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How Does it Work? Episode 10: The Minivan

As far as vans go, the minivan has to be one of the smallest.  You can chalk this up to technological smallening, or nanotechnology.  The minivan has many of the features of a regular car or van, except it’s not!  First of all, the standard 4 and a half seat arrangement has been drastically altered in the interest of people who can’t stop having babies.  Secondly, a roof that normally slopes back down to the butt-end is adjusted to make head-room where there is usually trunk room.  Eat your heart out, Professor Albert Einstein!  Unfortunately, there is some nasty folklore that says only the mothers of child-aged soccer players drive minivans.  This kind of demented thinking is the only thing holding the minivan back from being the most celebrated vehicle sub-type in the civilised world.  Nevertheless, car scientists and small-van enthusiasts will flock to minivan museums for years, to marvel in the wonder of these fantastic machines.  Plus, lots of them have DVD players and little TV screens inside them.  Holy smokes!  With all these incredible features in the minivan, it’s a wonder that it can still fly, just like the bumblebee.  But at least now you know how it works.

How Does it Work? Episode 9: Pollution

If there’s one thing that makes the world a gross place, it’s definitely pollution. Pollution can be defined as something that makes the world a gross place. Some examples of pollution include chocolate bar wrappers, car exhaust, and anything made of lead, pretty much. Unfortunately, people really like buying pollution. The tricky thing is that pollution is always disguised as something really cool, like a chocolate bar, or a sweet new car, or anything made of lead. But something happens after someone buys those things, it magically turns bad. How does it work?  Well, when we don’t have something, that thing seems great, but once we have something and use it, it’s not so great, and voila! Pollution! Thankfully we invented recycling, which is a process of turning things we don’t want anymore into things we feel guilty if we don’t buy. This process of guilt induction is the magic ingredient to solving the problem of pollution. Another solution would be to disobey the laws of physics, but the Police of Physics are pretty tough, and I don’t want to even get into it.

How Does it Work? Episode 8: The Microwave Oven

Microwave ovens have been a mystery for over 6,000 years. It was only recently that we even invented them, before that it was an even bigger mystery. The unique thing about microwaves is the way their doors open from side to side, instead of the standard upsy-downsy manner. This actually has to do with the physics. Microwaves are named after the primary food they cook, microwave popcorn, which was next to impossible to cook before microwaves. Microwaves emit beams of microtrons (a smaller version of the macrotron) at precisely the right levels to imitate human fire. The beams are so active, that metal will just go crazy if it’s inside, because metal is the antithesis of microwave popcorn, so the anti-matter involved is at exactly the wrong frequency wavelength. If you open the door to a microwave while it’s cooking, some of these microtrons will absorb into your skin, and make you feel like your chicken is rubbery. That’s one of the remaining mysteries of the microwave oven.  The other is inside-out butter melting, but really, who knows, right?

How Does it Work? Episode 7: Plants

Plants are all over the place, but some people say that isn’t enough. Plants come in all different sizes. Some you can step on, and some that are way bigger than the average guy. Most plants are coloured green, because that’s how nature tells us what’s an animal and what isn’t. If it’s green, it’s probably not an animal, so no worries if you’re out in the forest and you see something green, because hey, it isn’t going anywhere. Plants live off mostly dirt, but ironically, dirt lives off mostly plants, so it’s just a game of back and forth. Plants also like water a lot, and several plants need sunlight to activate the food-eating process. It’s kind of like a microwave and kraft dinner in a way. That’s pretty much how plants work.

How Does it Work? Episode 6: The Telephone

The telephone, or “smellophone” as it is humourously referred to in certain circles, is one of the seven technological wonders of the 20th or 19th century. Nobody really knows how it was invented, probably because things that amazing make really good secrets. The telephone is a thing that your voice can go through, like a paper towel roll, or puberty. To demonstrate how a phone works, take two tin cans, and connect them with a string. Then, watch what happens when you talk into one of them.  A good can always knows when to listen.  Anyway, this is a good way to tell if your string is made of telephone cable.  If it isn’t, you will hear a beep-beep-beep coming out of your leftover Ragu.  That’s pretty much how a phone works, I guess.