Roy Exum: Oh, The Boiling Water Trick

Thursday, January 9, 2014 - by Roy Exum
Roy Exum
Roy Exum

When the Polar Vortex made much of the United States colder than Antarctica at the start of this week, it immediately became the rage for many to try out the “boiling water trick.” It seems that if you take boiling water and hurl it into the intense cold air, the mass turns instantly into a cloud of snow. The result is pretty cool, to cop a phrase.

You see, if you spray cold water, it clings to tiny sodium or calcium particles and crystalizes like an icicle. But boiling water – which is actually steam when it is heated over 212 degrees -- has a lower viscosity than cold water. The hot water, or steam, breaks into tiny droplets when it hits the frigid air and will vaporize almost instantly due to a high ratio of surface area-to-volume. There you have it -- your have your own snow cloud.

Sadly, you also have a rash of those “Ya’ll Watch This!” yahoos who wind up in the emergency rooms with third-degree burns. The Los Angeles Times, in a stirring expose of mankind, reported yesterday that at least 50 of the silly experiences didn’t work due to what is politely called “the human element.” That’s right; the modern-day Einsteins promptly threw scalding water onto themselves in a marked lack-of-technique.

According to a funny story written by Matt Pearce, our victims had seen the stunt pulled on the ABC Nightly News and other TV stations. Jason DeRusha, a news anchor in Minneapolis, tweeted, “Just threw a pot of boiling water in the air. Kids thought it was awesome. Do it people.”

And soon the cries from the clowns started rolling in. “I’m working in the ER today & this woman just got 2nd degree burns from trying to freeze boiling water in the air!”

Other lines found by the Times’ staff included:

* * *

--  "Blayne and I just did the boiling water thing and I accidentally threw all the BOILING water against the wind and burnt myself."

--  "So I did the thing where you make snow and not all the boiling water froze and now my head is burned."

--  "I did that boiling water thing except I threw it weird so it came back and burnt my hand."

--  "So I did that boiling water snow thing but the wind whipped it back at me and my hands are STILL burning lol I can't hold anything."

--  "so my mom threw boiling water outside and she threw it on herself and burnt herself."

--  "Tried throwing boiling water in the air. Burnt my hand."

* * *

Is America great or what? There is one hysterical tape on YouTube that I’d share if it didn’t have the cussing when the scalding water hits the performer. DeRusha, the Minneapolis TV guy, hurriedly Tweeted, “Sorry that anyone got hurt! I look forward to all the posts from Minnesotans who did this safely.” On Tuesday he issued another Tweet. “None of these people (who got hurt) are from MN or followers of mine.”

Boy, you can’t cure stupid. Anything that involves electricity, ladders, scalding water or blood requires a professional. I’m telling you: just take their word for it.

IN OKLAHOMA CITY a group has submitted drawings of a seven-foot statue to honor Satan at the state Capitol, near where a 10-Commandments statue was dedicated in 2012. The New York-based Satanic Temple said the sculpture will be of Baphomet, a goat-headed figure with horns, wings and a long beard that's often used as a symbol of the occult. Smiling children will be around his throne. The state’s Preservation Commission said they will consider any application but state Rep. Don Armes, (R-Faxon) told reporters, “I think you've got to remember where you are. This is Oklahoma, the middle of the heartland. I think we need to be tolerant of people who think different than us, but this is Oklahoma, and that's not going to fly here."

ILLINOIS STATE POLICE have approved over 13,000 applications for concealed-carry permits since Jan. 1 and on Sunday, the first day applicants could file electronically, there were 4,525 requests on the web site.

A WAITRESS AT CRACKER BARREL in Lincoln, Neb., was just being friendly when she answered questions about her life as she served an anonymous couple, telling them she was saving her money to go to Trinity Bible College in North Dakota. So imagine her surprise as they gave her a tip for $1,000 and a check to Trinity Bible College for $5,000 to help with tuition.

A WAITRESS AT TWISTED FISH Restaurant in Seaside, Oregon, was handed an envelope with her tip and it was filled with crystal methamphetamine. Whoops! The cops came quickly and put the two guests in jail.

ONLY ONE IN EVERY FOUR kids between the ages of 12 and 15 meet the fitness guidelines outlined in the Let’s Move anti-obesity program introduced by Michele Obama, according to the government’s Centers for Disease Control.

Petty County Tyrants - And Response (2)

Last week's County Commission meeting was quite a show. Ironically, the preacher giving the opening invocation asked that "truth may prevail" because that is the opposite of what happened. What we actually saw was bickering, verbal attacks, and a collapse of democratic discourse. It is typically not my approach to "attack" individuals, but as each commissioner made public statements, ... (click for more)

Enforce The Bond Forfeiture In Padgett Case

Now that Christopher Padgett  was taken into custody by the Chattanooga Police Department and checked back into the Hamilton County jail, I trust the judge will do no favors and enforce the forfeiture of Padgett's entire $350,000 bond. Padgett was accused of murder, he was granted $350,000 bond and he ran. Padgett was found guilty. A convicted murderer was ... (click for more)

2 Witnesses To A Murder Refuse To Testify At Jury Trial

Two men who prosecutors say witnessed a murder in Hixson on Jan. 31, 2014, on Wednesday refused to tell their story to a jury. Criminal Court Judge Barry Steelman ordered Andrew Biro and Jacob Tyler "T.Y." Keel to answer questions from prosecutor Lance Pope, but they both refused. Biro had said during testimony in General Sessions Court that Christopher Levi Parker threatened ... (click for more)

PETA And Humane Educational Society Offer Reward For Torture-Killing Of Dog After Envelope Mailed From Chattanooga

An envelope postmarked from Chattanooga and containing a photo of a dog strung between two trees arrived at PETA's office in Virginia Tuesday, along with the severed ear of a dog. PETA members are offering a reward of $5,000-and the Humane Educational Society of Chattanooga has added another $1,000-for information leading to the arrest and conviction of the person(s) responsible ... (click for more)

CCS Wins, Notre Dame Falls in A-AA State Soccer Tourney

MURFREESBORO -- Chattanooga Christian sophomore Addie Henry celebrated her 16th birthday in style here Wednesday night with a goal and an assist to help CCS defeat Madison Academic Magnet (Jackson, Tenn. – 16-5-3), 3-0, in a A-AA state quarterfinal match played at the Richard Siegel Soccer Complex. Teammates Kyra Duble and Olivia Hoffman also scored goals, while Taylor Price ... (click for more)

Randy Smith: Mocs Hoops Looking For Huge Season

In the midst of what is an exciting college football season, I thought we might talk some college hoops as the Chattanooga Mocs are gearing up for what could be an amazing 2016-2017 season. Coach Matt McCall returns practically every starter from last year's squad that won the SoCon regular season and tournament titles as well as a school record 29 wins. The Mocs scored wins at ... (click for more)