"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 #67138 posted on 04/07/2012 10:42 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Boarders,

I'm just finishing up my freshman year here at the Y and am wanting to take a tennis class this spring to give myself a fun little break. I played varsity in high school, so I wouldn't call myself a beginner. Would that be enough experience to just go straight into intermediate?

-Not Quite Serena, But Maybe Someday

A:

Dear Someday,

Yes, just... yes. Go straight to intermediate. If you went into beginning, you would be bored out of your dang skull.

-Mico

Question #67137 posted on 04/07/2012 9:42 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

A few weeks ago was the Spring Equinox. From what I understand that means it is the day where the day is the exact same length as the night (or close to the exact same). Meaning that on the equinox (spring or fall) the sun sets almost exactly 12 hours after it rises.

In Provo however, the equinox isn't really an equinox (if you count the time it takes the sun to rise over the mountains and actually shine on Provo). I was wondering, taking into account the mountains, on what days of the year is the sunlight shining on Provo for the ~12 hour equinox time?

- Summer lover

A:

Dear summer lover,

Let's assume you're at the Creamery on Ninth, 1.6 miles east of the peak of Y mountain 3700 feet above you. Some trig shows that Y mountain subtends 24.3 degrees of your sky. The sun takes 24 hours to go around 360 degrees of arc; making it through 24.3 degrees will proportionally take 1 hour and 37 minutes. The mountains in the west are so far away that they won't make much of a difference, so in the end a day of roughly 13:37 will get you 12 hours of direct sunlight. This happens (this year, 2012) on April 22 and August 19 (see here for the length of every day). 

This is highly dependent on how tall and far away the mountains immediately east of you are. In general, the closer to the mountain you are, the less sun you're going to see.

~Professor Kirke

Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I have some questions with which I would like to pester you. I feel guilty asking 3 3/4 questions, but I couldn't help myself considering their intriguing nature.

I was talking to some of my fellow researchers yesterday, and they both mentioned that they had heard that there used to be a small nuclear reactor on campus near or inside the southwestern hill. Is this true?

My penultimate question, one of the kids with whom I was talking mentioned that he also heard that there was a particle accelerator on campus. Is this true?

And finally, this same kid said that a possible location for the particle accelerator is underneath the quad north of the ESC, west of the HBLL, and east of the soft science building of which I do not recall the name, and south of the terrible L-shaped building where I was forced to take some unnecessarily difficult math classes. To support his argument, he claimed that automobiles are not allowed to drive in the middle of the quad which is understandingly suspicious, but I'm not quite sure it would be relevant to the particle accelerator theory. Is it true that there is a particle accelerator under there? And if not, what is under there, if anything?

Thank you Board, you have made my stay here at BYU less painful ever since I discovered you last semester (3 semesters too late),

humble seeker of truth/kicks and giggles

A:

Dear Humble Seeker,

Answer 1: Yea. See also here and here.

Answer 2: Yea.

Answer 3: Not really. The particle accelerator(s) are under "the lawn just north of the ESC." That article is from 1998, so the area may have looked slightly different pre-JFSB (and the number of accelerators may have changed), but it seems unlikely to place them as far north as you seem to have, since it's an ESC lab.

Cheers,

No Dice

A:

Dear humble seeker,

As far as the location of the particle accelerator: before the underground lab in the ESC was remodeled, it was directly to the right as you exited the stairs in the lower level (which would be "the lawn just north of the ESC" mentioned in No Dice's link). After the remodel, that area became partly a study area and some other rooms. If you want to see roughly where the particle accelerator would have been underneath, look just to the west of the north entrance to the ESC for a brick structure. That structure houses an elevator that goes to the underground lab, and the accelerator was just to the west of that, which puts it under some of that grassy area north of the ESC.

Currently it has been moved slightly to the east, so you take a left at the bottom of the stairs and it's at the end (which I think puts it either under the eastern edge of the building, or possibly slightly into the area between the ESC and the MARB).

The underground lab definitely doesn't go all the way into the quad you mentioned, so if there's anything there it's not attached to the ESC. I'm also suspicious of your friend's claim that vehicles aren't allowed to drive through the middle of the quad, since I'm pretty sure I've seen them do just that (in particular, the grounds trucks). Although it's possible that there's a tunnel or two through that area, it seems unlikely that there would be anything substantial that far from any of the surrounding buildings; underground labs/etc. are usually underneath or immediately adjacent to a building. That's just a guess, though.

—Laser Jock

Question #67098 posted on 04/07/2012 9:42 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Is there a version of the "This little piggy" poem that has ten piggies? I could have sworn there were ten, but when I looked it up there were only five.

Also, which pigs are we supposed to feel sympathy for? (meaning, one goes to market- is it shopping or is it on the butcher's block?)

-Wee Wee Wee

A:

Dear wee wee wee,

I confess to being most familiar with the one that goes: 

This little piggy went to market

This little piggy stayed home

This little piggy had roast beef

This little piggy had none

This little piggy went wee wee wee all the way home *tickles*

However, the interwebs have piggy poems about ten piggies. Maybe those are the ones you've heard? Also, probably have sympathy for the one who has incontinence issues.

~Anne, Certainly

A:

Dear Wee,

The piggy's going to the butcher's block. Pigs don't shop, and if they did, they'd go to the market, not market. My condolences.

–Concealocanth

Question #67131 posted on 04/07/2012 9:36 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

The other day, I put Pandora on my "Lion King" station for my little boy to listen to. It played a Disney song, then "Hallelujah," by Rufus Wainwright, which is on the Shrek soundtrack. Then, it played "Accidentally in Love," by Counting Crows, from the Shrek 2 soundtrack. The progression seemed pretty logical, but I was surprised how fast the station went from Disney to modern alt rock.

Has any of you had a Pandora station make a similar digression quickly? What's the farthest one of your stations has gotten away from the original song/artist?

-No Dice

A:

Dear ND,

A few years back when Pandora/The Music Genome Project were just getting started, I gave Pandora a shot. It digressed after a song or two. So I closed out and went back to albums, and never looked back.

- Commander Keen, basically dead to the world at this point, and also not a fan of Pandora.

(Okay, it can be good for Christmas music sometimes, but that's about it.)

A:

Dear No Dice,

I actually really enjoy Pandora. A pretty obvious drift has been in my Mozart station; classical music leads to soundtracks which inevitably leads to quartets covering famous rock songs. Go figure.

My favorite musician is Aqualung, so early on in my Pandora-using days (circa 2008) I made an Aqualung station. This is technically in the "pop" genre, though I'd argue his music is pretty eclectic and not like on-the-radio "pop." Anyway, at one point it drifted towards adult contemporary music, then piano solos, and then one day the most bizarre thing happened. I was listening absent-mindedly and found myself humming along. It was the soft, soothing piano version of an LDS hymn! I was stunned!

It wasn't a quick drift, but it was pretty dang far from the original. After I thumbs-downed the song (because this station was not supposed to be sweet little piano pieces to lull me to sleep) my station went in the opposite direction and played crazy techno-pop. Let's just say, I had to "add variety" with about five other artists similar to Aqualung before the station neutralized. 

-Mico

Question #67130 posted on 04/07/2012 9:36 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why is it that in such a patriarchal society, we somehow managed to get surnames that are very female in origin. Like, Baxter was the female form of Baker. How did it become a name that got passed down through the male line? My roommates are making crazy speculations.

-Brewster Brewer

A:

Dear Brewer Brewster,

Why, what an interesting question! The reason seems to be two-fold. At one time in history, English men began to professionally take on traditional female jobs such as baking, weaving, etc. Also, perhaps coinciding with that change, the /-ster/ suffix changed meaning from "woman who does X" to "person who does X"; that is, its meaning widened. But you don't have to take my word for it. From the Oxford English Dictionary's entry on the /-ster/ suffix:

In northern Middle English, however, perh. owing to the frequent adoption by men of trades like weaving, baking, tailoring, etc., the suffix came very early to be used, indiscriminately with -er suffix1, as an agentive ending irrespective of gender; thus in the Cursor Mundi (a1300) demestre (see dempster n.) appears instead of demere (deemer n.), a judge, bemestre instead of bemer a trumpeter. It is probable that -ster was often preferred to -er as more unambiguously referring to the holder of a professional function, as distinguished from the doer of an occasional act. In Scotland, baxter and webster survived as masculines down to the 19th c. The only word of this formation that in Scotland has remained exclusively feminine is sewster n.

...From the 16th c. onwards the older words in -ster, so far as they survived, have been regarded as masculines, and several of them have given rise to feminines in -ess, as backstress, seamstress,songstress, huckstress. 

You can see that the /-ster/ suffix today is unisex - we have gamster, punkster, hipster. None of those necessarily denotes male or female. Interestingly, as the quote above points out, it was during the 16th century that /-ster/ completely transitioned to a gender-neutral suffix. Apparently as "baxter" transitioned to its current gender-neutral meaning, a new feminine version of "baker" was formed - backstress. Pretty cool! So it seems that "Baxter" became a name passed through the male line because its meaning widened to be associated with men and women, apparently to the point that it was a family name.

-Mico

Question #67129 posted on 04/07/2012 9:36 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

My wife is in her first year in med school here at Texas A&M. One of the courses she's currently taking is Clinical Skills, which teaches her to perform physical examinations in a professional and scientifically precise manner. Naturally, I get to be the guinea pig as she's studying for an upcoming test. One of the tests she performs over the whole suite of tests involves pressing her stethoscope to different parts of my back while I whisper the word "ninety-nine." At a different part of the test she uses her hands to feel my back as I speak (not whisper) the word "ninety-nine."
I could easily ask my wife why these tests are performed this way, but I thought we could all have a fun learning experience together if I asked you. So here are my questions:
1) What is the purpose of this test, and why the word, "ninety-nine"?
2) Why, if I have gone in to get physical examinations over the entire duration of my life, have I never experienced this test before?

-Proudest member of the Fightin' Texas Aggie Graduate Class of 2013! Whoop!

A:

Dear Proud,

1) It is to test for the symptoms of a disease.
2) You don't have the other symptoms of this disease.

Maybe you should consult your wife (the med student) about the test she is administering. Her patients certainly will.

Don't kill me.

- The Messenger

A:

Dear Proudest member of the blah blah OK I'm done,

Bronchophony. Boom. Two Google seconds* later.

Basically it's just a test to listen for the resonance or reverberation of sounds in your lungs. If you were to have an area of your lung with a different density or composure (like a nodule or a cancer) it would produce a unique sound and could indicate the need for other, more modern (and expensive) tests.

- Rating Pending (who agrees - why not just ask the wife?)

*The time it takes to Google one thing and click on one link. Scientists describe this as "an embarrassingly short amount of time to find an answer when you could have just asked your wife." Clever, those scientists.

A:

Dear Member,

Bronchophony. That's fun to say.

I think it's really interesting that they still do this test–I mean, I've read about it in Victorian-era novels, but I had no idea it was a modern thing too. Just be glad we don't still bleed people with leeches. Oh wait.

I'm going to respectfully disagree with The Messenger and the scientists who get embarrassed about Googling things. Some of my favorite questions, as a reader, are the random facts that you'd never think of Googling yourself but you get to learn about anyway because of someone else's curiosity on the Board.

Thanks for the question.

–Concealocanth

A:

Dear Proudest,

As RP mentioned, they're used to test for the changes in sound conduction that accompanies various lung problems. The first test (with the stethoscope) is "auscultating," and in the lungs, it's useful for hearing the changes in sound conduction that result from lobar consolidation (possibly from large tumors, but much more commonly from pneumonia). The second test (with her hands) is using "tactile fremitus" to detect any abnormal obstructions between the larynx and the back, where the vibrations are felt. Decreased vibrations might indicate a blocked bronchus, COPD, a pneumothorax, or some other obstruction.

You've never had either of those tests done because you're a young, healthy dude and nobody thinks you have pneumonia or COPD or any other lung problems.

Give my regards to your wife (from another first year med student who's learning this stuff too)!

- Eirene

Question #67128 posted on 04/07/2012 9:30 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm looking at the Bureau of Labor Statistics website and have found the average salary for my occupation. My question is: does the average salary statistic include expected benefits, or is it the base wage and benefits would be additional?

-any colour you like

A:

Dear ff00ff,

Their website includes a variety of information, including information on wages and on benefits such as health care. It looks to me like those are separate categories, so what you were seeing was probably a base wage. Without knowing exactly where on their website you were, it's hard to say for sure, but by using that link you can probably figure out what you were seeing and what it really means.

~Professor Kirke

Question #67122 posted on 04/07/2012 9:30 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Skittles or M&Ms?

-M&Ms

A:

Dear M&Ms,

I love you, in practically every way. Normal, with peanuts, with peanut butter, with pretzels, dark chocolate...you complete me.

Skittles, you're an awesome person. We should keep in touch. And I do want to be friends. But right now I'm really interested in M&Ms and...

Hey wait, we're Mormon* here! Sweet. I'll want you both. Forever.

~Professor Kirke

*Ok, for all three non-Mormons who will ever read this, we don't believe in polygamy. JOKE.

A:

Dear M&Ms,

Peanut M&Ms.

~Anne, Certainly

A:

Dear M&Ms,

Dark M&Ms.

No Dice

A:

Dear M&Ms,

Skittles—classic ones in the red bag. If not them, I yearn for the orange bag of peanut buttery goodness.

Oh. And those Crazy Cores aren't bad either.

--Gimgimno

A:

Dear M&Ms,

M&Ms are really good, but Skittles are better. Classic Skittles are my favorite, but the Wild Berry ones are extremely awesome, as long as you pick out the poisonous purple ones.

- Eirene

Question #67121 posted on 04/07/2012 9:30 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What's your favorite nonsense secondary name/personality in Board writer history?

-It has to be CATS, right?

A:

Dear has to be,

While I'm as full of CATS love as the next boardie, I LOVE LOKI SO MUCH. Seriously, go read all the Loki stuff in the archives. Good laughs.

–Concealocanth

A:

Dear right,

Obviously I love CATS. How can you not? All those ZIG. CATS rocks.

Besides CATS, and None (great, more personal answers all the time), I find 100 Typing Monkeys to be simply hilarious.

-Mico

A:

Dear yes, but also no,

I agree that all the winning are belonging to CATS; however, I would like to give a shout out to A Caustic Wisecrack. Werf is always there for a good laugh and a snarky comment. I'm a fan. A big fan. 

-Watts

Question #67034 posted on 04/07/2012 9:30 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I am putting in my mission papers. Throughout this process, it came up with my Bishop that I had some problems with masturbation when I was a teenager (several years ago, I am a girl, so I'm 21). It wasn't fueled by pornography, and honestly it was done innocently and I didn't know it was wrong for a long time. I stopped, but since I've been older I've slipped up a few times, and then completely stopped and committed to NEVER revisit it again. My bishop told me he considered me to be completely worthy. However, my stake president has taken it much more seriously and has required me to undergo several counseling sessions with a therapist, etc. etc. My question is this: they tell me I am worthy, but are they going to write about my past sins in their recommendations on my mission papers? Are they required to report past sins to the mission department of the church? It's just so humiliating to think of it all being documented.

sick to my stomach.

A:

Dear sick to my stomach,

I talked to my stake president, who said that he personally would not include it in the mission papers.  He said that if yours does, then he intends it to be something that is meant to be checked up on with your mission president while you are in the field.  He ended by recommending you not let this bother you.

I can definitely see how this would bother you, though.  Since stake presidents differ in their decision making, the only way to know what your own stake president is going to do is to ask him; since I don't know who he is, that unfortunately means you're going to have to ask him yourself.  I think that asking him will actually be quite beneficial, though—I think he needs to know how much this is humiliating and distressing you, since he may be oblivious.  He may not realize how his actions are affecting you, and you may be able to sway him toward not putting this information in your mission papers.  I would encourage you to be upfront with him and tell him what you're feeling and how it doesn't make sense to you that it's an issue if it's a past sin and the bishop said you were worthy.

So, to sum up, the stake president I asked said he wouldn't put that information in your papers, but the only way you can find out if yours is planning to is to talk to him.  I wish you luck with that.  Be brave.  Know you are justified in being worried about this.

Love from

Queen Alice

Question #67028 posted on 04/07/2012 2:06 p.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I read through your About Us blurbs and quite a few invite readers to shoot you an email if they want to "talk". How often does that actually happen? Optimistic mentioned receiving a decent number of dating applications and compliments, but that was 6 years ago. What is the current writer/asker correspondence rate like? How do you typically respond and have you made good friends that way?

-coconut

(I thought about emailing each of you personally to ask, but there are a lot of you! ...and this way seemed more fun)

A:

Dear Nutmeg,

You should have emailed!

Before I was writing, I made quite a few friends by e-mailing writers. In fact, some of my dearest friends are still the writers I met that way.

I've so far made friends with four people who have e-mailed me about various things and we have continued correspondence. One who e-mailed about the Farmer Croc cereal (and she is delightful, well-traveled and has ohmygosh the yummiest kids ever!), one who e-mailed about my various adoption answers (which has been super-great because she keeps inviting my sister and me to speak on adoption panels and we love doing that! Also I've had a lot of fun e-mailing her), one who e-mailed asking for Elder Holland's talk (I said I would trade it for a story, I was mostly joking, but then she ended up telling me so many stories and they are all hilarious. I really got the better end of that deal), and recently one more who e-mailed about Diva Cups (and she is funny, so this is awesome!).

Then a few other people have e-mailed me and I've e-mailed back and never heard from them again, so there we go. Maybe the magic is gone when I respond.

I like to think I'm pretty approachable and I'm more than happy to talk to people. I'm not sure why only girls seem to e-mail me, but I've had good experiences, so I'm not complaining.

-Marguerite St. Just

A:

Dear coconut,

As of yet, I haven't been taken up on the offer.

I guess nobody loves me. (Or possibly people think they have better things to do than carry on semi-anonymous online correspondence with me. Go figure.)

~Anne, Certainly

A:

Dear coconut,

I haven't really made friends with anyone who e-mailed me, but I have been emailed about ten times since I started writing. There were a few times where the reader and I carried on a small conversation, but it never lasted more than a few emails. That said, I'm always super excited to hear from readers, especially since (so far) they are always nice.

-Mico

A:

Dear coconut,

I think around three or four people have emailed me.  One even used two different names and two different email addresses so that I wouldn't know that he was the author of both emails; we are now buds.  Usually people write to me asking about unorthodox views on certain doctrinal topics, and they have all been very nice.  I'm a fan of the possibility for writers and readers to correspond, mainly because I think it allows people with minority (or hardly expressed) opinions in common to find one another and then maybe not feel so isolated; you get to talk with people you may have never met in real life.  I also met the Black Sheep this way back when I was a reader, which then lead me further on the path to becoming a writer and got me a new and wonderful friend.

Love from

Queen Alice

A:

Dear Cocodrilo,

Back in the dawntimes, I emailed some writers. I have also been emailed by some people. It turns out that it is now exactly even on both sides. Hooray for Karmic balance! (I'm still sad no one took me up on this offer though.)

But anyway, as is evident in all these answers, reader emails are less common than you'd think. Also I think I'm going to start writing Anne, Certainly a fan letter every day because, c'mon guys, that girl writes some excellent stuff!

–Concealocanth

P.S. My 100th emailer wins a fabulous prize beyond ALL MORTAL COMPREHENSION! Ready set go. (Some things are safe to offer because I'm absolutely certain I will never have to follow through.)

A:

Dear coco,

I've had at least a dozen peeps email me in my tenure. I respond and tell them secrets every time. Secrets. Every time

-Hamilton

A:

Dear coconut,

The only time someone has emailed me turned out to be probably the single most helpful thing I have done during my tenure as a Board writer. It was someone dealing with the possibility of a parent dying while serving a mission, which is what happened to me. I wrote about this in Board Question #55703 and invited the question asker to contact me. They did, and we corresponded a few times. While the content of those conversations and the eventual outcome are private, I really think I made a difference. It'd be great to be contacted for less earth-shattering reasons, but I'm glad I helped someone who needed it.

- Rating Pending (who hasn't updated his bio since becoming a Board writer many moons ago. It probably has little bearing on the current iteration of his personality.)