Friday, February 17, 2006

The Professor's Bean Soup and Other Stories

The Professor served me delicious bean soup for lunch--spicy and thick. The Professor is always worried that her food is not very good, and yet, when she opens up the crock pot, it's always something fabulous. She has a real gift for layering flavors. She also showed me her cute ankle corsets, which she uses to keep her ankles braced and herself upright. Now, I'm ready for a nap. It's a beautiful Friday and I should be enjoying it, but I have to work tomorrow, so it's more like Thursday and a half for me today. Not that I'm complaining. Thursdays are nice in their own ways as well. I did have a question for you engineer-y types, though, regarding the last post about Mrs. Wigglebottom. The "mmmmmrraawrrllmmmm" sound of the trucks. What's that called? Is that the Doppler effect? I looked on wikipedia, but I'm sad to say that I still can't quite tell if it's the same thing or not. I passed Physics by copying off of the Man from GM. What can I say? Speaking of him, I talked to him the other night and he was asking about y'all. He said, "So there's a large number of people who know me as the Man from GM? You don't tell them embarrassing stories about me, do you?" I had no idea the Man from GM could be embarrassed. But, since I have nothing else to write about and I have to end this post some way, I will tell you this story about the Man from GM. He was in my calculus class in high school. I loathed that class. There were nine of us in there--six boys and three girls. The three girls were required to sit in the front row, since "girls can't learn math as well as boys, your brains just don't work that way," but really it was so that the teacher could be a big letch. Fucker. Once we figured out that he had no interest in teaching us math and that he was really just waiting for a chance to sit at his desk and stare down our shirts, we'd often just announce, "Well, if all you're going to do is stare at our tits, we're leaving" and we'd wander down to the cafeteria and steal chocolate milk. Obviously, he didn't have a lot of control over the classroom. And, he sucked at math. So, he'd write out these long equations that covered all six blackboards in the room and just when he'd get to the end, the Man from GM would get up, grab another piece of chalk and start correcting the errors of the teacher. Man, that dude hated the Man from GM. He wasn't the only one. Our English teacher once duct taped the Man from GM into his desk and taped his desk to the floor and then taped his mouth shut. After class, she just left him there. I don't know who cut him loose eventually; he says it was me but I doubt it. I wasn't always very nice to him. But anyway, here's how the Man from GM got his job at GM. He was a freshman in college when GM was working on the big overhaul of the Corvette and GM had invited all these baby engineers up to Michigan to start wooing them. So, all these kids are touring the facilities and the guy giving the tour asks if they want to see the new Corvette and they all say "Sure" and he takes them and shows it to them. And, bless his heart, the Man from GM gets down under the car and starts shouting out potential problems. Then, he springs up and pops the hood and starts rifling around in the engine and asking more questions. Can you imagine? And the guy giving the tour is just standing there dumbfounded. "What?" The Man from GM asks in his smart-ass annoying manner. "You're touching the car." One of the other students says. "How else am I supposed to see how it works?" The guy giving the tour says, "I've shown this car to every group of students who's come through here this semester and you're the first kid to get under the car to take a look. When you graduate, you come work for me." And so he did.

14 Comments:

Blogger Yankee T said...

Excellent story about the Man.

2/17/2006 01:14:00 PM  
Blogger Exador said...

Yes, it's the doppler effect that makes the trucks' sound higher pitched as it approaches and lower pitched as it goes away.

2/17/2006 02:08:00 PM  
Blogger Aunt B said...

Wayward Boy Scout, is there anything you aren't good for? Thanks.

2/17/2006 02:11:00 PM  
Blogger Exador said...

If you're nice, I'll tell you all about how Rayleigh scattering makes the sky blue.

2/17/2006 02:30:00 PM  
Blogger Aunt B said...

I know you're just teasing, but I'd actually love that.

2/17/2006 02:39:00 PM  
Blogger bridgett said...

Yes, tell us why the sky is blue -- I've got a kid who is a science geek and would love to learn something a little more sophisticated (and accurate) than what her primary school teachers can lay on her.

2/17/2006 03:22:00 PM  
Blogger jag said...

I think I'm in love with the Man from GM.

2/17/2006 03:59:00 PM  
Blogger Exador said...

The first thing to remember is that the light refracts (is bent) when it enter the atmosphere (think of a pink floyd album cover prism) and that the amount of bend is proportional to the wavelength (frequency of the light). Remembering ROYGBIV, the blues are at the higher frequency and the reds are at the lower. There's a bunch of math, but just remember that the light bends more for higher freqency.

When you look directly at the sun, it looks white because the light is coming at a right angle to the atmosphere; no bend, you see all the colors.

Away from the sun, you are seeing light that is actually hitting the atmosphere and bending. The lower frequency stuff doesn't bend much, so you never see it. The high frequency blues bend a lot and get turned to hit you like the cosmic rays that they are, so you see them.

I had to go to Wikipedia to remember all of it, and they point out that at sunset, you are looking through a bigger chunk of atmosphere, so the white rays have a chance to be bent/scattered/refracted several times, filtering out all but the lowest frequency, hence you see a red sunset.

2/17/2006 04:08:00 PM  
Blogger Exador said...

Before some geek calls me out:
The light isn't really bent, so much as it's scattered, but bending is a little easier to grasp.

2/17/2006 04:11:00 PM  
Blogger Aunt B said...

Ooo, ooo, tell us about Bose-Einstein condensates next! I love to hear about Bose-Einstein condensates and how they can stop light.

2/17/2006 05:28:00 PM  
Blogger Exador said...

I hate quantum mechanics. It's all statistics and probability. YUCK!

2/18/2006 10:12:00 AM  
Anonymous The Man From GM said...

To: Aunt B's loyal readers..

Although, I am not a regular reader, I thought that I should set a few facts straight....

As many of you know, sometimes Aunt B does not let the truth get in the way of a good story.

1.) As an example of Aunt B's 'optional truth'... The morning we met for the first time in 6th grade she informed me that she was a vegitarian. And that pretty much has set the tone for the next several years.

2.) Our high school calculus teacher was much more interested in baseball than he was in female breasts. Although I do not doubt that he looked at the three young ladies in the front row.. I am resonably sure that he had more than one "intimate lockeroom experience" in college that I don't need to know about.

3.) I don't particularly remember correcting our Calc teacher regularly (as I was much more concerned about sneaking to woodshop).. However I do remember solving a very basic quadratic equation that he could not.

4.) Our english teacher never tied me to a chair.. Although she threatened constantly.. The real story here is that she repeatedly informed me that I would never get anywhere because I didn't particularly care about spelling... The key bit is that she always did it in a derogatory, self righteous manner..(this is why computers were invented, and why this blog software should have spell check)... Later on in life I got a minor in technical writing, have authored serveral technical papers, and have started the outline for a book in my area of expertise. HA HA HA... (that's my last laugh)

5.) Aunt B.'s story of how I got hired by GM is entirely fictional.. Although, her version rambles on a bit, its probably better than the real story that involves small race cars.

6.) Aunt B left out the best story of all... During one of our high school graduation events (honor society I think)... Our principal informed the audience that I was going to 'mechanics' school.. To this day I beleive that he does not know the difference between a mechanic and a mechanical engineer. This 'principal' later became superintenant of a neighboring school.. (And we wonder why kids are not learning anything)..

6.) Two words.. "The Underground"

I guess that this lengthy reply just about covers it.. However, if encouraged, I could probably come up with serveral "fun" Aunt B stories from years past.

Truthfully Yours

The Man From GM

2/19/2006 05:44:00 PM  
Blogger Aunt B said...

"Oh, I tell the truth!" Whatever!

1. We didn't meet in the sixth grade. We met our junior year of high school.

2. She did too tape you into the chair. Do you want me to call your mom and ask her to verify that in front of everyone?

3. If the story of how you got your job at GM is not true, it's because you're a big liar, liar pants on fire, because that's what you told me.

At least I didn't tell them how your ancestors got run out of Ireland for annoying the piss out of the rest of the country.

2/19/2006 05:47:00 PM  
Anonymous The Man From GM said...

Aunt B...

I stand corrected.. It was not 6th grade.. we met the summer between Sophomore and Junior year of high school..

I was never taped to a chair in high school. (usually I have to pay extra for that sort of thing)

The real story about my being hired at GM... First I was hired my sophomore year in college..

I was the captain of the Formula SAE team for my college (small race car built by students)... The competition for these cars is at Detroit (Pontiac Silverdome to be exact)... Between events a HR rep from GM came over and asked if I wanted a job at GM.. I said yes. Its just that simple.

The Man From GM

2/19/2006 06:21:00 PM  

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