Miles and Miles of Driveway

So right after Darth Vader came a long straight stretch of the road. We got to thinking about just how many miles of pavement there was in the US. It’s mind boggling, if you stop and think about it.

stop and think here

Mind boggling indeed. There are so many variables. First of all, how wide a road would you translate our total pavement into? Do you count shoulder pavement? It’s next to the road but not really. And sidewalks? And parking lots? And driveways?

We decided that driveways were probably the most quantifiable. So this is what resulted:

– The 2000 US census says there are 115,904,641 homes total.
– Assume that half have driveways. That’s ~50 million driveways.
– Assume that the average driveway is 20 feet long and one lane wide.
– 50,000,000 driveways × 20ft = 1,000,000,000 feet of driveway one lane wide
– 1,000,000,000ft ÷ 5,280ft/mile = ~190,000 miles of driveway one lane wide
– The equatorial circumference of the earth is ~25,000mi
– 190,000mi ÷ 25,000mi = 7.6

So a one lane road of US driveway pavement would go around the earth more than 7½ times!

That’s a lot of driveway.

I was driving down 101

I was driving down 101 yesterday evening around dusk, with the sun a little bit behind me. I looked in my rear view and saw a guy on a motorcycle with his unbuttoned shirt flying free and a helmet with edges that turn up. But in my rear view all I could see was his silhouette. Know what I thought he was at first? Darth Vader on a Harley.

Burger King Diet

Eat Burger King, get smaller. Really, it works. That’s why the 49ers have to have lunch catered at their minicamps. Da word from Coach Mooch:

These guys will never cook for themselves, and then they wind up leaving here and going to Burger King. Then, even if they’re lifting, they wind up shrinking, so this is designed to avoid that.

What Makes a Muffin Tick?

Muffins are complex organisms. Their diversity could perhaps be compared to that of us humans. They probably have as many flavors as we have races. Not only that, but there are characteristics that allow other muffin groupings. For example, we have adults and children, they have big muffins and little muffins. We have big adults and little adults, they have gargantuan big muffins and reasonably-sized big muffins. We have well-endowed and not-so-well-endowed men and women, they have large-topped muffins and not-so-large-topped muffins. I shall refrain from blogging about my muffin top size preference here.

In an attempt to better understand the muffin species, I took it upon myself to dissect one of its members. I was going to eat it anyway but I figured I’d be giving its short existence a bit more meaning by allowing it to make a contribution to science.

And now, the autopsy results. In order to keep my blog reasonably loadable for those of you with dialup connections, the report can be found here.

Speaking of freezers, are our

Speaking of freezers, are our fridges built upside-down? Why does the freezer go on top? Doesn’t heat rise and cold sink? Doesn’t it seem easier to have the coldest part of the fridge at the bottom? Then I wouldn’t have my Frozen Brita Waterfall problem.

Or is the current design actually taking advantage of the fact that cold sinks? Is the freezer on top so as not to waste the cold that sinks out of it? So that any escaping cold will just contribute to the cool of the rest of the fridge?

I know what you’re thinking. You’re thinking “That’s stupid. There’s no such thing as cold. There’s only heat, and cold is the absence of heat.” Ha! I already knew that! So just take everything I wrote above and reverse the logic.

Still, I’m thoroughly confused. I’m more confused than the last time I said I was confused. This one topic has confused me for years. Someone please explain this to me. Is our current refrigerator design more efficient, or would we benefit from turning the thing upside-down?