Whenever he thought about it, he felt terrible. And so, at last, he came to a fateful decision. He decided not to think about it. ~John-Roger and Peter McWilliams
Question #47558 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How does one link to a website that is not a board question? I imagine that one could format it so that the link is a word and just has the hyperlink attached as well as another alternate way of linking the website by listing the URL and hyperlinking the URL to the web page to which the URL refers.

- Curious Cat

A: Dear Curious Cat,

Just include the bare URL. We haven't enabled reader-side hyperlinking because we prefer more transparency.

- Katya
Question #47554 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

(How many licks does it take to get to the center of a tootsie pop?)

- (Rachel)

A: Dear those parentheses aren't as clever as you think:

This is actually one of our FAQs.

---Portia
Question #47550 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I heard an unconfirmed rumor a few years back about LaVell Edwards Stadium. Supposedly, President Samuelson promised the football team that if they achieved so many winning seasons in a row (I think I heard 3), BYU would put up the money to finish the bowl (instead of 4 sections to the stadium, it would be a continuous bowl). Is there any truth to this? In light of the sell-out crowds for virtually every game as of late, does BYU have any plans to increase seating at the stadium in the future? Thanks!

- Water girl fan

A: Dear water girl fan,

There is not a shred of truth in that. The stadium has to sell out for years in a row, not just games in a row. They're not even thinking about it right now. If it keeps selling out like it is now consistently, you may see an expansion in a decade or so.

-habiba
Question #47549 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why doesn't BYU permit fraternities/sororities to exist on campus? Fraternities can exist for educational, work skills, ethical, ethnicity, religious, political, charitable, chivalry, service, and performing arts reasons and it appears to me that they're not inherently evil. MANY of early influential leaders of the LDS Church including Joseph Smith Jr. and Brigham Young himself (what's the name of this school again?) were members of a fraternity. Some of the founding fathers of the USA and the majority of the generals of the continental army were members of a fraternity. Many scientist and people of other occupations who changed history for the better were members of a fraternity. Many influential living people of today also belong to a fraternity. It's true that not all fraternities are good for society, but that could be said of any club, organization, church or group and obviously there are a diversity of fraternities just like anything else. There are even LDS fraternities at the U of U. So why does BYU not permit a fraternity/sorority to exist on campus?

- Beta-Free-Bonesmen-Elk 322

A: Dear BFBE,

First, the connection between famous people and fraternities may be correlative, but you haven't demonstrated that it's causative. The fact is that many people of a certain social class belong to fraternities and sororities, but you might as well say that having a beard makes you a better military leader because most of the Civil War generals had one.

Second, the official LDS fraternity - Lambda Delta Sigma - has since been replaced with LDSSA (the LDS Student Association) and the LDS fraternity at the U has 10 chapters, all unique to that institution, which is rather a fraternal oddity. (Frankly, it sounds more like an LDS club which happens to have a Greek name than an actual fraternity.)

Third, as mentioned in Board Question #45432, one of the motivating factors for banning social fraternities was their discriminatory nature. While it's true that some fraternities exist for other purposes, there are also BYU clubs, departments, and activities which exist to support and promote all of the purposes you stated. The 1961-62 Board of Trustees hoped that BYU students would support those organizations in lieu of the fraternities, and that appears to be the mindset still maintained by the current President and Board of Trustees.

- Katya
Question #47548 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Why is BYU discontinuing all e-mail service?

- The Economizer

A: Dear Economizer,

Not enough people use their BYU inbox; most just forward their e-mail to another account. (See Board Question #44931 for a more thorough answer.)

—Laser Jock
Question #47546 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I was recently in the restroom...:) (thats a good starter to any question) and I had a thought provoking question. Often when one goes into the bathroom you want to pick the toilet without a lot of refuse on it. Also influencing this vital decision is the question of which toilet have the most people used? You obviously don't want to pick that toilet. My question is have their been any studies done concerning which toilet is most often used in a restroom? Also factors influencing that decision? Thanks!

-Man with overreactive bladder

A: Dear Man,

Laser Jock already did some research in Board Question #44603 on which stalls are the least used (the ones on the ends are the least used). However, I too have been contemplating your important questions. I think that if a stall is on the end closest to the door, it's more likely to be used than any of the other stalls, simply because it's the most convenient. However, according to The Germ Freak's Guide, the first stall will be the cleanest. Also, if a toilet hasn't been flushed for a while, it may actually be cleaner than the others since everyone has been avoiding it all day. Just flush it (you can use your foot if you're grossed out). And let's not even get started on dishrags.

-Whistler

PS If you want to know more, check out that e-book (although it seems kind of kitschy to me) or google Charles Gerba - he's the big name in what kinds of germs are where.
Question #47545 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

My in-laws used to have some kind of subscription to some book company that would send them hardcover classics once a month. So now they have this whole bookshelf full of all these classics, all hardbound and gorgeous and old-fashioned-looking. I think it's pretty awesome. I really want something similar for my own family, but Google and I have been having a hard time finding a company that offers subscriptions like that. Any wisdom to share?

So, since there seems to be a dearth of companies like that out there, I was thinking that I could make a book website where I sell hardcover copies of the classics, as well as just books in general. I was thinking of becoming an Amazon affiliate. Or is there a better way? How exactly does one go about becoming an Amazon affiliate? And do you think selling hardcover classics is a bad idea for a business, since hardcover classics obviously aren't in huge demand? Thanks! You guys are fabulous.

- Belle

A: Dear Belle,

I'm seriously disgusted at the poshlust possibly present in buying books for the sole sake of looking at them. It's almost as bad as buying a baby grand when you don't even play piano.

Putting my personal reservations aside, book-of-the month clubs are on their way out. With Amazon.com and other internet booksellers, why would you let someone else choose what books you get in the mail at horrible prices? I suggest buying individual books. You might like Easton Press (which is prohibitively expensive), Gryphon Editions, or Barnes and Noble's leatherbound classics section. You can also get some good-looking books by looking up "modern library" on e-bay (the old ones are probably what you want, and they're really cheap). You can also find good, actually old books at DI and used bookstores. Sometimes books look classier without their dustjackets (i.e., Harry Potter), so you might already have enough books to make a good-looking shelf.

I think that the demand for hardcover classics is being met. The BYU bookstore carries some Gramercy complete classics (available through Random House), and I frequently see them on the discount rack (meaning they aren't selling very well). I don't think it's a good idea for you to try and start this business, but I'm no expert on business. If you want to become an Amazon associate, eHow has a site on it. Let me know if you have further questions.

-wet blanket
Question #47544 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I work on the sixth story of an office tower in South Jordan overlooking a large expanse of wilderness. Due to the excellent vantage point and the loveliness of the view, the "office telescope" has found a permanent home in our particular office, and my office-mate and I often wile away the long hours by using said telescope to watch deer, hawks, marmots, and the like. Sometimes there are people down there too. I figure they're ecologists of some sort. They run sprinklers, insert little flags into the ground, and walk around doing something with nets.

About a month ago, a van pulled up in one of the fields and three men unloaded a big metal tub, which they filled with water using a hose. Then, roughly ten teenage boys, all dressed identically and armed with buckets, proceeded to fill their buckets using the water from the tub and then pour out the water in what appeared, from my vantage point, to be completely random locations on the ground around the tub. I would imagine this went on for about three hours. Then they all hopped back in the van and drove off, and I haven't seen them since (although the tub is still there, a month later).

What the heck is going on here? Why would anybody pour water around at random spots in a field for three hours? Why the buckets and the tub, when there was a perfectly good hose? (I believe it was also raining a bit at the time, which makes this even weirder.) Why the uniformed teenagers? Am I a witness to some shady doings here? It's like something from Hitchcock! Or, maybe Louis Sachar.

- Sinister-Looking Kid

A: Dear Sinister~

Huh... wow... umm... wow.

My best guess would be a military training exercise, but I agree that that's a bit... weird.

Unfortunately, the only lead I could think to get on this is by seeing the tub myself and looking for clues as to its origin. Investigating this would be fun enough that I might even come out there to the land of Jordan to do it, but your description of the area wasn't specific enough.

If you're content to leave this a mystery, so be it. If you want to get into it, send me an email.

...

...

And despite what you've heard, that was not me and my Death Squad. Don't even think about it that way, and definitely don't spread that theory; the results would be disastrous for us both.

~Hobbes
Question #47543 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What does this mean?
"Se correr o bicho pega, e se ficar o bicho come."
It's Portuguese, but the google translation of it doesn't make any sense.

- elbas

A: Dear elbas,

This is a common, sort of "folk saying" saying in Brazil. However, Brazil being full of folk-sayings, I did not become familiar with it until after my two years there when I heard about a movie called Cidade de Deus (City of God). The phrase is used as the tag line for this brutally honest, accurate, and gut-wrenchingly semi-documentary portrayal of life in "The City of God," a favella (ghetto) of Rio de Janeiro.

I just now ran the Google translation and you are appropriately confused: I have no idea where that came from.

Probably a similar phrase that we have in English is something akin to "damned if you do, damned if you don't." The word, "bicho," (pronounced, BEESH-oh), is a generic word that typically means "bug" or "creature," something small, but it can also mean "beast" or as street slang used between young adults ("Hey, bicho! What's going on?"). What "Se correr o bicho pega, e se ficar o bicho come," means then is, "If you run, the beast will get you and if you stay, the beast will eat you."

I can't help but think that this was an appropriate tagline for "Cidade de Deus" as it's about a young man trying to escape the often fatal violence, drugs, and cruelty of the ghetto: if you stay, it kills you and if you try to leave, it will kill you. It's also appropriate as "bicho" is how the very young, very violent gang members refer to themselves and each other. And they are the ones doing the killing and being killed. Very sad and very true.

- Rating Pending (who just got shivers thinking of the movie. It was almost as hard to watch as Schinlder's List.)
Question #47540 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I recently started seeing an off-campus psychologist for bipolar disorder, and it is his opinion that I should begin seeing a psychiatrist as well. He suggested in passing a psychiatrist who he said worked at the BYU student health center, but upon inquiry I have learned that this person is not affiliated with the health center at the present time and possibly never was.

So here's the question: what is the best way to go about finding a competent psychiatrist in the Provo area? Should I ask my psychologist for a different referral or go see a MD at the health center for a referral a la Board Question 44159 or is there a third option?

- Scared and Nervous

A: Dear Scared,

If you are on the BYU health plan, get a referral to a psychiatrist through a doctor at the health center. This way you can get psychiatric services at reduced charge. You may not even need a doctor's referral; when you make an initial appointment at the SHC (Student Health Center), ask if you can see a psychiatrist. I'm concerned that your psychologist hasn't been able to help you in this matter - has he never referred a client to a psychiatrist before? I suppose a third option would be to look up psychiatrists in the phone book, but I think you'll be better off getting a referral from your therapist or the SHC.

-The Supershrink
Question #47537 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

So I've decided I don't love what I'm majoring in right now enough to do it for the rest of my life. I'd really like to do something with music. I could start a band and try that route, but it's not secure enough of a future and I don't think the lifestyle is the most conducive to having the spirit (I know it is possible, just really difficult). I'd like to do something not so much on the legal side (law school would probably kill me) but am willing to do most anything else. My dream would be to get paid to find new bands for a label. Does a job like that even exist? What other types of jobs are there? What sort of degrees/programs are offered here at BYU that would help me get into said jobs?
Thank you
- happy jack

A: Dear Ethel,

Yes, in fact, there are agents that go about looking for bands; how on earth you would become an agent for a company, however, I don't know. It doesn't seem to me, though, that you could simply look in the paper and apply for a position doing that. I would recommend getting some sort of position at a record company.

Here's my crazy, ideal plan for achieving label-finding bliss. Go to a university that has a recording school based on the German philosophy of sound engineering - namely that recording engineers should be musicians themselves. McGill University in Montreal has a world-renowned school in sound engineering (you wanted a change of scene, right? Secretly?). You would have to have a lot of knowledge of music theory, and probably need to be able to play an instrument well, read music, etc. You would have to be trained in classical as well as contemporary music.

The reason I suggest this course of action is because recording engineers tend to be in the best position to find bands to recommend to labels, and labels tend to listen to their input, so long as they're trained by the modern German philosophy. If you make a niche for yourself, take on a lot of clientele, expose yourself to a lot of music, work for a variety of labels and become known for your excellent work, you very well may achieve your dream position of hearing new bands and setting them up with labels.

Also, I hear knowing the right people goes a long way. Brush up on your schmoozing skills and good luck. Don't forget to send me post cards from Montreal!

-Polly Esther
A: Dear hj:

Your dream job sounds a lot like what Julie Greenwald, the president of Atlantic Records, does.
My sister was interning at Def Jam Records and my cousin at RUSH Management; they both told me about a job opening as an assistant to Lyor Cohen. Lyor managed many of the biggest names in rap music. . . . by then he recognized I was more than an assistant and promoted me to the promotions coordinator of Def Jam Records.
It sounds like her career path mostly involved being at the right place at the right time. Even if you stick with your current major, after graduation, you could go to a location with an up-and-coming music scene, and talk your way into a relevant internship of assistantship.

---Portia
Question #47531 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I'm having a bit of a debate with a friend of mine over the meaning of a quote attributed to Tennyson. The quote is: "the happiness of a man in this life does not consist in the absence but in the mastery of his passions". In order to solve the debate we are having, I want to see the context of the quote, and I can't seem to find a reference other than the fact that it was Tennyson who said it. I've searched his poetry to no avail. Can you tell me where he said it? Did he actually say it? Or is it all just a big urban myth?

- Gidget

A: Dear Gidget~

I'm sorry, o good-looking and intelligent reader, but I was unable to find you context for this. I Googled this man halfway to oblivion and ran a text search on every poem he's ever written, and all I've determined is that it does not come from any of his poems.

In my searching, however, I did find multiple sources attributing the quote to him.

If you'd like more help with this, email me and we'll compare notes.

~Hobbes
Question #47515 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

When I have pizza delivered from Legend's Grille, do I tip the delivery man? Or can I have them add the tip on to be charged to my ID card?

-LF

A: Dear LF~

If it's delivered, it's always appropriate to tip. If you don't have cash, then whatever method of payment you use can be increased to account for said tip.

I was about to put in a plug for my favorite pizza place here, but I don't want to draw business away from good ol' BYU.

Have fun!

~Hobbes
Question #47514 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Recently, my parents and I purchased a 2002 Nissan Altima with about 100,000 miles on it. It was a great car, until it began to make a knocking noise. We got it checked by a mechanic, but he said that all was well, except for the car needed a lot of oil. Over the next few months, we added around 15-18 quarts of oil, and it finally died about a week ago. We had it towed to the Nissan dealership, and they ran a diagnostics test, and they revealed the problem to be that the catalytic converter broke apart, scoured the engine cylinders, the oxygen sensor melted onto the engine block, and all of these things allowed the oil, antifreeze, and fuel to mix together in the engine. All power was lost in the engine. The dealership said that it would be about $5000 to replace the engine, and all the sensors with the catalytic converter. We called Nissan, and discussed the issue with them. They said that there was nothing they could do, and it would be $5000 to replace the engine. The concern that we have is that this was a manufacturers defect, and not an issue caused by wear and tear. What can we do? Is there a class-action lawsuit that we can get in on? Thanks for your help!

- Stuck riding a bike

A: Dear Stuck~

I appreciate your plight, but I think the reason no one's been willing to touch this one is because we're not lawyers, and this is very much a question for a lawyer.

What I will advise you to do is to raise all hell with the salesman and with Nissan until somebody listens to you. Make noise. Be annoying. But obey the law, and get in contact with a lawyer immediately.

~Hobbes
Question #47496 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How one is to find their GRE score? For instance, if I received my score in the mail, was upset by it and tore it up, but then found out 6 months later that I really need it, how do I go about finding it?

GusGus

A: Dear GusGus,

You have to order additional score reports for $20 a pop. This website has the exact information.

-habiba
A: Dear GusGus,

If you sent your scores to a university, you could call up the records office and ask what your scores are. If you feel too ridiculous to do that, say you're calling to check to make sure they got the scores.

-Whistler
Question #47492 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

I'm not a music major, but is there any place on campus I could keep my guitar so that I could practice in between classes? I rented one of the "really big" lockers on the 5th floor of the H-FAC for this purpose, but alas, it is not big enough. While you're at it, do you know of any places I could practice without disturbing anybody/exposing my woefully lacking guitar skills to the world?

-Wannabe guitar player

A: Dear Wannabe,

If the lockers aren't big enough for you, I'd recommend that you get a job on campus that provides you with an office, such as a secretarial or computer-support position. In general, nobody will care too much if you store your guitar in your office; just clear it with your co-workers.

As for practice areas, use the practice rooms in the basement of the HFAC. Only music students can reserve time in them, but if the room is available at 15 minutes after the hour, it's free game. Just wander in and play to your heart's content.

-Yellow
Question #47490 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

How do toilet manufacturers determine an average size of toilet bowl for public use?

Does the average size differ between the US and Europe and other countries?

- Help! I'm falling in!!

A: Dear Help!~

According to toiletology.com, there's an internationally accepted standard. It's 12 inches from the back of the toilet to the waste hole. This varied from as little as 10 inches to as many as 14. Also, there is the "round" standard and the "elongated" standard.

Also, in my personal experience, European toilets are roughly the same size as their American counterparts, they're just shaped weird.

Especially in Germany.

~Hobbes
Question #47485 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

When did BYU first get an official web page? What was it like?

him

A: Dear not her,

The earliest record of a website at http://www.byu.edu is from December 3, 1998 at http://archive.org. That page says it was updated by the BYU web team on October 27, 1998, so we know that it was no later than that date. Earlier than that, though, it's hard to say. A BYU website may have existed earlier than that as an internal informational tool, but it doesn't seem to have been publicly available much prior to that time.

Click on the date above to see what it looked like.

-Yellow
Question #47482 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What is the approximate ratio of physical to digital money in the USA? I'm guessing that there isn't enough physical money in the world for everyone to withdraw all of the money that they have in their account.

Also, how does this compare to other nations? I'm guessing that Japan has a comparable or higher ratio. What about Europe?

Thanks!

- Fredjikrang

A: Dear Ichthyophile:

The term you are searching for is "reserve requirement," and Wikipedia has a comprehensive list for many nations. The fraction of physical money out of real money is dictated by law, and stands at 10% in the United States, 2.5% in Switzerland, 8.75% in Hungary. There is no official government requirement in the UK, so the banks decide for themselves, essentially. The latest data I could find for Japan was in '99: it was a low 0.59%.

---Portia
Question #47457 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I saw Stomp in Manhattan with my family, and it was awesome! I am wondering if they change their routines and if so, how often? Half of the show's skits or whatever they're called were similar to what they put on video, and half weren't.

(not romper) stomper

A: Dear stomper,

Here's what the good folks at STOMP had to say:
Thank you for your interest in Stomp. To answer your question regarding how often we change our routine, since the show opened almost 15 years ago, we have not changed it. We typically improvise during our routines but the steps that were created by the originators have stayed the same. We are in the process of creating a new routine as we prepare to celebrate our 15 year anniversary in February.
Yep. That pretty much covers it. Kind of crazy that they haven't changed it in 15 years.

-habiba
Question #47456 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

I heard that the Church is doing a translation of the D&C in ASL. As someone obsessed with ASL, I am wondering when this will be made available to the public.

- ASLLover

A: Dear Ethel,

Since the Church has translated the Book of Mormon into ASL, an assumption could be made that other scriptures will follow. I understand that such translations are extremely time consuming and would therefore probably be a long time in coming. As for now, though, the person I spoke to in translation said there isn't any official status on the Doctrine and Covenants.

-Polly Esther
Question #47452 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

What airlines will fly a dog from Stockholm, Sweden to Vienna, Austria?

-Woofers

A: Dear Voofers (as we say in Austria),

I emailed Austrian Airlines just a few days ago and got a very nice and very personalized email back (there are typos and everything!):
Dear Mr Pendin,g (sp?)

Thank you for your e-mail and for your interest in the Austrian Airlines Group.

The Austrian Airlines Group accepts animals for carriage either in the passenger cabin or in the hold of the aircraft, in accordance with the IATA life animal regulations. Animals must be accompanied by their owners in the same aircraft and passengers travelling with animals are required to provide all the necessary documents such as export/import/transit permits, health and vaccination certificates.

Only small dogs and cats are accepted for travel in the passenger cabin. The animal must be booked in advance and be clean, healthy, harmless, odourless, not pregnant and certain not to offend or disturb other passengers.

Animals travelling in the passenger cabin must be transported in a suitable leak- and smell-proof container and have to be kept in the container throughout the entire flight. The container cannot be placed on a seat, must fit under the seat in front of the passenger. It may not weigh more than 8kg or exceed 55x40x23cm, i.e. the maximum dimensions for standard carry-on baggage.

If an animal does not qualify for transportation in the passenger cabin it may be carried in the hold of the aircraft the passenger is travelling on, provided the latter is suitable for animal transportation (heating, ventilation, lighting). The passenger cannot supervise the animal during the flight. The animal must be in a suitable container and the passenger is responsible for providing sufficient food and water for the entire journey. The container must be adequately ventilated on at least three sides and be large enough to allow the animal to stand in an upright position, turn around lay down in comfort.

The Austrian Airlines Group carriers cannot be held responsible, if an animal is refused entry into a country, nor will the Austrian Airlines Group accept responsibility for any deterioration in the animal's health, occurring before, during or after the flight.

We kindly ask you to advise us of your flight details, the total weight of the cat/dog including the container and the dimensions of the container. Once we have received all the information requested above we will enter the details in your booking and notify you of the exact costs of transportation.

Please note that there is only a limit of animals allowed so if you can advice me the Flight number I can check if it is possible to transport the animal.

With best regards from Innsbruck

AUSTRIAN AIRLINES GROUP
Bettina Schinagl

Special Cases Desk
Fax: +43 (0) 5-1766-51043
specialcases@austrian.com
www.austrian.com
See! Very nice. I have flown with Austrian Airlines before and they are all about customer service.

- Rating Pending (who lost a 1,200 Euro ticket and when it was found on the previous plane, Austrian Airlines immediately refunded it. Whoops.)
A: Dear Dragon King of Arms,

Delta, at least, will fly pets. I'm not sure if they have the route you are looking for, though they do fly to Stockholm and Vienna (their site says connections may be available, but you have to use online reservations for assistance).

There are some restrictions/rules, what-have-you, on pet travel. To view them, go here.

-Azriel
Question #47448 posted on 09/23/2008 3:01 a.m.
Q:

Dear 100 Hour Board,

Can you please give me your opinions, some facts, and some good websites to study regarding the Presidential election? I feel very, very confused. At first I liked Obama, and I still like most of what he says, but I definitely don't agree with all he says and wants to do. When he chose Biden as his running mate, it made me like them less, because Biden's congressional voting record and his stand on most issues is the opposite of mine.

However, I really don't like McCain for a lot of the same reasons. I think I like Palin the best out of the four candidates, but I'm just learning about her. I think the best pair might be Obama/Palin, but I realize that won't happen. I definitely want to vote, but how do I choose when none of the candidates stand out for me? Please don't say write in another name, because I want to make my vote count...as much as it can with the messed up election process, anyway.

I love to read and listen to intelligent, thoughtful political opinions, so bring it on!

undecided girl

A: Dear undecided,

Do you live in a swing state? No? Then your vote won't "count" anyways, so vote for the person you agree with most regardless of which party they are for.

-obstreperous
A: Dear undecided,

Obama/Palin? I'm going to have nightmares.

You're never going to be completely satisfied with a candidate. You never agree with anybody 100%. You just need to do your research and decide who you think is best out of the TWO candidates, not the four. Let's be honest, vice presidents really don't do much, except shoot their friends. The real issue here is who you prefer between Obama and McCain. You'll want to become familiar with both of their campaign sites. I'd also recommend reading their literature. Obama's The Audacity of Hope is really quite revealing, and wonderful. Become aware of the big issues on the table and compare their strategies with your own opinions. I think it's also important to evaluate who you feel will be able to really inspire change. We're in sore need of it.

As for the Blownapart house, we stand with Obama.

-Linoleum Blownapart