Ask Chips 11: as juiced as MLB

Feb. 15, 2005, midnight | By Vivek Chellappa, Allison Elvove, Katherine Zhang | 19 years, 4 months ago

But not as tenuous as NHL

Several issues ago, we asked our readers for nominations to make our list for the best teachers at Blair. We received over 30 nominations for teachers, and excited at our newfound power, we set off to root out the unworthy to find out who would crack our list. We decided upon three tough questions to test our teachers' mettle: Why do you think you deserve to be on the Ask Chips list of best teachers, why do you think you are better than all other teachers, and what are your best two qualities? We started with Mr. Honigsberg, of the foreign language department. Mr. Honigsberg jumped right into the top spot on our list with an unabashed proclamation.

"People who speak French are better than other people,” he said, citing intelligence, style and looks as reasons for French superiority. Well, the patriots within us could not stand for such blasphemy, so we wandered over to the English office to talk to the amicable Ms. Fleischaker. Ms. Fleischaker refused to join in the fray we were hoping to create, instead choosing to attribute the quality of her students to reasons why she was thought so highly thought of.

Yearning for some conflict, we decided to next ask Magnet research teacher Dr. Torrence. But our conversation with her resulted in a roadblock. Dr. Torrence felt that teachers who really have to work to connect to their students are the ones who deserve accolades. "I have extremely gifted students,” she said. "You go across the hall and you have teachers working really hard to connect to students. They have a much harder job.” We took Dr. Torrence's message to heart. Ask Chips is a little out of its league when judging the best teachers. Coolest teachers, sure. So we don't think we can actually pick the ten best teachers at Blair. Well, we could…but the rankings would be biased and unfair. And although we usually are both of these things, when we're judging teachers we shouldn't be. Sorry guys.

And now, for what you want:

Pillsbury Doughboy asks: "Why do toasters always have a setting that burns the toast to a horrible crisp, which no decent human being would eat?"

Well, whenever the dedicated Ask Chips staff fails to know an answer, we google it. And what a job we did. In fact, we found a competitor to our vaunted service. Fortunately, they are based on Australia. Also, it's nice that their answers are well… you'll see…

So take a look at the Sidney Morning Herald.

Lindsay Ditcham, Eastwood asks: "Why do toasters have settings high enough to burn the bread to a crisp?"
As a lover of well-done toast, I find the number six setting on the average toaster inadequate and need to use two or three cycles at six to do the job. This is mainly due to the fact that heavy grainy breads such as Schinkenbrot, my favorite, require long toastings to brown them sufficiently.

That's right! Heavy, grainy breads like Schinkenbrot are the reason, Mr. Doughboy. God forbid your toastings do not brown sufficiently.

Snow dancer asks: "When will it snow? I feel that all my snow dancing has been in vain."

HA! We decided to wait until we HAD snow just so you'd feel foolish (that's how we do things). But now that we've had a couple of inches, we can look to the future. According to the 2005 Farmer's Almanac, which could be found here , snow is expected in early and late February and March. So keep up your chin, snow dancer. We have yet to see our best snowing. In the meantime, hang in there, keep dancing and look to the up-to-date snoWatch for advice and predictions.

Jansen Sheng asks: "If a mime commits suicide, does he use a silencer?"

Mr. Sheng! This certainly is not an original question. Steven Wright, the comedian, also posed such a question during a stand-up bit. In fact, if you google the question and the author (it's really all we do), you'd see that in 137 links, not a SINGLE one, has the answer. We shall be breaking new ground here. But assuming that the mime is just pretending to commit suicide, a silencer wouldn't be needed at all. After all, why would mime's ever need to commit suicide (we will now wait for a slew of comments from suicidal mimes).

cat who keeps meowing asks "meow?"

*ruff* Now run away, scaredy cat and don't come back until you're ready to ask us a real question.

mysterious blazer asks "Who am I?"

I think the best answer can be given by reader, nintendo who asked us "who are you?" But picture him saying it like the caterpillar from Alice in Wonderland, "Whoooooooooooo are youuuuuuuuuuu??"

confuzzled asks: "Exactly how long, in minutes and seconds, is one moment?"

According to an educational forum about religious tolerance (, one moment is "one fifty-eight thousand eight hundred and eighty-eighth part of an hour." Go figure.

Darling asks: "What exactly is UNIX?"

Similar to Mac OS and Windows, UNIX is just another operating system. There are different varieties of UNIX, and most are intended for use on multi-user servers. For more information, click here.

Waiter asks: "When you pour water, it doesnt come out in a perfect circle or anything, it forms has these nice little lines in the flow. Why?"

The main factor that influences water flow patterns is gravity, we reckon. We also suspect that the cohesion of water keeps it in a tight line shape thing instead of a perfect circle. Your science lesson for the day (whether it's right or not).

curious geroge asks: "is chinese food or curry yummier?"

Chinese food is yummier - real Chinese food. None of that Orange Chicken or Sweet and Sour Pork stuff.

Vivek disagrees. He thinks curry is superior (he eats a lot of it).

Alas! We cannot come to a decision. What do you guys think?

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Vivek Chellappa. As Vivek beings his final year in Blair, several new hobbies draw his attention: his passion for standup comedy and making lists with only one real piece of information. Vivek has recently developed a strong liking for the works of Mitch Hedberg, Dave Chapelle and … More »

Allison Elvove. Allison Elvove was a Co-Editor-in-Chief of Silver Chips Online during the 2004-2005 school year. She wrote more than 70 articles while on the staff and supervised 40 student journalists, editing articles on a daily basis. During her time as editor, Silver Chips Online won the … More »

Katherine Zhang. Katherine Zhang likes French baguettes, Pyotr Tchaikovsky, bookmarks, fresh boxes of rosin, Brad Meltzer novels, and of course, "JAG." In her free time, Katherine enjoys knitting, playing the violin, and reading - especially legal thrillers and books about people in faraway places and long-ago times. … More »

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