to ride it. If you ever want to take it on the freeway, you're probably better off getting a larger scooter. A 100 or 150cc scooter, for example, will usually be able to go about 60 mph. And, of course, if you're doing any serious commuting on the freeway, forget the scooter and get a car. Or a motorcycle, as Latro would opine.

Vespa is a very trendy brand. And they are kinda groovy. But while Vespas have a general reputation for quality, you're probably better off getting a Piaggio if you're just interested in a scooter and not an image. Piaggio is made by the same company and has some of the same styling, but it just doesn't have the cool Vespa name. Honda also makes many types of popular scooters you should consider, even if they aren't as retro cool.

I have never owned a scooter, by my friends who own them don't use them in the winter much. They are best for around-town transportation. While you can get baskets and little "trunks" for many scooters, they aren't too good for transporting most things, even small things like groceries. And they are of limited use in the winter. If the roads are at all icy, riding a scooter is very dangerous. And even if the roads are perfectly clear, riding a scooter can be a very chilly endeavor.

Good luck in your decision!

- de novo -
Question #25570 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

On a scale of one to awesome, how did you like X-Men 3?

- Wolverine

A: Dear You need to stop smoking those cigars,


I liked it! I really did. Although, I must admit that there were severals parts that I thought were cheesy. For example, I thought it was cheesy how Xavier comes back (if you didn't stick around for the end, Xavier's mind is placed into the body of that man they showed in the hospital). I can't remember the other scene, but I remember it being cheesy. Regardless, I liked it.

Question #25567 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Is there somewhere ONLINE I can check if my textbooks are on the BYU Bookstore buyback list? I really hate carrying all these fat books all the way up and the only payback I have is "Sorry, we are not buying it back this time." If they don't, they really should.

- Mrs Fiona Shrek

A: Dear Mrs. Shrek,

A trip to the BYU Bookstore page reveals this morsel on their sellback policy:

Simply put, sellback works like this: give us your books and we'll give you some bucks. We offer this service during Finals Week of each term. At sellback, we pay 60% of the current new retail price for books on our sellback list. The national norm is 50%. We are one of very few schools that offer 60%. As a result, every year we typically conduct the largest sellback-in terms of dollars given back to students-of any university in the country.

If a book is not placed on our list, it may be available for wholesale sellback. During sellback week, we have a national wholesaler on hand who buys books for the national used book market. The wholesaler determines prices by demand. It is generally between 10% and 30% of new retail value.

Because sellback information changes rapidly, it is only available in store, in person.

Looks like you're out of luck. It might be to your advantage to go to the Bookstore first and ask what they're buying back, but at that point, you may as well just bring the books with you.

Sorry. I've never been much of a fan of buyback, either. I've always had more luck selling my books on half.com instead.

- Optimistic.
Question #25566 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Who made Young Ambassadors for the 2006-2007 season? Is there a place this is posted online? Last year they didn't update their website with the new members until Winter semester, and I just wanted to know if there's a way to find out before that...

-a little bit jealous

A: Dear just a little jealous,

I did some searching and I wasn't able to find anywhere online that has an updated list. In addition, I gave a call to their office asking for a list and the secretary wasn't able to produce a list at the time I wrote this answer. However, I am sure that if you would like to see one soon, you could give them a call and they would be willing to help you. The number to call is 422-2563. Hope that helps.

Question #25565 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

My Dear 100 Hour Board,

I've recently realized that BYU has been bringing me down, and perhaps the mundane college life isn't for me. I think I'm in dire need of a major career alteration. I've always had a secret desire to be a professional burglar, you know someone who steals multi million dollar works of art by breaking into top level security private homes and building, using the latest technology and gadgets, then selling to the highest bidder. My favorite movies have always been movies like The Saint, The Italian Job, and Entrapment. My question to you is, is there some secret school out there who can teach me the tricks of the trade and train me to became a top notch professional burglar?

(Yours in Secret),
Crow Worrier King

A: Dear Crow Worrier King,
Unfortunately for you, BYU doesn't have a Burglary Major with an Emphasis in Appropriation of Rare Antiquities. However, in the interest of providing you with genuine career advice, I do have some suggestions.

  1. A life of crime really isn't that fun. Almost all criminals barely make a living and get caught fairly often, so they're in and out of jail. The few that are smart enough to stay out of jail actually don't live glamorous lives, because the stuff they steal is too traceable. Even money is traceable nowadays. So their lifestyles reflect more paranoia than luxurious living.

  2. If you do decide that deception and intrigue are your fortes, there are plenty of legitimate interests you could pursue, such as high-tech security systems design or counter-intelligence. You could always join the FBI or the CIA and go undercover. Then you could be doing all kinds of sneaky things, and not even feel bad about it. Well, not much.

  3. You should be aware that foxy ladies do not actually work in the burglary business. If you become a professional burglar, you will not get to hook up with Charlize Theron, Catherine Zeta-Jones, or Elizabeth Shue.

And a final note: if you really are considering a change in career paths, BYU's Counseling and Career Center may be amply more helpful than watching silly (albeit fun) action flicks. You can find it at http://www.byu.edu/ccc

- de novo -
Question #25564 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm a grad student at a different school and need a thesis. My interests are: security in the Arabian Peninsula, Iran, oil, and terrorism. Any thoughts on what some possible avenues of research could be?

- Al-Ghibar Al-Dhari Al-Mutasaqat

A: Dear Al-Ghibar Al-Dhari Al-Mutasaqat,
Not to deter you from asking us questions, but have you thought about talking to your thesis advisor or one of your professors? They would probably be able to help you much better than we could.

Here's another idea: have you started doing any research on any of those topics? Because those four suggestions are a lot of ground to cover. Perhaps in your research you'll find a very specific niche that will interest you and you can build your thesis from there.

At least that's how I write my papers. Good luck!

-ABC 123
Question #25556 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Hello! I am getting married in August and at the reception there is going to be a chocolate (wedding) cake and a chocolate fountain--paradise! There is a slight problem, however, as I cannot think of a pink (that'd be my wedding color) drink that isn't too sweet to go with tons of chocolate. I don't want to kill my guests, which I'm afraid pink lemonade may do. And so, I ask you to help me think of a nonalcoholic pink drink that would quench the thirst of guests happily eating chocolate to their hearts' content. Any suggestions?


A: Dear AQ4U:

Actually, pink lemonade isn't so bad. You just have to fix it the right way. I had a chocolate fountain at my wedding too--and we had a pink lemonade mixture. To make it, mix a can of pink lemonade with a 2-liter of your favorite lemon-lime soda. I really like this mixture, and still use it when I entertain.

It's cheap--try it out!

A: Dear AQ4U,
You could always go with pink lemonade crystal light. It's sugar free and wouldn't kill everybody off. My family loves it.
-ABC 123
A: Dear AQ4U,

Guava juice is pink, exotic, and not too sweet.

-la bamba
Question #25543 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What is gonna happen with Pam & Jim!?!

- Office Lover

A: Dear Office Lover,
Jim decides that he can't stand working in the office anymore if Pam doesn't love him and isn't going to break off her engagement. So he decides to take the transfer to another office that Jan once offered him.

Pam, meanwhile, decides that she has been dating her fiance long enough, and since he doesn't really seem serious about this whole marriage thing, breaks it off. She finds out that Jim is taking the transfer and confronts him in the office breakroom. She tells him that she isn't engaged anymore and that she loves Jim. Jim and Pam both decide to quit their jobs, get married, and start their new life together in some other state. Jim starts working in another office and Pam stays at home and lives her dream of becoming an artist.

Ok so I don't really know. We'll find out next season! Hooray!

Until then, feel free to speculate. If they don't hook up, that would be sad.

-ABC 123
Question #25530 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I really want to travel--lots of places! As a college student, I don't have much money, and it seems like, not much time--I've got to finish college, and maybe go to grad school and hopefully get married and start a family. Any ideas for getting the most travel in, while being cost efficient. Study abroad interests me, but seems expensive, and I want to go to many many countries; after school though, it seems like I'll be in the real world without time to travel, either working or being married. What have you board members done?

- Hopeful world traveler

A: Dear Hopeful world traveler,
Traveling doesn't really have to cost that much. But if it is something you really want to do, the investment is worth it. Don't tie yourself down due to financial issues. Well, I mean, be rational, but I wanted to go on study abroad. I didn't know how to pay for it. Loans. I went on study abroad in 2002 and I've almost paid them off (all my student loans collectively). The long-term payment option really isn't that horrible.

But if study abroad interests you, go. You'll never get an opportunity to do something like that again. I recommend study abroad 10 times over. I went to London, and when I was done with the program a few friends and I went backpacking around Germany, Austria, and Switzerland. We bought Eurail passes, which are a pretty good deal for students, and traveled around. We ate in markets (which are much more fun than any restaurant of course) and saved money by walking around the towns instead of paying for transportation (unless the city was huge). We stayed in hostels (we went in the off-season so there weren't very many tourists). Once you're in Europe, inter-country travel is super easy and pretty inexpensive. There are a few local airlines whose airports are off the beaten path, but their prices are great.

In my travels, I've been able to visit the entire United Kingdom, France, Germany, Switzerland, Austria, and Italy. A few of those countries I have been to several times. There are many other places I've wanted to go, but I consider myself lucky that I've been able to go to as many countries as I've been fortunate enough to visit in my young age.

So bottom line: travel light, travel cheap, and you can do whatever you'd like. Oh the places you'll go!

Question #25527 posted on 06/07/2006 8:08 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How normal is it for your second toe to be longer than your big toe? My second toe is smaller but my mom's and sister's second toes are both longer and that seems "abnormal" to me...

- Normal Feet

A: Dear "Normal,"

My toes are like that. My brothers used to tease me about it all the time, so I made it a point to look whenever people had bare toes, and see what percentage of people have longer second toes. The number fell around 10%. So you see, it's not so uncommon. We're not abnormal; we're just special.

-Tangerine, whose second toes are her favourites.
A: Dear Normal:

Mine are like that too. That trait runs in my family--my dad's side has the long middle toes. It's apparently hereditary.

A: Dear "Normal",

My toes are like that as well. Runs in my mom's family.

-la bamba
Question #25523 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I went to a graveyard over the Memorial Day weekend and somebody had placed a nail with a piece of tape next to each grave. Do you know of any meaning this could have had?


A: Dear App,

Maybe to hold flower bouquets down? I visited one this weekend with my family, too, and I saw a lot of little things nailed into the ground to hold down the flowers people placed there. (Not a good idea, my mom said, because those things can get caught in the lawn mowers.)

Question #25515 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I've recently developed a big interest in current events and politics and want to learn everything I can. I read several different news sites everyday and I feel like I'm learning a lot, but being a newbie, I lack so much background information. Do you have any suggestions for good sites I can visit to learn more about world and national events that have been happening the past several years? I am also looking for any sites that will help me better understand how governments are made up and how they work (both our own and others in the world), political terms (left, right, and so many others), and US parties and what they really stand for. I'm open to book suggestions as well. I would love to take politics and government classes, but I've already graduated and that's not an option for me right now. Thank you so much!

- The world is cool!

A: Dear World IS cool,

I also started to take an interest in politics. In general, when I have a question about general political ideas or events, I google it. It is amazing what you can get at your screen with a simply Google search. I think, though, the biggest thing is to just try to keep up to date on events in the world. As you are reading more in the news, you will find new sites that provide good sources of information.

I need to give some credit to Horatio as he has provided a lot of this for me (see HERE for more). Here are some site you could try:

- Christian Science Monitor
- Opinion Journal

Hope that helps.

A: Dear the world is cool!,

For the lighter side of news, check out www.fark.com. It's comprehensive and never ceases to draw a chuckle.

-la bamba
Question #25507 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

so today the alumni house came down starting at 7:30 in the morning. i kept a close tabs on the web cam and watched them demolish the building and my interest was piqued...why did they start in the middle of the building?

- alishka babushka

A: Dear alishka babushka,
I watched it too. It was kinda fun to watch. I kept hitting "refresh" on my browser to see it come down. My favorite part was when the big backhoe got to the glass atrium part.

The reason why it started in the middle is fairly simple: from that point the backhoe could reach all the way to the end, where the records division used to be housed, all the way up to where the entryway and reception used to be. The equipment later moved around to take down the conference room areas, but it made sense to position the equipment centrally to avoid unnecessary maneuvering. There wasn't a whole lot of front lawn space at the old Alumni Building to begin with, so it helped them work in tighter quarters.

- de novo -
Question #25483 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I've been looking into buying some Saucony Jazz shoes, but whenever I've looked at them online, I run into S-series, Edge, AC, Original, "low-pro," etc. I can understand the AC series well enough but I have no idea what the differences b/n the others might be. I haven't been able to find answers on google and none of the product reviews have really given me insights. This brings me to you. Can you fill me in so that I can be a little more educated on this buy? "Preciate it.

- Jack

A: Dear Jack,

Okay, let me see if I can take a stab at this. Your requested shoes were a little hard to find - most of them are not made anymore by Saucony (see their website). This is what I found:

- I wasn't able to find anything on the "Edge" shoes.
- For the S-series, I believe that it has reference to how the shoe will follow the sole of your foot. If you can picture it, you could make an "S" shape on the bottom of your foot. I think this is just to allow a better comfort around your foot.
- All of the shoes that you listed are considered "Originals."
- Lowpro has reference to the thickness of the sole (see the difference between the Lowpro and the Nylon Suede).

I hope that helps. Basically, I think your best bet to buying your shoes is to try them and see what fits best for yourself.

Question #25474 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How well are gas permeable contact lenses supposed to correct your vision? Could it have something to do with the fact that I have REALLY bad eyes? When I went to the doctor, he said that my prescription hadn't changed much since I started wearing contacts (about three years ago).

- Bat

A: Dear Bat,

I am confused about something. In your question, you ask: "How well are gas permeable contact lenses supposed to correct your vision?" From my understanding of gas permeable contacts (GPC), they effect your vision just like any other contacts. The difference is that GPC allow for air to reach your cornea allowing less irritation. From what I found online and talking to people, GPC's will not improve your vision.

Question #25456 posted on 06/07/2006 8:07 a.m.

Dear 100 Hour Board,

This is something that has been bugging me for a while. I have googled every way I know how. Maybe I don't know how to frame my queries in search engines. Please help!

Ever since I was diagnosed with asthma, I have paid attention to articles and statistics. When you hear that allergies are on the rise, especially childhood allergies, "they" (otherwise known as "the experts") quote statistics of 4-10% of all children have allergies (or 4-10% have food allergies) and 4% of all adults have allergies. Sometimes asthma is thrown into the sentence, sometimes not. There are some variations in the statistics, but since the ranges are so varied and I've seen so many different variations on the statistics of current amounts of allergies and/or asthma, I'm beginning to doubt the claim.

I can't find anything that tells me what previous percentages were but everyone says they are on the rise. Is this just numbers manipulation? If numbers are on the rise but percentages stay the same then it really isn't on the rise. Or is it simply that recognition is on the rise?

Can you direct me to solid data that proves the claim? There are so many conflicting ideas as to cause of the rise in allergies, but I'd like to know that the effect exists before trying to worry about the cause.

Maybe if you focus on just one type of allergy, you'll find more concrete data. (I've tried and not succeeded.) Maybe that's part of the problem, for instance: maybe peanut allergies really are on the rise but others are declining and so the average stays the same. Then "experts" quote the average and it confuses me again.

- Ageless

A: Dear Ageless,

Boy, you weren't kidding. I had to Google this thing out of its mind before I could find any sort of reputable data. Here's what I turned up.

Food allergies, especially in children, are definitely on the rise. Fewer than half a percent of the child population had food allergies as late as 1989 - that percentage has risen as high as five percent (depending on the study cited) today. Another thing you have to take into consideration is that while the percentage may not be exploding upward, the population is also rising. Five percent of twenty million is going to be less than five percent of thirty million (numbers are for illustration only and do not reflect actual demographic data). In that sense, even if the percent of children with allergies isn't rising (although it is), the actual number of children with allergies might be.

Scientists have come up with a series of possible explanations as to why allergies are on the rise, but perhaps the most plausible one is the hygiene hypothesis. Our society lives a cleaner lifestyle than we ever have before. Germs and other pathogens are sterilized and killed long before they can get in contact with us. As a result, our immune systems have little opportunity to go into action. They don't have a chance to learn which particles are harmful and which are harmless. They begin to attack common particles, especially milk and pollen. One of the articles I'm going to cite here referenced East and West German children after reunification. West German children had higher rates of allergies than the East Germans did. Some scientists explained this by pointing to the fact that the East German children spent time together in daycares and ended up giving each other lots of colds. This allowed their immune systems to go to work and learn which pathogens were harmful.

Here are the sources that I came up with - I hope they prove helpful.

Source the First
Source the Second
Source the Third
Source the Fourth

If those aren't as helpful as you would have liked, you can find a lot more at the website for the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma and Immunology. They seemed to be the place to go for this sort of data.

- Optimistic.