Monday, October 1, 2012

Anonymous asked:
How many helium balloons would it take to lift an elephant to the top of the Chrysler building?

According to Google, 1 liter of helium is enough to lift 1 gram. Also according to Google, your typical balloon would contain roughly 12 liters of helium, and an African bull elephant (the biggest kind of elephant) probably weighs about 7000 kg, or seven million grams.

So a rough estimate? Maybe somewhere in the neighborhood of 600,000 balloons. That would be a good place to start.

You would probably need more. You’re not just lifting the elephant, you’re also lifting the balloons and the strings. And you’ll need some heavy-duty strings too, since I imagine your basic length of yarn is going to snap under the weight of an African bull elephant no matter how many helium balloons are attached to it.
At some point you would need to question why you aren’t simply renting a blimp.

There is an additional problem with this scenario in that the Chrysler building isn’t open to the public—it’s leased out to private buildings. The elephant wouldn’t be allowed past the lobby. Once you airlifted it to the top, it would have nowhere to land. So now the question is, what happens when an elephant falls 1,050 feet onto the pavement of east Manhattan. I’m not sure I want to know the answer.

Anonymous asked:
How was your first chorus practice this week?
It went fine.

There are five pieces in our repertoire: Mozart’s “Te Deum” and  “Laudate Dominum”; Beethoven’s “Fantasia”; and Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Requiem”. On Thursday’s rehearsal, we started on the latter two.
For my part: never heard them before this week. So I’ve got some learning to do. I don’t know the melodies and I don’t know the words. The plan is to try my best to pick it up as we go along.

It was certainly a productive first day, I guess. We got some work done on the Beethoven and the Lloyd Webber. I got a decent handle on the German lyrics to the Beethoven piece.

It’s been a long time since I last sang in a choir. I’ve missed it. Choral singing is a team effort—each chorus member contributes only a tiny portion of each piece, and it all comes together into something bigger than the sum of its parts. I think that’s beautiful.

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