A Little Culinary Quantum Physics to Answer Some of Life’s Vexing Questions

 

So much in life is uncertain, unknowable, and uncontrollable. Sometimes we can use a few answers. Maybe these aren’t the kinds of questions that keep us up at night, but there is still something comforting about round numbers.

 

A keg contains 15½ gallons, or the equivalent of 6.8 cases of beer. That’s 124 red party cups filled to the brim. [KegBooty]

 

 

 

There are 37 scoops in a gallon of ice cream.  [WikiAnswers]

 

 

 

Within their PVC-wrapped tubes, Smarties come in a combination of white, yellow, pink, orange, purple, and green. Each color’s flavor really is slightly different. They are packaged as a roll of 15. [Wikipedia]

 

Plain or peanut?
A 1 lb bag of peanut M&M’s contains approximately 190 candies; you get 405 M&M’s in a bag of plain.   [ChaCha]

 

 

Figure on 7,200 grains in a cup of rice.  [WikiAnswers]

 

 

 

It takes 1½ potatoes to make the Big Grab single serving size of chips. How many chips is that? Let’s just say not enough. [Askville]

 

If you squeezed every last drop of ketchup out of little foil packets, it would take 41 of them to fill a standard ketchup bottle; realistically, you’ll never wring out every last drop or hit the narrow bottle opening every time, so count on 50 packets. Of course, realistically, who’s going to attempt this?  [CalorieCount]

 

A box of Cornflakes contains a mere 981 flakes, [WikiAnswers] while the same size box of Cheerios holds almost 5,000 of the little O’s. More importantly, it’s easily enough to make Cheerio necklaces for 50 small children.  [WebAnswers]

 

 

 

And the proverbial two scoops of raisins in Raisin Bran? It begs the obvious question Just how big is said scoop? You have to wonder, is it the same scoop, independent of box size, or does the scoop get larger when the box size increases?

The raisin counts prove to be an average of 221 in the 15 oz. package,  337 raisins in the 20. oz. box, and a stingy double scoop of 321 in the 25.5 oz. size. The scoop-to-box-ratio increases proportionately until you get to the big box, which is strictly for bran flake enthusiasts. [Science Creative Quarterly]

 

Next time you go grocery shopping, remember that volume estimates are subject to all sorts of perceptual illusions—a fact that marketers never forget. Tall and narrow appears to hold more than short and wide, and tuna cans aren’t flattering to anything but tuna.

One Response to A Little Culinary Quantum Physics to Answer Some of Life’s Vexing Questions

  1. Thomas Dolby says:

    When I first started reading this, I got a little excited. Now that we have the internet, and the fact that 45 years had passed, surely someone, somewhere, could provide a scientific analysis that would definitively answer that age old Tootsie-pop riddle: How many licks does it take to get to the tootsie-roll center of a tootsie pop? Drat! The world may never know!

    http://time.com/3702741/tootsie-pop-science/
    http://www.today.com/food/how-many-licks-does-it-take-get-center-tootsie-pop-t2356
    http://www.livescience.com/49787-how-many-licks-to-reach-center-of-lollipop.html
    http://www.tootsie.com/howmanylick-experiments
    http://nypost.com/2015/02/09/nyu-cracks-the-question-how-many-licks-to-the-center-of-a-tootsie-pop/

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