By CHRIS PACKHAM
When we threw the floor open for reader questions, we had no idea so many of you would respond. When we asked you to include $5 for each question you wanted answered, we actually thought more of you would consider it — for those of you still on the fence, the PayPal link is in the sidebar! Five bucks guarantees a response to any question, including difficult math questions, as long as they can be googled.
After the jump, a selection of reader questions that were actually paid for, and a promise that we'll do this again as soon as enough of you provide your credit card numbers, or send enough money orders, that we can finally afford the bronze garden fountain we've been saving up for. Click here, or on this spectacular work of art:
From John R.:
You write a lot about Kansas City light rail. Yet you never seem to advocate for any specific plan. Do you even know what you're talking about?
That's a good question, John R., and, drawing on my years as an educator, I'd like to answer it via the Socratic method, whereby I ask you a series of questions so that you may explore the implications of your own position. In the following dialogue, I will be portrayed by Raphael's Socrates, and your simulated responses will be delivered via an artist's conception of how I imagine you, which is dressed in a horrible C-3PO costume:
I assert that you have no idea about the prevailing light rail plan.
Have you ever touched a lady?
Was the lady awake at the time?
Did you put rohypnol in her beverage?
Is that the only way you can get close enough to a lady to touch her?
Does that mean you are a degenerate?
Thanks a lot, John R. I hope that answers your question!
From Billy G.:
i really like batman. do you like batman? i like when his batpod comes out of the batmobil. it is cool. do you like rap music?
Billy, I have to admit that I haven't seen Batman yet — is the rubber suit still holding Michael Keaton's enormous geriatric beer gut in place? With regard to his "batpod" coming out of his "batmobil," does that mean what I think it does? Because if so, that's filth, and somebody's illegal day care operator is obviously not shaking a certain foul-mouthed little illegal day care attendee hard enough in response to his nasty language. Although if "batpod" means something else, forget I said anything.
Since I haven't been to the movies for a while, I forwarded your email to Faysal Alkhaiwani, the Plog shift supervisor, to get another perspective. A couple of hours later, he sent this response:
You must not punch out until bathrooms have been mopped. It is unfair to other employees when you do not finish sidework. I ask you before you leave, is bathroom mopped? You said yes. It was a lie. Floors were filthy. Do sidework, or I take you off the schedule.
From Yael A.:
The Olympics were awesome! Did you like the Olympics? Michael Phelps was great! I'm going to move to China and pursue the full realization of human freedom through the elimination of class divisions!
Well, Yael, I can only answer this question with science. And if you work the Punnet square, you'll discover that against all probability, I was selected for the dominant "sports indifference" allele. This was a huge disappointment to my dad — if he were a musician, his version of Harry Chapin's "Cat's in the Cradle" would involve a lot less business travel and a lot more Chicago Bears, but would still end with me asking for the keys to the car.
I once tried to bring his world and my world together by renting "Madden 2001" for Playstation — I figured that if I could somehow mentally hook football to whatever brain node makes me play video games, I might suddenly develop an interest in sports. Unfortunately, my plan backfired because the Madden games add so many layers of confusion to the existing tax-code-level complexity of football's actual rules that you'd have to be some kind of genetically manufactured replicant to enjoy it. Ordinarily, I'd say that all of that is "in my opinion," but as I mentioned, I've worked out the Mendelian Punnet square based on a DNA sample The Pitch requires employees to submit upon hiring, and so all of this is based on hard, empirical science. Therefore, the statement "fuck the stupid Olympics," the official sponsor of me hating the fucking Olympics, is the inescapable conclusion of scientific inquiry. Hope this answers your question, Yael!